Every real estate broker, agent, organization and “affiliated business” has been banging the drum for the last few months about how important it is for buyers to get off the bench and into the game now. But is this really good advice, or just marketing hype?
Well, I’m a real estate agent, so what do you think I am going to say? You’re right, but keep reading anyway.
Consider the following:
- Huge efforts are being made by mortgage banks, financially backed and politically demanded by the federal government, to halt the foreclosures that have been occurring in many communities. These efforts take the form of loan restructuring and even partial forgiveness, and include guarantees from the government. The incidence of foreclosures is going to drop substantially.
- Homes that have been on the market in Northern Virginia, especially already foreclosed homes, are rapidly disappearing into the hands of investors and others, who know a buyers market when they see it. (In Prince William County, the foreclosure capital of the Mid-Atlantic, home sales were up 150+% year-over-year in October.)
- Mortgage funding is plentiful and cheap, and you can buy with a low (or even zero) down payment. You only need good credit and verifiable income.
- Let’s not forget the $7500 tax credit.
- People who don’t own a home would like one; people who own a home would like a better one. There is a huge amount of pent-up demand for homes in the job-rich Northern Virginia area, from people who couldn’t afford to buy in the 2003-06 boom and were too nervous to do it the last two years.
Speaking of booms, look what’s coming:
The housing demands of the Echo Boomers might be greater than that of the original Baby Boomers. Different, perhaps; tempered by different lifestyles, backgrounds and desires; but demand nonetheless. These are largely college-educated, fairly affluent people (in Northern Virginia), and they will want to buy.
You may be among them – in fact, you probably are. You are going to have a lot of competition for a home – unless you get out there in front and stop worrying about whether you buy at the exact bottom of the market.
I think Suze Orman can be a little simplistic, but (in addition to being rich) she has some good points here: