Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years

Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years: Version 2.0!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

To Buy or Not to Buy

If you plan on staying long term in Korea, the issue on whether or not to buy an apartment may come up.

We tried to buy one a few years back.  We had found a great deal on a new place that was too sweet to pass up, or so we thought.

With Financials in hand, we approached several banks, who all told us the same thing: no home loans for waegs.  A couple were actually quite rude.

At the time, the F5sponseree was heavy with our second and wasn't bringing in much income.  Despite our savings, my steady earnings, our lack of debt, my visa status and the number of years I had been here, every bank said the same thing:

Not for waegs.

I was pretty steamed about it at the time.  I work hard to support my family, have a decent amount of savings, no criminal record or debt at all.  I dreamed of those bank managers going to my country and facing the same shit.  Problem is, if they were in the same position as me, they wouldn't have.

In the end however, it worked out for us.

We invested some of the cash, sent some of it out of country, and then watched as new apartment construction exploded in Wonju.  Despite there being already a market glut on apartments, so many new ones are being built.  Pure insanity.

After talking with many of my Korean and waeg buddies, I'm glad the bank told us to go fuck ourselves.  Almost everyone I know who bought is now moaning about how they are locked into a slab of concrete that has depreciated since they bought it.  They'd lose 10-20% on their place, if they could sell it.  No one is buying.  The complex that we originally looked at has seen the prices on their apartments go down by 1500-2000 manners per unit.

The moral of the story?  Sometimes when other people are severely infected with the human stupidity virus, it can work out for you.


Prestigee Korea said...

When I lived in Itaewon, this dude was trying to sell 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom villa units in a new building that didn't even have parking for $400,000usd EACH. The villa units were about the size of my current living room, and you'd have to pay an extra $300 (each) to park your cars on the street every month.

To this day, that entire complex is completely empty. My wife and I bought a 2br condo in Thailand for $70,000 USD. No sense in sinking money into real estate in Korea.

Anonymous said...

Some of your posts are entertaining to read, but why do you keep calling your wife the sponseree its impolite

Anonymous said...

Why anybody rents when they can afford to buy is beyond me.

F5Waeg said...

Nice reading skills there btw, anonymous 2. I'm guessing you're trying to take the piss or get a rise.

The apt we were in when this was written was listed at 2000 manners less than the original purchase price, and the owner still couldn't sell it. Meanwhile my investments in gold have skyrocketed.

So again, thanks to the banks for being racist arseholes.

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