Like a ten year old on a road trip, people are wondering if real estate prices have hit the bottom… are we there yet? It goes beyond the usual “how’s the real estate market?” More than ever, it’s: Is this a good time to buy? How do you buy a foreclosure? Is it hard to get a mortgage? Are homes selling … How long would it take to sell my home? What if we buy and prices continue to go down? Are interest rates going to increase?
It does seem that prices in the Seattle Bellevue Redmond real estate market are starting to level off. While this is not true in the counties of Pierce, Thurston and areas in Snohomish County… King County and specifically Seattle and the Eastside have seen increases in home sales and a stabilization of pricing. This is especially true for King County condos and homes under $400,000. Many first time home buyers and those who have been waiting on the sidelines are jumping in and taking action as they find more affordable pricing and terrific interest rates. Even if prices slide a bit more, all it takes is an interest rate bump and buying power can diminish.
Though it is a buyer’s market, it is only a buyer’s market if you buy.
If you are in the market to buy, Now is a great opportunity. Home sellers are still anxious as their home prices have fallen and many homes continue to sit waiting for a buyer. Home foreclosures and short-sales have increased. Interest rates are incredibly low. There are also many First Time Homebuyer products available. And the Housing Stimulus Bill provides a First-time Home Buyer credit of $8,000. These facts, along with lower prices and tax advantages, even if the market hasn’t hit bottom, a buyer could loose money by waiting to purchase.
But the main point in home ownership is not even the economics. While it is a fact that buying and holding real estate has been a great wealth generator, there is still ‘no place like home.’ Home is where families create memories. Our home is our sanctuary.
Even with investment considerations, the main reason to purchase a house or condo is to live there.