Market Update: New Home Sales Show Significant Increase in September
According to a report this week from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 5.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 389,000 units in September. These figures are newly released from HUD and U.S. Census Bureau. Important to underscore, this marks the fastest sales pace recorded since April of 2010, and offers additional proof that the national real estate market continues its gradual recovery.
Favorable interest rates, rising prices and improving consumer confidence have combined to drive housing demand higher, explains NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. As more and more prospective homebuyers “move off the fence,” we can expect to see inventories of homes for sale shrinking, forcing prices to climb further.
As these market indicators suggest, those consumers considering a home purchase should move forward with their plans in order to take advantage of current conditions. Waiting to “time the market” could prove an exercise in futility as prices continue to tick upward and the pendulum swings back toward a balanced market.
If you are one of the many buyers who is ready to get off the fence and begin searching for a home, start with the following steps:
- Thoroughly review your financial situation. Make sure your credit is in good shape since lending standards remain stringent. Also determine how much home you can realistically afford. Today’s savvy homebuyers understand the importance of not taking on more than they can comfortably handle.
- Interview several REALTORS®. Buying a home in today’s market requires a trusted, knowledgeable guide. Speak to several agents before choosing one to work with and make sure the person you select has experience, a proven track record, a complete market analysis of the neighborhoods you are considering, and a wide network to tap.
- Determine your priorities. Before beginning the search, figure out what matters most to you in a home, such as: privacy, a big backyard, a certain number of bedrooms, proximity to public transportation, the school system, etc. Deciding this upfront will shave off countless hours from your home search.
- Begin your search online. While nothing compares to seeing a house in person, a thorough online search in advance allows you to create your “not to see” list. Photos and virtual tours online will help you narrow down your list of prospects.