Is 2017 the Year to Move Up to Your Dream Home? If So, Do It Early!

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Here’s what our colleagues at Keeping Current Matters had to say about whether this year is the year to move up to your dream home:

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If you are considering moving up to your dream home, it may be better to do it earlier in the year than later. The two components of your monthly mortgage payment (home prices and interest rates) are both projected to increase as the year moves forward, and interest rates may increase rather dramatically. Here are some predictions on where rates will be by the end of the year:

Freddie Mac

While full employment and rising inflation are signs of a strong economy, they also have the potential to push mortgage rates and house prices up. The higher rates and higher prices create significant affordability concerns, which may continue to characterize the housing market for the rest of 2017.”

Lynn Fisher, Vice President of Research & Economics for the Mortgage Bankers Association

By the time we get to the fourth quarter of this year, we will still be under 5 percent – we are thinking 4.7 percent…Something north of 5 percent by the time we get to 2018, and by the time we get to 2019, we show fourth-quarter rates hitting 5.5 percent.”

Mark Fleming, First American’s Chief Economist

Despite some regional disparities, title agents and real estate professionals do not expect increasing mortgage rates to have a significant impact on the housing market this spring. Continued good economic news, increasing Millennial demand and confidence that buyers will remain in the market even if rates exceed 5 percent bode well for 2017 real estate.

Len Kiefer, Deputy Chief Economist for Freddie Mac

We will probably see rates higher at the end of year, around 4.5%.”

Bottom Line

If you are feeling good about your family’s economic future and are considering making a move to your dream home, doing it sooner rather than later makes the most sense.

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Call The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. We are happy to walk you through the pros and cons of moving up now and help you make the BEST move!

Buyers & Sellers – Interest Rates Remain at Historic Lows . . . But for How Long?

If you’re pondering buying or selling NOW or waiting another year or two – you might want to take note of the latest info below from Keeping Current Matters!

Interest Rates Remain at Historic Lows… But for How Long? | MyKCM

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment; The higher the rate, the greater your payment will be. That is why it is important to look at where the experts believe rates are headed when deciding to buy now or wait until next year.

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate has fallen half a percentage point since the beginning of the year and has remained at or below 3.5% for the last 11 weeks according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The chart below shows how far rates have fallen this year (on the left), and uses an average of the projections from Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, the Mortgage Bankers Association and National Association of Realtors (on the right). As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the next 12 months.

Mortgage Rates - 30-Year Fixed Rate | MyKCM

How Will This Impact Your Mortgage Payment?

Depending on the amount of the loan that you secure, a half of a percent (.5%) increase in interest rate can increase your monthly mortgage payment significantly.

According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, national home prices have appreciated 6.0% over the last year and are predicted to be 5.4% higher next year.

If both the predictions of home prices and interest rate increases become a reality, families will wind up paying considerably more for their next home.

Bottom Line

Even a small increase in interest rate can impact your family’s wealth.


Interest rate changes don’t just affect Buyers. They affect Sellers too. As rates rise, some Homebuyers are priced out of the market they want to move into. And they decide to stay where they are. Less Buyers means less demand and more competition. And that can put a downward pressure on prices.

If you’re wondering whether you should buy now or wait – or sell now or wait – there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. There are lots of things that should factor into your decision. Interest rates are just one. Call Terry Belt & The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. Our team is one of the top teams in the entire country, with lots of resources at your disposal, and we are more than happy to consult with you and help you and your family make the RIGHT move!

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3 Reasons Why NOW May Be Your Time To Move Up

If you’ve been feeling like George Jefferson and thinking about “moving on up” (maybe you’ve outgrown your house or you’re just ready for a change), here are 3 reasons why NOW might be your perfect storm:

1. You might be able to have your cake & eat it too!

Have Your Cake

If you’re selling a home in the lower or mid price ranges (under $900,000) and moving into the over $1.2 million price range – you have a small window of opportunity that is open right now. The low-mid price ranges are moving swiftly. Housing supply is uber low. And that means values are rising. (Great for you when you sell your home!) On the other hand, the speedy market has not quite reached the upper ranges yet, at least not across the board, and so you may still have a quick window to buy above $1.2 million before prices rise in the same fashion as they have in your current home’s market. If you wait to make that move up, you may sell your current home for more than you could now (assuming prices continue to rise), BUT you would end up paying a LOT more for your new home when prices rise across the board.

Example:

If you sold now, you might sell your current home for $900,000, and buy your new home for $1.3 million. If you wait until next year, prices could rise 6%, netting you an additional $54,000 on the sale of your existing home; but costing you $78,000 more on your new home. You end up losing $24,000. (Note: Last year home prices in our area actually rose 7.12%.)

2. Interest rates continue to rise

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This means unless you are paying cash, the price of your new home keeps getting more & more expensive. All of the major forecasters (Mortgage Bankers Association, FHLMC, Fannie Mae, etc) are predicting interest rates to exceed 5% by 2015. That’s about 1% higher than where rates are now. Keep in mind that a 1% rise in interest rates equals a 10% decrease in home price affordability. So moving up NOW may be much better than later in terms of your mortgage payment and how much house you can buy.

3. YOLO

Take A Leap

“YOLO” is the modern version of “carpe diem”. Seize the day. You only live once. While that sounds a bit cavalier, we actually say this from experience. People often wait so long for the “perfect time” that they miss it altogether. If the reason you’re moving up is that your family has grown and you really need more space, or maybe your in-laws are aging and moving in with you, or your children are back home after college – don’t miss this opportunity. While real estate is an investment and a huge part of your financial picture, family is everything and your home is where it all happens. So call your real estate agent, analyze the numbers and if it makes sense – take the leap. Our clients often tell us they wish they had leapt a long time before they did.

If you’re thinking of moving up – or moving down – call The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. We’ll walk you through the process and help you analyze the “ins & outs” – where prices are in your current neighborhood & your dream neighborhood, whether you need to buy first or sell first, how you can find homes before they hit the market – there may even be some you haven’t though of!

If you’d like to maximize profits AND make your life easier – call (703) 242-3975 and ask for Terry Belt or Kevin Kleifges. We’ll help you construct a strategy to do so.

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