Author Topic: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"  (Read 4581 times)

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PoisonIvy

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"Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« on: October 28, 2012, 06:16:27 AM »
My partner and I recently bought our first home. We saved for several years to do this, and we are thrilled to have finally done this.

The area we have bought in is what's known politely as "up and coming". In other words, historically it's been known as the wrong side of the tracks, and about 15 years ago would have been considered a dangerous part of town. It's a big city, and this often happens here - previously no-go areas become hotspots as people are priced out of neighbouring, more desirable areas. /BG

When I meet people, they often ask what part of town I live in. I don't consider it rude to be asked, but when I reply, the response is often along the lines of a wrinkled nose, or even in some cases "Ugh! Why would you buy a home there?"

Usually I laugh it off and say, "Everyone knows that in 10 years it's going to be the Beverly Hills of south London. We're just getting in early." (Property "experts" have actually named our area as one of the areas that will rise in value in a few years, but that's not why we chose it.)  But if I get annoyed, I smile coldly and say, "We like it." To the nose-wrinkler, I said, "You look like you're about to sneeze. Here, let me get you a tissue."

I hate feeling like I'm justifying our reasons for living in an unfashionable part of town. I don't think it's any of their business. Property prices are a very popular topic of conversation here, having gone through a crazy boom then bust - much like what has happened in the US - but the people in my examples are actually insulting my choice of where to live, not just talking about the property market. 

Any suggestions of better responses that will help them realise this?

camlan

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2012, 07:13:35 AM »
"Ew. Why would you want to live there?"

"Why wouldn't we?" said with a big, wide-eyed, puzzled face.

Don't explain or argue or justify. Let them list all the reasons they think your area is "ewey." Then respond with, "Well, that's not what we see. We're very happy with our choice."

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Redsoil

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2012, 07:14:34 AM »
"Actually, it's an up-and-coming property area which is a lovely place to live!  It's changed so much from what it used to be, and will continue to evolve.  We think we're lucky to have got in at this stage and are really excited about our future plans for renovating."  Then bean-dip with further reno talk, or the great new restaurant that's near you etc.
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poundcake

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2012, 07:34:51 AM »
"So when we buy in Maida Vale/Hampstead in a few years, we will appreciate it more?"

Really, the innocent "Why wouldn't we? Bean dip?" seems best. In ten years' time, they'll be praising your "good luck" in getting in when you did.

cicero

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2012, 07:41:26 AM »
good for you! hope you have many happy times in your new home.

I see nothing wrong with saying "we like it", or "we're happy with our choice".  or "why not?"

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Shotochick

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2012, 07:44:43 AM »
After having just escaped WoolieArse/Charlton we would point out the way property prices and facilities improved after the DLR went in, and that Crossrail is only a few more years away, and as an added bonus we were only 25mins away from London Bridge...and then also note all the holidays we can still afford to take :)
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Zilla

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2012, 10:01:22 AM »
If you heard of South Beach, Florida?  20 years ago it was the worse part of Miami and even police officers wouldn't dare enter this haven of  drugs, crime and etc.  Now it's the "hub" of the South and full of celebrities/rich folks.  So I like your answer that you will reap your benefits in a few years, so say something along the lines of, "Oh in a few years I will quite pleased with my investment.  Meanwhile it's actually quite lovely now.  You should come out and visit it." 
And they will remember you when those prices rise up in a few years.

Kiara

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2012, 10:49:49 AM »
Sometimes it doesn't even take that long to change an area.  I've lived in my city for 12 years total.  When I moved in 12 years ago, the village where I live now was TERRIBLE.  Muggings, theft, drugs....I wouldn't have moved here if you paid me.  Seven years later, here I am.  Had completely turned around.  I love it, and anyone who asked why on earth I'd want to live here would get an eyebrow and a "Because I like it here."

(Plus, it was what I could afford!   :D)

GratefulMaria

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2012, 12:15:19 PM »
My partner and I recently bought our first home. We saved for several years to do this, and we are thrilled to have finally done this.

The area we have bought in is what's known politely as "up and coming". In other words, historically it's been known as the wrong side of the tracks, and about 15 years ago would have been considered a dangerous part of town. It's a big city, and this often happens here - previously no-go areas become hotspots as people are priced out of neighbouring, more desirable areas. /BG

When I meet people, they often ask what part of town I live in. I don't consider it rude to be asked, but when I reply, the response is often along the lines of a wrinkled nose, or even in some cases "Ugh! Why would you buy a home there?"

Usually I laugh it off and say, "Everyone knows that in 10 years it's going to be the Beverly Hills of south London. We're just getting in early." (Property "experts" have actually named our area as one of the areas that will rise in value in a few years, but that's not why we chose it.)  But if I get annoyed, I smile coldly and say, "We like it." To the nose-wrinkler, I said, "You look like you're about to sneeze. Here, let me get you a tissue."

I hate feeling like I'm justifying our reasons for living in an unfashionable part of town. I don't think it's any of their business. Property prices are a very popular topic of conversation here, having gone through a crazy boom then bust - much like what has happened in the US - but the people in my examples are actually insulting my choice of where to live, not just talking about the property market.

Any suggestions of better responses that will help them realise this?

Do you need them to realize?  You're the ones whose opinion matters.  I do like your responses and those of other posters, though, and cannot think of anything to improve upon the offer of a tissue.   :)

Congratulations on your new home!

Shoo

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #9 on: October 28, 2012, 12:59:40 PM »
My partner and I recently bought our first home. We saved for several years to do this, and we are thrilled to have finally done this.

The area we have bought in is what's known politely as "up and coming". In other words, historically it's been known as the wrong side of the tracks, and about 15 years ago would have been considered a dangerous part of town. It's a big city, and this often happens here - previously no-go areas become hotspots as people are priced out of neighbouring, more desirable areas. /BG

When I meet people, they often ask what part of town I live in. I don't consider it rude to be asked, but when I reply, the response is often along the lines of a wrinkled nose, or even in some cases "Ugh! Why would you buy a home there?"

Usually I laugh it off and say, "Everyone knows that in 10 years it's going to be the Beverly Hills of south London. We're just getting in early." (Property "experts" have actually named our area as one of the areas that will rise in value in a few years, but that's not why we chose it.)  But if I get annoyed, I smile coldly and say, "We like it." To the nose-wrinkler, I said, "You look like you're about to sneeze. Here, let me get you a tissue."

I hate feeling like I'm justifying our reasons for living in an unfashionable part of town. I don't think it's any of their business. Property prices are a very popular topic of conversation here, having gone through a crazy boom then bust - much like what has happened in the US - but the people in my examples are actually insulting my choice of where to live, not just talking about the property market.

Any suggestions of better responses that will help them realise this?

Do you need them to realize?  You're the ones whose opinion matters.  I do like your responses and those of other posters, though, and cannot think of anything to improve upon the offer of a tissue.   :)

Congratulations on your new home!

I agree, there's no need to make them understand anything.  You know the area is up and coming, and that your investment will pay off in future years.  These people who are critical of your choice will see your wisdom eventually -- when it's too late to get in on the action themselves!  That's knowledge you can use to keep yourself from getting drawn into a conversation about it.  Just smile and say, "Well, we like it a lot."  And then change the subject. 

Auntie Mame

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2012, 07:11:26 PM »
"because I love the house/neighbors/ area".  I live in area that is also changing.  Some parts are iffy, many parts are wonderful.  My neighborhood has a bad reputation, some of it deserved, some hyperbole.  What it boils down to is this,  I love the house I live in, I love how friendly and chatty my neighbors are, I love that almost everything I need is within walking distance.  I don't make excuses, I simply smile and say "Because I love living there".
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PoisonIvy

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2012, 07:13:33 PM »
Thank you for the replies, and the congrats. I'll need to remember them when we're elbow-deep in scraping off wallpaper and tiling the bathroom!

We do love it here. And it seems others are catching on. Just yesterday we were checking out a new farmers' market and bumped into some friend-of-friends who recently moved to the area.

KenveeB

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2012, 11:38:27 PM »
With people like that, I find it's best to take the question at face value. Don't read the expressions or the snide tone of voice. Just gush briefly about how much you love the neighborhood, or the house is exactly what you were looking for. Be totally cheerful, then beandip. It takes the wind out of their sails, and it lets you end that part of the conversation on a high note instead of sour note.

Raintree

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #13 on: October 29, 2012, 12:01:39 AM »
Lots of areas like that in my city, as people are priced out of the neighbourhoods they grew up in, and formerly dumpy neighbourhoods are being restored and becoming trendy.

Lots of good suggestions, but also (one I read on e-hell for other situations): "What do you mean?"

That would kind of force them into an "oh, um, ahem, I don't know...." because they weren't counting on actually having to SAY, "Well it's such a dump!! So many drug dealers and other undesirables.."

If they did have the nerve to say that, you could let them know that the area is undergoing revitalization and despite her perceptions which are firmly rooted in the past, this is no longer the case.

AuntyEm

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Re: "Ew. Why would you want to live there?"
« Reply #14 on: October 29, 2012, 07:27:13 AM »
My first house was in a neighborhood like that on Capitol Hill in Washington.  Turned out that the neighbors were as nice and friendly as they could be and after 12 years, when I sadly was forced to move overseas, I made a bundle.  I still wish I lived there.  The pluses (for my friends commuting in from the 'burbs who couldn't understand why I bought there)...affordable, charming old house, within walking distance to the Capitol and a 10 minute commute to my office downtown.