I'm pretty happy with that part. But it took some work and proper timing. Lots of offers and searching over a 2 year period, and probably 10 years of saving up $$$ for a downpayment (whilst most of our money went toward rent). We found some awesome $200k houses but those disappear with cash buyers within a day or two of being listed. And those prices don't come up often in my area, which is not exactly a "hot" part of California. If we had to buy our house today, we couldn't afford it. I have no interest in the whole buying/flipping thing which is how most middle class folk survive the California housing market, so we timed it to buy as close to the dip as possible (which we missed by a lot, but definitely avoided a peak). I learned from my parents and mother-in-law. They scrimped and saved and bought a house and then...........lived there for decades. They never bought into that move-every-5-years-into-a-bigger-crap-shack illness that plagues this land, so I follow by example. Maybe not very exciting, but it's the only way to live a modest life instead of being strapped for taco cash at all times. Plus I like my house. We have mulberry trees and a yard big enough for a large insane dog, and it was built in the '70s so even in subUrbia we have actual privacy. Apologies for the most adult post I've ever made. I'll get shitfaced and make a Slayer poll soon, hopefully.