A Quick Guide to Buying a Home  in Your Golden Years

A Quick Guide to Buying a Home in Your Golden Years

A Quick Guide to Buying a Home
in Your Golden Years

Article sourced and written by Andrea Needham 

Buying a new home in your senior years is a chance to live out the retirement of your dreams in a place you’ve always wanted to live. The home buying process is always a lot of work, but seniors have some specific considerations to keep in mind. From calculating how much home you can afford on a fixed income to hunting for a space that will accommodate your changing needs, you have a lot of planning to do. Here are some quick tips to help you get organized.

Finding the Right Home

If you plan to age-in-place like most seniors, make sure your new home will suit your lifestyle needs both now and in the future.

  • Consider moving closer to loved ones who can provide support and assistance in your later years.
  • Be sure to choose a community with access to all the things you want to do.
  • If you want a simpler life, consider downsizing into a smaller space.
  • When you’re ready to start house hunting, work with an experienced real estate company like The Cressy Team.

Funding your purchase

Before you start looking at homes, make sure this major financial move makes sense for you right now.

 Preparing for the big Move

Navigating a move is always a stressful process but planning far ahead will help everything go as smoothly as possible. 

  • If you’re moving long-distance, try to book your movers at least four to eight weeks in advance.
  • Don’t forget about essential moving tasks, like updating your address and setting up utilities at your new home.
  • Use a coded system for packing and organizing your moving boxes for effortless unpacking.

    Ready to retire in the home of your dreams? Before you buy a new home, make sure you do your research! Think carefully about where you want to move, know how to spot a home that will accommodate aging-in-place, organize your financials, evaluate your mortgage options, and create a thorough moving checklist. All of the planning you do now will pay off when you finally get to put your feet up in your perfect, new home!

     Photo Credit: Unsplash

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    How Will the Presidential Election Impact Real Estate?

    How Will the Presidential Election Impact Real Estate?

    How Will the Presidential Election Impact Real Estate?

    Article Sourced and Written by Keeping Current Matters

    The year 2020 will be remembered as one of the most challenging times of our lives. A worldwide pandemic, a recession causing historic unemployment, and a level of social unrest perhaps never seen before have all changed the way we live. Only the real estate market seems to be unaffected, as a new forecast projects there may be more homes purchased this year than last year.

    As we come to the end of this tumultuous year, we’re preparing for perhaps the most contentious presidential election of the century. Today, it’s important to look at the impact past presidential election years have had on the real estate market.

    Is there a drop-off in home sales during a presidential election year?

    BTIG, a research and analysis company, looked at new home sales from 1963 through 2019 in their report titled One House, Two House, Red House, Blue House. They noted that in non-presidential years, there is a -9.8% decrease in November compared to October. This is the normal seasonality of the market, with a slowdown in activity that’s usually seen in fall and winter.

    However, it also revealed that in presidential election years, the typical drop increases to -15%. The report explains why:

    “This may indicate that potential homebuyers may become more cautious in the face of national election uncertainty.”

    Are those sales lost forever?

    No. BTIG determined:

    “This caution is temporary, and ultimately results in deferred sales, as the economy, jobs, interest rates and consumer confidence all have far more meaningful roles in the home purchase decision than a Presidential election result in the months that follow.”

    In a separate study done by Meyers Research & Zonda, Ali Wolf, Chief Economist, agrees that those purchases are just delayed until after the election:

    “History suggests that the slowdown is largely concentrated in the month of November. In fact, the year after a presidential election is the best of the four-year cycle. This suggests that demand for new housing is not lost because of election uncertainty, rather it gets pushed out to the following year.”

    Will it matter who is elected?

    To some degree, but not in the overall number of home sales. As mentioned above, consumer confidence plays a significant role in a family’s desire to buy a home. How may consumer confidence impact the housing market post-election? The BTIG report covered that as well:

    “A change in administration might benefit trailing blue county housing dynamics. The re-election of President Trump could continue to propel red county outperformance.”

    Again, overall sales should not be impacted in a significant way.

    Bottom Line

    If mortgage rates remain near all-time lows, the economy continues to recover, and unemployment continues to decrease, the real estate market should remain strong up to and past the election.

     

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    How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall

    How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall

    How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall

    Article Sourced and Written by Keeping Current Matters

    Real estate continues to be called the ‘bright spot’ in the current economy, but there’s one thing that may hold the housing market back from achieving its full potential this year: the lack of homes for sale.

    Buyers are actively searching for and purchasing homes, looking to capitalize on today’s historically low interest rates, but there just aren’t enough houses for sale to meet that growing need. Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac, explains:

    “Mortgage rates have hit another record low due to a late summer slowdown in the economic recovery…These low rates have ignited robust purchase demand activity…However, heading into the fall it will be difficult to sustain the growth momentum in purchases because the lack of supply is already exhibiting a constraint on sales activity.”

    According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), right now, unsold inventory sits at a 3.1-month supply at the current sales pace. To have a balanced market where there are enough homes for sale to meet buyer demand, the market needs inventory for 6 months. Today, we’re nowhere near where that number needs to be. If the trend continues, it will get even harder to find homes to purchase this fall, and that may slow down potential buyers. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com, notes:

    “The overall lack of sustained new listings growth could put a dent in fall home sales despite high interest from home shoppers, because new listings are key to home sales.”

    The realtor.com Weekly Recovery Report keeps an eye on the number of listings coming into the market (houses available for sale) and the total number of listings staying in the market compared to the previous year (See graph below):

    Buyers are clearly scooping up homes faster than they’re being put up for sale. The number of total listings (the orange line) continues to decline even as new listings (the blue line) are coming to the market. Why? Javier Vivas, Director of Economic Research at realtor.com, notes:

    “The post-pandemic period has brought a record number of homebuyers back into the market, but it’s also failed to bring a consistent number of sellers back. Homes are selling faster, and sales are still on an upward trend, but rapidly disappearing inventory also means more home shoppers are being priced out. If we don’t see material improvement to supply in the next few weeks, we could see the number of transactions begin to dwindle again even as the lineup of buyers continues to grow.”

    Does this mean it’s a good time to sell?

    Yes. If you’re thinking about selling your house, this fall is a great time to make it happen. There are plenty of buyers looking for homes to purchase because they want to take advantage of low interest rates. Realtors are also reporting an average of 3 offers per house and an increase in bidding wars, meaning the demand is there and the opportunity to sell for the most favorable terms is in your favor as a seller.

    Bottom Line

    If you’re considering selling your house, this is the perfect time to connect so we can talk about how you can benefit from the market trends in our local area.

     

     

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    Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

    Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

    Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

    Article Sourced and Written by Keeping Current Matters

    The year 2020 will certainly be one to remember, with new realities and norms that changed the way we live. This year’s real estate market is certainly no exception to that shift, with historic highlights continuing to break records and challenge what many thought possible in the housing market. Here’s a look at four key areas that are fundamentally defining the market this year.

    Housing Market Recovery

    The economy was intentionally put on pause this spring in response to the COVID-19 health crisis. Many aspects of the common real estate transaction were placed on hold at the same time. Thankfully, technology and innovation helped the industry power forward, and business gradually ramped back up as shelter-in-place orders were lifted.

    The result? Total transformation of the market from rock-bottom lows to exceptional highs. Today, the housing recovery is being called truly remarkable by many experts and is far exceeding expectations. From pending home sales to purchase applications, buyers are back in business and homes are selling – fast.

    According to the Housing Market Recovery Index by realtor.com, the market has surpassed pre-pandemic levels, and has regained the strength we remember from February of this year (See graph below):

    Record-Breaking Mortgage Rates

    Historically low mortgage rates are another 2020 game-changer. Today’s low rate is one of the big motivating factors bringing buyers back into the market. The average rate reached an all-time low on multiple occasions this year, and it continues to hover in record-low territory.

    When rates are this low, buyers have a huge opportunity to get more for their money when purchasing a home, something many are eager to find while continuing to spend more time than expected at home this year, and likely beyond.

    Continued Home Price Appreciation

    One of the key drivers of home price appreciation this year is historically low inventory. Inventory was low going into the pandemic, and it is still sitting well below the level needed for a normal market. Although sellers are slowly making their way back into the game, buyers are scooping up homes faster than they’re coming up for sale.

    This is a classic supply and demand scenario, forcing home prices to rise. Selling something when there is a higher demand for what is available naturally bumps up the price. If you’re ready to sell your house today, this may be the optimal time to make your move. As Bill Banfield, EVP of Capital Markets at Quicken Loansnotes:

    “The pandemic has not stopped the consistent home price growth we have witnessed in recent years.” 

    Increasing Affordability

    Even as home prices continue to rise, affordability is working in favor of today’s homebuyers. According to many experts, rates this low are off-setting rising home prices, which increases buyer purchasing power – an opportunity not to be missed, especially if your family’s needs have changed. If you now need space for a home office, gym, virtual classroom, and more, it may be time to reconsider your current house.

    According to Mortgage News Daily:

    “Those shopping for a home can afford 10 percent more home than they could have one year ago while keeping their monthly payment unchanged. This translates into nearly $32,000 more buying power.

    Bottom Line

    With mortgage rates hitting historic lows, home prices appreciating, affordability rising, and the market recovering like no other, 2020 has been quite a year for real estate – perhaps one we’ve never seen before and may never see again. Let’s connect today if you’re ready to take advantage of this year’s record-breaking opportunities.

     

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