Is Now the Time to Become a Homeowner?

Home prices have dropped and mortgage rates are among the lowest we have seen in decades, but is this the best time for you to purchase a home?Lower home prices, due in part to the declining median price of homes, are motivating many potential home buyers to purchase now. According to the National Association of Realtors, the median home price for an existing home in the United States during December 2008 was $175,400 a decrease of 15.3 percent from $207,000 a year ago. We are currently experiencing at the best market since 1970 for the combination of low home prices and low interest rates.

The influx in new buyers can create a reduction in supply and cause buyers to have to out bid each other to acquire the home they want.  This is already happening in many parts of the country and thus stabilizing and even increasing the current level of home prices.  The bottom may be much nearer than you think.  If you’re one of the many potential homebuyers planning to take advantage of the plunging home prices, make sure you’re financially prepared to acquire a mortgage and ready to take on the responsibilities of home ownership.

Financial Preparation
As you may know, the proverbial bar has risen when it comes to credit and it has become a bit tougher to qualify for a mortgage. Before you set your hopes on a home, make sure you will qualify for a loan by having good credit (typically a score of at least 620) and at least a minimal down payment of 4-5% in the bank. Obtain a loan pre-approval before you go looking for homes then you can shop with confidence and know that you can qualify to buy the home that you select. Our mortgage professionals will give you a pre-approval letter or certificate that you can take with you when you shop and it can start with a 10 minute phone conversation or you can provide some information in an on-line application.  We will discuss all of the available financing options and help you identify the mortgage program that best fits your situation.

Mortgage Rates
President Obama has promised to keep mortgage rates low for Americans in order to increase home affordability. With that, expect to see mortgage rates continue to be very attractive. Low rates, combined with low home prices, are making homes affordable for those who qualify. Call 877-OWN-HOUSE today to discuss purchasing qualifications for your area and whether homeownership is right for you.

Home buyers aren’t the only ones benefiting from these new, low mortgage rates. Many homeowners, who have been financially responsible and have equity in their homes, are taking notice of the falling rates and are opting to refinance their homes at a better rate. Contact us online at to learn if your credit score and current home equity is enough to qualify for a refinance to a lower rate and payment.

Plant Roots
The economy is likely to be a bit bumpy the over next few years, make sure you are financially equipped and mentally prepared to ride out this seemingly tumultuous storm. Though home prices will fluctuate in many areas, stay put and plan to live in your home for three to five or more years so that you can enjoy the comfort of stability while you watch your home appreciate in value.  The tax savings will likely well outweigh any temporary dips in value.

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