Editor’s Note: Each Friday, WRAL TechWire takes a deep dive into the Triangle’s real estate markets.   This week: The latest data on rents may show price of rents in Raleigh are stabilizing and the reason why right now might be the best time to buy a house in the Triangle, especially for first-time homebuyers.    


RALEIGH –  First-time homebuyers discouraged by rising prices and intense competition are returning to the particular housing market, and now might be a good time to buy a house in the Triangle even with mortgage interest rates hovering near 7%. The market has changed. Here’s an example:

“Even though interest rates were higher, prices overall were falling more within our price range, ” says Savannah Hopps of Durham.   “We made an offer – under asking, unheard of earlier this year – and were under contract the next day before noon. ”

Adds Courtney Brown, a licensed real property agent with Hunter Rowe:   “It’s not the market that it was, at all. Sellers are having to do more work now. ”

Plus there are “buy-down” options from lenders to help lower costs.

It’s also a good time to check for incentives being offered by builders.

Raleigh area rental prices fell in September – 7th most in U. S. – but rent still expenses more than a year ago

This housing marketplace may be good for new buyers

The latest data upon homeownership through national real estate brokerage Zillow found that the share of buyers who are purchasing their first home has rebounded in 2022, following the drop within 2021.

“First-time buyers now appear to be making relative gains as high mortgage interest rates disproportionately encourage current homeowners to stay put, ” says Manny Garcia, a population scientist at Zillow.   “The flow of homes into the particular market is slowing, suggesting homeowners are likely comparing their present low home loan rate in order to today’s prices and deciding not to move. ”

Many Triangle homeowners who bought or refinanced in the last decade have locked within interest rates below 4%, along with some owners with rates as low as 2 . 75% or even lower. Right now, though, an average interest rate for a 30-year fixed price mortgage will be 6. 94%, according to the most recent data from Freddie Mac.

That’s exactly why some current owners might be feeling spooked , and possess decided not to make a move, right now, Garcia noted.

Climbing mortgage prices scaring buyers; Triangle prices are dropping

Rents still rising, but home cost appreciation is usually slowing

But rents are usually still increasing in the Triangle, plus now are outpacing house price appreciation, even although the price of rent fell in September 2022 compared to August 2022.

In fact, the latest data shows that the particular price associated with rents rose twice as fast in Raleigh than they did nationwide between Sept 2021 and September 2022, and grew faster compared to home prices increased in that time period as well.

The Triangle’s real estate market has softened, the bit, following a scorching spring and summer market, even though some agents have told WRAL TechWire that this is more of a return to seasonal trends than a housing slowdown or even housing crash .

Instead, the newest data through the Triangle Multiple Listing Service, TMLS, shows that home costs within the Triangle rose 13. 9% between September 2021 and September 2022.   That’s far less than the 25. 8% price gratitude between April 2021 plus April 2022 in the region.

Housing pain: Raleigh rents soar at double rate associated with inflation – 7th highest in US

Good news for first-time homebuyers

This particular could mean good information for new homebuyers within the Triangle.

Whereas homes were selling in a matter of days earlier this year, no matter their own condition, real estate agent Brown said that sellers shouldn’t expect that in today’s housing market.

Instead associated with facing bidding wars, purchasers may right now have more time to survey the market, write an offer that will best suits their needs, and win a contract, all at the asking price of the particular home, stated Brown.

“If you come in with the good offer, you can probably get the house at its list price right today, ” mentioned Brown.   “It could actually be a good period to buy a home, because there are more options right now. ”

But earlier this year, it was nearly impossible with regard to first-time homeowners to find a home that would meet their requirements, at a price they could afford, facing competition from other customers and from investors who were buying up homes in the Triangle.

Realtors say it’s almost impossible regarding first-time buyers to find a house across central NC

A success story: The best time to buy a home is now

Earlier this particular year, Savannah and Austin Hopps leased a 780-square foot apartment.   But with two dogs and a desire to be closer in order to the business they’d launched within South Clarington, they were ready to purchase their first home in the Triangle.

“We knew the particular rent would likely go up, and we were already paying more than $2, 000, ” said Hopps, the owner of NEIGHBORHOOD barre , which is located in South Durham.   “We knew we wanted to buy before our lease ended, and I wanted to become closer to my business. ”

Despite seeing increased rates of interest within August and September compared to when they’d first looked for housing in the area, these people found that the market was far less competitive than it had been the prior year and in the springtime and summer time of this year.

“Even though attention rates had been higher, prices overall were falling a lot more in our own cost range, ” said Hopps.   “We made a good offer – under asking, unheard of recording – and had been under agreement the next day prior to noon. ”

Hopps didn’t tell WRAL TechWire the terms of the mortgage.   Yet she did note that actually once their particular offer experienced been accepted, and they’d locked in their mortgage interest rate, rates increased again.

“We definitely leaned on the particular phrase ‘date the rate, marry the house, ’ because all of us knew that will South Durham was where we desired to end up being and that a refinance will be an option later on, ” stated Hopps.   “Now, the mortgage is the same as our lease, but we all live in a home we own, bigger than our apartment, with a huge yard for the dogs, and is close to where all of us work. ”

Looking in order to buy a house? Soaring home loan rates imply much higher payments

More lending options, too

And while mortgage rates above 7% may scare some buyers away from considering homeownership, many lenders plus many homebuilders are offering programs or incentives that will may make it easier intended for buyers to purchase a home.

“We’re expecting rates to stay within the current position, stay exactly where they are, or even maybe go a little bit higher than where they may be during the particular rest of the 12 months, ” mentioned Jon DeHart, branch leader at Movement Mortgage in Durham.

But even with home loan interest rates close to 7%, presently there are nevertheless options for property owners, said DeHart.

“One associated with the majority of popular marketing items correct now is called a 2-1 buydown, ” he said.   “This gives purchasers a chance to ease into the mortgage payment. ”

Here’s how it works: During the first yr following the particular purchase of the home, the mortgage interest rate is structured to be 2% lower than the marketplace rate for which the buyer qualified.   In the second year, the rate would be 1% lower than the marketplace rate, and starting within the third year, the particular loan would transition to the market rate made at the time the mortgage was signed.

That can make a real impact to get buyers, as well.

For instance, the $300, 500 loan with a mortgage interest price of 7% would normally mean that the borrower might pay a monthly amount of about $2, 1000.   Yet a rate of 5% would mean a monthly payment of regarding $1, 600, a savings of about $400 per month pertaining to the 1st year associated with owning the home.

“A 7% interest payment is better than the 100% rental payment when it comes to building wealth, ” stated DeHart.   “Because you’re still going to be, every month, making a small transaction toward principal, with the house appreciating over time. ”

Wake County real estate lending slows – is definitely a casing crash coming?

Builders want you in order to buy, also

“Every builder right this moment offers a pretty good online presence, plus most builders are changing pricing, ” said Bill Smith, the particular president of the Johnston Region Building Industry Association and a licensed real estate agent with the Jim Allen Group.

“They’re also altering incentives, consistently, ” mentioned Smith.   “Sometimes, twice a month, especially at the end of the particular month. ”

In addition to providing closing costs, sometimes in return meant for working with the preferred lender or preferred closing attorney, builders might also become offering design package upgrades or to pay closing expenses to assist a buyer purchase down the home loan rate of interest, Smith noted.

Builders want homebuyers to have a great experience purchasing, and owning, their houses, and that’s why numerous builders are usually looking to make deals along with homebuyers at this time.

“Builders are being much more accommodating on selling their houses, ” said DeHart, adding that some builders are also advertising the 2-1 buydown within listing their own homes for sale.

And, nationwide, the best time to buy a house might be in October, the recent analysis from ATTOM Data Solutions found.   In the particular Triangle, historically, the best months to buy have got been within the fall or in the winter, based on the ATTOM data set, which was shared with WRAL TechWire upon request.


WRAL TechWire reporter Jason Parker , the author of the report and a licensed real property agent within North Carolina, works with journalists from WRAL. com to track plus present market data and report on how people are experiencing the region’s changing actual estate markets.   These special reports will use the particular category tag “ Triangle Real Estate ” or “ Triangle Real Estate Market . ” 

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