Homeownership Rate Continues to Rise in 2020

So far, it’s been quite a ride this year, and our nation has truly seen its fair share of hurdles. From COVID-19 to record unemployment and then the resulting recession, just to name a few, the second quarter of 2020 has had more than a few challenges. Amidst the many roadblocks, however, the U.S. homeownership rate rose again, signaling great strength in the recovery of the housing market and an indication that even in a time of crisis, Americans still feel confident about buying a home. Yesterday, the U.S. Census Bureau announced: “The homeownership rate of 67.9 percent was 3.8 percentage points higher than the rate in the second quarter 2019 (64.1… Read More

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Guidance and Support Are Key When Buying Your First Home

In June, the number of first-time homebuyers accounted for 35% of the existing homes sold, a trend that’s been building steadily throughout the year. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR): “The share of first-time buyers increased in March through June—right into the heart of the pandemic period and the surge in unemployment—and is now trending higher than the 29% to 32% average in past years since 2012.” (See graph below): Why the rise in first-time homebuying? NAR continues to say: “The major factor is, arguably, low mortgage rates. As of the week ended July 16, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropped to 2.98%. With rates so low that are locked in… Read More

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Mortgage Rates Hit Record Lows for Three Consecutive Weeks

Over the past several weeks, Freddie Mac has reported the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropping to record lows, all the way down to 3.03%. Last week’s reported rate reached the lowest point in the history of the survey, which dates back to 1971 (See graph below): What does this mean for buyers? This is huge for homebuyers. Those currently taking advantage of the increasing affordability that comes with historically low interest rates are winning big. According to Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac: “The summer is heating up as record low mortgage rates continue to spur homebuyer demand.” In addition, move.com notes: “Summer home buying season is off to a roaring start. As buyers flooded into the market, realtor.com® monthly… Read More

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Americans Rank Real Estate Best Investment for 7 Years Running

Some Highlights Real estate has outranked stocks, savings accounts, and gold as the best long-term investment among Americans for the past 7 years. The belief in the stability of housing as a long-term investment remains strong, despite the many challenges our economy faces today. Of the four listed, real estate is also the only investment you can also live in. That’s a big win!

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Not All Agents Are Created Equal

In today’s fast-paced world where answers are just a Google search away, there are some who may question the benefits of hiring a real estate professional when selling a house. The reality is, the addition of more information can lead to more confusion. A real estate agent can be your essential guide, but truth be told, not all agents are created equal. Finding the right agent for you and your family should be your top priority when you’re ready to sell your house. The right agent is the person who can truly walk you through the whole process, look out for your best interest, and seamlessly lead you through all… Read More

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Taking Advantage of Homebuying Affordability in Today’s Market

Everyone is ready to buy a home at different times in their lives, and despite the health crisis, today is no exception. Understanding how affordability works and the main market factors that impact it may help those who are ready to buy a home narrow down their optimal window of time to make a purchase. There are three main factors that go into determining how affordable homes are for buyers: Mortgage Rates Mortgage Payments as a Percentage of Income Home Prices The National Association of Realtors (NAR), produces a Housing Affordability Index, which takes these three factors into account and determines an overall affordability score for housing. According to NAR, the index: “…measures… Read More

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Is the Health Crisis Driving Buyers Out of Urban Areas?

The pandemic has caused consumers to re-examine the components that make up the “perfect home.” Many families are no longer comfortable with the locations and layouts of their existing homes. The allure of city life (more congested) seems to be giving way to either suburban or rural life (less congested). The fascination with an open floor plan seems to be fading as people are finding a need for more privacy while working from home. Recently, news.com released a report that revealed how buyers’ views of listings are leaning heavily to more suburban and rural properties. Here are the year-over-year percentage increases in views per property type: Urban – 7% Suburban – 13% Rural –… Read More

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Homebuyers Are in the Mood to Buy Today

According to the latest FreddieMac Quarterly Forecast, mortgage interest rates have fallen to historically low levels this spring and they’re projected to remain low. This means there’s a huge incentive for buyers who are ready to purchase. And homeowners looking for eager buyers can take advantage of this opportune time to sell as well. There’s a very positive outlook on interest rates going forward, as the projections from the FreddieMac report indicate continued lows into 2021: “Going forward, we forecast the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage to remain low, falling to a yearly average of 3.4% in 2020 and 3.2% in 2021.” With mortgage rates hovering at such compelling places, ongoing buyer interest is bound to keep driving the… Read More

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Home Prices: It’s All About Supply and Demand

As we enter the summer months and work through the challenges associated with the current health crisis, many are wondering what impact the economic slowdown will have on home prices. Looking at the big picture, supply and demand will give us the clearest idea of what’s to come. Making our way through the month of June and entering the second half of the year, we face an undersupply of homes on the market. Keep in mind, this undersupply is going to vary by location and by price point. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), across the country, we currently have a 4.1 months supply of homes on the market. Historically, 6 months… Read More

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