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Philosophical - Simple Living versus Professional and Social Advancement

(6 Posts)
DickWhittingtonsCat Mon 17-Jan-05 15:52:54

Don't know if anyone will "get" this urban hippy post, concerning train of thought triggered by my flat having been for sale for 6 months with dozens of viewers but no buyer, as the market is so weak right now. Today I wrote a list about why I wanted to move house at all and realised that I don't need to, and am scared of what buying a bigger place represents. I live in a fantastic location where I can commute to school and work on foot and just want somewhere bigger in the same area. However, I find I am torn between wanting more space and wanting to make things possible for the next stage of my life (eg meet partner and he wants to move in /have another baby alone while I am still young and fit/buy the things that these days I can afford to buy instead of being forever stingy) and between being afraid that buying a bigger "family" flat by myself will represent me being single forever (ie giving up on meeting someone who wants to buy a home with me/manifesting my professional success in such a way that potential boyfriends get intimidated) and that having a bigger home will spoil the simple non-materialistic life which a smallish flat has taught us and lead us into a lifestyle in which we compete with flashy high-earning friends about our cluttered home full of material objects which we don't really need or want and lead to more housecleaning. The extra space I think I want is for such luxuries as dishwasher, sideboard to contain future nice crockery for entertaining more, private car parking for new car (old car is 14 yrs old and parked on street where new car would not be safe), space for my piano (currently in storage), space so overnightguests no longer have to sleep in sittingroom etc. But, the more that my old flat sits on the market unsold, the more I love it, and realize that washing up by hand is OK, having an old car is OK, if I really had more self discipline I would practise yoga more and don't need a special space in a bigger flat, guests manage fine on a futon, my friends don't mind unmatching crockery when they come to dinner, etc, etc. Is it possible to advance up the property ladder without sacrificing a simple lifestyle and losing those values? We have been so happy in that flat, and some of the happiest times were when we had no spare cash and very little stuff.

Frizbe Mon 17-Jan-05 16:00:22

Hmm interesting post....it is possible to advance up the ladder, but often you have to live in an undesireable mess to get there! as the bigger nicer place, if often not as nice when you buy it! and obviously within time you end up filling it with clutter, that you really don't need, then you need a bigger space for all the clutter! If you can afford a bigger place, then great go for it, but if you really don't need to then I'd stay put, you can buy new furniture for your current place and obtain all of the goodies you need (bar the dishwasher if there is no space for it) before you need to move! and like you say you can get to school and work on foot, so saving loads in petrol, so why move? When new partner turns up, he'll wanna buy somewhere new with you as a together thing anway, so where ever you move to, you'll only end up moving again! Splash you cash on a re decorate and a nice holiday instead!

FineFigureFio Mon 17-Jan-05 16:08:23

My opinion is, when you buy a bigger house you fill it with more junk and need a bigger one. Me and dh have talked about this at length and after him chasing his career for years have decided that it isnt importnant anymore. Our standard of living is affected more by his long hours than the amount of money he is bringing home

at the end of the day the most important thing is that you are healthy and happy not the materialistic things that surround you

Caligula Mon 17-Jan-05 16:23:42

But what about your piano? How important is that to you? And can you somehow work it in to your current place?

DickWhittingtonsCat Mon 17-Jan-05 16:35:28

Yes, the piano is something I really miss; it won't go up the stairs to current flat and there's no space. In the future ds also wants to learn the piano. Not working excessively for unnecessary things is definitely a priority: that is why I am determined to stay living in the same area, which means all I could afford over the next 5 yrs absolute max with long mortgage would be three-bedroom flat. And, if I went for that I would not have any money to waste on unnecessary material objects! So, given that I don't work excessive hours, have a healthy good lifestyle, and have enough money to move, would I be cutting off my nose to spite my face by staying in a smallish flat? I had a conversation recently with an older single female friend and she said that subconsciously she had remained in a one-bedroom studenty flat despite easily being able to afford the type of place her married friends had, because she was waiting for Mr Wonderful to come along and invite her to live in his bigger home; she was wondering if this had been subconsciously preventing her from considering having a relationship with a younger man or a man with a lower-paid job. I have a two-bedroom flat (one big bedroom, one small bedroom)which is fine for one mother and one child, but I aspire to having another child (and can afford to without working excessive hours, and want to do so within next 5 years with or without new partner).

Frizbe Mon 17-Jan-05 19:40:02

In that case stuff it, move and get your piano out! (your wonderful playing may even enchant a young man into your lair!)

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