Looking for a Home (EDIT)

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woohooligan's avatar
:new: Sorry I've been so quiet lately. We've been really busy between house hunting, trading the car (had to get one big enough for the family), commission work and a few other things (have an apt at the social security office today to discuss supplemental benefits for my kids). I've still managed to get comics done for Woohooligan although I've been getting them out a little bit late each time, like 8-9 days instead of 7. That's been frustrating for me, especially because the closer I get to the end of the week (or past deadline), the harder I find it to work on the comic. It's just very draining on me when I know that I'm late. And I'm not keeping up on the Gutter Stars interviews or on that Stick It To the Man contest I started. :shakefist:

Anyway, there is some good news! :D

:bulletblue: This week I discovered a cool new competitor to Ink Outbreak called Comic Rocket

:bulletblue: and a site for comedy webcomics specifically called IsItFunnyToday.com

:bulletblue: Traffic on the Woohooligan comic is up again! Woohoo! I had gotten traffic up from about 150/day to about 1,000/day when I started advertising on Project Wonderful, which was sweet! and then last week or so I noticed that my return traffic was at about 50% (on Google Analytics), and that was fantastic! Because it meant that people are coming back to the official woohooligan.com site and reading each week. And the past week since the 1st of the month when I published those lesbians (okay, technically they were bisexual) :bucktooth: traffic on the site doubled. At first I thought it would just be a 24-hour spike, like sometimes happens when I publish a new comic, but it's kept up all week! More people are sharing Woohooligan on Twitter, and finding those other two sites may have helped also. :nod: So I'm up from about 1k/day to now about 2k/day.

Woohoo! :happybounce: :cake:

Looking forward to StripCon in early August! :D

Oh and please do let us know if you see any decent 4-bed houses under $65k... or potentially even a 3-bedroom if it's got a garage or a basement or one of those "we're not technically allowed to call it a bedroom" rooms. ;P

Hey there, hooligans!

We're in a bit of a strange situation and I'm hoping maybe one of you guys could help. :nod:

About 2 years ago Tiff's mom, Carol, came to stay with us when her brother passed away. Then about a year ago now I got custody of my 3 kids, Alex, Cali and Nick. So that makes 6 people in the house. At the time we were in a 2 bedroom apartment, which was way too small. The kids were all having to sleep on a fold-out sofa in the living room every night. So we had to move to a bigger place. Right now we're in a 3-bed rent house with a converted garage (Tiff's mom's room). And it's working for us for the most part and we were expecting to stay here for a while. We're even weeding the lawn and taking care of a bunch of other repairs that the previous tenants had just ignored for god knows how long.

Now here's the problem you can help us with. :nod: The income we get between myself and Tiff's mom's social security isn't nearly enough to support the family as a whole in this rent house. Until now we've been getting some help from a discretionary trust (meaning that we can't use any of the money without the bank's approval).

Two weeks ago we got a call from the bank and they said

:bulletblue: You have to buy a house... NOW
:bulletblue: It has to be no more than $65k total after closing (and at least 4 bedrooms for 6 people)
:bulletblue: It can't need any major repairs

(and when it's over, the trust will be gone)

Luckily for us the way the custody hearings went (with the kids' mother never showing up) we're allowed to go wherever we need to go. So we can get a house anywhere in the US... potentially even in Mexico or Canada although I wouldn't expect that.

Based on the research we've done this past week the town we're in right now is one of the least expensive places we could get without putting ourselves way out in the Styx. So we've been looking in this area and not finding much and what we have found mostly needs major repairs like a roof or something. We did find that the Detroit home market is about 40% less expensive and have found some places there that might work, but even there it seems to be slim pickings (also because of the crime rate there and making sure the neighborhood isn't too dangerous especially with our kids). I'd prefer a place where I can get high-speed internet (Uverse or Fios preferably), although it's not an absolute requirement... I would just have to put my webserver in a colo facility.

We know it's going to be a challenge... we've been at this for two weeks already. :nod:

Anyway, if you know of a house for sale in that price range, I'd really appreciate any leads you've got. :nod:

Leave a comment here or a note or you can email me at isaac_dealey@yahoo.com.

Thanks! Stay awesome, hooligans!
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ElectricGecko's avatar
Hey, thanks for the lead on those sites. Apparently I was already ON Comic Rocket. I asked to be added to the rate it site. Who knows? And 2k! Crap, man! That's nutsy! Hey, considered Adsense yet? With those pageviews, it might be worth it. I make about a buck a day on one leaderboard and 5k pageviews. Better than a kick in the pants, as they say.
woohooligan's avatar
I did adsense a while ago, but stopped because at the time I wasn't getting enough traffic to see any revenue... I think I had earned something like 14 cents in a few years time. :bucktooth: But now that I'm getting decent exposure, it may be a good time to pick it back up. :nod:

I've just been so busy lately... I mean... I'm still checking messages daily and scoping new places to bid on PW and such, but between commission work, house hunting and trying to build up this new comic hosting site (ComicComet), I've just not found the time to work on my comic site.

Thanks, C!
ElectricGecko's avatar
Yeah, well, if you're advertising on PW and pushing up your traffic, then you might as well earn some back to put forward to the ads. I made $1.75 ... today! On one ad! That pretty much covers my ad budget! I mean, I never saw more than 40 cents on a leaderboard through PW, and usually I'd make fifteen cents a day or something. I kept noticing that the big boys always had Adsense ads running in prominent locations. Now I know why.
Astralseed's avatar
I'm a bit late on things here.. but my mother bought a house in Milwaukee last summer for 40K it's a 4 bedroom house. Lots of very cheap houses in Milwaukee right now, you just need to make sure the neighborhoods are fine since you don't want to end up in a neighborhood you are likely to get shot in.
woohooligan's avatar
Yeah, that's been a concern with Detroit too... Thanks, Katy! :hug:
Astralseed's avatar
If you were to find anything in Milwaukee, I can find out which neighborhoods are good and which aren't for you (though you may not even want to move there at all, just saying, if it's something you wanted to do, I could help let you know which areas are good etc :))
woohooligan's avatar
I won't lie, Scott Walker scares the crap out of me... but that doesn't mean I won't consider it. :nod:
Astralseed's avatar
Well, we just took the senate so he won't have an easy time pushing his agenda anymore :B .. Milwaukee is a really nice city. My mom lives out there and they have some great museums and the lake is there and there is tons of other stuff to do there too.
StarDragger's avatar
Maryland is almost definitely out. Because DC is right down the road, the property prices are pretty darn high here too. There's a place right next door to me, so I'll check its specific price, but I doubt we'll have any luck.
woohooligan's avatar
Yeah, I wouldn't expect Maryland to have anything that would work for us. I've seen the cost of living estimates around DC from back when I was considering software jobs there. Thanks for keeping an eye out! :hug:
StarDragger's avatar
You are quite welcome! :hug:
Caraphae's avatar
DO NOT move to Detroit. ROBOCOP was the optimistic future scenario for that city, and it never happened. Please, man.

But- if you really don't care about where you move, maybe you can still take advantage of some sort of urban homesteading program? Like this:
woohooligan's avatar
Thanks, Cara! That homestead program in Buffalo looks really interesting... if we can get the lot for $1 we might be able to get a modular home built under our $65k cap. :nod:
Xadrea's avatar
i would definitely say utilize craig's list! when my family moved, that's how we found our house :nod: a friend of mine just moved to tennesee for economic purposes and that could also be a place to look, as well as north carolina :)
woohooligan's avatar
MMm! Thanks! Lots of listings in our price range on CL. :hug:
Xadrea's avatar
no problem! i hope you can find something soon!:hug:
TheVioletFox's avatar
I'll keep an eye our for you. People move in an out of the neighborhoods around the university all the time. But man... a 4 bedroom for only 65K? That sounds like a bit of a stretch.

Just glancing around, I found this: [link]

But yeah, If I see anything else, I will definitely let you know.
woohooligan's avatar
Thanks, Pam!

Yeah, we know it's going to be difficult. Tiff and I had already seen that particular listing... pretty sure she contacted the agent on it. Don't remember if we heard back.

We've found a bunch of properties that are in the price range and the right size, but they usually are either in need of repair or well over an hour's drive from the nearest city. So far except for some of the properties in Detroit.

Thanks for keeping an eye out! :hug:
classicEIGHT's avatar
I don't know a terrible amount about buying a house other than what I've learned from experience of my own. Still not a home owner, but I can say this; exhaust all ways of searching, and you'll be able to find a good one for a great price.
But, what I can't tell you about searching or buying a house, I might be able to make up for with other information. I fork for a title company so, if you happen upon any questions I may be able to answer (or beat up someone for answers), by all means.
woohooligan's avatar
Oh sweet! Yeah, I'll shoot you a note if I have any questions. How long have you been forking there?
classicEIGHT's avatar
A year and a few months. You'd be surprised what one learns when they insist on bouncing you around every few months, lol! And what I dont' know, I'm sure I know someone who does so...

Not a bad gig if you like sitting at a desk all day. And for the amount they pay me, I can cope with it! XD
ElectricGecko's avatar
Well, I can tell you that you're DEFINITELY not looking at Canada. For one, your funny American money is actually worth less per dollar up here, which is a drag. Second, Canada's housing market never fell in the 2008 recession. America's house prices plummeted into the toilet while in Canada the prices are still sky high. They may crash (or be 'corrected') at some point in time, but who knows when that would be?

Currently you can't even buy an empty plot of land in my city for 65k - even in the hood - and my city has some of the lowest real estate prices in Ontario. And Ontario is one of the cheapest provinces to live in.

So long story short, NOT Canada. Somehow I feel like things would be cheaper in Idaho.
woohooligan's avatar
Thanks, C! Yeah, I kind of expected we'd be out of luck on Canada.

Just did a search for Idaho home prices and came across this cool home prices heat-map on Trulia. [link] ... Lets you narrow it down to an individual state... but it looks like Idaho overall isn't likely to be where we want to look... according to the US heat map, the best states for price are Iowa and Ohio, although there are probably pocket areas in any given state that might be good. Michigan overall is still more expensive than Iowa, but I get the feeling the Detroit area is generally less expensive than Iowa.
ElectricGecko's avatar
Detroit area, from what I've heard, is in many parts a ghost town. I don't think you can find lover real estate values anywhere in North America. Mind you, you've gotta be down with living in a vaguely post-apocalyptic vacated urban landscape.
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