As prices rise, mortgage lenders are making it easier to buy a house.
Source: Los Angeles Times
Some prices are rising across the country and mortgage rates, though still historically low, are up since the presidential election.
Simply put, buying a home isn’t easy, especially in high-cost metropolitan areas such as Los Angeles County, where the median price of a home hit $569,000 in June.
But changes in the mortgage industry are afoot, with the goal of loosening some of the strict standards established after the subprime crisis — rules some blame for impeding sales.
“The reality has sunk in that there are buyers out there who will be able to buy homes and make the mortgage payments,” said William E. Brown, the president of the National Assn. of Realtors. The industry is “trying to give them more options to buy a house.”
Government-controlled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are paving the way by rolling out new programs to encourage home ownership.
The companies, with their congressional mandate to promote home ownership, don’t originate loans, but purchase mortgages from lenders to keep the market moving. And any changes they make in the underwriting standards for the loans they buy can have a big effect.
When home buyers have pets, that factors into their priorities for their future home. While the specific priorities differ from person to person, a massive 95% of consumers think that allowing animals within a housing community is important. Other preferences that consumers value include:
Nearby animal amenities (a walking path ranks at #1 at 54%; a nearby dog park or animal grooming also is included in the list).
Home features important to animal owners (not surprisingly, a fenced yard is vital to 91%, with a laminate floor coming in second as another priority for 66% of consumers).
Zillow released a study on Tuesday, revealing some of their real estate findings; including: “half of all buyers are under age 36, meaning the Millennial generation is driving more of the housing market than we previously understood.”
Another finding had to do with the hiring of real estate agents. They found that “buyers aren’t replacing the expertise of real estate agents with online research—but they are doing a tremendous amount of research online before contacting an agent. Those who start their home searches online are actually more likely to use an agent than other buyers.”
The report summarizes Zillow’s findings in a 164-page report; click here to read about all of the real estate findings in detail.
“The average rate of a 30-year fixed mortgage dropped to 3.48% — the lowest level since May 2013, according to Freddie Mac. A year ago, the rate was 4.08%.
“The drop comes in the wake of the U.K.’s decision to leave the European Union. The historic vote sent the yield on the U.S. 10-year Treasury, which serves as benchmark for consumer loans, tumbling to 1.45% this week…”