Chart from National Association of Realtors.
It’s a great time to purchase real estate in the U.S. With inventory at an all-time high, prices at or close to rock bottom, and mortgage rates at historic lows, people are again considering real estate as an investment to round out their portfolios. And foreigners are in the game.
A new report released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) details the trend. The number of sales to foreigners not residing in the U.S. continues to be holding in the 2 percent range, proving that individuals worldwide are taking advantage of our market, recognizing its value and the propability of values rebounding. (click here for NAR’s full report)
Other NAR surveys have indicated that an additional 2 to 3 percent of residential sales are made to those international customers who live in the U.S. Additional information on international activities is available here.
For much more detail on what that means specifically to Connecticut, follow the link below.
Lisa M. Bender, Lisa@CTClassicHomes.com
Financing Updates, Market Updates
I attended a very interesting presentation today given by Dr. Lawrence Yun who is the Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors. It was refreshing to walk away with some positive information and perspectives. Here are a few things he shared that I found particularly insightful on the current housing market:
Let’s hope the economy continues to show positive signs of momentum. If you are interested in reading more about Dr. Yun’s insights, click here.
Financing Updates, Tips for Buying a Home
As an agent, I would always recommend to my buyers that they do get pre-approved for a loan before they begin their search (note: pre-approval is different from pre-qualification. Pre-approval is a more formal process and carries more weight). For a little bit of work on your part, it benefits you, the buyer, in so many ways:
1) It will show you what price range is realistic for you, given your financial situation.
2) It shows you are serious, especially to sellers who may need to decide between offers from two or more potential buyers (the one who is pre-approved will likely have a greater chance of getting the house!).
3) Sometimes, it can make the closing process go faster. You are already pre-approved for a mortgage by a lending institution as long as your financial situation does not change drastically (this is not the case with a pre-qualification).
If you do get pre-approved, keep these things in mind:
1) Pre-approval letters generally expire after a set amount of time. If your letter has expired and you are still house hunting, you will need to get the letter updated.
2) Even though you are pre-approved you still need to have the property’s value approved by the lending institution before they will give you a loan. Hence, you will need to get an appraisal on the property. If the lending institution thinks you are paying more than the home is worth, they may not give you a loan for this property (even if you qualify for a loan of this amount).
3) Your pre-approval letter will specify the maximum amount for your loan. This doesn’t mean you should necessarily go this high with your loan. Consider all of your expenses and your comfort level with monthly payments before committing.
4) When making an offer on a house, you always want to include your pre-approval letter with your offer to show that you are a strong candidate to the seller. Tip: Have your lending institution adjust the letter to indicate the exact amount of the loan you will need with your offer. If you show the maximum amount of the loan you can get and this is higher than you are offering, the seller may hold out for a higher price from you.
Christine O’Day CT Classic Homes/Higgins Group