Despite rising home prices, it’s still cheaper to own a home than to rent, reports CNBC. But the toughest part for those who want to buy is actually finding a home.
“One thing we added this month to our REALTORS® Confidence Index is analyzing data on REALTORS®’ comments,” said Danielle Hale, managing director of housing research at NAR. “The two biggest phrases in the comments this month were ‘low inventory’ and ‘multiple offers.’”Inventory levels in April dropped 9 percent compared to a year ago, and listings spent an average of 29 days on the market before selling—the shortest timeframe since the National Association of REALTORS® began tracking such data in 2011.
The least expensive homes are the toughest to find. Sales of homes below $100,000 dropped 17 percent in April year-over-year. Also, sales of homes under $250,000 dropped more than 6 percent. Yet a new Trulia report shows it’s cheaper to buy than rent in all of the nation’s 100 largest metro markets. So while consumers may have more financial incentive to buy now, they are hard-pressed to find an actual home to buy.
The report shows that buying a home is 33.1 percent cheaper than renting, but there are big differences across metros. For example, it’s more than 50 percent cheaper to buy than rent in Baton Rouge, La., if a consumer is purchasing with a 20 percent down payment and 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. On the other hand, in San Jose, Calif., buying is only 3.5 percent cheaper than renting.
Source: “It’s Cheaper to Buy a Home Than Rent, But Only If You Can Find One,” CNBC (May 24, 2017)
Tips for First Time Home Buyers
Hire a buyer’s agent to save you time and money
If you are considering buying a home, hire a buyer’s agent. An agent will save you time in finding a home that meets your needs. They can send you listings to view the details and photos before actually setting foot out the door. Also, agents often know of new listings that aren’t on the market yet. Besides, the seller is the one that will end up paying the commission, so take advantage of having some representation on your side, it doesn’t cost you anything.
Set up the financing for your new home purchaseThink about getting the loan before buying a home. It is smarter to go house shopping with a preapproval letter in your hand. When that day comes along that you want to make an offer, it will make your offer a lot stronger when the seller doesn’t have to worry so much as to you having to get financing. Get preapproved now!
Negotiate a successful deal that benefits both parties
Make sure your buyer’s agent gives you a list of comparable sales in the area. This will help you determine how much to bid on the home. The last 3 months sales are a good gauge for you to determine what to bid. Remember there are always more details to the offer than just the price. Examples are: how soon you want to move, having a pre-approval, seller’s assist, the items you want them to leave in the house. There are many details so be sure so sit back and think of the things that are important to you.
Make home inspections part of the plan
You may want to make your offer contingent on the home inspection. If you find out the home has foundation issues, you may decide against buying it. Having a home inspection will let you know exactly what you are getting into. Some people hate to spend another $300-$500 on the inspection, but it does give you the opportunity to address with the seller the problems of the home. Also, it lets you negotiate the items you would like them to address.
Remember buying a home is a step by step journey, there is no easy way there. There are many hurdles to go over to end up living in your dream home, but if you take them one step at a time, you’ll be well on your way to home ownership in no time. Get your FREE Quote Now!