In a saga of familial ties and financial dilemmas, the Original Poster (OP), a successful architect and real estate investor, finds himself at odds with his family over buying his brother’s dream home.
An Architect’s Dream
From childhood, OP had a fascination for properties and home design, a passion that blossomed into a successful career as an architect. He managed to buy his first duplex in Germany, which started his journey into real estate.
OP didn’t stop at one duplex. Today, OP owns two houses in Italy, one in Spain, and is about to acquire a fifth in France.
The Passive Income Kingdom
Rental income from his properties in Germany, Italy, and Spain has bolstered OP’s financial stability, making him comfortable even after heavy investments and refurbishments. His current residence in NYC is a rented one due to a job relocation. The potential house in France promises to be the largest and perhaps final addition to his real estate portfolio.
A Brother’s Struggle
OP’s older brother, unlike OP, has a family with two kids and is currently stuck in an apartment. He and his family have found their dream house, but it’s beyond their budget. Simultaneously, OP and his wife are on the verge of making a significant property purchase in France.
The Family Meeting
During a family video chat, OP brings up his plans to buy the house in France, causing an unexpected reaction. His brother suggests that OP should relinquish his new opportunity and instead support him in buying and refurbishing a home.
His brother presents this as his dream home for his family. This home is also double the budget they have for a home. Initially, OP dismisses this proposition, believing it to be a joke. His brother couldn’t want him to forfeit his dream home for himself and his family.
Family Feud Ignites
To OP’s surprise, his brother’s suggestion wasn’t a joke. His family members started pressuring OP to use his wealth to support his brother’s dreams, which left OP flustered and on the defensive.
Being somewhat soft-spoken, OP, after consulting with his wife, considers a middle-ground solution. They propose buying the dream house for OP’s brother and renting it to him without profit.
This proposition was seen as an insult to OP’s family. They weren’t interested in having OP as their landlord.
Family pressure escalates as OP’s parents insist that he should outright give his brother the money for the house. This expectation tests OP’s boundaries, prompting a firm response. OP tells his family to leave him be and proceeds with the paperwork for the house in France.
To make matters worse, OP’s friends suggest he prioritizes family above all else. Considering OP’s financial stability, they believe he should assist his brother. Now, OP is stuck in a moral conundrum, wondering if he is in the wrong.
The Stubborn Stand
Despite the new revelations, the family continues to pressure OP to support his brother financially. They dismiss OP’s concerns about his brother’s financial recklessness, causing OP to feel isolated.
OP decides to reach out to a popular platform for their advice and opinions. Many agree with him about the fact that he shouldn’t feel the need to help his brother. However, they also have condemned his purchases of land across the globe because of what it does to the economies where they live.
Despite all the turmoil, OP finalizes the paperwork and purchases the house in France. This move comes as a shock to his family. Still, OP begins to feel a sense of relief as he sticks to his decision.
Was Telling His Brother About Buying His Fifth Home Appropriate?
The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter. Here are some of their responses:
One reader said, “You shouldn’t have to pay for your brother’s house. He should live within his means.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote: “You are the problem for owning 4-5 houses. Why? From what you’ve said, you’ve been a decent enough landlord, but in my opinion, the practice of snatching foreign property just to continually increase your “passive” income is gross.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person states, “Beggars can’t be choosers. I find it insulting that they were insulted that you offered to buy their dream house and rent it to them for zero profit.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another viewpoint on the story: “You knew he was in that situation and feeling very frustrated, and you brought up buying the most expensive property of your FIVE houses to him? Just as a conversation starter? That sucks, and you know it sucks.”
What Do You Think?
What are your thoughts on their actions?
What would you have done in this situation?
This story is inspired by a thread from an online forum.