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Charleston Real Estate Happenings Blog

Monday, August 12, 2019   /   by Steve Smith

Still Paying Your Landlord's Mortgage?

Rent Vs. Own





Some Highlights:





Owning your own home vs. renting may lead to some great options, such as locking in your monthly payments and having the freedom to customize your living space.






Whether you rent or own, you have to cover someone’s mortgage costs. You may as well be doing so to build your own wealth, rather than that of your landlord.






Renting and owning both have up-front fees when you sign your lease or close, respectively. Think about putting that money to work for you!

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Thursday, August 08, 2019   /   by Steve Smith

Home Ownership Levels Are NOT Dropping-- Chicken Little Calm Down!

Why All the Chicken Littles Should Calm Down


The U.S. Census Bureau recently released their 2019 Q2 Homeownership Report. Some began to see the sky falling, believing the report showed Americans may be stepping back from their belief in homeownership.
The national homeownership rate (Americans who owned vs. rented their primary residence) increased significantly during the housing boom, reaching its peak of 69.2% in 2004. The Census Bureau reported that the second quarter of 2019 ended with a homeownership rate of 64.1%, which is down from the 64.8% rate for the fourth quarter of 2018. Based on this news, some started to question the consumer’s belief in the idea of homeownership as a major part of the American Dream.
Everyone Calm Down…
It is true the homeownership rate did fall. However, if you look at the national rate over the last 35 years (1984-2019), you can see that the current homeownership rate has returned to historical norms. The 64.1% rate is ...

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Tuesday, August 06, 2019   /   by Steve Smith

How Much Do You Know About Home Purchase Down Payments?

Whether you’ve owned a home before, or you’re ready to jump into homeownership for the first time, there are always a lot of questions swirling around about what is truly required for a down payment, and how to best source down payment assistance. Let’s tackle these two today.


1. How much do you really need for a down payment?


There is a long-standing misconception about down payment requirements. A survey from Fannie Mae shows only 17% of consumers know the minimum options are actually between 1 - 5% of the purchase price and 40% don’t know how much they need at all.There are many mortgage loans available that require as little as 3% down for first-time buyers, and some ask for only 3.5% down from repeat buyers. There are even loans available for Veterans that provide 0% down payment options too.


We’ve mentioned recently that you don’t need to come up with a 20% down payment to buy, and we&rsq ...

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Tuesday, July 30, 2019   /   by Steve Smith

Increase Your Equity Over the Next 5 Years!

Many of the questions currently surrounding the real estate industry focus on home prices and where they are heading. The most recent Home Price Expectation Survey (HPES) helps target these projected answers.
Here are the results from the Q2 2019 Survey:

Home values will appreciate by 4.1% in 2019
The average annual appreciation will be 3.2% over the next 5 years
The cumulative appreciation will be 16.8% by 2023
Even experts representing the most “bearish” quartile of the survey project a cumulative appreciation of over 6.7% by 2023

What does this mean for you?
A substantial portion of family wealth comes from home equity. As the value of a family’s home (an asset) increases, so does their equity.
Using the projections from the HPES, here is a look at the potential equity a family could earn over the next five years if they purchased a $250,000 home in January of 2019:Based on gains in home equity, their family wealth could increase by ...

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Thursday, July 25, 2019   /   by Steve Smith

3 Powerful Reasons to Buy a Home Now

Whether you are a first-time buyer or looking to move up to the home of your dreams, now is a great time to purchase a home. Here are three major reasons to buy today.
1. Affordability
Many people focus solely on price when talking about home affordability. Since home prices have appreciated throughout the past year, they assume homes are less affordable. However, affordability is determined by three components:

Price
Wages
Mortgage Interest Rate

Prices are up, but so are wages - and interest rates have recently dropped dramatically (see #2 below). As a result, the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) latest Affordability Index report revealed that homes are MORE affordable throughout the country today than they were a year ago.

“All four regions saw an increase in affordability from a year ago. The South had the biggest gain in affordability of 6.9%, followed by the West with a gain of 6.0%. The Midwest had an increase of 5.8%, fol ...

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  charleston real estate, charleston sc, charleston, homes for sale, real estate, condos for sale, houses for sale, town homes for sale, property management, rentals