A Consumers Guide to Buying a Home in the Age of NAFTA

Posted In: Politics, National, Opinion,   From Issue 620   By: the Unreasonable Man

17th August, 2006     0

My wife and I have been looking at houses recently, and of course, in this current economy it is what they term a 'Buyer's Market'. Perhaps some of you out there have also been looking at houses. Here's a word of advice (to be screamed as loud as possible while flailing arms): Don't Do It!

However, if you feel as though you must do this extremely silly thing and actually buy the damn place, stop for a second and add up the total principal & interest for a 30-year mortgage. The sum total would make even the Federal Reserve Chairman buy a new drool bucket.

So let's assume its too late and you've gone and bought the house because the real estate agent (a woman wearing three different plaids and Rambo earrings) assured you it would be snapped up by someone else any minute. Right. Homes with fake Ocelet skin wall paper in the living room are really big this year.

Whatever your placement on the real estate journey, it is important to understand how realtors often distort, like doctors & lawyers, perfectly good words of English into strange new meanings.

Examine, if you will, this convenient compendium of real estate terms and their correct definition:


Cute -      Small
Charming -  Very small
Bungalow - Very, very small
Doll House  - Hope you're a family of dwarfs
Florida Room - The coldest room in the house
A real fixer-upper - Even the termites left
Large Lot - Middle of Nowhere
Country living - Really nowhere
Your own estate - I mean, absolutely nowhere
Owner transferred - His office is a shambles, too
Corporate owned - I knew we should have checked his resume
This one won't last long - Don't examine the foundation too closely
Historical District - We changed the street signs and doubled the Taxes
Just listed - I'm the 8th agent on this dog
Owner anxious - As well he should be.
Not a drive by - Nor a low swoop in an F-15
Private Street - Neighbors are Satanists
Lots of extras - Former owners were kind enough to leave the wallpaper
Why pay rent? -  What price freedom?
Low utility bills - Furnace conks out
Drastically reduced - Priced close to reality
Renovated farmhouse - We kicked the pigs out of the kitchen last week.

FINANCING TERM                          ORDINARY TERM
Truth in lending                                        The Feds made us
Creative financing                                      Blood from a turnip
Balloon                                                     Blows up in your face
Adjustable rate mortgage                          We want more money
Commission fee                                          More, damn you!
Processing fee                                                  I said MORE!
Application fee                       Okay, turn your pockets  inside out
Mortgage insurance                              What's that in your shoe?
Recording fees                              Miss Dixon, we've got a
                                             Problem here. Please call the guard.


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