monthly_payment 1-affordability

I love using real estate apps on my phone. Every time I drive by a “For Sale” sign in a neighborhood, I pull out my phone and queue up one of my favorite listing apps (yes, I have more than one on my phone!) and check out the property and sometimes other ones nearby.

Now, if I was actively looking for a home and wanted to know what kind of rate I could get and how much my monthly mortgage payment would be on a property, well, most listing apps don’t offer that service. And if they do, the information isn’t always accurate.

But Realtor.com, the site that prides itself on having the most accurate listing information on the web, says it’s fixed that issue for good.

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Chart: Zillow

Chart: Zillow

Lots of people wonder if, considering their location and income, if it’s not more financially sound to buy or rent a home in their area. In some cities, renting is the obvious choice (hello, New York!). But what about Dallas?

Zillow combed some facts and figures and came up with data that shows where it makes more financial sense to rent based on what they call the “break even horizon.

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Print

Like they say, there’s good news and there’s bad news.

Realtors and brokers won’t come out unscathed from the federal government shutdown, as a report from the National Association of Realtors shows. If you’ve got a closing coming up, best be prepared to have some hiccups.

While the NAR report says that FHA will “continue to endorse new loans in the Single Family Mortgage Loan Program, multi-family loans won’t be processed. VA loans will be processed, too, and flood insurance from FEMA will get a government stamp, and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are still keeping the gears greased.

On the flip side, if you have to process IRS forms or verify Social Security numbers through the SSA, you’re out of luck because these offices are closed.

Read the whole document below.

NAR Government Shutdown Brief

Prudential q2 Optimism infograf

Still not getting the wave of real estate optimism that has been heading to pretty much every shore in the U.S.? Well, Prudential’s Q2 outlook says that if your boat hasn’t been lifted from the rising tide of home prices, then it should as Millennials embark on the American dream of first-time homeownership. There is, however, a knowledge gap that exists between perception and reality for Millennials. That’s where the expertise of a Realtor is key.

It’s a great infographic worth scrolling through, but if you want a quick-and-dirty breakdown, here are the highlights:

– 80 percent of Americans ages 25-34 have a favorable perception of the real estate market

– 76 percent of Millennials view homeownership as part of the “American dream”

– While 65 percent of respondents say they “closely watch interest rates,” 43 percent said rates were falling, or were stead, when in fact interest rates are on the rise

You can, of course, read the whole thing on Prudential’s website.