All Things Real Estate: Finding a home in 2024 will be difficult without tradeoffs

All Things Real Estate: Finding a home in 2024 will be difficult without tradeoffs

Many of our clients are having challenging times finding a home that fits their specific “needs and wants.”

The lack of available inventory is the greatest problem for those who are seriously searching and are qualified to buy.  For those who either need to sell or want to sell, the fear of not finding their “next place to call home” is one of the main reasons for not listing.

I have experienced this exact situation as a broker with one particular family that although their place is listed, will not close until they find their next domicile beforehand.

This has caused buyers not to consider their place.  Of course, current interest rates are an additional and important factor for many others not being able to purchase; even though rates are down over 1% since October.

However, prices are still exorbitant and outside the affordable range of many family’s budgets.

There are solutions for some who would consider buying but unfortunately fall into one of the previous categories and may not be thinking outside the box in being creative in their endeavors.

If it is interest rates that are keeping you from purchasing, and then if you somehow were able to secure a lower rate, would that change your mindset and situation?

If a seller provided you with a mortgage or a credit at closing, would that also help you in the process?

However, additional reasons why some do not qualify are also the down payment, debt/income ratio, as well as the overall much higher monthly costs that are pushing many out of the market

From my experience, some are stuck in a specific town generally for good reasons, and some have, “champagne tastes and beer pockets.”

In this market, one needs to be a bit more flexible in their search parameters. Being open to expanding one’s horizons to provide more opportunities to choose from should enable you to locate a home sooner rather than later.

Researching and adding several additional towns to your search criteria that have similar attributes and characteristics will help you make solid comparisons.  Checking prices and taxes, schools, transportation, cultural availabilities and things to do, restaurants, safety, etc. will provide a clear and concise pathway in determining your possibilities.

Driving around those other neighborhoods and down some blocks will give you a more secure feel for the area.

Lastly, stopping and conversing with those who are outside who live in the area can provide you with a stronger and more positive opinion about considering those additional towns.

Maybe downsizing and considering 3 bedrooms instead of 4 or 1-1.5 bathrooms instead of 2 will provide you with more homes to view. You may also be able to expand and upgrade your home by adding those features in the future when funds will be available.

Buying a fixer-upper to build equity right from the get-go will be another option to ponder in reaching your final decision.

Do you have a family member or someone you know or a referral for an excellent reliable contractor that would provide a reasonable estimate to renovate and upgrade the home?

Checking reviews on Google and elsewhere will provide some insight into what former and current clients experience when working with them.

Most importantly, going through a trade-off process, one by one, to narrow down your expectations as to what is crucial and critical in finding a home, will provide you much more flexibility; especially if it is your first starter home.

In the past some mortgage people provided, what we call “liar loans” or what we use to call “no-doc” loans (NINA-no income, no asset), just to make a deal occur to collect their commissions.

This was a major reason for so many foreclosures in the real estate implosion and the collapse of the real estate market in 2008.   Today they are called “receivable loans” for those who have been in business for at least two years and can substantiate and have an excellent track record of monthly receivables.

Not every lender has this type of program (but our lenders do).  There are limitations, so be careful and do your due diligence and we will assist you in qualifying with a lender.

If a single-family is outside your qualifications, then you should consider a Condo or co-op as your “starter home.”

Monthly costs can be considerably lower, somewhat consistent, and can provide a more carefree environment.  These choices are a simpler path to ownership without the upkeep of exterior costs of maintenance.  It sure beats a rental!  Turn the key, move in, and then go to work the very next day, or if retired, then go out to play!

If you have a certain budget based on your qualifications, then don’t shut the door on other homes, condos, co-ops, or possibilities that just might fit your specific “needs and wants.”

Happy New Year to all our clients, families, and friends, and may it be healthier, happier, and more lucrative for all!

Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave Suite 180 in Great Neck.

For a 15-minute consultation, value analysis of your home, or to answer any of your questions or concerns he can be reached by cell: (516) 647-4289 or by email: [email protected] or via https://WWW.Li-RealEstate.Com 

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