The Top Real Estate Markets For 2022

Real estate sign in front of a house for sale in a nice suburban neighborhood. Digital 3D render.

Real estate sign in front of a house for sale in a nice suburban neighborhood. Digital 3D render.Realtor.com created a list of the top housing markets for 2022 whose ranking is based on the combined yearly percentage growth in both home sales and prices expected in 20222 among the top 100 largest markets in the country. The list reflects data from recent home sale prices, the number of new sales and new construction as well as previous and anticipated household growth for the area. The top 10 metros on the list are:

  1. Salt Lake City, UT
  2. Boise, ID
  3. Spokane, WA
  4. Indianapolis, IN
  5. Columbus, OH
  6. Providence, RI
  7. Greenville, SC
  8. Seattle, WA
  9. Worcester, MA
  10. Tampa, FL

For more information on the top housing markets for 2022, click here.

Are you interested in purchasing a home or refinancing your current home this year? I would love to help! Call me today!

Affordable Housing Markets That Remain Hidden Gems

Street of suburban homes

Street of suburban homesRecently, the National Association of Realtors conducted a report of the 2022 Housing Market Hidden Gems, which reveals the top ten undervalued metro area housing markets in the U.S. This report measured wages, jobs, population growth, and housing permits over a three-year period. Additionally, the report measured the migration and percentage of the population between 25 and 44 years of age. The top ten markets in alphabetical order are:

  1. Dallas, TX
  2. Daphne, AL
  3. Fayetteville, AR
  4. Huntsville, AL
  5. Knoxville, TN
  6. Palm Bay, FL
  7. Pensacola, FL
  8. San Antonio, TX
  9. Spartanburg, SC
  10. Tucson, AZ

While many of these areas benefit significantly from remote work as buyers feel more comfortable moving out into less expensive cities, all of them had an estimated property value below the national median of $297,506. Of these cities, Dallas, TX proved to be the most expensive location, while Spartanburg, SC is the least expensive.

For more information about this list, click here.

2022 Housing Market Predictions

2022 Housing Market Predictions2

2022 Housing Market Predictions2After a busy 2021 housing market, experts are revealing what we should expect to see in 2022. Following are a few predictions:

Increased mortgage rates – While mortgage rates have remained near historic lows for many months, National Association of Realtors economists expect the 30-year fixed mortgage rate to increase by the end of 2022 as the Federal Reserve increases interest rates to battle inflation.

Increased home prices – Home prices in 2021 increased by almost 20% from the year before. Experts predict that home prices will continue to rise in 2022, but only by abut 3-6%.

Limited inventory – Throughout 2021, inventory remained low and bidding wars were prevalent. During 2022, inventory is expected to increase slightly but will likely remain low enough to keep bidding wars in play.

For more information on 2022 housing market predictions, click here.

If you are interested in purchasing a home in the coming months, give me a call! I would love to help with your financing.

First-Time Homebuyers Are Willing to Pay More

The mental key from door with wooden trinket in shape of house in woman's hand

The mental key from door with wooden trinket in shape of house in woman's handAccording to a recent study by Realtor.com, first-time homebuyers are tiring of bidding wars and ready to pay more to become homeowners. Survey results showed that 75% of first-time homebuyers who haven’t been able to close on a home in the past year plan to continue trying and more than 90% plan to offer more than 20% down when possible. Additionally, the number of buyers looking for homes between $500,000 and $750,000 increased from 6% to 13% from the spring to fall of 2021 and the number of buyers looking below $350,000 decreased from 75% to 62%.

Further elaborating, George Ratiu, manager of economic research at Realtor.com, said that “First-time homebuyers internalized how competitive the real estate market has been this year and have been willing to adjust their budgets, strategies, and expectations. Low mortgage interest rates have allowed first-time homebuyers to stretch their budgets. And many first-time homebuyers who have been able to work remotely have been able to save a little more for a down payment.”

As the housing market has remained competitive, many buyers have lost bidding war after bidding war and, despite the steadily increasing home prices nationwide, are willing to pay over asking price to win. Almost 30% of buyers surveyed responded that they are willing to offer 30% over the list price of a home, compared with none when a similar survey was conducted in the spring.

To read more, click here.

Tips To Improve Home Security

Tips To Improve Home Security2

Tips To Improve Home Security2Protecting one’s home, family, and belongings is a primary concern for most homeowners. However, installing a fancy alarm system can sometimes be costly. How can you increase the security of your home without breaking the bank? Here are some simple tips:

Automatic lights – Putting smart lightbulbs in street-facing lamps and setting lamp timers are  great ways to create the illusion that someone is home. Click here for smart light bulbs and here for lamp timers.

Outdoor lights – Exterior lights, especially ones with motion sensors, increase home security. When the lights detect movement, they will turn on, hopefully deterring any intruders and alerting you that something may be awry outside. View motion-detecting exterior lights here.

Smart locks – It’s possible that intruders aren’t breaking in, but rather taking advantage of an unlocked door. Smart locks that are remotely accessible or lock when a door is closed can prevent your doors from being inadvertently left unlocked. View smart locks here.

Video doorbells – Doorbells that record movement around the home entrance have become a staple in home security. Most video doorbells are accessible through a smartphone app and have two-way talk features. To see the top video doorbells, click here.

Window stops – These devices prevent windows from opening more than six inches. You can still provide ventilation for your home without creating enough room for someone to enter. Click here for window stops.

Alarm system – If possible, install an alarm system that will sound if someone breaks into your home. If it is not possible to install an alarm system, the illusion of one can also act as a deterrent. Alarm system signs and fake alarm system boxes on walls can give the impression an alarm system is there, even when it is not functional.

Don’t forget to ask your neighbors to keep an eye on your home when you are going to be out of town. They may even be willing to move trash cans and pick up newspapers and mail to make your home appear as if you are there. For more home security tips, click here. To view ways that home security technology has advanced, click here.

Benefits of Home Security Systems

Benefits of Home Security Systems2

Benefits of Home Security Systems2Did you know only 38% of Americans own a home security device? According to a survey conducted by safehome.org, the most popular types of home security devices are video cameras and doorbells, followed by a professionally monitored security system. However, home functionality is beginning to change thanks to a new wave of smart home systems, such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home, and Nest. While there is generally an upfront and sometimes monthly cost associated with home security systems, some financial benefits also come with them. Here are some of the advantages of arming your home with a security system:

  1. Protect your home, family, and valuables – The most obvious benefit of a home alarm system is protecting your home from intruders. Many professionals say intruders are less likely to enter your home if an alarm system is present.
  2. Remote access – With most modern home security systems, you can have remote access to your home through a mobile app. This gives you the ability to check in through the camera while offering other features such as locking doors and windows and turning lights on and off.
  3. Lower homeowners insurance – While your home security system may come with a monthly fee, it has the potential to lower your homeowners insurance rate.
  4. Fire and carbon monoxide notifications – Many home security systems provide a notification if your smoke or carbon monoxide alarms are triggered. Some systems also notify authorities when this happens.
  5. Energy bill management – If your security system allows you to manage your home thermostat and electrical outlets, it could be saving you money on your energy bill. If you need to adjust the heat or turn off an electrical appliance, you can do so remotely. Additionally, many systems allow you to program your thermostat for energy management.

For more benefits of home security systems, click here. To view a list of some excellent home security systems, click here.

Pre-Closing Checklist For Homebuyers

pre-closing checklist

pre-closing checklistWhen purchasing a home, it can often feel like there are several hurdles to cross before actually making it to the closing table. Knowing what to expect and preparing yourself accordingly is the best way to ensure a stress-free home purchase process. Following is a checklist of items that must be completed before closing on your new home:

Contingencies – Make sure all your contingencies have been taken care of prior to closing. Most home purchase contracts include contingencies for items such as home inspections, appraisal, financing, and more. While your mortgage planner and real estate agent should walk you through these tasks, it is best to be aware of them to ensure they are completed.

Title – When you purchase a home, you “take title” to establish legal ownership. Your mortgage lender will require a title search take place and you will likely be required to purchase title insurance to protect you should any legal claims to the house arise. Homebuyers are entitled to choose their own title company. If you need recommendations, your real estate agent should be able to provide those.

Mortgage Approval – Prior to final approval, your mortgage will go through the underwriting process in which an underwriter will review all aspects of your application and check your credit score. During this time, it is crucial that you do not make any financial transactions that could hurt your credit, such as opening new lines of credit, moving large sums of money, or financing a large purchase like a car or boat.

Closing Disclosure – Your mortgage planner will provide a HUD-1 settlement statement, otherwise known as a closing disclosure. It is important to thoroughly review this as it will contain information about your mortgage, such as the payment amount, the loan’s terms, additional fees, and closing costs.

Final Walk Through – Most contracts allow buyers to do a final walkthrough with their real estate agent 24 hours before closing. During this time, you will ensure that the sellers have vacated the home and that the home is in the condition that was contractually agreed upon.

Bring Required Documents – Lastly, you will need to bring proof of homeowner’s insurance, a copy of your contract with the seller, home inspection reports, bank required paperwork, and a government-issued photo ID to closing. Your real estate agent will likely help you collect and organize these documents.

If you have any questions about the home purchase process, I would love to answer them for you! Give me a call today to discuss.

Wrap the Perfect Gift

Packing of the christmas presents on white background

Packing of the christmas presents on white backgroundSay goodbye to gift-wrapping chaos this giving season! Instead, follow the simple steps outlined below to wrap the perfect gift.

Before you begin, gather your supplies: wrapping paper, scissors, tape, and ribbons/bows. Note that it is generally easier to wrap a gift that is inside a box. You can purchase gift boxes, but many stores will often give you boxes for free if you ask.

Once you have all your supplies ready to go, it’s time to start wrapping. Here’s a step-by-step plan:

  1. On a flat, clear surface such as a counter or kitchen table, unroll some of the wrapping paper, printed side down.
  2. Starting with the gift on the edge of the paper, roll the wrapping paper across the box to determine how much paper you will need to cover the entire present.
  3. Cut the paper, then fold about an inch over the cut to create a clean edge.
  4. Place the box in the center of the paper and bring the paper edge opposite to the folded edge up the side and halfway across the top of the box. Fasten with tape.
  5. Bring the folded side up so that it overlaps with the taped edge and pull the paper tightly around the box before affixing with tape.
  6. Fold the paper in on each side of the gift. To do this, fold down the top flap onto the side of the box, creating two wings at the side. Flatten the wings and fold them inward. Fold the remaining triangle of paper up against the box and attach with tape. Repeat on the other side.
  7. Add ribbon, a bow, or a decorative gift tag to the present to give it a festive touch!

View photo instructions here.

For a tutorial, watch the video below.

If you are interested in purchasing a new home or refinancing in the coming year, I would love to help! Call me today to discuss your home financing options.

 

Review Your Mortgage to Achieve Financial Goals

reviewing mortgage

reviewing mortgageI would love to help you reach your financial goals this year. By scheduling a mortgage checkup with me, we can discuss your current situation as well as your goals for the future. There are many areas we will go over to understand if it is a good time for you to purchase a new home or refinance your current mortgage.

We will begin by thinking about your future. Ask yourself: “What are my real estate goals for the next 5-10 years?” Maybe you want to purchase your first home, or maybe you want to purchase a vacation home. Analyze whether you anticipate changes in your employment or income over the next 5-10 years, as this could affect what you can afford. You will also want to consider any potential life-changing events over this period. These events may include:

  • children going away to college
  • marriage or divorce
  • promotion or retirement
  • aging parents
  • surgery or prolonged illness
  • home improvements or needing a smaller/larger home
  • newborn baby or adoption
  • starting or closing a business
  • purchasing an investment property, second home or new car

Next, we will discuss the current state of your home and mortgage as well as how it could affect your future. We will look at the approximate value of your home and how long you plan to live in it. If you have a second mortgage, we will take that amount into consideration as well. The next step will be to discuss both your personal goals and your goals for your mortgage.

Personal goals may include:

  • building your net worth/achieving financial freedom
  • having your mortgage paid off when you retire
  • achieving liquidity
  • moving into a larger home
  • maximizing current and future tax deductions
  • saving money to send your children to college

Mortgage goals may include:

  • lowering your monthly payment
  • eliminating other debt (credit cards, student loans, etc.)
  • using equity to develop a cash reserve or for investment purposes
  • maximizing tax benefits
  • paying off your loan as soon as possible

Let me help you achieve your financial goals for 2022. Call me today to schedule a time to evaluate your current situation and discuss your future plans.

 

Winter Housing Market Expected to Show Relief

For Sale and Coming Soon realtor sign in front of large brick single family house in expansive snow cover yard in mid winter

For Sale and Coming Soon realtor sign in front of large brick single family house in expansive snow cover yard in mid winterWhile the housing market has reflected extremely low inventory and high prices nationwide for several months, experts say that it could experience some relief in the coming weeks. Unfortunately, inventory will likely remain low, but prices are beginning to decrease, and the holidays should provide some relief on the number of buyers looking for homes.

During the fall, Realtor.com conducted a survey in which they found that 77% of sellers were willing to accept an offer as low as 7% below asking price on their homes. These responses were up from 54% of buyers in the spring.

Additionally, while interest rates have increased slightly, they remain low. The Federal Reserve has stated that it does not plan to increase rates significantly until the U.S. economy has reached full employment and inflation has leveled.

Danielle Hale, chief economist of Realtor.com elaborated that “through the end of the calendar year, buyers will get a break. I mean this in the sense that buyers are likely to have more time to make decisions, less competition, and a bit more negotiating power with sellers.”

For more information on the current market and predictions for the future, click here.