Homeownership Wins Over Time

Homeownership Wins Over Time [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights

  • If you’re questioning whether or not to buy a home this year due to today’s cooling market, consider the long-term financial benefits of homeownership.
  • As a homeowner, equity increases your wealth. On average, nationwide, home prices appreciated by 290.2% since 1991.
  • Homeownership wins in the long run. If you’re ready to buy a home, reach out to Your Armstrong Field Real Estate professional today.

Do You Believe Homeownership Is Out of Reach? Maybe It Doesn’t Have To Be.

It turns out, millennials aren’t the renter generation after all. The 2022 Consumer Insights Report from Mynd says there’s a portion of millennial and Gen Z buyers who are pursuing homeownership as a way to build their wealth, but it may not be exactly the way previous generations have done it. The study explains how they’re breaking into the market:

“. . . younger generations of Americans are not buying into that dream in the same way that older generations have. A growing number of Americans are choosing to make their first real estate purchase as an investment property.”

Instead of buying a home and moving into it themselves, some young buyers are purchasing a home so they can use it as a rental. This tactic may be gaining popularity, at least in part, because of the affordability challenges brought about by today’s higher mortgage rates. The report above mentions how many people in this group are considering this approach. It says:

“Almost half of Millennials and Gen Z (43%) are considering buying an investment property compared to only 9% of Baby Boomers and 27% of Gen X.”

Why Younger Buyers Are Buying a Home To Use as a Rental

This strategy allows buyers to continue living in their current location, like the bustle of a city apartment or a neighborhood that they know and love, where they couldn’t afford to buy. But instead of giving up on the idea of owning a home, they buy a home in a more affordable area with the intention of renting it out.

In a way, they’re getting the best of both worlds. They live where they want, and they still own a home where they can afford it.

Their goal is to generate passive income and diversify their assets. It works like this: in addition to having a rental stream of income, the equity they build in their house will also help grow their net worth over time.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about buying a home as an investment strategy to build your wealth, connect with us to explore your options and nearby areas that may have homes that fit what you’re looking for.

Autumn is here, enjoy the cozy season in Salem, Massachusetts!

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The leaves are peaking and painting our beautiful coastal town of Salem, Massachusetts in a rainbow of fall colors. Enjoy warmth and harvest here in town with a wonderful selection of local restaurants. Our lineup of November events includes Santa’s Arrival at the Hawthorne and Holiday Tree Lighting on November 25th. The 2022 Salem Awards Ceremony on November 15th in collaboration with Voices Against Injustice. Stories of Ukrainian Art: Examples of Courage and Identity on November 20th with the House of Seven Gables. A performance of Bach’s Cello Suites No. 5 and 6, Lecture and Performance with Salem State University, and many more events! Explore new exhibits on display at the PEMSalem Arts AssociationSatanic Temple, and Old Town Hall.

Don’t miss some of our favorite new businesses, including Flip the BirdCurly Girl Candy ShopReal Pirates Salem, and The Coach House!

Visit Salem.org to begin planning your visit today!

Salem Halloween Trick-Or-Treat Hours, Safety Tips

On the Witch City’s busiest night of the year, drivers are urged to be on the lookout for costumed kiddos in residential areas.

Outside of the hustle and bustle of downtown, Salem neighborhood trick-or-treating will take place between 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Outside of the hustle and bustle of downtown, Salem neighborhood trick-or-treating will take place between 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. (Shutterstock)

SALEM, MA — As thousands make their way to the Witch City for Halloween day and night revelry, there is a majority of residents who look forward to a more traditional trick-or-treat experience.

Outside of the hustle and bustle of downtown, neighborhood trick-or-treating will take place between 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. During this time, those driving through neighborhoods are urged to be on the lookout for costumed kiddos, while those on the hunt for candy are advised to be careful to stay out of roads and avoid common trips and falls.

“Drive slowly, especially on neighborhood and residential side streets, and be aware that children may cross at many points of the street, including from behind parked vehicles, trees, or sign posts where they may not see your approaching vehicle,” Salem police said.

Those who wish to participate in this year’s trick-or-treat should turn on outside lights. Those who do not want to be part of the party should keep outside lights turned off during trick-or-treat hours.

Among the other trick-or-treat safety tips from Salem police are to plan a route ahead of time, do not eat any candy until it is brought home and inspected by an adult, walk on sidewalks when possible, and walk facing traffic where there are no sidewalks, avoid walking on yards where the terrain is often uneven and falls can happen, carry flashlights or use reflective tape to be better seen and tell children never to enter a strange home or accept a ride from someone they do not know.

Salem also has a “Zero Tolerance Policy” when it comes to drinking and being disorderly in public. Anyone who is served with a Zero Tolerance Order will be banned from all downtown business.

(Scott Souza is a Patch field editor covering Beverly, Danvers, Marblehead, Peabody, Salem and Swampscott. He can be reached at Scott.Souza@Patch.com. Twitter: @Scott_Souza.)

Saving for a Down Payment? Here’s What You Should Know.

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As you set out to buy a home, saving for a down payment is likely top of mind. But you may still have questions about the process, including how much to save and where to start.

If that sounds like you, your down payment could be more in reach than you originally thought. Here’s why.

The 20% Down Payment Myth

If you believe you have to put 20% down on a home, you may have based your goal on a common misconception. Freddie Mac explains:

“. . . nearly a third of prospective homebuyers think they need a down payment of 20% or more to buy a home. This myth remains one of the largest perceived barriers to achieving homeownership.”

Unless it’s specified by your loan type or lender, it’s typically not required to put 20% down. According to the latest Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the median down payment hasn’t been over 20% since 2005. There are even loan types, like FHA loans, with down payments as low as 3.5%, as well as options like VA loans and USDA loans with no down payment requirements for qualified applicants.

This is good news for you because it means you could be closer to your homebuying dream than you realize. For more information, turn to a trusted lender.

Down Payment Assistance Programs Can Be a Game Changer

A professional will be able to show you other options that could help you get closer to your down payment goal. According to latest Homeownership Program Index from downpaymentresource.com, there are over 2,000 homebuyer assistance programs in the U.S., and the majority are intended to help with down payments.

A recent article explains why programs like these are helpful:

These resources can immediately build your home buying power and help you take action sooner than you thought possible.”

And if you’re wondering if you have to be a first-time buyer to qualify for these programs, that’s not always the case. According to an article from downpaymentresource.com:

“It is a common misconception that homebuyer assistance is only available to first-time homebuyers, however, 38% of homebuyer assistance programs in Q1 2022 did not have a first-time homebuyer requirement.

There are also location and profession-based programs you could qualify for as well.

Bottom Line

Saving for your down payment is an important first step on your homebuying journey. Connect with your Armstrong Field Real Estate advisor and trusted lender today to begin exploring your options.

Why Buying a Home May Make More Sense Than Renting

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Some Highlights

  • If you’re trying to decide whether to rent or buy a home, consider the advantages homeownership offers.
  • Buying a home can help you escape the cycle of rising rents, it’s a powerful wealth-building tool, and it’s typically considered a good hedge against inflation.
  • If you’re ready to take advantage of the benefits of homeownership, talk with a trusted real estate professional at www.armstrongfield.com to explore your options.

Why Buying a Home May Make More Sense Than Renting [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Will My House Still Sell in Today’s Market?

If recent headlines about the housing market cooling and buyer demand moderating have you worried you’ve missed your chance to sell, here’s what you need to know. Buyer demand hasn’t disappeared, it’s just eased from the peak intensity we saw over the past two years.

Buyer Demand Then and Now

During the pandemic, mortgage rates hit record lows, and that spurred a significant rise in buyer demand. This year, as rates increased due to factors like rising inflation, buyer demand pulled back or softened as a result. The latest data from ShowingTime confirms this trend (see graph below):

Will My House Still Sell in Today’s Market? | Keeping Current Matters

The orange bars in the graph above represent the last few months of data and the clear cooldown in the volume of home showings the market has seen since mortgage rates started to rise. But context is important. To get the full picture of where today’s demand stands, let’s look at the July data for the past six years (see graph below):

Will My House Still Sell in Today’s Market? | Keeping Current Matters

This second visual makes it clear that, while moderating compared to the frenzy in 2020 and 2021, showing activity is still beating pre-pandemic levels – and those pre-pandemic years were great years for the housing market. That goes to show there’s still demand if you sell your house today.

What That Means for You When You Sell

The key to selling in a changing market is understanding where the housing market is now. It’s not the same market we had last year or even earlier this year, but that doesn’t mean the opportunity to sell has passed.

While things have cooled a bit, it’s still a sellers’ market. If you work with a trusted local expert to price your house at the current market value, the demand is still there, and it should sell quickly. According to a recent survey from realtor.com, 92% of homeowners who sold in August reported being satisfied with the outcome of their sale.

Bottom Line

Buyer demand hasn’t disappeared, it’s just moderated this year. If you’re ready to sell your house today, lean on a trusted real estate professional to understand how the market has shifted and how to plan accordingly for your sale.

Three Things Buyers Can Do in Today’s Housing Market

It’s clear the 2022 housing market has been defined by rising mortgage rates. With rates on the rise, it’s also become more costly to purchase a home. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR):

“Compared to one year ago, the monthly mortgage payment rose to $1,944 from $1,265, an increase of 53.7%.”

If you’re thinking of buying a home or have been trying to recently, that’s a big increase in a monthly mortgage payment – and it may be causing you to press pause on your plans. This jump is making homes less affordable, especially compared to the last two years when mortgage rates were at historic lows.

The good news is you can navigate today’s housing market and this rising rate environment with a few simple tips. Here are three things you may want to consider to help make your homeownership goals a reality.

1. Expand Your Search Area and Criteria

If you’ve been looking for a home in the city center or a specific area that’s starting to feel out of your price range, you may want to try looking a little further out in a location that could be more affordable. Expanding your search location or re-prioritizing the items on your wish list can open up opportunities you haven’t considered, and that could help you afford more of what you need (and want) in a home. As CNET notes:

“Area growth is likely to keep pace with the market, which means that the outskirts of town might be hopping within five years. Consider stepping out of your ideal location by searching in the nearby cities. You may find better prices and more square footage.”

2. Explore Alternative Financing Options

Working with a trusted lender to learn about the different loan types and options is essential too. According to Nerd Wallet:

“A variety of mortgages are available with varying down payment and eligibility requirements.”

Experts know how to point you in the right direction when it comes to exploring ways to find the best home loan for your situation. With rising mortgage rates making it more costly to finance a home today, there may be an ideal option out there your loan officer can introduce you to. This could make a home purchase more affordable and within your financial reach over the life of your loan.

3. Look for Grants, Gift Funds, and Down Payment Assistance

There are also many options available when it comes to securing the funding you need to purchase a home. One valuable resource to explore is downpaymentresource.com. Searching for specific down payment assistance options available in your local community could be a game changer when it comes to taking your first step toward homeownership. As NAR indicates:

“Many local governments and non-profit organizations offer down-payment assistance grants and loans, targeted to area borrowers and often with specific borrower requirements.”

Plus, there are programs and special benefits for individuals working in certain professions or with unique statuses, including teachers, doctors and nurses, and veterans.

Ultimately, that means there are many federal, state, and local programs available for you to explore. The best way to do that is to connect with a local real estate professional and your lender to learn more about what’s available in your area.

Bottom Line

If you’ve been searching for a home and have found yourself stepping out of the process because you’re worried about rising costs, connect with a trusted real estate expert. Having a team of local advisors on your side may be just what you need to guide your search in a new and more affordable direction.

New Feature on ArmstrongField.com

While browsing through the homes for sale listings on ArmstrongField.com one of our knowledgeable REALTORS is only a click away!

Ask a Realtor a question about a home

Just put your name and phone number in the form that pops up and a REALTOR will connect with you via phone call within 1 minute! if you aren’t ready to talk with someone right away then just close the form with the “X” and continue to enjoy our website. When you have a question and are ready to talk, click on the “cn” logo (it stands for Connect Now) at the lower right-hand corner of your screen. You may receive a text message back if all agents are busy, but be assured that someone will get back to you shortly. We hate waiting as much as you do!