Why Now is the Time to Purchase a Home

Real Estate Agent with Maximum One Realty Greater Atlanta

Although the housing market has been in the doldrums for the past few years, most of us realize that home ownership is a worthy long term financial goal, not to mention the pride and comfort of living in space that is yours.  There hasn't been a better time to buy a house in the last 30 years. Here's why:

1. Prices are remarkably low, especially in neighborhoods that have been hit hardest by foreclosures. In some cases, you can buy a house for less than the cost of a lot in the same subdivision. People forget that houses don't have a memory. In other words, once the foreclosures are gone, the house becomes worth what it would cost to replace it.

When the cost of the sticks and bricks and land exceeds your purchase price, you are getting a true bargain.

2. Sellers are ready to be flexible on price and terms. Smart sellers in this market know that they have to be flexible in order to make a sale, and some sellers simply MUST sell. Plan on seeing a lot of houses and making a lot of offers to get the best deal. And don't rule out bank-owned homes and government owned properties, as they may offer some of the best values around.

HUD is so anxious to sell its homes that it offers buyers a "$100 down" loan program provided you plan to live in the home you buy. You can even add up to $5,000 in needed repairs and upgrades to the loan. And the rate is locked in at today's rate for a full thirty years.

3. Interest rates are still at remarkably low levels. The greatest expense you will have associated with housing is the interest you pay over the years on your home loan. If you can lock in a 30 year fixed rate now, you will benefit every month for the next three decades.

When considering your loan options, don't overlook the FHA 5/1 adjustable rate loan. If you plan to own your home for less than ten years, you may actually be better off with an adjustable loan than a fixed rate. Not only is the rate fixed for the first five years, but it can rise no more than one percent per year thereafter. Check with your lender for details.

4. This recession is ending. We are already beginning to see a slow decline in unemployment. Sooner or later, this country will experience an economic recovery.  Housing will be in demand and inventory will be lower due to the slowdown of new construction.

If a home purchase is in the cards, don't wait too long.  Interest rates have already begun inching up, and inflation is clearly on the way. Know that the Federal Reserve has been engaging in what they call "quantitative easing," which means that they have been artificially holding down interest rates to help end the recession. This is only temporary, and it can't go on forever.

When inflation occurs, home prices will rise, and you'll wish you had bought a house when you had the chance.  You may not see an opportunity like this again in your lifetime.  Contact a good local realtor who can point you to the values and make your dream of home ownership come true!


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