To finance a home with a VA loan, a property must pass the VA’s set of Minimum Property Requirements. The VA sets these standards to ensure that veterans are purchasing high-quality, move-in ready homes. Find out what to look for to ensure homes you’re interested in buying will meet the requirements. And if you’re trying to sell your home, find out some quick fixes that will increase your curb appeal and your sale price.
Every potential home buyer has to stop for at least a moment and consider this question. Today, we want to look at one of the many financial reasons to buy instead of rent: the housing expense moving forward.
According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors, the median sales price of a home in the U.S. is $184,300. The mortgage payment (principal & interest) on that purchase would be $661.89 assuming a 20% down payment and a 3.5% mortgage interest rate. Currently, the median asking rent in the U.S. according to the Census Bureau is $717 a month.
We realize that the two payments do not necessarily reflect the housing cost on a similar residence. However, that is not the point of the post. All we are saying is that the monthly housing expense on a median price home is $661.89 and the median rent is $717. We now want to discuss what will happen to these costs over time.
The principal and interest portion of the mortgage payment is locked in for the next 30 years. We know real estate taxes may be included in the payment and will increase to some degree over that time. We also acknowledge that the homeowner will have occasion to spend money on repairs. They also receive many tax advantages as a homeowner.
However, the actual monthly housing expense remains the same for the next 30 years.
Now, let’s look at what happens to a rent payment. The best thing to do to predict the future is to study the past. Here is a graph of the median asking rent since 1988 based on Census Bureau data:
We believe rents will follow their historically pattern and increase dramatically over the next 30 years. Buyers have a choice: either lock in your housing expense or deal with the uncertainty of rental increases.
Got a dream green home you’d love to build? Sure, you’ll probably want to include solar panels in the building, but that’s just one element. Green building involves making the most efficient use of the materials that go into the building, and creating a space that allows for sustainable use of resources needed to live in that home. Energy’s important, as well as water use, air quality, and the relationship of the landscaping to the larger surrounding environment.
Foreclosure filings dropped 5 percent in April from March, with foreclosure filings down 23 percent in April from year ago levels, RealtyTrac reports. Nationwide foreclosure activity has reached a 74-month low or the lowest point since February 2007.
“The April numbers indicate that the pig is moving through the python when it comes to deferred foreclosures in judicial foreclosure states,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. “Foreclosure starts have been increasing for several months in many of the judicial states, and now that increased volume is showing up in the second stage of the process: the public foreclosure auction.”
Judicial foreclosure auctions rose 22 percent from March to April and were up 31 percent from year-ago levels, RealtyTrac reports. On the other hand, scheduled, non-judicial foreclosure auctions dropped 7 percent in March and are down 43 percent from last year.
Foreclosure starts are rising in several non-judicial states, Blomquist notes. While foreclosure starts have fallen nationwide, 22 states are still seeing a rise in foreclosures over the previous month, RealtyTrac reports. Some of those states include: New Jersey (138 percent increase), Connecticut (46 percent increase), Texas (37 percent increase), Georgia (35 percent increase), Oregon (16 percent increase), and California (13 percent increase).