Suffolk County NY home prices are rising at double digit rates. Inventories are at historic lows. Two out of five applicants for a mortgage don't qualify or are turned down. Yet nearly three quarters of all potential homebuyers say it's a good time to buy a Suffolk County NY home.
While some would argue its always a good time to buy, conditions have turned to favor sellers in most markets across the nation, including Suffolk County NY . Yet even though a slight majority of consumers participating in Fannie Mae's latest monthly National Housing Survey expect prices to rise over the next three months, 71 percent said it's still a good time to buy a Suffolk County NY home.
By contrast, the share of respondents who say now is a good time to sell climbed 4 percentage points in April but still reached only 30 percent, compared to 15 percent at the same time last year. That's not even half as many as those who said it's a good time to buy. The percentage that said it's a good time to buy stayed steady from March.
The share of respondents who say mortgage rates will go up fell 3 percentage points to 43 percent, while those who say they will go down increased slightly to 7 percent.
The share of respondents who said they would buy if they were going to move increased slightly to 65 percent.
“For the first time in the survey’s three-year history, the majority of Americans surveyed now expect home prices to increase,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “Crossing the 50 percent threshold marks a significant milestone as most Americans believe a housing recovery is truly occurring throughout the country. Reflecting that increased optimism toward housing, the share of Americans who think it is a good time to sell has doubled during the last year. Many homeowners who have been underwater are gradually returning to positive equity, and selling is now becoming an available and attractive option again.” (Read the complete survey here – PDF.)
Do you agree with the majority of survey respondents who said they think now is a good time to buy a Suffolk County NY home? Your email address will never be displayed on our site for your security and we will never contact you via your email address unless you ask us to. We'd love to hear from you whether you agree or disagree with Fannie Mae's survey results.
Everyone who owns a Suffolk County NY home must face routine maintenance, such as replacing worn-out plumbing components or staining a deck, but some choose to make improvements with the intention of increasing the home's value.
Certain projects, such as adding a well thought-out family room – or other functional space – can be a wise investment, as they do add to the value of your Suffolk County NY home. Other projects, however, allow little if any opportunity to recover the costs when it's time to sell.
Things You Think Add Value To Your Suffolk County NY Home, But Really Don't
A swimming pool is one of those things that may be nice to enjoy at your friend's or neighbor's house, but can be a hassle to have at your own Suffolk County NY home. Many potential homebuyers view swimming pools as dangerous, expensive to maintain and a lawsuit waiting to happen. Families with young children in particular may turn down an otherwise perfect house because of the pool (and the fear of a child going in the pool unsupervised). In fact, a would-be buyer's offer may be contingent on the home seller dismantling an above ground pool or filling in an in-ground pool.
An in-ground pool costs anywhere from $10,000 to more than $100,000, and additional yearly maintenance expenses need to be considered. That's a significant amount of money that might never be recouped if and when the house is sold.
Installing stainless steel appliances in your kitchen or imported tiles in your entryway may do little to increase the value of your Suffolk County NY home if the bathrooms are still vinyl-flooring and the shag carpeting in the master bedroom is leftover from the '60s. Upgrades should be consistent to maintain a similar style and quality throughout the home. A remodel might not fetch as high a return if the rest of the home is not brought up to the same level. High-quality upgrades generally increase the value of high-end homes, but not necessarily mid-range houses where the upgrade may be inconsistent with the rest of the house.
Potential homebuyers today often cringe at the idea of having wall-to-wall carpeting. Carpeting is expensive to purchase and install. In addition, there is growing concern over the healthfulness of carpeting due to the amount of chemicals used in its processing and the potential for allergens (a serious concern for families with children). Add to that the probability that the carpet style and color you thought was absolutely perfect might not be what someone else had in mind.
Overbuilding for the Neighborhood
Homeowners often make improvements to their property that unintentionally makes the home fall outside of the norm for the neighborhood. While a large, expensive remodel, such as adding a second story with two bedrooms and a full bath, might make your Suffolk County NY home more appealing, it will not add significantly to the resale value if the house is in the midst of a neighborhood of small, one-story homes.
Homebuyers don't want to pay $450,000 for a house in a neighborhood with an average sales price of $250,000; the house will seem overpriced even if it is more desirable than the surrounding homes. The buyers will instead look to spend the $450,000 in a $450,000 neighborhood. Your house with all its improvements might be beautiful, but any money spent on overbuilding might be difficult to recover unless the other homes in the neighborhood are pretty much the same.
Suffolk County NY home buyers may appreciate well-maintained or mature landscaping, but don't expect the home's value to increase because of it. A beautiful yard may encourage potential buyers to take a closer look at the property, but will probably not add to the selling price. If a buyer is unable or unwilling to put in the effort to maintain a garden, it will quickly become an eyesore, or the new homeowner might need to pay a qualified gardener to take charge. Either way, many buyers view elaborate landscaping as a burden (even though it might be attractive) and, as a result, are not likely to consider it when placing value on the home.
The Bottom Line
It's hard to imagine spending thousands of dollars on a home-improvement project that will not be reflected in the home's value when it comes time to sell. There is no simple equation for figuring out which projects will bring the highest return, or the most bang for your buck. Some of this depends on the local market and even the age and style of the house.
Homeowners frequently must choose between an improvement they would really love to have (the in-ground swimming pool) and one that would prove to be a better investment. A bit of research, or the advice of a qualified real estate appraiser, can help homeowners avoid costly projects that don't really add value to your Suffolk County NY home.
Could there possibly be a new Suffolk County NY housing bubble on the horizon? The latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed prices in the nation's 20 largest cities had the biggest year-over-year increase since May of 2006. Diana Olick reports for NBR that some are now worrying that we may be facing a new housing bubble.
Even though signs point to the Suffolk County NY housing crisis being over, 58 percent of Americans believe we are still in the middle of a crisis, and roughly one in five people believe the worst is yet to come. These statistics come from the MacArthur Foundation. Their "How Housing Matters" research initiative involved a telephone survey of 1,433 adults, conducted between Feb. 27 and March 10.
What do you think? Do you think we're on the verge of another Suffolk County NY housing bubble? We'd love to hear your thoughts and comments. (Your email address will never be displayed on this site, or used by us to contact you… so please go ahead and tell us what you think about a possible Suffolk County NY housing bubble.)
t's no wonder why Suffolk County NY new homes are being heavily influenced by baby boomers. Recent studies by the National Home Builders Association and AARP show that baby boomers are leading the push in Suffolk County NY new home construction trends, influencing how builders, designers and architects modify their floor plans to meet varied lifestyles and changing needs.
Today's 77 million baby boomers were born between 1946 and 1964 and represent 26 percent of the total US population. Boomers make up 45 percent of the national work force and hold the largest amount of discretionary income in history.
Boomers Prefer Suffolk County NY New Homes
A study done by seniors advocacy group AARP shows that a large percentage of boomers plan to move when they retire. Those in a position to sell their existing homes prefer building new Suffolk County NY homes to take advantage of new technology and energy efficiency than trying to maintain or remodel an older home.
Whether boomers are remodeling or planning to look at Suffolk County NY new homes, this generation is more active than generations past, has a more sophisticated style and wants lots of options and choices in their home designs.
Multi-purpose flex rooms are high on the list for active boomers who love to entertain, exercise and relax. These spaces can easily be converted to a guest room, home office, or an exercise or media room. Today every space needs to have a purpose; gone are the days of rarely used rooms like formal dining rooms.
Another hot trend in Suffolk County NY new homes is having a large master suite with comfortable sitting areas, large his-and-hers walk-in closets, master baths with garden tubs, dual sinks and if space permits, a small patio or terrace.
Baby boomers are very particular about their kitchens, as cooking and entertaining are typically at the top of the list for these active adults. They are seeking kitchens stocked with high-end amenities like professional grade appliances, granite countertops, hardwood flooring and custom cabinetry. Items like large pantries, center islands and cozy breakfast nooks are must-haves.
Home builders, designers and residential architects are continuously modifying their floor plans and home designs to meet the ever-changing needs and demands of a generation that is not yet ready to head to the retirement home.
Suffolk County NY home buyers have been flocking to the market in droves this past year, trying to take advantage of affordable prices and record-low mortgage interest rates while they still can.
When it comes to applying for a mortgage — the most important aspect of the home-buying process — recent surveys found that about one in three buyers have no idea what they're doing.
In today's market, where the low supply of listings and bidding wars require swift decision-making, it's pretty unsettling that few buyers come in well-prepared. And considering the fact that the housing crisis was largely attributed to homeowners who took on mortgages they couldn't afford, buyers apparently haven't learned many lessons.
Suffolk County NY Home Buyers Need Education
Here are some key findings from the recent unrelated reports by Zillow and the Yale Law Journal study:
- One-third of about 1,000 potential buyers who took Zillow's Mortgage IQ Survey did not know they could get a mortgage with less than 5 percent down. (The minimum down payment for FHA loans is 3.5 percent and VA loans can be obtained with zero down.)
- One-third of buyers incorrectly believe that all lenders are required by law to charge the same fees for credit reports and appraisals.
- 26 percent of buyers thought they were obligated to stay with the lender that pre-approved them (not so) while 24 percent believed the best interest rates and fees are only obtained through their own bank (again, not true).
- The Yale study, conducted over three years, also found that 31 percent of its participants did not understand the basic principals of a mortgage, and many didn't even bother to read the terms of the documents they were signing.
- Nearly one-third of participants who read a lender disclosure form didn't know the loan being presented had an adjustable rate, despite the fact that the form clearly specified so.
If you'd like to see how prepared you are to join the ranks of Suffolk County NY home buyers, take Zillow’s 10-question mortgage quiz.
Get more mortgage information by checking out the mortgage related articles under Suffolk County NY Mortgage Info to your right.