The "Homeless" part of the blog title beckons.
It turns out the house I rent is going on the market and I'll likely have to move again. The kicker on moving again in Hayward is there are virtually no rentals. I lucked into this one. Most rental units have waiting lists.
I spent part of today approaching banks for a loan, potentially buying the place. On the positive side, I'm building equity -- and my monthly payment would decrease by hundreds of dollars. By the time I retire in 15 years, I would have savings. (I had to look up that word to see what it means.)
But I must deal with reality. That is I have a less-than-positive credit score. And "less-than-positive" means "crappy." And crappy is a synonym for another word. For instance, this year, I didn't get a W-2. I received a W-0.5.
I talked to three banks today and had a mixed experience. There's always a litany of questions, and inevitably we came to me being out of work came up and the whole "without a permanent address." What's that mean" they asked. "Well, technically it's being kind of homeless." You were homeless? "I always had a place to stay that was dry and safe and clean." At three banks: pause, pause, pause.
It comes down to credit score ultimately and when I last looked, mine was below 600 and banks, all of them, need at least 620. It's hard to tell what mine is because I needed deep-sea expert Robert Ballard -- the guy who found the Titanic -- to find it.
It seems unlikely I can buy, even though I can make the payments and save money at the same time.
The system is not set up for those on the cusp, even for someone who has worked since age 16 and still works 65 hours a week at age 56.
I'm working in two directions -- seeking a loan and looking for a rental -- equally. In the short term, I always have the Steakhouse Lodge, where I stayed for a month before getting into my current home.
Keep in mind this is not a Debbie Downer post. It is a journalist honestly reporting his own story. And as I write this, I'm having a Manhattan at the Steakhouse, my Hayward family, waiting for my Wisconsin fish fry. I have my troubles but I also have my blessings.
Peace and hearth unto you my brothers and sisters.