Buying My Castle

Darlene’s Story:

I didn’t buy my first home until age 42 and was shocked the bank would give a 30 year loan to someone of my advanced years. OK, advanced years is an exaggeration but I certainly didn’t like the fact I would be 72 when the loan was paid off. My first thought, “I’ll be working forever. Goodbye retirement!”

Being a first time home buyer at age 42 was not my only fear. My anxiety also heightened because I was a never-married 42 year old woman taking on a 30 year note alone. I am an independent, capable woman but this was not how I envisioned my life. Where was Prince Charming?  Wasn’t I supposed to be living in the castle with him and our 2.5 kids by now?  Wasn’t he supposed to be helping me pay the mortgage from his job as a dragon slayer?

But, I wasn’t living with Prince Charming in a castle. I wasn’t getting any younger either. And, I was tired of paying rent to someone else with nothing to show for it so I got serious about purchasing my own place.  However, fear gripped me and so many questions bombarded me. What if I get in over my head? Is this the right decision for my life? What if Prince Charming finally shows up and I’m “stuck” with this house?

I remembered what God’s Word says about fear in 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” I’d like to say I clung to that verse and never looked back but that wouldn’t be true. I pressed forward in buying the home I had been renting but often doubted myself during the process. And though it seemed like God was opening every door, I continued to question if I was doing the right thing.

In the midst of my uncertainty, God showed His faithfulness by walking with me through the entire process. I prayed a lot, bought books about home buying by Suze Orman and Dave Ramsey and gathered all the advice I could handle from friends and family. Since I only had enough cash for a 5% down payment I was excited to learn about the 80-15-5 loan where I could take out two loans, one for 80% and one for 15% of the mortgage amount. The 15% loan enabled me to put down 20% and, thereby, avoid paying Primary Mortgage Insurance (PMI), saving me a lot of money.

I also wasn’t obligated to escrow my taxes and insurance so my house note never changes and I pay those items separately. It was a scary and fun day when I signed the paperwork giving ownership to me (and the banks, of course). The interest rates even went down the following year and I was able to refinance my loan down to 15 years! Knowing I’d be paying it off at age 58 felt much better!

I’m now a 54 year old still single woman. Life is good and I’m presently living in my second home. In fact, I’ve always had a dream to live in a home built just for me and my dream came true a little over two years ago. During the building process I wrote Scriptures on the frame and dedicated my home to the Lord.

My home sits in front of a nature reserve which gives the feel of living in the country. I love sitting on my back porch listening to the birds chirping all around me while I pray or meditate. I feel so blessed and often tell God I can’t believe He lets me live here. So, I’ll be a senior citizen of 66 when my current home loan is paid off, unless Jesus comes before then. But, I am OK knowing this because I serve a God who always takes care of me!

“I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread.”  Psalm 37:25

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