The Time is Now: Why to Buy a Home in 2018
February 14, 2018
You want to buy a new home. You talk about it all the time. But you just haven’t gotten serious yet. Maybe you’re anxious about selling your existing house. Or perhaps this is your first time buying a home, and you don’t know if the economic conditions are just right.
If you need a little extra encouragement and some fact-fueled motivation for making that next step toward Living Up in a new construction house sooner than later, we have it. In fact, now is one of the best times to buy a new home in recent memory. There are a number of data points to back this up, starting with this: homebuilder confidence is at its highest level since 1999, according to the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB). Add low unemployment rates and it’s easy to see why 2018 is poised to be a big year for homebuyers, especially the early part of the year.
But wait, there’s more. Here are a few additional reasons now is the time to consider buying a new home.
RATES ARE RIGHT
With 30-year mortgage rates still hovering at 4%, and the experts agreeing that mortgage credit will remain cheap for much of the year, right now could be an ideal time to pull the trigger on buying that new home. With some predictions warning that rates will rise as the year progresses, waiting for even more opportune financial conditions could end up costing you in the long run.
YOUR ESCAPE PLAN
If only buying a new home was as easy as finding the one you liked and signing some paperwork. For many of us, this is just step two. Step one is selling our existing house. Don’t worry, we have more good news. We remain in a seller’s market, where those looking to purchase a resale home are battling homebuyers for a limited inventory of houses. In many cases, homes are here today — and gone tomorrow. Realtor.com predicts these inventory levels to increase as the year drags on, meaning you could lose your competitive edge. And you know what’s really a bummer? Finding you dream home while being stuck in your real home.
WHO’S MAKING THE MOVE
Everyone looking to buy a new home now can reap the benefits of all these different factors lining up in your favor. But expect to see even more movement from two groups: Millennials and Active-Adults. Millennials alone could account for more than 40% of the total mortgages taken out for new home purchases, according to Realtor.com, as many young adults view homeownership as the way to grow their nest egg. So where will they live? One trend to watch is the demand millennials are generating for low-maintenance townhome living, an investment in the future that doesn’t require mowing the lawn.
But Millennials aren’t even expected to be the biggest demographic buying new homes. This honor goes to the 55-plus crowd. Part of the growth expected from Active-Adults is simply due to aging; homeowners are trending older. According to a 2017 Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies report, the head of one in three U.S. households will be over the age of 65 by 2035. But there are additional factors leading 55+ homebuyers to buy now, including taking advantage of the limited housing supply to cash in on their existing home sale, according to the NAHB. And once they collect, Active-Adult homebuyers are looking for more manageable home sizes and want to live closer to family.
There is no question that 2018, especially the early part of the year, is shaping up to be a big year for homebuyers. But will it be a big year for you? That all depends. Are you ready to make the move — now?