Houses, houses everywhere…

I keep going back and forth about buying a house right now. My mom keeps reminding me that we are on the hook for the mortgage for the Va house. We have renters, but what if they bug out? What if we can’t get new ones? If we are simply renting here, and things go south, we can at least downsize more easily. At the same time though, we might as well take advantage of the low interest rates and lower home prices, right?\
Then there is the issue of what size and cost of house we should we go for. I have no idea how much we can actually afford. We pay our bills fine and buy stuff we want, like shoes and books and just this week a new tv- wheeee, if there is money in the checking account. (Money going into savings, etc is not to be touched.) Bigger sometimes means just more to clean, which is totally uncool, but I don’t want to underestimate how much we can afford and be in an uncomfortably smaller or older house.\
My dream house is the white fancy one I posted before, with the awesome kitchen (and awesome everything else):\
But it is a two-story house, so it isn’t really my dream house, but it is really darn close. Like, 95% close.\
There are other options, like the smaller, newer, less expensive house with the fabulous sun room.\
Or the least expensive house that is almost exactly like the house we are in right now, except with only a one-car garage and no pantry:\
How much is it worth to me for a two-car garage? The house is kind of boxy and not as open and airy as some of the others we’ve seen. For that reason, it isn’t as appealing to me. On the other hand, it would be easier to separate and keep the noise down as we do different activities in the house, like dish washing vs video games vs tv watching vs working on the computer.\
The things all of these houses have in common: right school area, formal living room and casual living room, and at least 3 bedrooms plus a bonus room (and have kitchens, bathrooms, etc, heh).\
So, yea. Someone make the decision for me. :)\
Above all, I am really thankful we can afford a house, any house, in an area with such a good school because that is the most important thing of all. Of course, having such a good school improves the chances that my kids will get into an Ivy League school, which means I need to double the contributions into their college funds. Oy. And I am back to square one.