I have an important concept for you as we're coming into this challenging market with interest rates.
So I want you to think about something I call parity pricing. Let's paint a picture:
Imagine you're a buyer now. You have a $400,000 budget to buy a house. And you found one and got it in contract. Your budget for your payment is $1,767 a month. That's for principal and interest — we won't worry about taxes and insurance for this kind of demonstration.
So how we came to that number is if we were buying a home in April and we were lucky enough to get a 5.25% interest rate back then, that's what that payment would equal. But fast forward to today, we were shooting this around September where interest rates have shot up to 7.25%. In order for that buyer who only has a budget of $1,767 a month, or for that buyer to buy a house based on today's interest rate, how much would the seller have to come down to get to a parity...
Here's some good news about the real estate market, and we need some good news right now:
As of the second quarter of 2022, home ownership rates were rising. So that's good.
And we say, well, why would anyone not want to be a homeowner? Right? When we're in the real estate business, we think everybody should be a homeowner.
But sometimes, renters have a hard time getting over the hump of deciding if it is a good idea to become a homeowner. Especially when we're seeing interest rates rise. We've seen prices still rising in some markets by double digits.
One thing you can point to, which is really powerful, is the concept of inflation.
Everybody knows what inflation is and inflation is touching everybody. And so you can point out that, "Hey, you know, I'm sure you're aware that inflation right now is at a record high, a 40-year high. The last reading was 8.5% inflation. But what people don't realize is that rents are...
Is it a good time to buy a house today?
It's an important question for us as REALTORS to be able to answer and really be passionate about it. This isn't just an answer we're giving because we wanna sell a house, but an answer that's actually backed up by real data.
That way, buyers will actually believe what we're saying and be influenced by what we're saying.
So here are 5 key reasons, backed up by data, why people should be excited about entering the market today:
1. Rents are rising quickly.
So if you're not a homeowner, what are you by default? In most cases, you're a renter. So latest reading shows that rents are up 14.8% compared to a year ago. And they're likely to continue to rise at a fast pace going forward.
2. Interest rates.
Interest rates have settled back down a little bit. They're not at the peaks anymore. So interest rates historically, when you look at the last five decades, have averaged 8%. Right now, we're in the high...
Date the rate. Marry the house.
Now, what does that mean? That means that if we went back in time to a year ago, the market was a completely different animal. Right?
A year ago, buyers that were in the marketplace were experiencing multiple offers on every listing. They were being asked to sign escalation clauses that would maybe sometimes mean they were paying 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, a hundred thousand dollars more than the list price. People are being asked to do appraisal waivers, inspection waivers, appraisal gap language, non-refundable earnest money.
It was an incredible time to be a buyer in what we might call a frenzy market.
Now, fast forward to today:
The market's undergoing a complete shift, right? And what that means is there's a lot more to choose from. There's a lot more listings on the market. List prices are coming down in a lot of price categories. We're seeing a lot fewer buyers in the market. So that means that the...
There's a new stat out that shows some unprecedented numbers. And the numbers reflect that home buyers entering the market today are paying 39.4% higher mortgage than they did last year at the same time.
Now, why would their mortgage go up almost 40%?
The number one reason?
Also a bit of home price increases as well. But by and large interest rates going up seven of the last eight weeks. They've gone up so fast.
So when we look at this, some of our buyers may be saying, "Hey, let's pump the brakes on me buying."
How do you respond to that? Well, the response should be a reflection on what happens if they don't pull the trigger now and they wait. We know the Fed is already planning to do six more rate hikes this year, starting right now in May.
So as we begin to roll through the rest of the year, it's highly likely these interest rates aren't gonna go lower. They're gonna go much, much higher as the Fed tries to break...
Here's a number that we should be talking about with our spheres of influence, our friends, our social media audiences:
And this is 15.9.
Now what's 15.9 represent?
15.9% is the amount that the average renter had as an increase in the rent last year.
And it's likely that this is gonna have again this year or some similar high number, and probably the year after that.
It's supply and demand. There is high demand and low supply. So it's the same thing that's happening to us in the real estate industry, right? We have low supply, high demand causes prices to rise.
So if renters aren't careful what can happen is if rents continue to rise, they could have rent that's increasing by 10%, a year or more over the next 2, 3, 4, 5 years. They could easily be paying 30, 40, 50% more for rent in a few years.
And they think their rent's high now. Wait another couple years, it's gonna get higher.
So what can they do? What's the...
If you know people in your sphere of influence that own investment property, I've got some good news. Also, if you own an investment property, I've got good news. And if you're trying to sell investment property, I've got good news:
The investment property side of our business is going through a real resurgence right now. We knew during COVID they got kinda hit. We know the eviction moratoriums made it really tough for them. But now we're starting to see people come back out of that.
So here's a few good numbers in that arena that come from us from the NAR economist blog:
Two of them are dealing with absorption rates. Absorption rates, meaning how many units are being absorbed by the market.
In Q2 and Q3 of this year, 700,000 units were absorbed by this market. It's a lot of units, but completely instantly absorbed by the market.
Vacancy rates have fallen in 2011-ish from 6.9 back then all the way down to 4.6 now. That's a nationwide...
Hey guys, did you know that the average rental price for a two bedroom home across the country, believe it or not drum roll is...
Can you imagine that? It's incredible!
But at that level, how much house could you buy? That's an interesting question. And it's a question that we can all answer.
So the $1,700, if you had 20% down with an average mortgage today would buy you a home priced at about $455,000, which is a shocking high number.
You know why that's so high? Because interest rates have dropped again to a 60-year low.
So instead of renting, somebody can actually go out and buy a house for $455,000. Now that's assuming they had 20% down, but let's assume they don't.
Let's assume they only have 3.5% percent down, which is a typical FHA loan. That might cut that number down by another a hundred thousand so maybe they could afford $355,000.
But wouldn't that be far superior to renting?
These are the kinds of conversations we...
The Wall Street Journal just put out an interesting article about a company called Invesco putting $5 billion into a hedge fund that's purchasing single family homes.
And they're not alone. There's another $6.5 billion dollars targeted with other hedge funds doing exactly the same thing.
Now, why are these hedge funds going after single family homes?
Well, they've identified that they can get a cap rate of as much as 6.8%. That's the target rate that they're comparing to apartment buildings and commercial — which is like the low sixes.
So what they're saying is: we're going to make money on this. And we're going to rent these houses to millennials that are choosing not to become homeowners.
What we need to do as an industry, number one is to recognize that we should be investing in single family homes as well. But also we need to encourage everybody that's not a homeowner today to get into the real estate arena and buy their...
Are a ton of foreclosures about to hit the market?
The answer is absolutely not. Let me tell you why:
This is a myth that's happening among a lot of renters. People that don't own homes yet are all waiting for the shoe to drop and a bunch of foreclosures to hit the market. Let me tell you why it's not going to happen:
There is something called forbearance. And a lot of people did tap into it at the beginning of the pandemic. The experts thought that about 30% of mortgage holders would need to tap into it at the beginning of the pandemic. In other words, forbearance is where a lender gives you some level of grace.
They say, "Hey, you can stop making your payments for a while, or you can make a minimum payment or we'll tack on your payments to the end of the loan." There are a lot of different variations to it.
But the government said they want everybody to have a six-month opportunity if they've been struck by COVID or...
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