home buying: A Large Down Payment, Or Be Agile With Your Savings? - 05/20/22 06:19 AM
Putting down the largest sum of money at your disposal might seem like the best way to go when it comes to your mortgage down payment. There is a certain amount of truth to this, but the reality is bigger is not always better.
Ideally, the amount of money you settle on for your mortgage down payment will take into account your monthly budgeting requirements.
The Big Advantages Of A Large Down Payment
Fewer Mortgage Payments: The larger the down payment, the higher the likelihood that you will be able to afford a shorter mortgage. Unlike some of the other benefits of large … (0 comments)

home buying: Case-Shiller, FHFA Post New Records for Home Price Growth - 04/27/22 10:23 AM
S&P Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index rose by 19.80 percent year-over-year in February and was the third-largest pace of home price growth since the National Home Price Index’s inception. The 20-City Home Price Index reported that Phoenix, Arizona held its first-place ranking with year-over-year home price growth of 32.90 percent. Tampa, Florida maintained its second-place standing with year-over-year home price growth of 32.60 percent. Miami, Florida reported year-over-year home price growth of 29.70 percent year-over-year. Home prices rose faster for all 20 cities in February than in January.
Rapid Home Price Growth Expected to Slow as Rising Mortgage Rates Take Hold
All … (1 comments)

home buying: Exploring Homebuyer Assistance Programs: Options Available - 04/27/22 10:21 AM
The traditional rule of thumb is that you should put down 20 percent of the cost of the house if you decide to become a homeowner. Unfortunately, the thought of saving 20 percent of the price of a home for a down payment can be daunting for people who are trying to buy a house for the first time. If you purchase a house worth $250,000, this means that you would have to save up $50,000 to put down. Fortunately, there are multiple down payment assistance programs that can make it easier for people to afford a home.  
The Traditional First-Time … (1 comments)

home buying: Is It Enough To Offer Asking Price in Today’s Housing Market? - 04/25/22 07:32 AM

If you’re planning to buy a home this season, you’re probably thinking about what you’ll need to do to get your offer accepted. In previous years, it was common for buyers to try and determine how much less than the asking price they could offer to still get the home. The buyer and seller would then negotiate and typically agree on a revised price that was somewhere between the buyer’s bid and the home’s initial asking price.
In today’s real estate market, buyers shouldn’t shop for a home with the same expectations.
Things Are Different Today Today’s housing market is anything but … (4 comments)

home buying: Myths About Today’s Housing Market [INFOGRAPHIC] - 04/25/22 07:29 AM

Some Highlights If you’re planning to buy or sell a home today, it’s important to be aware of common misconceptions. Whether it’s timing your purchase as a buyer based on home prices and mortgage rates or knowing what to upgrade or repair before listing your house as a seller, it takes a professional to guide you through those decisions. Let’s connect so you have an expert to help separate fact from fiction in today’s housing market. … (1 comments)

home buying: How to Get a Mortgage If One Spouse Has A Poor Credit Score - 04/25/22 07:22 AM
A poor credit history is a reality for many people, but it can be particularly daunting when it comes to investing in a house. Fortunately, if you or yours have experienced bad credit doesn't mean that you should be penalized in the future. If your spouse has struggled with bad credit in the past but you're both preparing to move forward and invest in a home, here are some tips for getting it together financially.
Face The Music
Many people who have bad credit are too scared to take a look at their credit report and broach it honestly, but it's important … (1 comments)

home buying: On the Fence of Whether or Not To Move This Spring? Consider This. - 04/18/22 07:57 AM

If you’re thinking of selling your house, it may be because you’ve heard prices are rising, listings are going fast, and sellers are getting multiple offers on their homes. But why are conditions so good for sellers today? And what can you expect when you move? To help answer both of those questions, let’s turn to the data.
Today, there are far more buyers looking for homes than sellers listing their houses. Here are the maps of the latest buyer and seller traffic from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) to help paint the picture of what this looks like:

Notice how much darker the blues are on the left. … (2 comments)

home buying: What Is Multigenerational Housing? [INFOGRAPHIC] - 04/15/22 07:17 AM

Some Highlights If you have additional loved ones coming to live with you but don’t have enough space, it may be time to consider a larger, multigenerational home. Some key benefits of multigenerational living include a combined homebuying budget, shared caregiving duties, enhanced relationships, and more. These benefits might be why more people are choosing to live in multigenerational homes today. Let’s connect so you can find a house that meets your changing needs and has plenty of space for you and your loved ones. … (4 comments)

home buying: Where Are Mortgage Rates Headed? - 04/13/22 11:00 AM
Where Are Mortgage Rates Headed?
There’s never been a truer statement regarding forecasting mortgage rates than the one offered last year by Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American:
“You know, the fallacy of economic forecasting is: Don't ever try and forecast interest rates and or, more specifically, if you're a real estate economist mortgage rates, because you will always invariably be wrong.”
Coming into this year, most experts projected mortgage rates would gradually increase and end 2022 in the high three-percent range. It’s only April, and rates have already blown past those numbers. Freddie Mac announced last week that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is already at 4.72%.
Danielle … (4 comments)

home buying: Understanding Your Debt To Income Ratio: What It Means - 04/13/22 10:54 AM
If you are looking for a home, you might need to finance it using a lender, such as a bank or a credit union. There are a number of factors that will influence whether your mortgage application is approved. Then, these same factors will play a role in the terms the lender might offer you. One of the most important factors is called the debt to income ratio, or DTI. It is important to understand how this will impact your mortgage application.
What Is A Debt To Income Ratio?
Your DTI is important to the lender because this allows the lender to … (2 comments)

home buying: Using Your Tax Refund To Achieve Your Homeownership Goals This Year - 04/11/22 10:54 AM

If you’re buying or selling a home this year, you’re likely saving up for a variety of expenses. For buyers, that might include things like your down payment and closing costs. And for sellers, you’re probably working on a bit of spring cleaning and maintenance to spruce up your house before you list it.
Either way, any money you get back from your taxes can help you achieve your goals. Using a tax refund is a common tactic for buyers and sellers. SmartAsset estimates the average American will receive a $2,897 tax refund this year. The map below provides a more detailed estimate by state:

(8 comments)

home buying: What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - April 11, 2022 - 04/11/22 10:50 AM
Last week’s economic news included remarks given by Federal Reserve Board Governor Lael Brainard and the release of the minutes of the most recent meeting of the Fed’s Federal Open Market Committee. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.  
Federal Reserve Leaders Prepared to Address Inflation
Lael Brainard, a Governor of the Federal Reserve Board, addressed the central bank’s concerns over rapidly rising inflation in her remarks made at a financial conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota. “Currently, inflation is much too high and is subject to upside risks. It is of paramount importance to get inflation down.” Ms. Brainard … (2 comments)

home buying: Exploring Multigenerational Homes: They Are Becoming More Common - 04/08/22 08:34 AM
Purchasing a house is expensive. Not everyone has the money to put down 20 percent. One of the ways to make it easier to afford a house is to live in a home with multiple generations. Some people decide to move back in with their parents because they might have a difficult time affording a mortgage and student loans. Some parents move in with their children because they have health-related issues that need to be addressed. Now, multi-generational homes are becoming more common.
An Overview Of Multigenerational Homes
First, it is important to define a multigenerational home. This is a home that has … (4 comments)

home buying: The Future of Home Price Appreciation and What It Means for You - 04/07/22 10:06 AM

Many consumers are wondering what will happen with home values over the next few years. Some are concerned that the recent run-up in home prices will lead to a situation similar to the housing crash 15 years ago.
However, experts say the market is totally different today. For example, Odeta Kushi, Deputy Chief Economist at First American, tweeted just last week on this issue:
“. . . We do need price appreciation to slow today (it’s not sustainable over the long run) but high price growth today is supported by fundamentals- short supply, lower rates & demographic demand. And we are in a much different & … (4 comments)

home buying: The Pros and Cons of 'Mortgage Before Marriage' for Young Cou - 04/06/22 01:51 PM
There was a time when a higher percentage of people were married before they committed to buying a home together, but it's a lot more common to co-habit and invest in a home together. If you're considering the commitment of a mortgage without being married, here are some things to be aware of before you start searching the market.
Relationship Status Won't Affect Your Rates
It might seem like there are greater risks involved if two individuals purchasing a property are not legally bound, but it actually makes no difference to the mortgage lender. If two people are buying a home together, the … (0 comments)

home buying: Balancing Your Wants and Needs as a Homebuyer Today - 04/06/22 01:48 PM
Balancing Your Wants and Needs as a Homebuyer Today
Since the number of homes for sale is low today, it can feel challenging to find one that checks all your boxes. But if you know which features are absolutely essential in your next home and which ones are just nice bonuses, you can land a home that fits your needs.
Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for realtor.com, explains it like this:
“Focus on the goal you set out for yourself, like your list of must-haves and nice-to-haves and your budget, . . . Stick to that. Be persistent.”
So how do you go about creating your list of desired features? … (1 comments)

home buying: Advice For Purchasing A House On A Single Income - 04/04/22 11:13 AM
Even though a lot of people have two incomes they can use to purchase a house (theirs and their partner’s), this is not necessarily required. There are lots of people who want to take advantage of current interest rates to purchase a house, and some people are trying to do it on their own. Even though it can be a challenge to buy a house with only one income, it is certainly not impossible. There are several tips that can make it easier for everyone to afford a house with just a single income. 
Always Check Your Credit Score
If you want to … (1 comments)

home buying: Don’t Get Caught Off Guard by Closing Costs - 03/17/22 07:27 AM

As a homebuyer, it’s important to plan and budget for the expenses you’ll encounter when you purchase a home. While most people understand the need to save for a down payment, a recent survey found 41% of homebuyers were surprised by their closing costs. Here’s some information to help you get started so you’re not caught off guard when it’s time to close on your home.
What Are Closing Costs? One possible reason some people are surprised by closing costs may be because they don’t know what they are or what they cover. According to U.S. News and World Report:
“Closing costs encompass a … (1 comments)

home buying: Key Factors That Impact Affordability Today - 03/10/22 11:29 AM
Key Factors That Impact Affordability Today
You can’t read an article about residential real estate without the author mentioning the affordability challenges that today’s buyers face. There’s no doubt homes are less affordable today than they were over the last two years, but that doesn’t mean homes are now unaffordable.
There are three measures used to establish home affordability: home prices, mortgage rates, and wages. Let’s look closely at each of these components.
1. Home Prices The most recent Home Price Insights report by CoreLogic shows home values have increased by 19.1% from last January to this January. That was one reason affordability declined over … (2 comments)

home buying: Down Payment Assistance Programs Can Help You Achieve Homeownership - 03/03/22 09:35 AM

For many homebuyers, the thought of saving for a down payment can feel daunting, especially in today’s market. That’s why, when asked what they find most difficult in the homebuying process, some buyers say it’s one of the hardest steps on the path to homeownership. Data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows:
“For first-time home buyers, 29 percent said saving for a downpayment [sic] was the most difficult step in the process.”
If you’re finding that your down payment is your biggest hurdle, the good news is there are many down payment assistance programs available that can help you achieve your goals. The key is … (2 comments)

 
Bob Elliot, 20+ Yrs Industry Experience (eXp Realty)

Bob Elliot

20+ Yrs Industry Experience

Minneapolis, MN

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eXp Realty

Address: 15451 Founders Lane, Apple Valley, MN, 55124

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