Is the Housing Market Finally Cooling? A Guide to Home Buying This Winter

nyone who has bought a house last year (or tried to) knows how hot the market has been. But as we head into 2022, the housing market may — finally — be starting to cool.

Let’s recap, briefly, how we got here.

A record-low supply of homes for sale and near record-low mortgage rates have propelled U.S. homes prices to an all-time high. The median sales price of a single-family existing home jumped about 23% in the third quarter of 2021, hitting $363,700, according to the National Association of Realtors’ quarterly report. Those rising home prices forced buyers to duke it out for a limited number of homes.

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5 Signs It’s Time to Break up With Your Real Estate Agent

Your real estate agent can’t make more housing supply appear out of thin air or double the value of your home overnight. But they should make you feel supported and well represented in a crazy market. If not, it may be time to cut ties.

This is not a decision to make lightly, but if you do you certainly have no shortage of options. As of October, the National Association of Realtors, the real estate’s largest trade group, had 1,564,547 members — a 7% jump from the end of 2020. And many more real estate agents aren’t NAR members.

With all the competition, real estate agents are fighting tooth and nail for clients. “It’s a dog-eat-dog industry,” says Jason Gelios, an agent with Community Choice Realty in Southeast Michigan. Considering that you have plenty of agents to choose from, there’s no reason to stay with your agent if you’re not happy with their service.

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Buying a Car During Coronavirus Isn’t Easy, But You Could Save Big

In the midst of a pandemic, buying a car might not be the first thing on your mind. But if you are willing to leap some hurdles, there are great deals out there, say experts.

A case in point: U.S. new-car and truck sales plunged to a 30-year low of around 633,000 vehicles last month, a 53% decrease from April 2019, according to industry analyst Edmunds.com. Automakers such as Toyota and Honda reported their sales in April were cut in half compared to a year ago.

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Where Home Prices Are Heading in the Age of Coronavirus

Baltimore realtor Nicole Callender had five homes scheduled to hit the market April 1. Then the coronavirus struck and all of her clients decided to postpone. Now with home sales picking back up in the last two weeks, Callender is urging sellers to move forward, betting that life — and her city’s real estate market — will soon be back to normal.

“I have a listing coming up in Locust Point, which is a very desirable location,” says Callender, who hopes the house will soon fetch the $485,000 asking price. “The seller was on the fence…but when I sat down with them and showed them how quickly homes are selling in the city, they decided they want to list their home now to avoid missing out on a hot market.”

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Here’s Exactly What Homeowners Insurance Covers — and What It Doesn’t

If you’re like most homeowners, your home is your biggest asset. Protecting it should be a top priority.

Plus, nearly every mortgage lender requires borrowers to buy home insurance. Which makes sense: After all, your lender wants to get repaid even if your house burns to the ground.

According to the Insurance Information Institute’s latest data, the average annual premium of a homeowners insurance policy in the U.S. is $1,211. However, home insurance costs can vary widely depending on where you live, in large part because some states are considered high-risk areas for natural disasters and, thus, policyholders in those regions are more likely to file claims.

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Endless Snacks and the Temptation of Naps: What it’s Really Like to Work From Home

Most people are jealous when I tell them I work from home.

And I’ll admit, in the seven years I’ve been a freelance writer, the words “I miss working in an office” have never once left my lips.

Of course, I’m not the only person with this privilege. A 2019 survey by Owl Labs found that 62% of U.S. employees work remotely at least occasionally. Of that group, 54% of respondents say they work remotely at least once per month, and 30% work remotely full-time.

Ditching the cubicle life was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Still, it’s not right for everyone. Some days it’s a pajama lover’s paradise — but the arrangement has its drawbacks, too.

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