The house prices in CA where I live (Orange County) are insane.
The average low-end house is $550,000. Two stories and a small back yard is $700,000. A slightly bigger back yard brings up the price to $800,000.
Suppose you put 20% down on a $550,000 house. You pay the loan off for 15 years.
Buy 3 bedroom house: 4000 a month for 15 years, about 800 of which are taxes
Rent 3 bedroom apartment: 2000 a month.
After 15 years: 720000 paid on house
After 15 years: 360000 paid on rent
How long would it take to break even?
Savings of $1,200 a month for 25 years!
So to make financial sense, you have to live in the house for 40 years, at which point you break even.
What’s worse about this is $4,000 a month is quite a lot of money. It’s not all post-tax dollars due to writing off interest, but nonetheless unless you make $100K a year you’re going to be hurting. To be safe you really need a two income household.
A small house just isn’t worth that much damn money. That is why in other parts of the country houses can still be found for $250K.
Unfortunately, the only areas that I know of that have game companies are Silicon Valley and Southern CA, both of which are the highest priced areas in the country.
Funny but true: These prices reflect the recent downturn! A year ago the numbers were 15% higher.