We were young and making nothing. Had a chance to buy a real fixer upper for a song.
By the way there is not such thing as buying a fixer upper for a song.
You will spending a whole lot of money at the Home Depot like stores and it will probably need stuff like water heaters, and all kinds of appliances and fundamental work on the house. We learned, and put in a whole lot of time.
We got about five hours sleep for years and we sure learned.
Then we moved up and this is our fifth house.
When we bought it we could have purchased another, more fancy one, that cost several times what this one did. Or at least that is what the agents and banks told us. But suchcame with an enormous mortgage. We demurred.
Many of those who did so are in trouble now.
We are not. We have a modest house still, but we can easily afford the mortgage payments.
The subprime mortgage disaster occurred because their were folks who were gullible and lenders who were, to me, dishonest.
Anyway, be conservative in your finances. At least it has always worked for us.
Before criticizing a person, walk a mile in his shoes - then you are a mile away and you have his shoes!