Buying a Home this Spring: Bright Spots and Challenges

On Thursday, USA Today published a view of what many of this spring’s first-timers have encountered in their inaugural home-buying ventures. Our own Costa Mesa trends don’t precisely match those tapped by their research—but the themes cited in the national press are familiar here, too.

Although the headline emphasized the difficulties those buying a home for the first time may encounter (“3 Challenges Facing First-Time Homebuyers This Spring”), elsewhere in the piece, some bright spots were acknowledged. For Costa Mesa readers inclined toward a ‘glass-half-full’ point of view, they tend to balance out the familiar challenges.

Bright Spots:
• According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, affordability has advanced with the easing of 30-year fixed mortgages to a national average of 4.42%.
Inventory “has loosened up slightly.” This is a relative finding since the U.S. still lags in properties for sale (at least compared with the historical norm).
Prices. Price growth has slowed “and leveled off” according to the MBA.
Spring buying. Nationally, good, old fashioned negotiations have replaced the frenzied bidding wars of last year. But USA Today isn’t calling this spring a buyer’s market—only one characterized by fewer competing offers.

Challenges:
Home prices. Prices are still relatively high—especially for those buying a home for the first time. Since they can’t count on the equity built by their current property, scrambling for a substantial down payment can be a barrier.
Securing a loan. In March, the FHA said that it is tightening its rules for high-risk mortgages. As is generally the case, this can provide a hurdle for first-timers.
Inventory is still tight. Some finger-pointing is aimed at the home construction industry, which is only now rebounding from the recession-spawned falloff in new home starts. Entry-level housing ($200,000 and less) is the sector hit hardest.

Buying a home in Costa Mesa may take more determination for first timers—but that doesn’t mean it isn’t well worth the effort. Whether you are a first-timer or a long-time homeowner, give me a call for an in-depth discussion of the possibilities presented by this spring’s many offerings!

We are built on a philosophy of Heritage & Hustle L3 is a full service real estate agency with a regional office located in the heart of #CostaMesa, offering a wide-array of custom services to meet their clients’ needs with roots in the community since 1976. It’s L3 mission to provide trusted, convenient, responsive service to ensure clients enjoy their real estate experience. L3 was originally formed to offer personal, concierge-level service as an alternative to the large, nationally based real estate companies. From its small beginnings of only two employees, L3 has grown to a full staff of 20 serving over 300 clients a year. L3 is not limited to serving just its clients; it is also committed to serving the community. Not only has L3 donated hundreds of hours to many area charities, they have also received the prestige of being named one of the #toprealestatecompaniesinCostaMesa If you’re interested in #buyingorsellinginOrangeCounty, turn to the experts. Turn to L3 and let them help you make your real estate buying or selling dreams come true. For more information or to get started on finding or selling your home contact L3 today at 714-444-4663 or email us at info@thel3.com

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