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      Still Think You Need 15-20% Down to Buy a Home? Think Again!

      Still Think You Need 15-20% Down to Buy a Home? Think Again! | MyKCM

      According to a new study from Urban Institute, there are over 19 million millennials in 31 cities who are not only ready and willing to become homeowners, but are able to as well!

      Now that the largest generation since baby boomers has aged into prime homebuying age, there will no doubt be an uptick in the national homeownership rate. The study from Urban Institute revealed that nearly a quarter of this generation has the credit and income needed to purchase a home.

      Surprisingly, the largest share of mortgage-ready millennials lives in expensive coastal cities. These cities often attract highly skilled workers who demand higher salaries for their expertise.

      So, what’s holding these mortgage-ready millennials back from buying?

      Myths About Down Payment Requirements! 

      Most of the millennials surveyed for the study believe that they need at least a 15% down payment in order to buy a home when, in reality, the median down payment in the US in 2017 was just 5%, and many programs are available for even lower down payments!

      The study goes on to point out that:

      “Despite limited awareness, every state has programs that provide grants and loans to make homeownership more attainable, with average assistance in various states ranging from $2,436 to $21,171.”

      Bottom Line

      With so many young families now able to buy a home in today’s market, the demand for housing will continue for years to come. If you are one of the many millennials who have questions about their ability to buy in today’s market, let’s get together so we can assist you along your journey!

      Compass Contemplations for Thursday

       

      DID YOU KNOW? Housing starts fell 5.3% in September from the prior month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.201 million, according to the Commerce Department. Residential building permits, which can signal how much construction is in the pipeline, also fell, declining 0.6% from August to an annual pace of 1.241 million last month. Housing-starts data are volatile from month to month and can be subject to large revisions. September’s 5.3% drop for starts came with a margin of error of 11.3 percentage points. (WSJ)


      DID YOU KNOW? U.S. home-builder confidence ticked up in October after pulling back from a multi-decade high in recent months. (WSJ)

       

      DID YOU KNOW?  Household wealth in the U.S. continues to surge. China has replaced Japan in 2nd place. Aggregate global wealth rose by $14 trillion to $317 trillion in the 12 months prior to mid-year 2018, a 4.6% growth rate. Rising wealth was largely due to increases in non-financial assets owned by the middle-class. Total wealth and wealth per adult in the U.S. have grown every year since 2008, even when total global wealth suffered a reversal in 2014 and 2015. The U.S. has accounted for 40% of all increments to world wealth since 2008, and 58% of the rise since 2013. (Global Wealth Report 2018)

       

      DID YOU KNOW? Consumers filed the fewest requests for a mortgage since late 2014 last week as most home borrowing costs reached their highest levels in more than 7 years.

       

      DO YOU WANT PROOF? .....of how every "Compass experience" matters?  This summer, a Compass Agent in LA successfully and smoothly sold the home of their clients. Those clients then asked their agent if perhaps they knew a Compass agent in New York who could help sell their parents apartment on the Upper East Side. It had been on the market for quite some time with a different agent at a different firm and they felt they had such a positive experience with Compass LA they wanted to try a change ......this time with Compass New York. With the introduction to Compass NY and an agent who specializes on the Upper East Side, the home was re-listed, staged, and beautified. After just 13 days on the market, it entered into a contract and closed within 45 days. There is no better public relation for ALL of us if we ALL focus on QUALITY EXPERIENCES AND RESULTS.

      Pre-Approval: Your 1st Step in Buying a Home

      Pre-Approval: Your 1st Step in Buying a Home | MyKCM

      In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search.

      Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget will give you the confidence of knowing if your dream home is within your reach.

      Freddie Mac lays out the advantages of pre-approval in the ‘My Home’ section of their website:

      “It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”

      One of the many advantages of working with a local real estate professional is that many have relationships with lenders who will be able to help you through this process. Once you have selected a lender, you will need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.”

      Freddie Mac describes the ‘4 Cs’ that help determine the amount you will be qualified to borrow:

      1. Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payments
      2. Capital or cash reserves: The money, savings, and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash
      3. Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase
      4. Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time

      Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and it often helps speed up the process once your offer has been accepted.

      Bottom Line

      Many potential homebuyers overestimate the down payment and credit scores necessary to qualify for a mortgage today. If you are ready and willing to buy, you may be pleasantly surprised at your ability to do so.

      Is the Real Estate Market Finally Getting Back to Normal?

      Is the Real Estate Market Finally Getting Back to Normal? | MyKCM

      The housing market has been anything but normal for the last eleven years. In a normal real estate market, home prices appreciate 3.7% annually. Below, however, are the price swings since 2007 according to the latest Home Price Expectation Survey:

      After the bubble burst in June 2007, values depreciated 6.1% annually until February 2012. From March 2012 to today, the market has been recovering with values appreciating 6.2% annually.

      These wild swings in values were caused by abnormal ratios between the available supply of inventory and buyer demand in the market. In a normal market, there would be a 6-month supply of housing inventory.

      When the market hit its peak in 2007, homeowners and builders were trying to take advantage of a market that was fueled by an “irrational exuberance.”

      Inventory levels grew to 7+ months. With that many homes available for sale, there weren’t enough buyers to satisfy the number of homeowners/builders trying to sell, so prices began to fall.

      Then, foreclosures came to market. We eventually hit 11 months inventory which caused prices to crash until early 2012. By that time, inventory levels had fallen to 6.2 months and the market began its recovery.

      Over the last five years, inventory levels have remained well below the 6-month supply needed for prices to continue to level off. As a result, home prices have increased over that time at percentages well above the appreciation levels seen in a more normal market. 

      That was the past. What about the future?

      We currently have about 4.5-months inventory. This means prices should continue to appreciate at above-normal levels which most experts believe will happen for the next year. However, two things have just occurred that are pointing to the fact that we may be returning to a more normal market.

      1. Listing Supply is Increasing

      Both existing and new construction inventory is on the rise. The latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors revealed that inventory has increased over the last two months after thirty-seven consecutive months of declining inventory. At the same time, building permits are also increasing which means more new construction is about to come to market. 

      2. Buyer Demand is Softening

      Ivy Zelman, who is widely respected as an industry expert, reported in her latest ‘Z’ Report:

       “While we continue to expect a resumption of growth in resale transactions on the back of easing inventory in 2019 and 2020, our real-time view into the market through our Real Estate Broker Survey does suggest that buyers have grown more discerning of late and a level of “pause” has taken hold in many large housing markets.

      Indicative of this, our broker contacts rated buyer demand at 69 on a 0- 100 scale, still above average but down from 74 last year and representing the largest year-over-year decline in the two-year history of our survey.”

      With supply increasing and demand waning, we may soon be back to a more normal real estate market. We will no longer be in a buyers’ market (like 2007-February 2012) or a sellers’ market (like March 2012- Today).

      Prices won’t appreciate at the levels we’ve seen recently, nor will they depreciate. It will be a balanced market where prices remain steady, where buyers will be better able to afford a home, and where sellers will more easily be able to move-up or move-down to a home that better suits their current lifestyles.

      Bottom Line

      Returning to a normal market is a good thing. However, after the zaniness of the last eleven years, it might feel strange. If you are going 85 miles per hour on a road with a 60 MPH speed limit and you see a police car ahead, you’re going to slow down quickly. But, after going 85 MPH, 60 MPH will feel like you’re crawling. It is the normal speed limit, yet, it will feel strange.

      That’s what is about to happen in real estate. The housing market is not falling apart. We are just returning to a more normal market which, in the long run, will be much healthier for you whether you are a buyer or a seller.

      5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional Before Entering the Market!

      5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional Before Entering the Market! | MyKCM

      Whether you are buying or selling a home, it can be quite the adventure. In this world of instant gratification and internet searches, many sellers think that they can ‘For Sale by Owner’ or ‘FSBO,’ but it’s not as easy as it may seem. That’s why you need an experienced real estate professional to guide you on the path to achieving your ultimate goal!

      The 5 reasons you need a real estate professional in your corner haven’t changed but have rather been strengthened by the projections of higher mortgage interest rates and home prices as the market continues to pick up steam.

      1. What do you do with all this paperwork?

      Each state has different regulations regarding the contracts required for a successful sale, and these regulations are constantly changing. A true real estate professional is an expert in his or her market and can guide you through the stacks of paperwork necessary to make your dream a reality.

      2. So you found your dream house, now what?

      There are over 230 possible steps that need to take place during every successful real estate transaction. Don’t you want someone who has been there before, someone who knows what these actions are, to ensure you achieve your dream?

      3. Are you a good negotiator?

      So maybe you’re not convinced that you need an agent to sell your home. After looking at the list of parties that you will need to be prepared to negotiate with, you’ll soon realize the value in selecting a real estate professional. From the buyers (who want the best deals possible), to the home inspection companies, all the way to the appraisers, there are at least 11 different people who you will need to be knowledgeable of, and answer to, during the process.

      4. What is the home you’re buying/selling really worth?

      It is important for your home to be priced correctly from the start in order to attract the right buyers and shorten the amount of time that it’s on the market. You need someone who is not emotionally connected to your home to give you its true value. According to a recent article by the National Association of Realtors, FSBOs achieve prices significantly lower than the prices of similar properties sold by real estate agents:

      “FSBOs earn an average of $60,000 to $90,000 less on the sale of their home than sellers who work with a real estate agent.”

      Get the most out of your transaction by hiring a professional!

      5. Do you know what’s really going on in the market?

      There is so much information out there on the news and on the internet about home sales, prices, and mortgage rates; how do you know what’s going on specifically in your area? Who do you turn to in order to competitively and correctly price your home at the beginning of the selling process? How do you know what to offer on your dream home without paying too much, or offending the seller with a lowball offer?

      Dave Ramsey, the financial guru, advises:

      “When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.”

      Hiring an agent who has his or her finger on the pulse of the market will make your buying or selling experience an educated one. You need someone who is going to tell you the truth, not just what they think you want to hear.

      Bottom Line

      You wouldn’t replace the engine in your car without a trusted mechanic, so why would you make one of the most important financial decisions of your life without hiring a real estate professional?

      5 Reasons Why to Sell This Summer!

      5 Reasons Why to Sell This Summer! | MyKCM

      Here are five reasons listing your home for sale this summer makes sense.

      1. Demand Is Strong

      The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase…and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy the same home.

      Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

      2. There Is Less Competition Now

      Housing inventory has declined year-over-year for the last 35 months and is still under the 6-month supply needed for a normal housing market. This means that, in the majority of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in the market. This is good news for homeowners who have gained equity as their home values have increased. However, additional inventory could be coming to the market soon.

      Historically, the average number of years a homeowner stayed in his or her home was six, but that number has hovered between nine and ten years since 2011. There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move as they were unable to sell over the last few years because of a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners will be given the freedom to move.

      The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until this other inventory comes to market before you decide to sell.

      3. The Process Will Be Quicker

      Today’s competitive environment has forced buyers to do all they can to stand out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing. This makes the entire selling process much faster and much simpler as buyers know exactly what they can afford before home shopping. According to Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insights Report, the average time it took to close a loan was 41 days.

      4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

      If your next move will be into a premium or luxury home, now is the time to move up! The inventory of homes for sale at these higher price ranges has forced these markets into a buyer’s market. This means that if you are planning on selling a starter or trade-up home, your home will sell quickly, AND you’ll be able to find a premium home to call your own!

      Prices are projected to appreciate by 5.2% over the next year, according to CoreLogic. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait.

      5. It’s Time to Move on With Your Life

      Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

      Only you know the answers to the questions above. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

      That is what is truly important.

      Moving Up to Your Dream Home? Don't Wait!

      Moving Up to Your Dream Home? Dont Wait! | MyKCM

      Mortgage interest rates have risen by more than half of a point since the beginning of the year, and many assume that if mortgage rates rise, home values will fall. History, however, has shown this not to be true.

      Where are home values today compared to the beginning of the year?

      While rates have been rising, so have home values. Here are the most recent monthly price increases reported in the Home Price Insights Report from CoreLogic:

      • January: Prices were up 0.5% over the month before.
      • February: Prices were up 1% over the month before.
      • March: Prices were up 1.4% over the month before.

      Not only did prices continue to appreciate, the level of appreciation accelerated over the first quarter. CoreLogic believes that home prices will increase by 5.2% over the next twelve months.

      How can prices rise while mortgage rates increase?

      Freddie Mac explained in a recent Insight Report:

      “In the current housing market, the driving force behind the increase in prices is a low supply of both new and existing homes combined with historically low rates. As mortgage rates increase, the demand for home purchases will likely remain strong relative to the constrained supply and continue to put upward pressure on home prices.”

      Bottom Line

      If you are thinking about moving up to your dream home, waiting until later this year and hoping for prices to fall may not be a good strategy.

      What to Expect From Your Home Inspection

      What to Expect From Your Home Inspection | MyKCM

      So you made an offer, it was accepted, and now your next task is to have the home inspected prior to closing. More often than not, your agent may have made your offer contingent on a clean home inspection.

      This contingency allows you to renegotiate the price paid for the home, ask the sellers to cover repairs, or even, in some cases, walk away. Your agent can advise you on the best course of action once the report is filed.

      How to Choose an Inspector

      Your agent will most likely have a short list of inspectors that they have worked with in the past that they can recommend to you. Realtor.com suggests that you consider the following 5 areas when choosing the right home inspector for you:

      1. Qualifications – find out what’s included in your inspection & if the age or location of your home may warrant specific certifications or specialties.
      2. Sample Reports – ask for a sample inspection report so you can review how thoroughly they will be inspecting your dream home. The more detailed the report, the better in most cases.
      3. References – do your homework – ask for phone numbers and names of past clients that you can call to ask about their experience.
      4. Memberships – Not all inspectors belong to a national or state association of home inspectors, and membership in one of these groups should not be the only way to evaluate your choice. Membership in one of these organizations often means that there is continued training and education provided.
      5. Errors & Omission Insurance – Find out what the liability of the inspector or inspection company is once the inspection is over. The inspector is only human after all, and it is possible that they might miss something they should have seen.

      Ask your inspector if it’s ok for you to tag along during the inspection, that way they can point out anything that should be addressed or fixed.

      Don’t be surprised to see your inspector climbing on the roof, crawling around in the attic, and on the floors. The job of the inspector is to protect your investment and find any issues with the home, including but not limited to: the roof, plumbing, electrical components, appliances, heating & air conditioning systems, ventilation, windows, the fireplace & chimney, the foundation and so much more!

      Bottom Line

      They say ‘ignorance is bliss,’ but not when investing your hard-earned money in a home of your own. Work with a professional you can trust to give you the most information possible about your new home so that you can make the most educated decision about your purchase.

      Buying a Home Is Cheaper Than Renting in the Majority of the US

      Buying a Home Is Cheaper Than Renting in the Majority of the US | MyKCM

      The results of the 2018 Rental Affordability Report from ATTOM show that buying a median-priced home is more affordable than renting a three-bedroom property in 54% of U.S. counties analyzed for the report.

      The updated numbers show that renting a three-bedroom property in the United States requires an average of 38.8% of income.

      The least affordable market for renting was Marin County, CA, just over the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, where renters spend a staggering 79.5% of average wages on rent, while the most affordable market was Madison County, AL where 22.3% of average wages went to rent.

      Other interesting findings in the report include:

      • Average rent rose faster than income in 60% of counties
      • Average rent rose faster than median home prices in 41% of counties
      • While median home prices rose faster than average rents in 58% of counties

      Bottom Line

      Buying a home makes sense socially and financially. If you are one of the many renters out there who would like to evaluate your ability to buy this year, let’s get together to find your dream home.

      99% of Experts Agree: Home Prices Will Increase

      99% of Experts Agree: Home Prices Will Increase | MyKCM

      Some believe that the combined effects of the new tax code and rising mortgage rates will have an adverse impact on residential real estate prices in 2018. However, the clear majority of recently surveyed housing experts believe that home values will continue to rise this year.

      What is the Home Price Expectation Survey?

      Each quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists. Those surveyed include experts such as:

      • Daniel Bachman, Senior Manager, U.S. Economics at Deloitte Services, LP
      • Kathy Bostjancic, Head of U.S. Macro Investors Service at Oxford Economics
      • David Downs, Real Estate Finance Professor at VCU
      • Edward Pinto, Resident Fellow at American Enterprise Institute
      • Albert Saiz, Director at MIT Center for Real Estate

      Where do these experts see home values headed in 2018?

      Here is a breakdown of where they see home values twelve months from now:

      • 21.6% believe prices will appreciate by 6% or more
      • 71.6% believe prices will appreciate between 3 and 5.99%
      • 5.7% believe prices will appreciate between 0 and 2.99%
      • Only 1.1% believe prices will depreciate

      Bottom Line

      Almost ninety-nine percent of the top experts studying residential real estate believe that prices will appreciate this year, and over 93% believe home values will appreciate by at least 3%.

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