If you’re hoping to buy a home this summer, you’re in good company. Homebuyers in Boise face the most competitive United States housing market in decades: low mortgage rates and strong demand can mean heated bidding wars. The past year has fueled a stronger desire for homeownership, and Bank of America’s latest Homebuyer Insights Report found prospective buyers are eager to swap unpredictable monthly rents with steady monthly mortgage payments. As a matter of fact, nearly half (46%) of respondents say that building equity is more important now than ever before.
Beyond the financial benefits of homeownership, people are also reassessing how their living space and surroundings fit into their lives as they spend more time at home. Human connection, a sense of community and good neighbors are just some of the key priorities for today’s homebuyer. Younger generations are looking for a multifunctional space as the home has become an office (45%), a school (31%), a movie theater (28%) and a gym (27%).
We know hopeful buyers in Boise are eager to own, but competing in one of the hottest markets in the nation can be a challenge. Luckily, there are some simple steps you can take to put your best foot forward:
Consider a starter home
If you’re eager to take advantage of low rates and feel confident in your financial position, you may consider a starter home — often a condominium or townhome. While it may not have all the amenities of a dream home or the perfect location, a starter home that you can comfortably remain in for a few years is typically less expensive. More importantly, a starter home can give you the chance to start building equity and establish fixed monthly mortgage payments, protecting you from rising rental rates.
Get your financing in place and take advantage of digital tools
In a competitive market, having a preapproval shows that you’re serious about becoming a homeowner. Take the necessary steps to get your finances and creditworthiness verified by a lender. Interactive digital tools and online resources can guide you through the mortgage process from start to finish and prevent any delays. Find a Home loan navigator that allows you to secure preapproval online, so you can begin the home search with a competitive edge.
Know exactly what you’re looking for and get started as early as possible
Check out homes in your desired location beforehand, so you can narrow down the price range and home type that’s right for you. From there, make sure you stay informed about the homebuying process so you can act quickly and with confidence once you’re ready to buy.
Even as the meaning of home has evolved over the past year, homeownership continues to mean the power to build personal wealth and a legacy for you and your family. While buying a home today may require a bit more patience and persistence, taking the time to prepare for what’s ahead will put you on the way to beating the competition and crossing the finish line of your homebuying journey.
Damian Fischer is a retail sales manager for Bank of America.