Tag Archives: renters

Money Monday: Renters can buy

Even in California, buying can be more affordable than renting.

Renters That Can Buy

This infographic is from the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS.

Money Monday: Ask Yourself These Questions Before Renting or Buying

Whether to buy or rent doesn’t necessarily have a clear-cut answer. But hopefully these questions will provide some guidance:

  1. What’s your top financial priority?
  2. What do you have savings for: down payment or first and last months’ rent?
  3. How long do you plan on living in the area?

There’s five more questions to ask yourself before you rent or buy; find them here on Yahoo: “8 Questions to Ask Yourself When Deciding to Rent or Buy a House.”

Money Monday: Investing in real estate

As with all investments real estate investment has it own risks and the decision to invest should be carefully considered.

As a landlord there are certain costs that you will need to cover, potential vacancy problems that may strain your ability to pay your mortgages, and liability issues. It is important that you speak with an expert before putting yourself in a situation where you can potential over-extend yourself.

With that in mind, I have included some of the basic property types and benefits associated with real estate investment.

Single-family residence. First time real estate investors are usually advised to buy a single family detached home and rent it out as it’s market value appreciates. The reason for the popularity is that they are relatively easy. They are easy to buy, easy to finance, and they hold appeal to buyers and renters. Also, if you find that the real estate investment game was not the right choice for you they are relatively easy to turn over. Mortgage brokers know this-so these properties are also usually easier to finance and refinance.

Vacation property and second homes. Investment options in this category are myriad, from outright purchase to fractional-interest contracts and timeshares. Even if the property isn’t income producing, it can appreciate into a worthy investment, and mortgage interest is fully deductible. If you do rent the property when it’s not in use, realized income and tax obligations depend on what percentage of the year it’s kept for “personal use”-a tightly defined term you should discuss with a real estate attorney.

Apartment properties. Apartment properties require a long-term commitment, as well as a substantial investment of borrowed and equity capital, but due to the availability of professional managers they often don’t demand a lot of personal time. If you are the do-it yourself type then you might find yourself spending your weekends painting, advertising vacancies, and repairing faucets – though the higher return might be worth it for you. They can have mortgage loans of up to 100% of value, while other investment types may require all cash. Loans can be amortized or paid with the income generated by rents.

Condominiums. Condominium investments provide a bit of extra risk. Their market value appreciates more slowly than for detached single-family residences, and rental rates usually aren’t high enough to cover mortgage, property tax, and maintenance fees.

Vacant land. Vacant land is probably the least liquid and therefore usually the weakest choice for a profitable shorter-term investment. While undeveloped land is easy to maintain, it nearly always takes longer to appreciate and longer to sell.

Commercial property. To reduce personal liability and offset the greater expense of these properties, some investors form or join a limited liability company. Because of the extremely high risks involved with this type of agreement, consulting a real estate attorney is essential before taking this step. You probably shouldn’t consider this arrangement if you aren’t personally familiar with the other partners and their business expertise.

Money Monday: Housing affordability worry

Homebuyers getting more anxious about affordability

Source: Investors Business Daily

Homebuyers in the U.S. are growing more anxious about their ability to afford a dwelling of their own, and that’s especially true of millennials, says a new survey from Redfin. Another concern they have is high rent, with nearly half of first-time homebuyers surveyed saying that it pushed them into the housing market. And while low inventory was blamed as a major factor in July’s drop in sales of existing homes, that was third on the list of homebuyers’ worries, after affordability and competition from other shoppers.

money house

Making sense of the story

In previous surveys, the second- and third-most cited concerns made up a far higher percentage of total responses. Last year it was 31.4 percent, while in May it was 33.5 percent. In other words, affordability is gaining prominence as the number one concern among buyers.

Among the 1,887 homebuyers participating in the Redfin survey, those who said affordability
was their biggest concern grew to 28.1 percent this summer, compared to 26.6 percent a year ago. Anxiety about competition in the market again got the next-biggest share of responses, but it was cited by only 13 percent this year, compared to 17 percent in 2015.

Worry about lack of inventory again was third, but fell 2 percentage points — from 14.4 percent
of responses to 12.4 percent. The only other response reaching double digits was the share of
homebuyers who had “no concerns,” which increased slightly to 10.4 percent from 9.5 percent.

Among millennial homebuyers, nearly a third said affordability was their top concern. About half that number (16 percent) expressed worry about competition from other buyers, while about 1 in 8 (12 percent) were most troubled about the available housing inventory. And slightly more than 1 in 10 said they were the most uneasy about coming up with a down payment.

Full story: www.investors.com/news/real-estate/homebuyers-getting-more-anxious-about-affordability-redfinsays

Money Monday: Many full-time workers face housing affordability problems

Source: Harvard

While statistics on the gap in affordable housing clearly indicate the magnitude of the problem, they mask the extent of the difficulties that certain low-wage workers often face in obtaining a unit they can afford, particularly in major metro areas.

housing market

Making sense of the story

  • Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that in many markets, most full-time cashiers, retail and sales persons, and food preparation workers would have been unable to afford even a modest one-bedroom apartment.
  • The fair market rent of a two-bedroom apartment was even further out of reach for these workers: as high as $2,062 in San Francisco and over $1,400 Washington, DC, Boston, New York, and Los Angeles.
  • Other occupations where median annual wages were inadequate for households to afford a
    modest one-bedroom apartment include—but are not limited to—EMTs and paramedics,
    childcare workers, security guards, and several types of healthcare support occupations.
  • All of these jobs are vital to local economies, and support a variety of businesses and services required for healthy, growing communities.
  • Wage stagnation among low-income households is certainly part of the problem. Between 2001 and 2014, the median real household income for renters in the bottom quintile fell 9.9 percent, while income for households in the top quintile was up 3.1 percent.
  • To make ends meet, many low-wage households must reduce expenditures on food and
    healthcare, move to areas which are less accessible and require longer commute times, or double up with family or roommates.
  • Nearly a third of the nation’s 7 million renters earning less than $35,000 in 2014 had minors
    living at home, and fully half of these families reported being severely cost-burdened in the same year—paying more than half of their incomes for housing.

Read the full story: housingperspectives.blogspot.com/2016/08/many-full-time-workers-face-housing.html

Money Monday: Renters are increasingly paying more for less

“New apartments hitting the rental market in 2016 are 8% smaller than they were 10 years ago, according to a recent report from online rental marketplace RentCafe.

for rent

“Meanwhile, rents for all apartments on the market have risen 7% in the last five years.

“This year, the average square footage of all new apartments, including studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments, was 934 square feet. Just a decade ago, the new units coming online offered an average of 1,015 square feet.

“The national average for rent this year is $1,296 compared to $977 in 2011…”

Read more from CNN here, or read the quoted report from RentCafe here.

If you’re thinking of buying a home instead of renting (especially after reading about this), then please contact me to see how I can help! 

Contact me!

John A Silva | (619) 890-3648 | Email

Money Monday: Challenges Hamper the Housing Recovery

As the Housing Recovery Strengthens, Affordability and Other
Challenges Remain: Harvard Study

Source: Harvard

The national housing market has now regained enough momentum to provide an engine of growth for the US economy, according to The State of the Nation’s Housing report released this week by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. However, several obstacles continue to hamper the housing recovery—in particular, the lingering pressures on homeownership, the eroding affordability of rental housing, and the growing concentration of poverty.for rent

Making sense of the story

  • On the renter side, the number of cost-burdened households rose by 3.6 million from 2008 to 2014, to 21.3 million. Even more troubling, the number with severe burdens (paying more than 50 percent of income for housing) jumped by 2.1 million to a record 11.4 million.
  • The national homeownership rate has been on an unprecedented 10-year downtrend, sliding to just 63.7 percent in 2015. Tight mortgage credit, the decade-long falloff in incomes that is only now ending, and a limited supply of homes for sale are all keeping households—especially first-time buyers—on the sidelines.
  • The report finds that income inequality increased over the past decade, with households earning under $25,000 accounting for nearly 45 percent of the net growth in US households in 2005–2015.
  • The report finds that rent burdens are increasingly common among moderate-income households, especially in the nation’s 10 highest-cost housing markets, where three-quarters of renters earning $30,000–45,000 and half of those earning $45,000–75,000 paid at least 30 percent of their incomes for housing in 2014.
  • Federal assistance reaches only a quarter of those who qualify, leaving nearly 14 million
    households to find housing in the private market where low-cost units are increasingly scarce.
  • Low-income households with cost burdens face higher rates of housing instability, more often settle for poor-quality housing, and have to sacrifice other needs—including basic nutrition, health, and safety—to pay for their housing.
  • The report notes that a lack of a strong federal response to the affordability crisis has left state and local governments struggling to expand rental assistance and promote construction of affordable housing in areas with access to better educational and employment opportunities.

Read the full story here. This concise intro to Harvard’s article is from the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS.

Money Monday: Renters have affordability challenges when buying a home

Renters value homeownership but face affordability challenges when it comes to buying a home, C.A.R. survey finds.

upside-downCurrent renters value homeownership and want to buy a home, but many are encountering affordability and financial obstacles that prevent them from buying, according to the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®’ (C.A.R.) “2016 Renter Survey. Making sense of the story:

  • Nearly half of renters (48 percent) plan to buy a home in the future, with 10 percent saying that they plan to buy within a year.
  • For those not planning to buy, an improvement in finances, lower housing prices, and saving enough for a down payment would motivate them to buy now.
  • Of the 28 percent of renters who don’t plan to buy in the future, 50 percent said they can’t afford to buy, 20 percent will not buy because they prefer to rent, 19 percent said they can’t qualify for a mortgage, and 15 percent lack a down payment.
  • Job uncertainty (9 percent), economic uncertainty (12 percent), and housing market uncertainty (6 percent) were among other reasons renters cited for not buying a home.
    Homeownership remains important to renters, with nearly half (45 percent) rating it 8 or higher in importance on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being extremely important. The average was 6.8.
  • Nearly all renters (95 percent) see advantages to homeownership; freedom to do what you want with your home, building equity, and having permanence and stability were the top benefits mentioned by renters.
  • One of the surprising findings of this survey is that more than one in four millennial renters said they plan to purchase a home that will accommodate their parents, and about one in five millennials indicated they plan to pool funds with family members to buy a home.

Read the full story from KPCC: www.scpr.org/news/2016/06/08/61459/homeownership-is-valued-but-remains-expensive-and/