Real Estate News – October 2019

Can’t Afford to Buy a Home? Have You Considered Down Payment Assistance?

What’s the number one hurdle for renters making the leap to homeownership? That pesky down payment. Even with an FHA loan that only requires a minimum of 3.5% down, the thought of setting aside several thousand dollars is daunting (and for some, darn near impossible).

survey from Apartment List highlights the struggle for millennial renters, with 62% citing a lack of down payment savings as their reason for delaying homeownership. 48% have zero down payment savings, and just 11% have saved $10,000 or more.

Fortunately, there are programs out there to help, they’re just not always well publicized. Here are some tips for finding Down Payment Assistance: 

1. Do a national search.
You’ll be surprised how many programs you can find. “Do you even know that down payment assistance (DPA) programs exist? You’re in good company if you don’t,” says The Mortgage Reports. “These programs help homebuyers with loans or grants that reduce the amount they need to save for a down payment. And there are more than 2,000 of them nationwide.”

2. Check out statewide programs.
From the HUD site, you can search by every state plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands to see which programs are available for you. 

3. Now take it local.
Don’t forget to check for programs in your city. The City of Los Angeles Housing + Community Investment Departmentoffers up to $90,000 in financial assistance for first-time, low income homebuyers. In Memphis, there is a zero-interest deferred loan that provides funding for first-time homebuyers’ down payment and closing costs for eligible homebuyers through its Division of Housing and Community Development.

4. Search by your profession.
You’ve probably heard about VA loans for military members and veterans, but there are other professions that are eligible for down-payment assistance. The Neighbor Next Door Program is a program for law enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians, and teachers that requires only a $100 down payment for eligible homebuyers. Because the program is tied to the idea of revitalization, homes in these communities are offered to eligible buyers at a 50% discount. 

5. Check with your real estate agent or lender.
Doing your own research is key, but it’s always smart to consult a professional who is familiar with your specific situation.

Why You Should Replace Your Roof Before Selling Your Home

Are you thinking about putting your home on the market for sale? It doesn’t matter if you’ve been living there for 50 years or five, you want to do everything you can to get the most out of your investment. Here’s why a residential roof replacement might be a great choice to boost your ROI, or at least save you time and effort during the sale process.

Increase Your Asking Price After a Roof Replacement
While it’s a significant investment, a new roof is likely to recoup most of its upfront cost, as it’s a top factor that home buyers look at when deciding on a home. 

Save Time on Roof Repair Negotiations from Buyers
Many buyers will look for any excuse to offer less on your home than what you’re asking, and an aging roof could reduce your sale price by thousands. Dedicating the time and money to a new roof now will save you the headache of a lengthy back-and-forth over purchase price later. 

Maximize Eyes on Your Home and Speed Up the Sale Process
People don’t want to put major improvements into a home they’re just moving into. When buyers notice an older roof, they are more likely to skip seeing your home entirely. The more eyes on your property, the better, and likely the sooner you’ll get the final offer settled.

Keep Lending Companies Satisfied with Adequate Roof Repairs
You might not care about the age of your roof when you list your home – let the next person deal with it. But you may come to care when the next person’s mortgage company comes to do their own inspection of the property. If roof repairs are required, they may refuse to approve the loan or request the necessary fixes be completed before they will move forward with loaning any money.

Published by Lowcountry Home Hunters

Your Local Real Estate Connection (843) 642-7111 tsmathers@kw.com

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