Keep calm and shop rates

Things have been tough for a few years now, and in varying degrees based on the angle from which you’re looking. And absolutely, interest rates have risen (and fallen, and risen again), inflation is real, and our political climate is scary. But let’s take a deep breath and pause before tail spinning.

d e e p  b r e a t h

In my years as a real estate broker, I’ve remained passionate about accurate data and verifiable results. The truth is, headlines often add terror to nebulous and uncertain situations. If you’re a little scared and unsure as a consumer, you might scan headlines and feel like we’re on the cusp of housing armageddon. Language and “stats” are often geared toward sensationalism, and to grab your attention.

Yes, we’re in an adjustment period. There’s a lot to discuss about this. But you know what? Uncertain housing markets are great markets to participate in as a purchaser. People you’d normally compete with are influenced by the terrifying headlines and word-of-mouth panic, so they back out of a potentially opportune market when sellers become open to price adjustments and concessions.

Try not to panic, and maybe even double down. Some banks are still offering interest rates in the 3%s** based on location and property type, whereas others are offering interest rates in the 4%s** based on how much cash you’re putting in and which loan product you choose. These are competitive rates, especially compared to the 18% interest rates (yikes!) people stomached in the 1980s. So although it may feel like there can’t possibly be a silver lining in this market and near-future markets, there will be opportunities during this uncertain time.

**Unfortunately, these programs and discounts have been curtailed as of December 2023. However, you still have control over individual factors like credit score and downpayment amount. These can positively impact your ability to land a great rate and negotiate terms of the loan.