The realtor is telling us this is a good neighborhood. Better than the one the house we just looked at was in.

“Good schools” she comments.

When I look up the elementary school, it’s rated “1”, where as the school in the not as good neighborhood is rated “1+”.


Demographically speaking, the “good” neighborhood is overwhelmingly White and the not so good neighborhood is overwhelmingly Latino.


(Either way, I’m a minority in both communities.)

There is clearly a difference between a 1 and a 1+, but the 1 school got a 7 out of 10 on another site and the 1+ a 6.


Whose definition of “good” are we supposed to be going by?

Also, how “good”  can we expect to get in terms of what we can afford?

Live in a condo in a maybe better neighborhood, as defined by safety, accessibility, decent nearby public school or buy a tiny, old, single family home that may or may not fall into the Earth or collapse on us, in a neighborhood defined as good.

While I appreciate advice from people, most have the money to make other choices. No, very friendly and responsive lender, I don’t want to mess with a house that may or may not have foundation problems, but if there’s a better house for under $200K in this neighborhood, I would know about it.

Trying to decide where to live is like trying to predict the future. And while that’s impossible to do in any situation, I’m terrified of making the wrong decision.

Why are people even stuck with Bad options? I agree that a lot of money should perhaps get you nicer things, but the baseline should start at Good.

Everyone should have access to good education, good healthcare, and affordable housing.

Instead, we’re all clawing for the smallest piece of pie, ready to shove someone out of the way for something better. 90% of this is driven by having a kid. What hoops of fire do we have to jump through to get him into a “good” school? What neighborhoods can we live in where there’s a low chance that something will happen to him while he’s playing outside? What space is big enough to share with an eventual teenager?

Is Meryl Streep going to show up and take my kid away?

What sacrifices are we willing to make in order for him to maybe be happier, or well adjusted, or, I don’t even know, not miserable and blaming us for his situation while living under the same roof?

Is there ever truly any sense of security? Is homeownership better than renting? What if the value of the home goes down? What if the neighborhood goes to shit? What if the school doesn’t stay at a “1” rating?

The again, while I don’t have to worry about the value of my rental and can call the landlord whenever something goes wrong AND not have to pay for it, what if he decides to sell the place. Or really, WHEN?

Ah well, we’re all going to die. The End.


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