There are a number of expressions that we sometimes hear when someone finds something good in an othewise bad situation. For example, I work with the Citizens for a Troutman Library. When the new library was designed, the architect estimated the cost to be well over $1,000,000. Then the economy went south. When we put it out to bid, we were able to get a contract for under $800,000. That allowed us to move ahead with construction. In another example, the Town of Mooresville has lately been getting some needed re-paving of streets done, largely because paving prices are substantially lower than normal, and that’s the best use of our town funds now.
This same silver lining can help some people move ahead with their plans for buying a house or trading up (or down). Right now, 30 year mortgage interest rates can be had for under 5% with good credit. Right now, many first time buyers can get a tax credit of up to $8,000 and many repeat buyers a credit of up to $6,500. Right now, home prices are historically low. (Sellers, if you’re moving in the same market, you’ll enjoy the same discount on the house you buy that you may have to give to get yours sold- so that’s no reason to wait.)
Do you think this silver lining will last forever? Well, we know the home buyer tax credits will end by the middle of next year. We know that mortgage interest rates have been held artificially low due to government buying our own bonds, and that will likely go away next year. We see that in other parts of the country that are ahead of us in the downturn-upturn cycle, that prices are starting to edge back up. I’d say now is really a remarkably good time to make a move, if that’s part of your long-term plan.
Who’s ready for some lemonade? Oh, by the way. I help people buy and sell houses.