Generation Rent is Ready for Home Ownership!

Generation Rent is Ready for Home Ownership!

Millenials ready to purchaseMillennials are ready to purchase homes finally; after 10 years of declining numbers according to a University of Southern California study.  This is fantastic news for the housing market and fantastic news for millennials as they shift from renting to owning.  A certain shift from 2014 when Pew research reported that for the first time in 130 years, individuals between the ages of 25-44 were more likely to be living with their parents vs. owning a home.

One of the stunning statistics I came across reading a Bank of America study was total lack of understanding of what is actually available to millennials; their perceptions of what it took to own a home was incredible; here’s what it showed:

-30% of millennials believed they need 20% down to get a mortgage

-31% believed they needed 10% down

-Only 5% believed they needed 5%

-6% were simply unsure

That represents 72% of all millennials!  Yet most millennials that do in fact obtain a mortgage pay around 3%!

Until recent times, the factors that contributed to both the realities as well as poor perceptions of one’s ability to own a home were:

  1. Increase in Debt
  2. Unemployment rate
  3. Increase in rental costs leading to decrease in ability to save for a down payment
  4. Credit requirements after the mortgage meltdown
  5. Lower inventory of starter homes
  6. Getting married later- lack of dual incomes to go on mortgage

As I wrote in a prior blog, times are changing for the good.  It’s amazing what a positive outlook does for politicians, investors/Wallstreet, business owners and of course, the stock market.   Low down and no down payment mortgages are truly helping millennials obtain their goals

My advice to the millennials is simple: roll up your sleeves, get with someone that truly knows what they are talking about and define your point “A”.  Meaning, if you want to own a home, don’t be embarrassed about anything: what your bank account says, what your credit score is or what limitations you think you might have.  It’s important to get it all out on paper; some may find themselves in their own home right away, some very soon and for the rest, they are left with a clear path to point “B”, an exact game plan.

Next week I will reviewing interest rates and inventory; thanks for reading!

Mortgage Guidelines Are loosening

Mortgage Guidelines Are loosening

mortgage guidelinesIn the fourth quarter of 2016 we witnessed a great number of mortgage lenders loosen their approval standards.  We also saw a spike in interest rates, but if history is an indicator of where interest rates are going for the remainder of 2017, rates should flatten or even perhaps show a slow decrease.

Recently sworn in Treasure Secretary Steven Mnuchin stated out of the gate that mortgage rates are likely to stay low for some time.  Statements from high ranking officials such as Mr. Mnuchin often keep rates in check.  Add historical data to that, when interest rates spike up quickly (they went up 80 basis points from November 2016 to January 2017…which by the way, is one of the largest spikes we’ve seen in such a short amount of time) history shows a long, slow decline in rates.  Most people are assuming a continual increase in interest rates, but that very well may not be the case.

The housing market rise and surging stock market has created optimism among lenders.  Minimum credit scores have been reduced; documentation for the self-employed has reduced; and maximum loan-to-values have been increased.   Banks have also made concessions with individuals with less than perfect credit and have low and no down payment mortgages (VA, USDA, FHA).  Today, very few banking institutions create their own lending models.  Most will follow the lending guidelines set forth by Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac, in addition to FHA, VA and USDA.  What’s loosening are the investor overlays; meaning, if FHA says a minimum FICO score is 525, a banking institution may insert an overlay, bringing the credit guideline to 580.

To support this trend, mortgage processing software firm Ellie Mae has approved 77% of the almost 4 million mortgages they processed last year.  The end result is cautious optimism in the US Housing Market.

So what does this mean to you?  It means if you’ve been turned down getting a mortgage, you should consider trying again.  If you are self-employed and went through a few struggling years after the mortgage melt down, time has passed and banks seem to be prepared to start lending to you again.   Whether you’re in the market for a new home or an investment property, 2017 could be a very optimal time for you to act.