Buyers are doing everything from tapping into their retirement savings accounts to taking financial gifts from family and friends in order to bring more money to the closing table. Bankrate.com recently surveyed more than 2,500 adults about their home purchase to find the top ways they’re saving.

About 47% of first-time home buyers said they saved on their own to purchase a house. But others also sought help elsewhere, such as through a first-time home buyer grant or loan assistance program (21%), financial gifts from family or friends (21%), or by taking out money from their retirement savings (8.8%), the survey showed. Other less common efforts cited included getting an additional source of income (7.4%); receiving a loan from family or friends (6.3%); moving in with family or friends to cut down expenses (5.7%); and selling personal items like jewelry, cars, and electronics (4.9%).

Millennials are more likely than Generation Xers to say that they’ve used their retirement savings or sold personal belongings in order to find more money for buying a home, the survey showed.

“It’s troubling that people feel like they have to tap into their retirement savings,” Deborah Kearns, a mortgage analyst with Bankrate, told CNBC. “They’re already not saving enough for retirement, and they’re compounding the problem by taking out a loan or not contributing to save for a down payment.”

More importantly, what percent of first time home buyers, and Millennial’s or Generations Xers have any clue what the costs of retirement will take to live on a minimal retirement income? So many are living for the moment, trying to accomplish more of their bucket list and believe they will never retire.

May I suggest to you, put in play a fictitious model of your lifestyle and play it out for just a month. Where do you stand now? The federal government may not have a Social Security program in 50 years! It’s so simple to put away just 5% of your earnings a week and put it in your own IRA or similar.

Half of the real estate economists and experts surveyed by Zillow the past 2nd quarter believe that the next recession is coming in 2020, according to the second quarter Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey, recently released.

Of the 100 real estate experts surveyed, half said a recession was likely to come in 2020 with 19 percent specifically pinpointing the third quarter of 2020 — which lines up directly with the months leading up to the presidential election. Thirty-five percent of those surveyed said they believe a recession is likely in 2021, meaning 85 of 100 experts believe a recession is coming in the next two years. But they don’t think housing will be the main cause.

“Panelists were asked to choose and rank up to three economic and/or political factors likely to trigger the next recession, from a list of 10,” the study states. “Trade policy, a geopolitical crisis and a stock market correction were the most commonly chosen factors, respectively.”

“A housing slowdown was among the factors rated as least likely to cause the next recession, chosen by just 12.6 percent panelists that offered an opinion,” the survey continues.

Although experts say housing won’t cause of the recession, the potential slowdown will have an impact. More than half of those surveyed said they expect home buying demand in 2020 to be significantly lower than in 2019, while about a third of those surveyed said they expected it to be about the same.

“Home sales have been sluggish to start 2019 compared to the beginning of 2018, despite conditions that are more favorable for buyers now than they have been in quite some time,” the survey says.

The combination of slowing demand and an impending recession could be good news for potential buyers in the short-term and cause further slowdowns in overall U.S. home value appreciation going forward.

Panelists, on average, said they expect annual growth to be around 4.1 percent at the end of the year and slow further to 2.8 percent in 2020 and 2.5 percent in 2021.

The results of this year’s survey line up with a similar survey from May 2018, when more than half of the economists surveyed said they believed a recession was coming in 2020.

Home values are currently growing at a 6.1 percent annual pace, according to the survey, but growth has slowed in each of the past four months compared to the month prior. Panelists expect that trend to continue.

The results of this year’s survey line up with a similar survey from May 2018, when more than half of the economists surveyed said they believed a recession was coming in 2020.

I’m your go to Military Relocation Professional!

Created before the close of World War II, the VA home loan benefit has helped millions of veterans, service members and military families achieve the dream of home ownership. Today, in many ways, it’s more important than ever.

VA loan volume has soared in the wake of the Great Recession, driven in large part by historically low rates and increasingly tougher lending requirements. The VA program provides significant financial benefits that make homebuying possible for score of veterans who might not otherwise qualify.VA Loan Eligibility CheckContact a Loan Specialist at Veterans United Home Loans to see if you qualify for a $0 down VA Loan. No obligation required. Get a Quote!

Here’s a look at six of the biggest benefits of these long-cherished home loans:

No Down Payment

This is far and away the program’s signature benefit. Qualified VA Loan borrowers can purchase up to a county’s conforming loan limit without a down payment. Those limits can change every year and are higher in more expensive areas.

For conventional and FHA loans, buyers are typically looking at minimum down payment requirements of 5 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively. On a $200,000 mortgage, that’s a $10,000 down payment for conventional and a $7,000 down payment for FHA.

It can take service members and veterans years to save that kind of cash. The ability to purchase with no down payment means military homebuyers don’t have to scrape and stockpile for years and years to pursue a home of their own.

No Private Mortgage Insurance

Coming up with a down payment is tough enough for conventional and FHA buyers. But they’re also on the hook for mortgage insurance unless they can put down a sizable amount — typically 20 percent of the purchase price. On that same $200,000 mortgage, you’re talking a whopping $40,000 in cash.

FHA loans carry both an upfront mortgage insurance premium and annual mortgage insurance, the latter of which now lasts for the life of the loan. Conventional buyers will pay this monthly cost until they’ve built up suitable equity, which can take years.

There is no mortgage insurance with VA loans.

VA loans do come with a mandatory funding fee that goes directly to the Department of Veterans Affairs. Borrowers with a service-connected disability are exempt from paying this fee, which helps keep the program going for future generations.

Looser Credit Requirements

Credit score requirements have started to thaw, but that hasn’t made life significantly easier for many military buyers. The credit benchmarks set by both conventional and FHA lenders can still be tough to hit.

Most VA lenders are looking for a credit score of at least 620. Borrowers will often need to meet a higher threshold for conventional mortgages, especially if they’re hoping to get a great interest rate. Click here to learn more about VA Loan rates.

The 620 benchmark is in FICO’s “Fair” credit score range, which is a tier below “Good” and two below “Excellent.” Contrary to misconception, VA buyers don’t need anything near perfect credit to secure financing.

Forgiving DTI Ratios

VA lenders generally want to see you spend no more than 41 percent of your gross monthly income on major debts, such as a mortgage payment or student loans.

But it’s possible to have an even higher DTI ratio and still obtain a VA home loan. Some lenders may go up to 55 percent or more depending on your credit score and ability to hit additional income benchmarks.

That additional flexibility can make it easier for buyers to truly maximize their purchasing power.

Curbing Closing Costs

Closing costs are inescapable, regardless of the mortgage product. The VA actually limits what fees and costs veterans can pay at the time of closing.

Homebuyers can ask sellers to pay all of their loan-related closing costs and up to 4 percent of the purchase price for things like prepaid taxes and insurance, collections and judgments.

Foreclosure and Bankruptcy

These financial setbacks don’t automatically put an end to your VA loan chances. It’s possible to secure a VA home loan just two years removed from a foreclosure, short sale or bankruptcy. In some cases, veterans who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection can be eligible just a year removed from the filing date. Read more about getting a VA Loan after foreclosure.

Homebuyers seeking conventional or FHA financing can find the waiting periods significantly longer.

Even veterans who lose a VA-backed mortgage to foreclosure can still be eligible for another.

Purple Heart recipients could save thousands in home loan fees after the passage of a law to benefit veterans exposed to Agent Orange. 

Tucked away in the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act passed by Congress and signed into law in June, is language that makes Purple Heart recipients exempt from paying the funding fee the Department of Veterans Affairs charges on its guaranteed home loans. 

The funding fee can reach as high as 2.4 percent of the total loan value for first-time buyers — thousands of dollars, depending on the cost of the home. 

Disabled veterans already have been exempt from the fee, though as Connecting Vets previously reported, VA has wrongly charged thousands of them fees and many have yet to see their refunds. 

But under the Blue Water Act, beginning Jan. 1, 2020, Purple Heart recipients are added to the list of exempt veterans. 

Most of that law deals with its namesake — expanding VA disability benefits to the veterans who served in ships off the coast of Vietnam and were exposed to Agent Orange but have so far been denied the same benefits ground troops qualify for for the same exposure. 

The new law also includes a directive to VA to use the money collected by the funding fee from non-disabled or Purple Heart vets to pay for the Blue Water benefits. The fees were previously used to cover VA home loan administrative costs.

To qualify to have your home loan fee waived, you have to provide proof of your Purple Heart to both the VA and the lender before the closing date of the loan, according to the law. 

Since August 23rd 2019, and this is the 26th of August! There have been price reductions/changes on 23 properties in the Ponte Vedra area.

Once we get the listing, it takes a great deal of time, and money to market the property. We spend a great deal of time in due diligence prior to meeting with our sellers to provide an accurate and impartial value only to be faced with false promises we may have heard from the sellers previous realtor interviews. Do we accept the sellers demands in order to get the listing? It’s extremely important to share the consequences of pricing higher what substantiates the true value.

Who are we fooling, it’s not fair to our seller nor to us to list the home higher than what it’s worth, (UNLESS) we’re in a market where multiple offers are the norm. . Why deceive our sellers, by listing it for what the seller wants to sell it for. Disappointing all parties.

A seller must accept that the real value of their home is determined by what a buyer is willing to pay for it in today’s real estate market. What the seller wants to receive at the closing table doesn’t affect the home’s market value! The market does not care what they need! If a seller cannot grasp this reality, then the listing we worked so hard to get will not be a marketable one, and our efforts to sell it will be fruitless.

The longer a property remains on the market, the lower the price must be for it to sell. Statistics have proven if the property is not correctly priced from the start, it nearly always and ultimately sells for less. No winners!

So many times, numerous sellers are interviewing several listing agents, and will they spoke to another agent who said the listing price should be “XYZ” What a realtor may say about what the price should be doesn’t affect it’s value.

Why do so many buyers and sellers have limited trust in us as realtors? Agents will tell them what they want to hear and not the honest truth. As difficult as it may be, honesty is always the best policy.

As I shared with you in the beginning. Twenty three (23) properties in our area have reduced the price of the home they listed in the past two days. So digest what this short article has to say and call me. I don’t sell homes in volume, I represent my buyers and sellers with ethics and integrity and with value that comes with experience.

Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals
580 W. 8th Street Tower 1, Suite 3510 Jacksonville, FL 32209

The month of August flew by! More than 25 years ago, RE/MAX began its partnership with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals – and they continuously aim to grow the support needed to improve the lives of so many kids. Collectively, RE/MAX agents and offices have raised millions in support of CMN Hospitals.

Thank you to all of our RE/MAX agents and offices near and far who have raised millions in support of CMN Hospitals.

Lets continue to make a in the life of a child RE/MAX agents and brokers!

If you would like any additional information about the Jacksonville office, need local resources at an event, or if you would like to come tour, please do not hesitate to contact me and I’ll assist you with this.

For the kids,