Today’s Mortgage Rates Make it the Ideal Time to Buy or Sell
The National Association of Realtors published a report on April 1, 2019, that states consumer confidence is high and the GDP is reporting 10 years of growth. The national unemployment level sits just below 4%. Job growth in Illinois from February of 2018 to 2019 is up 1-2% overall. In a nutshell, consumers are becoming more and more confident and the housing market is taking notice
Chicagoland Mortgage Rates at a 3-Year Low
2018 wasn’t a great year for mortgage rates. Around this time last year, experts were predicting a 5% national average for a 30-year fixed mortgage by the end of 2018. Fast-forward and national mortgage rates today are the lowest they’ve been in years. Earlier this year, the Federal Reserve also announced that they have no plans to raise interest rates in 2019.
In Illinois as a whole, the average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.12%, though some rates are dipping below 4%, and the average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages is 3.62%. These rates change on a daily basis, which makes it more difficult to know when you should pull the trigger on a rate offer. Chicago mortgage rates have traditionally been some of the most competitive in the United States, meaning that the low rates we see now make it a great time to buy!
Housing Options are Abundant
When populations rise quickly, the demand for homes is high and houses sell quickly, giving the seller the advantage. Lately, the population in the Chicago area has remained fairly consistent, giving buyers more options. While housing prices seem to slowly be on the rise, the added number of homes for sale in chicago gives the buyer the advantage.
The Millennial Effect on Buying and Selling
The millennial generation has had a consistent effect on the housing market. As this generation is nearing their home-buying peak, we see a rise in demand for homes that are updated and match today’s trends. People want a home that’s ready to go.
Previous first-time buyers favored the ‘fixer-upper’ homes, homes that might need new paint, updated kitchen cabinetry, or bathroom facelift. This isn’t the trend right now. As BrightLeaf Advisor Heather Kinealy wrote in a piece earlier this summer, “They are the ‘razzle-dazzle’ homes. Other homes aren't doing as well - the ones that people have lived in and loved, who have raised families in and may be a decade out of finish.” This is at odds with the home buying mindsets of the past - to buy a cheap, first-time home, fix it up, sell it, and move into something bigger later in life. Check out Heather’s full post for more on this topic.
However different it might seem, this trend in home buying sits well in our current market. Lower than average mortgage rates combined with an abundance of options makes it a prime picking time for first-time buyers. Those less experienced at shopping for a home have less competition and more time to make their decisions.
What Does This Mean for Sellers?
Lower current mortgage rates typically mean more buyers coming into the market, but today’s home buyers come with specific interests and needs. Modern updates and high curb appeal is important right now. Sellers should be aware that buyers are looking for more than just a home for sale in the Chicago area. An affordable turn-key home is a hot commodity.
Making key investments into your home before putting it on the market will make a big difference. A new roof or HVAC system is certainly appealing, but something as simple as a fresh color scheme or a landscaping upgrade will add big value to your home and draw in more interested buyers - and, of course, bids.
Chicago Real Estate Agents That Can Help
Buying a home is complicated, no matter your experience level or the current market. The right advisor makes all the difference in making a great decision that works with your personal and financial goals.
BrightLeaf’s Advisors are dedicated to keeping you informed and meeting your expectations throughout the home buying or selling experience. Whatever your goals, we’ll help make the best choices for your unique situation.
Visit the BrightLeaf Realty page to learn more.