Recently there has been a lot of talk about home prices and if they are accelerating too quickly. As we mentioned before, in some areas of the country, seller supply (homes for sale) cannot keep up with the number of buyers out looking for a home, which has caused prices to rise.
The great news about rising prices, however, is that according to CoreLogic’s US Economic Outlook, the average American household gained over $11,000 in equity over the course of the last year, largely due to home value increases.
The map below was created using the same report from CoreLogic and shows the average equity gain per mortgaged home from June 2015 to June 2016 (the latest data available).
For those who are worried that we are doomed to repeat 2006 all over again, it is important to note that homeowners are investing their new-found equity in their homes and themselves, not in depreciating assets.
The added equity is helping families put their children through college, invest in starting small businesses, allowing them to pay off their mortgage sooner or move up to the home that will better suit their needs now.
CoreLogic predicts that home prices will appreciate by another 5% by this time next year. If you are a homeowner looking to take advantage of your home equity by moving up to your dream home, let’s get together to discuss your options! You can reach me at 407-925-7721 Cell or Text.
The most recent Housing Pulse Survey released by the National Association of Realtors revealed that the two major reasons Americans prefer owning their own home instead of renting are:
- They want the opportunity to build equity.
- They want a stable and safe environment.
In a recent article by The Mortgage Reports, they report that “buying and owning a home is the essence of ‘The American Dream.’ Each month, your housing payments go toward owning your home instead of renting it; building your personal wealth and assets instead of someone else’s.
History has shown that homeownership is a clear path to wealth-building, with homeowners boasting a net worth [that is] multiples higher than the net worth of renters.”
Does owning your home really create a more stable environment for your family?
A survey of property managers conducted by rent.com disclosed two reasons tenants should feel less stable with their housing situation:
- 68% of property managers predict that rental rates will continue to rise in the next year by an average of 8%.
- 53% of property managers said that they were more likely to bring in a new tenant at a higher rate than to negotiate and renew a lease with a current tenant they already know.
We can see from these survey results that renting will provide anything but a stable environment in the near future.
Homeowners enjoy a more stable environment, and at the same time are given the opportunity to build their family’s net worth.
According to ATTOM Data Solutions’ 2017 Rental Affordability Report, buying a home is more affordable than renting in 354 of the 540 U.S. counties they analyzed.
The report found that “making monthly house payments on a median-priced home — including mortgage, property taxes and insurance — is more affordable than the fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 354 of the 540 counties analyzed in the report (66 percent).”
For the report, ATTOM Data Solutions compared recently released fair market rent data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development with reported income amounts from the Department of Labor and Statistics to determine the percentage of income that a family would have to spend on their monthly housing cost (rent or mortgage payments).
Rents have been surging faster than home prices in about 37% of the markets measured. Daren Blomquist, Senior Vice President of ATTOM Data Solutions warns that rising interest rates could be the tipping point of affordability:
“While buying continues to be more affordable than renting in the majority of U.S. markets, that equation could change quickly if mortgage rates keep rising in 2017. In that scenario, renters who have not yet made the leap to homeownership will find it even more difficult to make that leap this year.”
Rents will continue to rise and mortgage interest rates are still at historic lows. Before you sign or renew your next lease, meet with a local professional who can help you determine if you are able to buy a home of your own and lock in your monthly housing expense.
According to a recent report by Trulia, “buying is cheaper than renting in 100 of the largest metro areas by an average of 37.7%.” That may have some thinking about buying a home instead of signing another lease extension. But, does that make sense from a financial perspective?
In the report, Ralph McLaughlin, Trulia‘s Chief Economist explains:
“Owning a home is one of the most common ways households build long-term wealth, as it acts like a forced savings account. Instead of paying your landlord, you can pay yourself in the long run through paying down a mortgage on a house.”
The report listed five reasons why owning a home makes financial sense:
- Mortgage payments can be fixed while rents go up.
- Equity in your home can be a financial resource later.
- You can build wealth without paying capital gains.
- A mortgage can act as a forced savings account.
- Overall, homeowners can enjoy greater wealth growth than renters.
Before you sign another lease, let’s get together and discuss all your options.
There has been a lot of talk about the falling homeownership rate in the United States. In December 2004, the homeownership rate reached an all-time high of 69.4%, while the current rate is 62.9%. When comparing these two figures, there is some room for concern regarding the difference.
However, today we want to shine some light on the issue by:
- Showing what historic homeownership rates have looked like over the last 130 years.
- Breaking down the current percentages by state.
Historic Homeownership Rates:
Current Homeownership Rates by State:
All of the states that you see in blue on the map above have a greater homeownership rate than the national average.
Though the homeownership rate has fallen recently, the percentage is still at a healthy rate compared to historic numbers, and most states currently have a higher percentage than the national average.
There are some that think that housing affordability is a challenge. Historically, that’s not true. Others think that home prices are approaching bubble values. If we look back over the last sixteen years, that is also not the case. As a matter of fact, the numbers show that the U.S. residential real estate market is doing just fine.
Here are two articles and excerpts that make this point:
“It has been an excruciatingly long time coming, but the housing sector in the United States is finally getting healthy. Thank millennials and thank homebuilders who are starting to produce more of the starter houses young people demand.”
“Interest rates are so low now that a family can buy the median-priced U.S. home on income of less than $45,000 a year — about $11,000 less than the median household income. And half of America’s houses are cheaper than that.”
There are those worried that all this positive talk resembles what was being said in 2004 and 2005. Jonathan Smoke, Chief Economist at realtor.com, explains the difference very simply but effectively:
“The havoc during the last cycle was the result of building too many homes and of speculation fueled by loose credit. That’s the exact opposite of what we have today.” (emphasis added)
No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, the emotional reasons why we choose to buy our own home are, more often than not, the more powerful or compelling ones.
Every year, The Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University conducts a survey to find driving factors behind why Americans decide to buy a home.
The top 4 reasons to own a home cited by participants of the survey were not financial.
1. It means having a good place to raise children & provide them with a good education
From the best neighborhoods to the best school districts, even those without children at the time of purchase may have this in the back of their mind as a major reason for choosing the location of the home that they purchase.
2. You have a physical structure where you & your family feel safe
It is no surprise that having a place to call home with the means for comfort and security is the number two reason.
3. It allows you to have more space for your family
Whether your family is expanding, or an older family member is moving in, having a home that fits your needs is a close third on the list.
4. It gives you control over what you do with your living space, like renovations and updates
Looking to actually try one of those complicated wall treatments that you saw on Pinterest? Tired of paying an additional pet deposit for your apartment building, or do you want to finally adopt that puppy or kitten you’ve seen online 100 times? Who’s to say that you can’t in your own home?
The 5th reason on the list, is the #1 financial reason to buy a home as seen by respondents:
5. Owning a home is a good way to build up wealth that can be passed along to my family
Either way you are paying a mortgage. Why not lock in your housing expense now with an investment that will build equity that you can borrow against in the future?
Whether you are a first time homebuyer or a move-up buyer who wants to start a new chapter in your life, now is a great time to reflect on the intangible factors that make a house a home.