The Wisconsin economy is continuing to improve according to WRA President, Bill Malkasian. The state unemployment rate stood at 7.4% in January, down from 9.2% last January and is well below the national rate. In a recent Forbes article, Milwaukee was voted one of the top places to find employment. A strong job market should instill some confidence in potential homebuyers who have a real homebuying opportunity in front of them. "It’s also clear that our housing remains very affordable even as mortgage rates have moved up in recent months," said Malkasian. Wisconsin’s Home Affordability index (which shows what percentage of a median priced home a buyer with the median income can afford) was at 225 in February of 2011. "It is hard to imagine housing in Wisconsin being more affordable than right now, especially is the upward trend in mortgage rates continues," said Malkasian.
If you’ve been listening and wondering about buying a house – maybe thinking now’s the time to jump in, where do you start?
What can you afford?
So you don’t fall in love with a home you can’t afford, figure out what you CAN afford. Try out some mortgage calculators, or find a property online and use the mortgage calculator to see what the monthly payment would be. (Is it less than the rent you pay now?) Meet with a mortgage lender to get preapproved. Know your credit and protect it.
Where do you want to live? What are you looking for?
Narrow down your area – have an idea of where you want to live and what type of house or condo you are looking for. Consider signing up for a free MyFirstWeber account so you get emails on new listings that match criteria you set.
Find an Agent, a trusted advisor
Attend a few open houses, talk to REALTORS and find one that you are comfortable with. You’ll need to trust them through a big decision, so find someone you’ll enjoy working with. Once you find a REALTOR, they’ll guide you through the home buying process and help you along with showing you properties, making an offer, presenting your options and preparing you for closing. There’s a lot involved in buying real estate – a trusted real estate advisor is priceless.
First Weber would be pleased to be that trusted advisor. Find an agent or contact us if you need one. Or, if you’re not ready to talk yet, go ahead and search firstweber.com for Wisconsin real estate. Thank you for reading the First Weber Wisconsin real estate & Wisconsin living blog. Good luck in your search and good for you! Taking the steps to owning your own home is something to be proud of.
photo credit http://www.flickr.com/photos/amarcord69/4432424706/