According to a recent Bankrate.com poll, Americans name real estate as their top investing choice in 2016, and several economic factors are putting the ball in the home buyer’s court. Of course, the most important thing to consider is whether buying a home right now makes sense for you, personally. If it does, here are 3 reasons to feel good about making the investment.
1. Mortgage interest rates remain low
Interest rates were predicted to rise in 2016 but have stayed steadily below 4%, partially due to the recent Brexit vote. Industry experts warn that rates could rise at any time, making now a great time to lock in to near-record low rates.
2. Meanwhile… Rental prices are on the rise
Currently, in only 8 of 50 states (and Virginia is not one of them) is renting less expensive than buying (monthly mortgage payment vs. rent, based on a 30-year fixed mortgage with 20% down and factoring in property taxes and insurance).
3. Down payment assistance is available
Feeling deterred by the prospect of a large down payment? Not everyone needs 20% to put down. Veterans Administration (VA) loans (for active or retired service members) often require 0% down, and FHA loans may require as little as 3.5%. First-time homebuyer programs are popular, and many lenders are offering down payment assistance for those who qualify based on income. Regarding new homes, many builders and lenders are offering cash credits to help cover closing costs.