Are you thinking about purchasing a home in the next several months? If you live in or are relocating to Southern California, you're not alone. This area features one of the hottest housing markets in the country. And, as one might expect, it doesn't look like that will be changing any time soon. But, before you jump into the process, there are a few things you should know about the current housing market.
1. Home Prices Are Still Rising
While there's a certain degree of fluctuation seen in the U.S. market overall, the California market has held steady. As a result, buyers have experienced prices rising throughout 2018. Housing market forecasts for 2019 don't indicate that this will be stopping at any point soon. Assuming that the momentum remains the same in 2019, buyers may expect prices to rise by at least 5 percent. That means that if you're looking to buy, now is the best time if your goal is to save money now and see the highest return on your investment.
2. Demographics Are Changing
Millennials, notorious for being renters, are finally moving into the housing market in more significant numbers. However, most seek starter homes and deals. If you're purchasing a home for yourself meant to last many years, this means you might be able to get a better price by buying upmarket. If, however, you are expecting to sell within a few years, it might be better to target smaller homes or at least homes in millennial-friendly areas.
3. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Increasing
Throughout 2018, mortgage interest rates increased due to changes in policies from the Federal Reserve. These increases were enough to give some prospective buyers pause. Experts believe that interest rates will continue to climb in 2019. Combine this with rising home prices and potential buyers may want to consider moving up their purchase timeline to borrow at lower rates.
4. Second Cities and Their Suburbs Are In-Demand
The country as a whole may be more familiar with Los Angeles than Glendora, but guess which city is in higher demand? If you guessed Glendora, you’d be right. As younger homebuyers settle down and start their families, they are following trends of the past and heading to the suburbs of Greater Los Angeles County and smaller cities that are walkable, family-friendly, and feature arts and entertainment. As such, this is where home values are likely to increase the most.
5. Smart Homes are the Future
This will not be relevant to all buyers. How important smart home features are to you depends on two things: First, do you want them? If you love the idea of a smart home you can control from your phone or tablet, then make it a priority. Next, ask yourself this question: Will you likely sell your home in the next few years? If the answer is yes, then whether you like the idea of a smart home or not, purchasing one will yield positive results come selling time. If, however, you don't plan to sell for five years or more, chances are the system in the home you purchase will be outdated, or well on its way to being so. In this situation, if you're ambivalent about home technology, skip smart homes as an investment.
6. Representation Matters
In a market as competitive as the one in Southern California, it's tough to buy or sell without guidance and expertise. There's no substitute for the knowledge and connections of an experienced professional. Even if you know what you want and feel you have a grasp on the market, don't take a chance. Buying a home is a massive commitment and investment. The last thing you want is to end up in a neighborhood that's bucking the trend and losing value or delaying closing due to underestimating the complexity of the process. A seasoned real estate agent can assist you in navigating all the details. This will ensure you don't miss out on your dream home.
Consult With Laura Dandoy
Laura Dandoy is an expert in Southern California real estate. With more than 29 years of experience representing buyers and sellers in La Verne, Claremont, Upland, Glendora, Rancho Cucamonga, and San Dimas, and more, she has a verifiable record of success. With the connections needed to help you find your home as it hits the market, you don't need to worry about missing your chance at the home you dream of. To learn more about her work and the homes she is representing, contact her at 909-398-1166. You can also submit a request for Laura to contact you by filling out our Contact Us form.