Buying Real Estate in 2012 – What You Should Know

“It’s never been a better time to buy a home.” Potential home buyers have heard this before but in this current market, the saying is actually true. Several factors have come together to truly make today’s market a buyer’s market. Real estate classes can clue home buyers in to the many advantages of purchasing a home in 2011 including:

  • Record low interest rates;
  • Dropping home prices;
  • And an increased selection of homes.

Low Rates
In response to the sluggish economy, the Federal Reserve Board has kept interest rates at record lows to encourage borrowing to stimulate the marketplace. The feds have signaled their intent to keep these rates low into the year 2013. Right now, first time home buyers with good credit getting into a 30-year fixed mortgage can expect interest rates between 4 and 4.5 percent — historic lows for the housing market. Lower interest rates mean lower payments and less interest expense over the life of the loan.

To get the best interest rates, real estate classes advise making sure home buyers stay on top of their credit report, checking all three reports regularly for fraud and mistakes. Home buyers should also take steps to ensure their credit remains good while they look for a home. The better the credit score, the better the interest rate.

Price Drop
The drop in home values is not such great news for current home owners, but it is great news for potential home buyers. The falling home prices means buyers can get more house for their money. Real estate classes suggest looking at three factors to know if a home is a great deal.

  1. Check the comparable sales data for other homes in the area. A Realtor can help a home buyer do this or most major real estate websites.
  2. Determine how much buyers were able to negotiate off the list price to get to the final sale price. Again, a Realtor can assist with this.
  3. Buyers must make sure the house is affordable and fits into their budget. If they buy too much house and then struggle to make payments, they haven’t received a good deal.

Choose Your Home
Another half glass empty, half glass full statistic is the amount of homes on the market right now. For home buyers, the amount of homes on the market right now translates to more choice because more people want to sell their homes than there are buyers. Buyers can shop around for the home that best suits their needs both for now and in the future. Gone are the days of having to compete with hordes of buyers for the same house.

Home buyers will find a lot to cheer about the 2011 housing market. Homes are plentiful, prices are low and interest rates can only get lower. For buyers who may have waited to buy a home, now is the time to jump into the market.