Why Some Millennials are Skipping Starter Homes

One of the most prevalent discussions in today’s housing market is the shortage of available homes for sale.  Construction activity has yet to surpass its pre-Recession peak and in many metros, home buyers are vying over the same few available properties for sale.  Starter homes especially are feeling the inventory Read More

Passive Houses Gaining Popularity Again

A passive house is defined as a house that is able to use approximately 86% less energy for heating and 46% less energy for cooling than neighboring homes.  Passive house design eliminates the need for extra heating and cooling by building airtight homes that do not let in outdoor air.  Read More

Understanding the Appraisal Process

Purchasing or refinancing a home will typically require a home appraisal to determine its current value.  The appraisal should be conducted by a qualified appraiser who is licensed or certified in the state and familiar with homes in the area.  Fannie Mae requires an appraisal from an appraiser who has Read More

Gen X Boosts Homeownership Rate Recovery

The national homeownership rate has struggled to regain traction since the pre-recession housing peak.  Last month, a report from the Census Bureau showed the United States homeownership rate improved to 63.9% in the third quarter, up slightly from second quarter’s 63.7% and significantly from last year’s 63.5%.  One of the Read More

New Tax Plan and Mortgage Interest Deduction

On Thursday, Republican lawmakers introduced the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, a bill proposing major tax overhaul across income brackets, corporate taxes, and tax deductions.  The long-awaited proposal may still incur some changes before it becomes law, but if passed the changes are scheduled to take effect January 1st, 2018. Among Read More

Breaking the Cycle of Long-term Renting

A decade after the 2007 housing market crash, some metros are still struggling to recover to pre-crisis housing activity.  2016 marks the highest rental rate since 1965.  Home price appreciation is causing many renters to delay home ownership.  In most metros, only about 45% of renters could afford a median-priced Read More

Equifax Data Breach: What You Need to Know

Equifax, one of the three largest credit reporting bureaus in the country, reported that due to a data breach, approximately 143 million Americans may have their personal information compromised.  Data such as names, social security numbers, birth dates, addresses and driver’s license numbers are all at risk.  Additionally, Equifax estimates Read More

Market Recap: Construction Spending Unchanged, Mortgage Apps Up, ADP Employment Numbers Positive

Mortgage rates started to trend upward after a few weeks of holding steady.  This month, US construction spending remained unchanged and private-sector jobs grew less than anticipated.  New purchase mortgage applications rebounded after last week’s declines, and refinance applications decreased slightly. US construction spending from April to May was unchanged Read More

Joining the 800+ Credit Club

Lenders use credit scores to determine a borrower’s ability to repay debts like mortgages and vehicle loans. Credit scores impact lending terms, mortgage rates, and financing eligibility. Typically, scores above 700 are considered good. TransUnion reports only about 20% of Americans have a score above 780 and even fewer rank Read More