Weekly Real Estate Report

Weekly Real Estate Report

 

Home prices and rates have fallen so far that the monthly cost of owning a home is more affordable than at any point in the past 15 years and is less expensive than renting in a growing number of cities. The Wall Street Journal’s third-quarter survey of housing-market conditions in 28 of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas found that home values declined in all but five markets compared with the second quarter, according to data from Zillow Inc. Meanwhile, rent levels have risen briskly across the country and rates are the lowest in six decades. As a result, monthly payments on the median priced home—including taxes and insurance—are lower than the average rent levels in 12 metro areas, according to data compiled for The Wall Street Journal by Marcus & Millichap, a real-estate brokerage that tracked 27 metro areas. It remains less expensive to rent than to buy in 15 cities. “It’s one of the most striking developments of the housing downturn,” said Paul Dales, an economist at Capital Economics. “The initial building blocks for a recovery are in place.” “Home ownership is also looking more affordable because after several years of declines, apartment rents will rise by around 4% this year. Rents are poised “to pick up even more momentum across the country next year.” Source: The Wall Street Journal

Today’s experts spout off the latest statistics about long-term wealth, home values, and interest rates, yet there’s a much more sentimental side to homeownership. In fact, many home buyers are drawn to homeownership for these warm and fuzzy reasons. Owning a home allows you to put down roots, both figuratively and literally. On one hand you become part of a neighborhood and community. When you rent, neighbors come and go as quickly as leases renew. Homeowners, however, tend to stay put longer. What does this mean for you? You can develop, many times, lifelong relationships. This also means your home will see you through many of life’s important milestones. It makes sense. Many people enter the realm of homeownership as young couples looking to build a nest. They plan on starting their own family and need room to expand and grow. These family homes will see many firsts and will be the container of countless memories. Additionally, homeownership gives families more room to entertain and this means extended family will also share in building memories. It’s not just young families, though, that seek homeownership. Families with teenagers seek larger homes to room their growing brood. Retiring adults may wish to start a new phase and new memories, seeking out warmer climates or smaller, more manageable homes. There is a certain pride that comes with homeownership. This little piece of property and land is yours. There’s no one that can evict you or take it away. This security allows people to form deep attachments to both the land and home. This pride of ownership spurs many owners to make improvements and additions, both to keep the home in working order and to make it more comfortable and usable, which in turn improves neighborhood values and overall curb appeal. Why do people buy? They may be initially motivated by changes in circumstance, such as a new job or a new family, but they buy based on emotional responses. People want a house that can become their home, where they’ll fill it with good times and memories. Be sure to remember this sentimental side of homeownership the next time you read about stocks, bonds, and housing woes. Source: Realty TimesHome owners looking for additional income are opening up their homes and renting out spare bedrooms to offset housing payments, which has made “homesharing” the latest trend catch on in some parts of the country, particularly in affluent areas. Homesharing “started where it was mostly elderly people living on fixed incomes that needed to rent out a room to supplement their income or they were frail and needed help in the house. So they would offer a lower rent to somebody that would help,” says Jackie Grossmann, a homesharing coordinator in Deerfield, Ill. “But now it’s really moved to boomers, who have lost [their] savings.” While baby boomers are looking for roommates to help offset the costs of home ownership, the roommates are looking for inexpensive housing in “homesharing” arrangements for any number of reasons, such as job loss, divorce, job relocation, and more. Some programs have even sprung up to help play matchmaker to home owners and renters. In the high-priced area of Deerfield, Ill., for example, the Interfaith Housing Center of the Northern Suburbs offers the North Suburban Homesharing, a free service that matches roommates looking for inexpensive housing with home owners seeking extra cash. Source: DeerfieldPatch