The Millennial Home Buyer

May 17
Category | Blog

According to the latest Zillow® Housing Confidence Index (ZHCI), among people 18-34 years old, 65 percent said homeownership and the American Dream go hand-in-hand. That’s more than any other generation. This age group represents Millennials, or those born between 1982 and 2004.

The survey results come at a time when rising rents and stagnant incomes are making it tough for many Americans to buy homes. Millennials are renting longer than past generations as they put off major life decisions, but Zillow’s survey shows millennials value homeownership more than their parents and grandparents and low interest rates are in their favor.

While the number of millennial renters continues to climb in urban areas, the generation is choosing elsewhere when making the move to buy. This decision is boosted by price, limited inventory and the need for space.

The 2016 National Association of REALTORS® Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends study revealed that more millennials are purchasing single-family houses outside of urban areas than ever before. In fact, millennials represented 35 percent of all buyers compared to 26 percent from Generation X, and 9 percent from the Silent Generation.

From witnessing the plight of their parents to navigating a barren employment landscape, most millennials experienced the effects of the ...

Spring may be the “season of clean” at home, but it’s also an ideal time to organize your finances and commit to long-term financial stability.

The arrival of spring motivates people to renew their surroundings, and what better way to focus that momentum than to check off everything on your financial to-do list.

To go out with the old, in with the savings check out these recommendations:

1. Evaluate and pay down debt. Take a look at how much you owe and what you are paying in interest. If there are better rates available now, consider requesting a lower credit card interest rate or refinancing your mortgage. Begin paying off existing debt, whether that’s by chipping away at loans with the highest interest rates or eliminating smaller debt first. 

2. Review your budget. A lot can change in a year. If you’ve been promoted, had a child or became a new homeowner or renter, be sure to update your budget. Determine what expenses demand the most money and identify areas where you can realistically cut back. Develop a strategy for spending and saving and stick to it.  A savings strategy will be key for your downpayment.

3. Check your credit report. Your credit rating is a primary factor in qualifying for a mortgage, so pull copies of your report from Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax at least three months before you intend to buy. You ...

Mortgage rates recently plunged to their lowest level since February 2015, unlocking more savings for home buyers and home owners who are refinancing. If you have been considering buying a home- 2016 could be the best year to make your move!

Currently interest rates for the popular 30-year fixed rate mortgage is still even lower than it was this time last spring. Mortgage rates are largely unchanged and remaining near their low mark for 2016 at the start of the spring homebuying season, according to the recently released Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey®. 

“As a result, the 30-year mortgage rate was mostly flat, up only 1 basis point to 3.59 percent. The release of March's existing-home sales report, which shows monthly growth at 5.1 percent, suggests homebuyers are taking advantage of low mortgage rates as the spring homebuying season gets underway," Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac.

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending April 7:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.59 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week's 3.71 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.66 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: ...

Going through a foreclosure can be a traumatic experience, but it doesn’t mean you’ll never own a home again. Getting a mortgage if you have a foreclosure on your record has its challenges but is not impossible to overcome- your dream of homeownership is not just a fantasy.  While your credit will take a big hit after foreclosure, you may be able to get another mortgage after some time passes. It is key to remember that, getting a loan isn't the same for each boomerang buyer; it depends on the circumstance of the individual's foreclosure or short sale and their credit history since the event.

More than five million American families lost their homes to foreclosure between 2007—the year when the crisis kicked up—through the end of last year. Foreclosures and most negative credit events stay on credit reports for up to seven years. For those who lost their homes in the early years of the crisis, credit scores are improving as the black marks drop away, improving their ability to borrow again.

It is certainly possible to obtain financing in today’s environment and still get competitive interest rates as long as the borrowers fulfill certain credit obligations. It’s important to note however a bankruptcy, foreclosure and a short sale aren’t the same event. A ...

Spring is finally here and as the weather continuing to get warmer; do you find yourself thinking about a vacation? As you dream about venturing to that ideal destination make sure you also dream about the process of packing luggage, long flights and crowded hotels. What if you vacation became more permanent? Have you been wondering how much fun a beachfront or vacation home might be but really haven’t gotten too deep in the details? 

A vacation home is considered a “non-owner occupied” property and you’ll need a down payment of at least 20% when using conventional financing. However, there are other options with lower down payments as long as the  property is considered a vacation, or second home and not primarily used as a rental property. For income tax purposes, a second home becomes an investment property if the unit is rented out for more than two weeks each year.

Many people assume they must own a primary residence before owning a vacation home, but this isn’t a rule you must follow. What’s really important is matching your housing choices to your lifestyle.

You may live in a city and want lots of space that you can’t afford there. You could rent a modest condo in the city, and buy a large vacation home outside the metro area.

When buying a vacation home you’ll need to get ...

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