Property Rights Law Firm, P.A.

The affordability of homeownership

Florida residents who are apprehensive about purchasing a home may be pleased to discover that doing so may be more affordable than they think. This is despite the increases in mortgage interest rates and home prices and the stiff competition from other buyers.

According to a report from ATTOM Data Solutions, it is less expensive to purchase a home than rent one in 66 percent of the counties in the United States. The monthly rent amounts of three-bedroom apartments were compared to monthly house payments, which were comprised of mortgages, insurance and property taxes, for average-priced residences in 540 counties with 900 or more home sales in 2016. The affordability of the prices were evaluated by examining the rent estimates for 2017 provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, public record sales deed data and wage data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, the affordability of getting a home may not last as interest rates are expected to continue to increase. If mortgage rates follow suit, it may become more affordable to rent a home than to buy one.

One of the areas in the country where it may be a surprise that it is more affordable to purchase than buy is Miami-Dade County, which has high-priced, luxury beachfront condos. Further inland, home buyers will find single-family homes that are reasonably priced. These types of homes are generally easier to buy than condos as condo buyers are usually required to submit a 20 percent down payment for properties that are ineligible for insured loans that permit lower down payments.

A real estate attorney may assist a client with obtaining a residential property. Closing documents are often complex, and a review by an attorney before they are signed can be advisable.

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