Posts Tagged Provo

Salt Lake City and Provo added to the Improving Market List

Salt Lake City and Provo have been added to the Improving Housing Markets (IHM) list maintained by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Since December the list has added 57 metro areas around the U.S., signaling at least a stabilization, if not a recovery, of the housing market in America.

Building permits for the Salt Lake City metropolitan area have increased 2.3% since it’s lowest point in March 2009, home prices are up 0.4% from it’s lowest point in March 2011 and employment is up 3.6% since February 2010.

Building Permits for the Provo metropolitan area are up 2.7% from it’s low in February 2009, home prices are up 1.1% since March 2011 and employment is up 4.6% since December 2009.

The Improving Housing Markets list identifies metropolitan areas that have shown improvements in employment, housing permits and home prices for at least six consecutive months. To measure market performance, the National Association of Builders gathers information from Freddie Mac, U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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Salt Lake County home sales are up even though prices are down

I personally think that increased home sales is a good thing for long-term values in Salt Lake County and adjoining areas.  As homes sell the values will again start to inch up. At least as soon as we get rid of the REO’s (Real Estate Owned by banks).

I also agree with Joshua Stern of Keller Williams – right now we are seeing the perfect buyer situation in the balance of low interest rates and lower prices of homes.  Prices could go lower, and interest rates could hold at current levels for a few more months, but I wouldn’t count on either.

Most economists agree that mortgage rates simply cannot remain this low over the long term and that as the economy improves, those rates will drift upward. “With rates this low, you may not get a better deal by waiting for prices to bottom,” said Joshua Stern, an agent with Keller Williams in Salt Lake City.

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Buying a Home – Home Ownership and Your Community

Owning your home means providing a secure and comfortable space for your family to flourish as well as investment in a financial tool that can help you build equity, move up through social classes, and prepare for retirement. Buying a home, however, is more than just a long term investment in your family’s security; it is also an investment in your community.

When you own your home, you become more than just a resident in a neighborhood, but a contributor to the well being of your community. By owning a home, your property taxes go directly towards funding the schools, libraries, and other services provided by the county to your community. The care that you put toward maintaining your home’s exterior helps the community prevent blight. Your vigilance while participating in a local Neighborhood Watch program can keep your community free of crime. All of these contributions to your community not only help maintain a safe and desirable living atmosphere, but over time helps increase the overall property value of homes in your community.

An increase in property values helps you and other members of your community thrive financially. When property values increase, residents in the community begin to build more equity in their homes. This growth of equity provides community members with money to invest in businesses in the community, which in turn continues to increase property values. Most important, as you continue to build equity in your home, you begin to build a nest egg that you can use to send your children to college or retire with. As with any investment, owning your home requires diligent financial planning, and the help and advice of a professional who cares for both your interests and the interest of your community.

As a first step to buying your home, you should reach out to the local Realtors and lenders in your area. These organizations are usually vested in the community where they operate and have a high focus on helping you with financial planning and education. Ask your Realtor and lender to show you how to work with a mortgage calculator and explain the finances of owning your home including PITI payments (Principal, Interest, Taxes, and Insurance) and federal tax benefits. Realtors or lenders who do not provide this level of financial education can put you in peril of buying a home that you may not be able to fully afford resulting in a foreclosure. Unfortunately, nothing hurts a community more than a high rate of foreclosures because of the reduction of property values and the general sense of despair that foreclosures bring.

As you prepare to purchase your home, make sure to keep in mind that it is more than just your own security and well being that you are investing in, but the security and well being of an entire community. As a stakeholder in your community, you should work with local real estate professionals that can help you make a responsible home purchase decision that will benefit your financial well being as well as the financial well being of your community.

Visit for more articles on how home ownership can be made affordable.

Rambod Jacoby is the founder of HomeBuyer Go, a free platform developed to help first time home buyers clearly understand and experiment with the different financial concepts in a home purchase.

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