The Average Length Of Homeownership For Most Families

The Average Length Of Homeownership For Most FamiliesIt is critical for everyone to find a home that is right for them. Given the current lack of inventory, this can be a significant challenge. Fortunately, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) keeps track of numerous market aspects, including how long the average family stays in a home. For the past few decades, the average family has stayed in their home for approximately six years; however, during the past few years, that average has gone up to nine years. This means that the average homeowner is keeping his or her house longer than he or she did in the past. Why is this happening?

Why Are Families Staying In Their Homes Longer Than Before?

There are numerous reasons why this might be taking place. First, the real estate market crashed just over ten years ago. When home prices fell, homeowners were worried that they would not be able to sell their home at a price that would pay off their mortgage, also known as a home sale. Therefore, they decided to stay in their homes longer until their homes recouped their value.

In addition, there was a lot of uncertainty about the economy, causing some homeowners to think twice about making a move. They might have been worried that they wouldn’t have the money to cover emergency expenses if they paid for a move.

Finally, the homeownership rate among the younger generation, including those getting ready to have kids, has still not caught up to previous generations. When this generation starts to look for better school districts or more room, they might start looking for houses, causing them to move more frequently. Because they might not currently own homes, they are not selling homes, and thus not bringing down the median tenure.

What Is The Impact On The Housing Market?

So, what does this mean for the housing market? If families are moving frequently, they might not be in houses that are right for their family circumstances. As a result, baby boomers who are looking to downsize or parents with multiple children in a 2-bedroom house might be looking to move in the foreseeable future.  Given the current lack of inventory, this might be a bit of a challenge.

Buying a Home While Relocating is a Smarter Choice

Buying a Home While Relocating is a Smarter ChoiceThe idea of buying a home is challenging enough as the process requires a lengthy approval validation, paperwork, financing, and the actual move with logistics. However, when one really looks at what typically occurs with relocation, buying versus renting can start to make more sense over time.

Finances Have to be In Order

Buying a home more than once every ten years requires a good amount of discipline on one’s personal finances. Most of the initial decisions and approvals will depend heavily on keeping one’s debt versus income ratios in line and viable. That also means saving up a lot to have sufficient cash flow for fees and your down payment. It also means not letting credit cards get out of hand or taking on other significant debt unless necessary as both weigh against one’s ability to obtain new financing for the next home purchase.

Renting Versus Owning

Renting or leasing tends to be the go-to option during a relocation because it tends to be easier upfront, has fewer requirements to achieve, and involves less of a significant commitment financially. After all, what happens if there is another relocation just a year later? However, most relocations are fairly defined in time. Anything under a year would make sense for renting, but when one starts getting beyond a year, buying starts to become far more appealing.

First, all the dollars one pays in rent are a sunk cost. If one buys, some of that money goes into home equity. Second, many companies and organizations who relocate their people often have connections for quick purchasing and residential needs, leveraging corporate interests for their employees. This allows for the rotation of homes from one employee to the next and makes buying easier for longer-term stays.

Third, a purchase for a shorter-term stay doesn’t have to be a full-scale home. Smaller units that cost much less are easier to close and can work just as well for temporary living. Relocating buyers should really consider a wide range of housing options in a buy versus just a strict replacement of what they had before.

Finally, market costs in the target location have to be considered. Some markets are very affordable and might be cheaper than renting month to month but others are astronomical, and it simply doesn’t make sense to buy in these regions for a short-term stay.

The Bottom Line

Understand with renting everything paid is gone and won’t be recovered in any form at all. It’s a lost expense. That can be thousands of dollars after one year alone. Buying will have fees, but the money spent on the mortgage each month buys equity which can be recovered in a sale, plus a possible gain as well down the road. Buying doesn’t work in every situation where one is relocated, but it can be a viable option in affordable markets and when one is staying longer than a year.

As always, check with your local real estate professional for the best advice on your relocation and your personal financial situation.

Keep The Dream Of Owning A Home Alive

Keep The Dream Of Owning A Home AliveFor many people, owning a home is their dream. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the entire country and has left many people wondering if they can still afford to own a home. While this might put some things on hold, there are steps that everyone can take to keep the dream of owning a home alive.

Get Pre-Approved For A Mortgage

The first step that you should complete if you would like to own a home is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. The pre-approval process will give you a firm idea of what you can afford. Then, you can start to narrow your search and find homes that are within your price range.

Furthermore, when you do make an offer, sellers will know that you are serious about buying the home because you have already been pre-approved. Reach out to a lender and get pre-approved for a mortgage.

Connect With A Top Agent Virtually

Most people are used to going to home showing in person; however, there are ways to do this virtually. A trusted agent is going to have access to all of the listings in the local area and can help you understand what the process is regarding buying a home. You can connect with an agent either by phone or by video to learn what it is like to navigate the real estate market. While today’s market might be different from most markets, there are still opportunities to get a great deal on a home.

Do Research On Options For Assistance

Buying home is one of the most important ways to stimulate the economy. As a result, there are lots of options that have been put into place to help people buy homes in a responsible manner. This could include loan programs, payment assistance programs, and loan options that do not require a large down payment. This can help you afford a dream home without having to necessarily put down 20 percent.

Do Not Put Your Dreams On Hold

While the climate might be a bit different right now, this does not mean that people have to put their dreams of owning a home on hold. This simply means that everyone has to do their due diligence and find the home that is right for them.

3 Pros And Cons Of Renting Or Owning A Home

3 Pros And Cons Of Renting Or Owning A HomeHome ownership is highly valued in our culture. However, buying a home isn’t the best decision for everyone. Examine the differences between owning and renting your home to help you decide if now is the time to buy.

Effect On Flexibility

Renters enjoy more freedom than homeowners. After the leasing period ends, renters are free to walk away and find a new place to live. Homeowners, on the other hand, are at the mercy of the market. Depending on the conditions, owners might have a hard time selling their property quickly. It also takes a lot more paperwork to sell a home than it does to end a lease.

Those who don’t have plans to stay settled for at least a few years might be better off renting their homes. If circumstances suddenly change, they have more options than heavily-invested homeowners.

Financial Concerns

Home equity is a huge perk of ownership. A home equity line of credit gives homeowners a source of quick cash for emergencies or to take advantage of investment opportunities. These loans come with friendly options that make them ideal funding for a variety of situations. 

It’s a myth that renting is more expensive than owning without taking home value appreciation into account. When monthly expenses are compared side-by-side, owners invest more of their income into their living space than renters.

Beyond monthly mortgage payments, homeowners are responsible for insurance, property taxes, and utilities like garbage and water that are generally included in rental prices. In addition, homeowners bear the full cost of maintenance and repairs.

Owning a home can be a safeguard against harsh financial circumstances and give the opportunity for the appreciation of home value. However, for those who are currently cash-strapped, renting may be the more wallet-friendly choice.

Your Lifestyle

When things go wrong, renters can rely on their landlord or management company to coordinate and facilitate repairs. Homeowners, however, are solely responsible for handling the condition of their property. Besides the financial costs, it can take hours of research and dirty work to preserve your residential property.

If you enjoy handiwork, the chores associated with home ownership aren’t such a big deal. For the more technically challenged, however, taking care of a home could become a hassle.

Be honest about your abilities, interests, and resources before you commit to a home purchase.

If you are considering a new home purchase, be sure to contact your trusted home mortgage professional to find out about your financing options and to get pre-approved.

3 Great Homebuying Tools Millenials Have Available to Them Right Now

Millennials Have Great Home Buying Tools AvailableThe economy seems to be heating up rapidly, but home loan interest rates are still at historically low levels. Real estate values have climbed a bit across the country, but low interest rates and affordable prices makes for an excellent opportunity for new homeowners to get into their first home before it rates and prices rise higher.

According to the recent studies, there were 4 consecutive quarters of homeownership growth where new homeowners outpaced new renters.  The solid economic fundamentals are likely responsible for creating this excellent home buying environment.

Over the past year, Millennials seem to be on board and helping to drive the upward trend. They represent the next generation of homebuyers, and as this group is getting older, they are getting married more frequently. They are also starting families which tend to encourage the idea of home ownership. In fact, a recent analysis showed that home ownership is 30% higher among married couples than non-married couples.

Specifically, low unemployment numbers and a progressively aging pool of Millennials with a desire for home ownership appear to be driving this trend. US homeownership actually increased over 2017 to an unadjusted rate of 64.2%, which was a significant uptick from the previous year at 63.7%.

Here are a few very helpful tools are still available for new buyers:

  • Any homebuyer with military status can take advantage of Veterans Administration loans with far better rates than the normal market, making mortgage payments cheaper.
  • Those buying in rural areas can take advantage of rural homebuyer’s assistance programs provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help people move to small towns and similar communities.
  • The Housing and Urban Development Agency provides HUD loans that make it very affordable for those with limited income to purchase HUD-owned homes as first-time buyers and get into real estate.

Of course, the big response from Millenials is how do I earn more to even get started. Like Generation X folks before them, Millenials can’t wait for a job to be made available on a platter.

While looking, many smart folks have started their own businesses online or in their local marketplace. If a current job is enough to cover current bills, a second income can be entirely dedicated to saving, which can generate thousands of dollars quickly.

Even a part-time second job that creates $1,000 a month produces $12,000 a year and in two years enough for a sizable down payment. 

If you have questions about buying your next home, give us a call. We’d be happy to help!

Clever Tips for Paying Off Your Home Mortgage Faster

Pay Off Mortgage Faster

Paying off the mortgage on your home faster not only means that you’ll be able to enjoy the peace of mind that comes with completely owning your property earlier, but you may also save thousands of dollars in interest payments.

Below are seven clever tips to help you get your mortgage payments on the fast track.

1. Save for a large down payment

Pay as large a down payment as you can reasonably afford. The more you can put down, then the less you’ll have to borrow from the bank.

2. Read the fine print

When you are choosing a mortgage, look at the fine print to find out if any restrictions apply to paying early. Some lenders will charge you for making extra or early payments. 

3. Prepay early in the life of the mortgage

This is when the loan is the most interest-heavy. In the first five to seven years you are likely paying mostly interest. Request an amortization schedule of your mortgage to get a clear picture of how this works.

4. Be smart with unforeseen fortune

If you get an unexpected chunk of cash, such as a gift, prize, work bonus, inheritance, tax refund or other windfall, consider applying it straight to paying down the principal on your mortgage.

5. Double-check your records

When you make extra payments, ensure that they are processed correctly. Sometimes when the lender receives a payment that is outside of the monthly cycle, they may not know what to do with it. Make a special note and keep track of the payments yourself, so you can make sure they’ve been applied to your principal.

6. Increase your payment

Even increasing your payment by a small amount every month may take years off the length of your mortgage. Consider how much you can afford to pay every month rather than just the minimum payment amount.

7. Think about a bi-weekly payment

You might want to switch to an accelerated bi-weekly mortgage payment rather than a monthly payment. This typically applies an extra payment each year.

These are just a few techniques you can use to pay off your mortgage faster.

Remember, the quicker you pay off your mortgage, the less interest you will be paying.