In the Market: Hopeful trend for recent grads

Posted by Nneka Madus
Mortgage Market Analyst

This weekly feature is a real estate news roundup from a millennial’s point of view. When a young professional moves from Indianapolis (median home price $125K) to San Francisco (median price $1 million), you can expect an adventure. Nneka Madus, an analyst in Bank of the West’s Mortgage Division, did just that and has plenty to share in her quest to own a home in San Francisco.

Young woman in green apron swipes credit card while its female owner waits to complete the purchase of her tray of lunch food.Homebuyers who have been willing to wait for better deals are starting to be rewarded for their patience, according to Brena Swanson from Housing Wire. Brena finds two reasons why the housing market may be shifting back in favor of the home buyer. For millennials and first-timers entering the housing market, as we’ve said on our blog in the past, it can be to your advantage to get preapproved for a mortgage sooner rather than later.

The market appears to be tipping back in favor of the buyer — home price growth has slowed down in some markets and interest rates are still low. If you’re wavering about entering the housing market, consider talking with a tax professional to help you better understand potential tax incentives that might help sweeten the deal. Many first-time home buyers may not be aware of the tax breaks granted to homeowners, but Chaille Ralph, a Houston Realtor, gives some thoughts in the Houston Chronicle on some deductions homeowners could potentially take advantage of.

Accumulating debt can be easy; I’m pretty familiar with it at this point in my life. To pay for business school, I took out student loans. Before I moved to San Francisco, I had a car and, as is common, a car loan. Lastly, I can’t forget about my credit cards — hey Amazon, hello Macy’s. Trulia describes four common consumer loans and how they may impact a person’s credit score, and potentially a mortgage application. When you go to get a new mortgage, this debt may impact your FICO score and ultimately your ability to get the house that you want. It’s a good idea to understand how these loans work and their impact on credit worthiness. (By the way, for more information on credit scores and home buying, check out the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s website.)

Hey, first time homebuyers, I know there has been so much discouraging news lately telling us that “millennials and first-time home buyers can’t afford to become homeowners” or “student loan debt has shut us out of the market,” but that may not be the entire truth. Trey Garrison from Housing Wire dissects a RealtyTrac report that states almost every U.S. housing market is still affordable for recent grads, provided they are making the median income — even those with student debt. For those of us living in high-priced cities like San Francisco or NYC, this report may not be so reassuring. But it’s potentially great news for those living in other U.S. markets!

U.S. Outlook: What’s in store for September payrolls?

Chief Economist

The U.S. economy appears to be holding on to much of its momentum in the third quarter.

Graph of initial jobless claims YTD 2014, with falling trend line.Firm readings on the economy bode well for September payrolls.

For more on this and other economic developments to watch, see highlights of my weekly economic analysis below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook report, delivered on Sept. 26.

Key observations:

  • We are forecasting a net 230K non-farm jobs were created in September.
  • Hourly & weekly earnings growth may trump jobs in September’s employment report.
  • Housing, China, Europe, and the dollar are four risks to the U.S. economic juggernaut.
  • Strong retail sales reports for July and August led us to push up our estimate for third-quarter GDP growth.

Click here to read my full report.