Buy & Sell

How Homeownership Today Differs From the 90s

The younger millennials are now in their mid-to-late twenties, and yet, many of them still don’t own a house. Many are also still single. When asked why they’d rather marry late, you’d usually hear answers such as “We couldn’t afford the lives our parents lived.”

Indeed, unlike the baby boomers, millennials have higher debts, particularly student loans. As such, buying a house at their age seems like a far-fetched idea. But some have done it already, thanks to a higher income and good credit.

But that’s the problem — millennials earn 20% less than baby boomers. With regard to their debt, fortunately, 43% have never accumulated more than $50,000. But still, today’s costs of living hinder them from making major purchases, such as a home. Even with a full-time job, many people, not just millennials, feel that their income isn’t enough to sustain all their needs.

So will house-buying ever become easier for them? Or should they leave that hope in the 90s forever?

The Impact of the 2008 Financial Crises

Housing crashed in 2008, and the older millennials back then had felt its impact. Though the market has long since recovered, it challenged everyone’s mindset about buying a home, which was that a house is an investment.

Since the financial crisis left tens of millions owing more than their homes were worth, the belief that a house in investment had been reversed. Apparently, homeownership isn’t an investment, according to Potomac Wealth Advisor’s president, Mark Avallone. He added that homeownership is instead a lifestyle choice for people who desire the freedom of having their own house and land. If you’re still hoping for a great return from your home purchase, you’re still dwelling in the 90s.

Aaron Hendon, a Realtor with Christine & Co., states that homeownership has worked well over time, but only for the sensible ones. So he advises to buy within your means, buy slow and smart, buy where you want to live and be aware that the housing market has been a stable growth driver.

Overall, just because a house is no longer an investment means that buying one has become a bad idea. The shelter is a basic need, but we won’t thrive in a rental forever. Hence, if you have a good credit record, use it to your advantage and get in touch with reputable mortgage companies. If your options are looking great, then you may start with your home-buying journey.

Costs of Living: Then vs. Now

Regardless of whether you decided to buy a home now, the costs of living will remain a challenge. Government statistics show that while household income has increased, it didn’t keep up with the pace of inflation. Indeed, a dollar’s purchasing power today cannot compare to that of 20 years ago. The current costs of buying homes, cars, and other high-value items has grown at a rate that outpaces inflation.

As of January 2020, a $20 item in 1999 costs $31. Correspondingly, a $194,800 house in 2000 would become worth $297,705 in January 2020, as per an inflation calculator.

To prove that household income has failed to keep up, the Census Bureau shows that the median household income in 1999 was $42,000. Using an inflation calculator, that figure should’ve grown to $65,191 in January 2020. But as of 2018, the median household income was just $63,179 — 5% less than what it should’ve been.

Wages and Home Prices

Bruce Ailion, a Realtor with Re/Max, states that real estate prices are directly tied to wages. But if wages are growing at a rate of 2%, while housing grows at 6%, then a home would be unsustainable.

Over time, home prices have grown around 4% yearly, while stocks have gained almost 10%. Though stocks could also crash, it’s easier to get out of it during a crisis. This means that even if a home is your biggest investment, it’s not necessarily the best or the most profitable over time.

But again, homeownership isn’t at all bleak. You can focus on its long-term gains instead of its day-to-day costs. Sure, prices of goods are rising while wages barely do, but you can sleep better than a night in your own bed, in your own house.

Besides, you can build equity from your home. As you repay your mortgage, the percentage of the home that’s all yours becomes bigger. For example, if you bought your abode for $350,000, and you owe $200,000 on your mortgage, then you already have a $150,000 equity.

And with substantial equity, you can receive cash after you’ve sold the home, borrow against it through a home equity loan, or use it to make a down payment on your next home purchase.

Bottom Line

Life may have been easier in the 90s, but we can’t dwell in the past and keep resisting the present. Our only choice is to move forward, and carry on with our plans if our instincts tell us that it’s right. So even if it’s harder to buy a home now, do it regardless, because waiting for things to get better may just result in precious time wasted.

Buy & Sell

Single- and Multi-Story Homes: What’s the Difference?

Take a drive through any suburban neighborhood in central Florida and you will discover that most homes are single-story dwellings. Multi-story homes do exist, but they are the exception rather than the rule. On Utah’s Wasatch front, you will find just the opposite. Multi-story homes in and around the Salt Lake City area are more common.

So, what’s the difference? It is not just one thing. There are quite a few differences that go above and beyond the obvious. The differences between the two models affect everything from purchase decisions to local building policies.

A Home’s Footprint

The amount of physical land a building consumes is known as its footprint. Single-story homes tend to have larger footprints because all the living space is contained on the ground floor. Multi-story homes achieve smaller footprints by stacking living spaces.

This principle matters more than you might think. An article published on The Balance website offers some simple numbers that make this more understandable. Let us say you have a city block divided into 40′ x 80′ lots. Each lot has 3,200 square feet of land. Assume building codes stipulate that no more than 40% of a lot can be consumed by the home.

You can build a single-story home on the entire 40% and still have 60% for everything else. Alternatively, you could build a multi-story home with a 900 square foot foundation, get the same amount of living space, and consume only 28% of the allowable footprint. Now you have more room for your yard.

Local Housing Density

Single- and multi-story homes present differently when it comes to housing density too. Going back to the central Florida example, single-story homes with larger footprints can make neighborhoods seem more densely packed than they really are. Houses often feel like they are on top of one another.

Densely packed urban areas run into the same problem despite city streets often being lined with multi-story homes. But there you have the added disadvantage of extremely small lots. A multi-story dwelling in a suburban neighborhood would seem to be the ideal solution if you are into ample yard space and a neighborhood that doesn’t feel cramped.

Heating and Cooling Costs

One of the big advantages of single-story dwellings is that they require less energy to heat and cool. In addition to water table issues, this is one of the reasons so many Florida homes are single-story. It’s just too expensive to run the AC otherwise.

Up in Salt Lake City, the winter months are more difficult for owners of multi-story homes. They are harder to heat, and upper floors tend to be warmer than the ground floor.

Other Considerations

There are other considerations to think of. For example, you might be looking at selling the family home and downsizing. Salt Lake City’s CityHome Collective explains that retirees are the most likely downsizing candidates. As a local real estate broker, they find downsizing clients are more amenable to single-story structures.

Single-story homes take steps out of the equation. Homeowners are not walking up and down stairs multiple times per day. Likewise, single-story homes often require less cleaning and maintenance.

On the other hand, multi-story homes make it easier to separate spaces. CityHome Collective says this is appealing to families. A multi-story home offers most of the common space on the first floor while bedrooms are on the upper floors. This allows the separation that cannot be achieved with single-story homes.

And now you know. There is more to the single- and multi-story home question than meets the eye. Perhaps buying your next home will not be so easy now.

Buy & Sell

How to buy property in Spain?

Purchasing property abroad seems like a very stressful situation to many. However, once you choose a good real estate agency, the entire process runs smoothly and stress-free. We have devised a step-by-step guide on how to buy property in Spain. Read on and find out how to fulfil your dreams of owning a beautiful house by the sea or a luxurious apartment near the mountains.

Buy property in Spain – how to start?

If you find a perfect property do not buy it without seeing it in person or via a videochat. It is important to see the actual condition of the property, since the pictures may deviate from reality. Make sure to check the walls, floors, furniture etc.

Once you choose your dream house or apartment it is best to consult a real estate agent in Spain, who is well-acquainted with the market and with all the formalities since legal regulations change very quickly. In addition, the agent should pay attention to the condition of the house as well. If something seems off, they should inform you.

See property offers in Spain –

The preliminary contract – what is it?

Signing the preliminary contract is a form of a collateral for you and the seller. In case any of the parties to the agreement withdraw from it, the withdrawing party is obliged to pay a payment in advance. It usually amounts to EUR 3,000-6,000. Thanks to this contract, the potential buyer is booking the property and mustn’t be worried that the owner sells it to anyone else.

The documents

It shouldn’t be a surprise that buying property in Spain is impossible without having an ID card or passport and its copy – just like in any other country. However, what is new is the NIE number (Número de Identidad de Extranjero). It is a number assigned to a foreigner in Spain. It may be obtained at police stations – sometimes it lasts up to 2 months. A professional real estate agency will help you in organising the meeting and will be present during it. Moreover, you should have an open account in a Spanish bank, which also may be assisted by a real estate agent.

Best regions to buy property in Spain

First of all you should focus on what will the purpose of your property be – whether you wish to live in it or rent it to tourist for profit. The location is another important factor – city centre, outskirts, by the sea or in the mountains? Choose the perfect area with many tourist attractions or a quiet place with no neighbours. The choice is yours.

Costa Blanca is one of the most popular areas for investment. It is mainly due to the wide variety of properties at different prices and its beautiful, sandy beaches with all amenities at hand. It is a great place for family with children, as well as for couples of all ages and singles.

You have to keep in mind that properties near popular tourists resorts are more expensive, but they are also more attractive to tourists and therefore generate more profit. Alicante, Benidorm and Calpe are only some of the most popular and beautiful cities in the Costa Blanca area.

Alicante is the capital of the province and is known for its interesting history. In addition, it is filled with tourist attractions, such as the Basilic of St. Mary or St. Barbara’s Castle.

Benidorm is a Spanish New York. It is full of pubs, restaurants, clubs and fun. It is a perfect place for people who wish to relax dancing to their favourite songs. It also has beautiful beaches, which are adapted to children and adults.

If you wish to relax in a more quiet place then Calpe will be perfect for you. It is known for Penon de Ifach – a 332 m limestone rock, which is referred to as the little Gibraltar. When climbing it you may meet seagulls and cats wandering there. It is ideal for active recreation and the views are amazing.

Should you buy property from the owner or via a real estate agency?

Many people believe that buying property directly from the owner results in saving a lot of money. It is true, however, real estate have experience in negotations and therefore it may be just as affordable. Moreover, with the assistance of a real estate agency you will save a lot of time.

Buy & Sell

Is property investing in Australia as simple as it seems?

If you Compare the Australian property market online and read the free report you will see a lot of success stories. Watch all the TV shows where they buy properties, renovate them, and make a fortune… And you hear stories from friends, family, and colleagues about how they bought property decades ago and made a fortune. All you need to do is buy something to get in the market and you’ll be sorted, right?

WRONG! This type of investing can be the biggest mistake you ever make in your LIFE. Property investing in Australia is much more complex. It’s a science that requires much more research and due diligence if you want to limit your risks and maximize your profits.

Hear me out… There are hidden aspects regarding these examples above that you may not realize. The magazine success stories?

They probably tried and failed many times and lost a fortune before learning how to invest properly. The TV shows? They have a virtually unlimited budget and a team of professionals working with them to renovate the property.

Even then – you rarely get to see if they actually made any profit after all the time and money is invested in the project (and when they do give you figures, are they really genuine or showbiz?).

And the stories you hear from friends, family, and colleagues? They are usually from times when the property was FAR more affordable.

Good luck trying to find opportunities like that these days. Times have changed. You can’t just choose any old property thinking it’s a winner. It difficult too because there is no ‘one-stop-shop’ to just compare quotes online in one place, like other services.

Or even profitable at all. Investing this way is like a property market roulette. Except the odds are much less in your favor.

There ARE still fantastic opportunities out there… And have explosive capital growth potential too. You MUST do the research and carefully analyze every property. And look in every town, in every state to find the best ones. Don’t have the time or funds to do this kind of research?

That’s fine. We spend countless hours and an exorbitant amount doing exactly this. You can benefit from this research and get some of the best properties we’ve discovered during your free consultation.

Buy & Sell

Condos for sale at Kamaole Sands: what to look for?

If you are willing to invest money for condos and want that you get at the right place, then it is good to look at some factors so you can make the right decision. To buy the condos, you must know the construction company that is managing the project as well as know-how much reliable it is. Moreover, look upon the location. For example, if you are looking for the Condos for sale at Kamaole Sands, it will definitely the right decision. It is because the overall location is awesome, you find beautiful views as well as markets re near and no problem of getting public transport, rather location is ideal to live.

Some other things that you should not avoid before buying the condos that are for sale are

Repute is important

While searching for the condos, it is essential to take some time and find the one that has a good repute. You should know the builder, the number of projects the construction company has handled, and how people rate the work? You can also visit the previous sites on which company has work to confirm the construction company’s repute.

Quality of the location

Make sure the area where you are going to invest has quality finishes as well as all essential amenities that you need to spend life comfortably. It must contain high-end appliances, counter units, properly furnished bathrooms, community rooms, fitness centers, and conference rooms. Thus, it must be a complete unit where you spend a luxury life.

Design of suite

It is the option required when you are looking for a luxury apartment. If you want to shift at a modern suit, then look for its design. The modern type has the floor to ceiling windows, curved walls, construction pillars, and all other things that you need in your condos. The design must be clear and well crafted, so you feel satisfied with spending on your new living place.

Search for the best condos near you, spend some extra time in finding the right option, so you spend quality life in your new home.