Affordability May be Shifting in 2017


Another year is in the books and real estate professionals across the country collectively saw the housing market continue its trek back toward pre-recession norms. However, many experts now believe that the surprising results of November’s presidential election could throw a number of industry trends off their previous course, and it will be vital to keep up with the many ways in which the market will shift in the year ahead.

One of the biggest changes from previous expectations – which was already observed within weeks of the election – is that mortgage rates started to spike in short order, according to Tribune News Service. Home values have been on the rise for some time, but rates quickly moved from the mid-3 percent range to north of 4 percent. And it’s important to consider what impact that could have on buyers’ motivations.

Assessing the situation
Most agents know that real estate sales in many parts of the country weren’t always easy to facilitate in 2016 because of the limited inventory of properties for sale, and it’s possible that quickly rising rates might discourage additional selling especially among homeowners who refinanced in recent years, the report said. But the fact is that because both prices and rates aren’t likely to shrink back down again any time soon, any efforts would-be buyers can make to get into the market as soon as possible – especially younger adults who have never purchased before – will help them to save at least some money in comparison with what they will closer to the end of 2017.

This might also be made possible by the fact that lenders are expected to continue to loosen their mortgage standards over the course of the year, especially for buyers who can make sizable down payments.

How much could affordability change?
Rates have already risen appreciably, but expectations for that rapid uptick to continue for some time to come are a little dim right now, according to MarketWatch. While rates north of 4 percent weren’t seen for almost all of the first 11 months of 2016, it’s not yet clear whether rates will surpass 5 percent before the end of 2017. More likely is that rates – which have seemed shockingly low to many observers for all but a few brief periods in the past few years – could hover in the 4 percent range for most of the year.

“I don’t believe that there will be any significant changes to interest rates, at least in the near term, since the underlying fundamentals that have led us into a low-interest-rate environment haven’t changed,” Rick Sharga, executive vice president of Ten-X, a real-estate auction site, told the site.

It’s further important to keep in mind – and to remind hopeful buyers – that rates even as high as 4.9 percent are still below pre-recession norms, which tended to range between 5.5 percent and 6 percent prior to the start of the housing downturn. With this in mind, affordability can still be somewhat strong for hopeful shoppers.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click

Tips for Success in Buying a Home in 2017


Realtor Showing Hispanic Family Around New HomeThere are many benefits of homeownership: equity buildup, tax incentives, pride in ownership and strong community ties to name a few.  If you have a goal for 2017 that includes buying a home here are five tips to achieve your home buying goals.

1.Start Planning Now

The home buying process should start a few months in advance of a home purchase.  Start your home search by meeting with a real estate agent who knows the area where you want to buy.   It is important to work with someone with whom you feel comfortable since you will be spending a lot of time with him or her; ask family and friends for recommendations.

2.Get PreApproved for Your Mortgage

Discovering your buying power is an important step in the home buying process as it saves time in your home search by defining the price range in which to look.  A pre-approval also allows you to submit a strong, competitive offer which may give you an edge over other buyers in multiple-offer or negotiating situations.

To get an idea what you can afford try using HUFF Realty’s  HOME FINANCING CALCULATORS.  These tools will help you estimate how much mortgage you can afford.

3.Identify Your Needs Versus Wants

Many people must compromise on home features when buying an existing home. It’s a good idea to prioritize your needs and wish-list items from most important to least.

4.Start Your Home Search and be Prepared to Act Quickly

Visit neighborhoods and homes that align with your budget and needs based on your discussion with your lender and real estate agent.  Recently, home inventory has been low which can often lead to multiple offers and bids over asking price so be ready to move quickly!

5.Make a Realistic Offer

You want to make sure your offer is consistent with the sale prices of similar homes in the area.  Make sure to review the list of comparable sales with your agent so that your offer stands out among the rest.

The home buying process can provoke many questions, some frequently asked questions and answers can be found here.  If you would like to explore the fine details of home buying as they pertain to your specific needs, contact your local HUFF agent or visit




New Year, New Career? A New Year’s Resolution Worth Keeping

New careerAre you approaching the New Year with many goals in mind? Eating better, losing weight, quitting a bad habit, or generally improving the quality of life? Are you looking to begin a new career that allows you to be your own boss and lets you set your own schedule?    A career in Real Estate may be the answer you are looking for!

HUFF Realty can help you establish your new career in Real Estate.  We provide sales training to help you jumpstart your career.  Our dedicated support staff will be there with training, marketing, relocation, and technology support to assist as your business grows and prospers.

Join HUFF at our FREE informational career seminar Wednesday, January 25th at 6PM at our Fort Mitchell office located at 334 Beechwood Rd. Fort Mitchell, KY 41017.

What to expect:

  • Food, drinks, networking, and fun!
  • Information on how to get your Real Estate career started
  • Information on obtaining a Real Estate license
  • Information on Real Estate schools
  • Information on Earnings Potential
  • What HUFF Realty will do to ensure your success


If you have any questions, contact Pam Schreiter at 513-644-4111 or