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3 Common Mistakes When Buying for the First Time
First-time buyers are finding the housing market challenging to break into. On average, they have to put in 3.8 offers before their offer is accepted, which is higher than the 2.5 offers that repeat buyers typically make, according to a new survey of about 2,000 U.S. adults from NerdWallet, a personal finance website.
Further, 56 percent of first-time buyers say they offered more than the asking price before they were successful in their home purchase. For comparison, 35 percent of repeat buyers say they offered more than the asking price.
“It shows that things are tough out there for first-time home buyers,” says Holden Lewis, home expert at NerdWallet. “There’s just more competition for those homes. There’s not a whole lot of them out there in a lot of markets, and there’s a lot of buyers who are competing for those homes.”
As the newbies in the market too, first-time buyers may be prone to some mistakes, such as lowballing initial offers or failing to shop around for their mortgage, Lewis says.
Here are three common mistakes first-time buyers often make:
Failing to shop around for a mortgage: NerdWallet’s research found that 50 percent of all buyers applied to just one lender for their mortgage. But that could be leaving money on the table. Shopping around can save you, on average, $430 in interest in the first year for those with a fixed-rate $260,000 mortgage, NerdWallet’s study finds. “That savings would accumulate and compound for every year that they had the loan,” Lewis told CNBC.
Believing the 20 percent down payment myth: Lewis says another common rookie mistake is believing you have to put down more of a down payment than you really do. Seventy-one percent of current homeowners say they made down payments of 20 percent or less, according to U.S. Census Bureau data (of those, 23 percent of buyers put down between 11 to 20 percent; 16 percent put down 6 to 10 percent; and 32 percent put down 5 percent or less). In markets where home prices are rising at a faster clip, buyers may find it time to buy now rather than wait until they ‘ve saved a 20 percent down payment, Lewis says. But Lewis adds that in some markets, however, home values may be increasing more than what a buyer would pay for mortgage insurance. Lenders usually require mortgage insurance when borrowers don’t put at least 20 percent down.
Showing unwillingness to compromise: First-time buyers may also be going in with too-high expectations. Housing inventories in the lower price ranges, which typically first-time buyers are looking at, are low and that means limited choices. Twenty-six percent of all recent buyers surveyed say they purchased a home knowing it would need improvement or work. Twenty-one percent also said they had to compromise on their list of must-haves. Real estate experts urge first-time buyers to identify their top priorities, such as commute times, schools, and square footage. “It really helps to know going into that it that you’re just simply not going to get everything you want,” Lewis told CNBC.
5 Hints at the Future of Home Design
Bolder color schemes and more usage of brass were among some of the latest home design trends—which focused particularly on the kitchen and bathroom—featured on the expo floor at last week’s 2019 International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas. Hosted jointly by the National Association of Home Builders and the Kitchen & Bath Association, the trade show brought together more than 80,000 builders and architects who offered forecasts for the new-home construction, remodeling, and home design industries. Here’s a look at some of the hottest design trends that were on display.
1. Striking Cabinetry
Bolder hues were gracing kitchen and bathroom cabinetry, walls, and even sinks. Kohler delivered a colorful punch with a bathroom design that included a purple sink, purple claw-foot bathtub, blue sinks, and a black toilet.
Explore REALTOR® Magazine’s 2019 IBS coverage, including the latest home features to gain prominence and the effect of affordability on new construction.
Homeowners are starting to branch away from neutral grays, and wider color choices are expected to dress up interiors in 2019 and 2020, says Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin Williams. That’s why the company chose Cavern Clay as its 2019 Color of the Year, a terra-cotta color and nod to the popularity of the American Southwest aesthetic. Clay can serve as a neutral color but with a pop, Wadden says.
“I think as we near 2020 and the start to a whole new decade, consumers are getting excited to get back to more color, especially in the kitchen,” Wadden says. Indeed, bold kitchen colors were a dominant force at IBS 2019, with cabinets in greens, blues, and reds.
Five years ago, espresso-stained cabinetry was the top kitchen trend. Now, the top choices are paint colors: white, gray, black, and navy, which is quickly becoming a rising star, Wadden says.
2. Brass and Bronze Accents
Brass hardware, lighting, and faucets made appearances in many kitchen and bathroom spaces on the expo floor. This is not the same shiny brass from the 1980s; it’s less polished. It’s also being placed alongside other metals, such as chrome or brushed nickel, matted black, or bronze.
CAFÉ, part of the GE Appliances brand, introduced customized hardware options in various metals, such as brushed bronze, brushed stainless, or brushed black. Homeowners can dress up appliance handles with the different finishes to their stainless steel, matted white, or matted black refrigerator or stove. For example, soft brushed copper hardware handles can be added to a matted white refrigerator for a more contemporary vibe.
3. Geometric Shapes
Particularly when it comes to lighting fixtures, geometric shapes are another star in home design trends. Square and circular fixtures that expose Edison bulbs—which are becoming focal points in a kitchen space—make for artistic pendants over a kitchen island. “We’re seeing a lot of mid-century modern and geographic shapes,” says designer Julianna Dykstra of Distinctive Bathroom & Kitchen Inc., in Ottawa. “We’re seeing the Edison bulbs along with mixed metals in faucets and hardware. It’s adding a little more bling in the kitchen.” Geometric shapes are also showing up in tiles on bathroom shower walls and kitchen backsplashes.
4. The Standalone Tub
Homeowners recently have traded bathtubs for large, luxurious showers. But while that’s still on trend, Todd Hallett, president of TK Design and Associates, says bathtubs are reclaiming their place in the bathroom and becoming the new focal point. “When you walk in, you look directly ahead to see the tub and the shower behind it,” Hallett says. “It becomes a dramatic space.” Showrooms on the expo floor at IBS 2019 featured standalone bathtubs as the centerpiece of the bathroom, accented with a chandelier above and overlooking a fireplace.
5. All-Glass Sliding Wall Panels
Extending the living space to the outdoors has been a hot home trend for the last few years, but all-glass sliding wall panels and pocket doors are making the transition from the inside to outside more seamless. These doors disappear inside walls, hiding away to expose the outdoors. This eases the transition into an outdoor kitchen, fire pit, pool, or lounging space.
Surveys conducted by home design website Houzz show that opening indoor space to the outdoors is a home remodeling trend that is growing in popularity. “Folding doors or sliding doors that open the kitchen to the outdoors has mostly been in the luxury segment,” says Nino Sitchinava, principal economist at Houzz. But she says other price points are starting to makeover their spaces, such as replacing a single door to the backyard with double doors or replacing double doors with triple doors.
Pocket windows, which were featured in the 2019 New American Home, slid away entire sections of windows to expose an outdoor wet bar area to the indoor kitchen. Innovations in sliding wall panels have made them more energy efficient so, when closed, they better retain the indoor heating and cooling. Also at IBS 2019, companies showed off innovations in the shape and size of the glass, including rounded sliding wall panels.
Source: REALTOR® Magazine Live
CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Watch the hilarious moment a garbage man takes a quick break to jump on a discarded trampoline.
Posted by CBS News on Wednesday, February 20, 2019