T Nation

Looking for Home Buying Advice


I will be going to my next duty station (Corpus Christi, TX) in a few weeks and am planning on purchasing a home.

From the research I've done I believe that the homes are fairly priced (especially when put in context with other markets across the country), and it actually appears to be one of the last beach towns that is still affordable.

However, I am still hesitant to purchase for a number of reasons. It is possible that I am only going to be in Corpus Christi for 6 months (although it could be in excess of two years... you never know when it comes to the Navy). My goal is to purchase another home at my follow-on duty station and to rent out the home I purchase in CC.

I have saved up a little over 12K delivering pizzas at night and living frugally, but am still planning on financing all but 1.875% with a VA loan quoted at 5.875% (the interest rate). I am not set on which place I want quite yet, but am leaning towards purchasing a condo on North Padre Island. The places I'm looking at range in price from 120K - 165K.

I saw some other threads relating to this topic (Housing Bubble and another that was started by Nate Dogg I believe) and there was a lot of valuable feedback.

If anyone has experience with real estate (especially frequent movers who continue to rent out places after leaving) I would greatly appreciate your insight.

Thanks in advance to all who reply!



I would wait a few months and see how the market moves. There's lots of new houses out there not being purchased, that might drive down overall prices.


I'm in Corpus and am in the process of buying a house. Right now there are tons of houses on the market in your price range. Are you going to be stationed NAS-CC or in Ingleside or Kingsville?


I should have added that since I've been looking, prices have dropped about 10%.


look in Alice, it's only 30 minutes orso from Corpus, and the property is cheaper.



It's also a shitty, hot hell-hole.

In Corpus right now, $120k will go a long way.


The best advice I have ever heard on real estate:

"Buy the worst house in the best neighborhood you can afford."

Buy a shack, if it's in a great, prospering neighborhood.


I'm going to be stationed at NAS CC.

I've also noticed the same thing with all the great homes that are affordable. I just can't help worrying about all the new construction. I'm thinking that buying on the island is wiser since they can only build so much before they run out of space.

In any case I can't wait to get out there.. I think I've had about as much pan-handle FL as I can take. I'm convinced that this has to be the wife beating / drunk driving capital of the USA.


In any case I can't wait to get out there.. I think I've had about as much pan-handle FL as I can take. I'm convinced that this has to be the wife beating / drunk driving capital of the USA. [/quote]

What part of the panhandle are you talking about ?


You guys have it great for house prices. $120k (be about ?87k) gets nothing but the shittiest shit hole pretty much any where in the uk.

My advice, thank your lucky stars!


We may have better housing costs but you've got a Royal Family.


It isn't everywhere in the states my friend. If you could only see the dumps that go for $300k near me. Thank god I got in early


Sound to me like you are in the market for an investment property, not a home. Those are two ENTIRELY different buys. Chances are that if a home is going for 120, you can probably pick up a duplex or something for about a 100, rent it out to make the mortgage while putting a little aside for taxes and upkeep.

Then, when your tour is up, you can flip the property and take the money you make from the sale toward your home at your next duty station. You can hire a management company to run things for you so that you don't have to worry about it when you're deployed.

I did this kind of thing whe I was in the navy (stationed at NOB in Norfolk) and was able to build up enough of a next egg to have enough for a nice place when I got out. VA typically will not help you with an investment loan but it sounds like you have enough of a down payment that it won't matter. Most banks require either 5 or 10 percent down on an investment buy and it sounds like you've probably got that covered.


Recently Purchased in OCT. in the Greater New Orleans area (RiverRidge), try to get an agent that is also a real estate lawyer. Saved us alot of time and money. Post-Kat. the jerk wanted to pull out of the deal and sell to someone else for 50% more than what it was worth. Our laywer told them that we would be in court for at least two years in which he couldn't sell to anyone.

Needless to say she saved our ass being that our previous residence had flooded and we were living in an expensive efficiancy. Also, insurance, shop around and GET IT!!!


Most of the new home construction going on right now is cookie-cutter neighborhoods with very small lots. Very little of it is custom home construction.

I'm on the other side of town and haven't really looked at the island, but I'd be surprised if there was much in your price-range actually ON the island.


Thats not every place bub. A 300sq foot STUDIO (ONE room) starts at $150,000 by me.


I completely agree with what you say about the cookie-cutter neighborhoods. Definately not a fan of most of the new construction.

There are a few new condos that look pretty nice that are actually on the island. Pricier than non-island living obviously, but could pay off if their tourism industry keeps on its upward trend.


I was just thinking houses. There are definitely condo's in that price range. As far as an investment, you should know about this:


I don't know if that would help or hurt the other condos on the island.



One beds over here go for up to ?450k