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<<wouldn't I be giving the best advice I could to the client who could afford a higher cost home and resultant mortgage to get the max amount of home that they felt comfortable getting? >>

Also keep in mind the Baskin Robbins sign: "The sour taste of poor quality lasts longer than the sweetness of the low price."

When you are buying a house, it only costs a little bit more to get, say, a 2 car garage vs. a one-car garage, or a 3 bath over a 2 bath. Remember, you will probably be in the house 10 years or more, and your family will probably grow. It's a lot cheaper to get these things on the original purchase than to add them on later. In many cases, "add them on" means "sell this house and buy another".

I've discovered a pretty accurate rule-of-thumb. The house that is just perfect for you costs 10% more than what you can afford to pay. The house that you can afford is not one that you want.

That's why many many people suck it up, decide to go on a two-year bread & beans diet, and buy a house that will suit their needs for the next 10-15 years---even though it's more than they want to pay.

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