Homeownership is a foundational part of the American Dream. As we look back on more than a year of sheltering in our homes, having a place of our own is more important than ever. While financial benefits are always a key aspect of homeownership, today, homeowners rank the nonfinancial and personal benefits with even higher value.
Recently, two national surveys revealed the reasons homeownership is such an important part of life. The top three personal benefits of homeownership noted by respondents in Unison’s 2021 report on The State of the American Homeowner are:
91% – feel secure, stable, or successful owning a home
70% – feel emotionally attached to the homes that have kept them safe over the past year
51% – call homeownership a “key part of their life”
These sentiments were supported by the most recent National Housing Survey from Fannie Mae, which also shows that the top three reasons Americans value homeownership have nothing to do with money. Those surveyed were given a list of feelings and accomplishments that are associated with or impacted by where we live. They were then asked, “To achieve this, are you better off owning or better off renting?” Here are the top three points from the list that respondents said homeownership could help them achieve:
91% – control over what you do with your living space
90% – a sense of privacy and security
89% – a good place for your family to raise your children
Other nonfinancial advantages of homeownership revealed by the survey include feeling engaged in a community, having flexibility in future decisions, and experiencing less stress.
Financial and nonfinancial benefits are a key component to the value of homeownership, but the nonfinancial side is most valued after a year full of pandemic-driven challenges. Let’s connect today if you’re ready to take the first steps toward becoming a homeowner.
Last week’s Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows sales have dropped by 3.7% compared to the month before. This is the second consecutive month that sales have slumped. Some see this as evidence that the red-hot real estate market may be cooling. However, there could also be a simple explanation as to why existing home sales have slowed – there aren’t enough homes to buy. There are currently 410,000 fewer single-family homes available for sale than there were at this time last year.
Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR, explains in the report:
“The sales for March would have been measurably higher, had there been more inventory. Days-on-market are swift, multiple offers are prevalent, and buyer confidence is rising.”
Yun’s insight was supported the next day when the Census Bureau released its Monthly New Residential Sales Report. It shows that newly constructed home sales are up 20.7% over the previous month.
Buyer demand remains strong. With more of the adult population becoming vaccinated and job creation data showing encouraging signs, existing-home inventory is expected to grow in the coming months.
The financial benefits of buying a home as compared to renting one are always up for debate. However, one element of the equation is often ignored – the ability to build wealth as a homeowner.
Most experts are calling for home prices to continue appreciating over the next several years. The most recent Home Price Expectation Survey, a survey of over one hundred economists, real estate experts, and investment and market strategists, expects home appreciation to increase as follows:
Using their annual projections, the graph below shows the equity build-up a purchaser could earn, using a $350,000 home as an example:A homeowner could increase their net worth by over $80,000 in five years. That’s an average of $16,000 annually. That number should be in any equation determining the financial benefits of owning a home compared to renting.
Homeowners are going to make a substantial amount of money in home equity over the next five years. If you’re ready to buy a home, let’s connect so you can enjoy this great benefit as well.
One of the biggest hurdles homebuyers face is saving for a down payment. As you’re budgeting and planning for your home purchase, you’ll want to understand how much you’ll need to put down and how long it will take you to get there. The process may actually move faster than you think.
Using data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Apartment List, we can estimate how long it might take someone earning the median income and paying the median rent to save up for a down payment on a median-priced home. Since saving for a down payment can be a great time to practice budgeting for housing costs, this estimate also uses the concept that a household should not pay more than 28% of their total income on monthly housing expenses.
According to the data, the national average for the time it would take to save for a 10% down payment is right around two and a half years (2.53). Residents in Iowa can save for a down payment the fastest, doing so in just over one year (1.31). The map below illustrates this time (in years) for each state:
What if you only need to save 3%?
What if you’re able to take advantage of one of the 3% down payment programs available? It’s a common misconception that you need a 20% down payment to buy a home, but there are actually more affordable options and down payment assistance programs available, especially for first-time buyers. The reality is, saving for a 3% down payment may not take several years. In fact, it could take less than a year in most states, as shown in the map below:
Wherever you are in the process of saving for a down payment, you may be closer to your dream home than you think. Let’s connect to explore the down payment options available in our area and how they support your plans.
Luxury living at 77 Court Street located less than a half-mile to vibrant, revitalized Newtonville with lots of shops, restaurants, and the advantage of the Commuter Rail and easy access to all highways.
Enter the two-level unit with an open layout, chef’s kitchen with waterfall quartz island, and dining and living area with sliders opening to a large deck. The cathedral ceiling adds to the drama. Stairs lead to a loft area on the second floor. Two master suites, one on the first floor and another upstairs–both with full baths and walk-in closets. Additional guest bedroom or office on the second floor off the open loft area.
This 2017 new construction building has an excellent Condo Association. Friendly lobby and shared outside space in the rear with picnic table and charcoal burning grill ready for you to enjoy.
77 Court Street, Unit 302, Newton, Offered at $1,229,000, MLS # 72803755 Eight rooms, three bedrooms, two full baths, one-half bath, Living area 2,230 sq. ft.
If you would like a Buyer Agent’s advice as you tour the home, contact me at Janet@JanetPorcaro.net or call 617-797-9497.
The listing broker is Haywood Kristiansen Group, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Warren Residential.