by Phillip B. Burum, Executive Vice President, Diversified Pacific,
President, Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter
The holiday season is upon us and regardless of the tone or background of your celebration, as the year winds down we are all preparing to celebrate Thanksgiving. Whether or not you are a believer of, or are supportive of, the origin story of Thanksgiving; as American homeowners we have a great deal for which to be thankful. I hope that you will take a moment to reflect on just how fortunate you are this season.
For those who are hoping to realize their dream of homeownership yet this year, I want to let you know there is still time. If your search includes new homes, every builder with an active community in our region will take the opportunity to sit down with you and help you find a way to purchase your new home before the calendar turns to a new year. If your aspirations include a resale home, what better gift is there to someone selling their home than a credible offer from a motivated buyer?
Owning your own home remains the greatest possible investment that most Americans will make in their lifetime. Over the past several months, however, there has been no shortage of news reports on the impending correction of the housing market. Most people do not have the time to perform the level of investigation that would be required to prove or disprove those assertions but, if owning a home is on your holiday wish list, you owe it to yourself and your family to study the facts and make your own determination of what is best for your current situation.
The facts are that home prices continue to rise and interest rates will be rising as well. No one wants to be the last person to buy a home before a market adjustment, but I would suggest that you also consider that you should not want to be the person staying on the sidelines, waiting for the perfect moment to buy. The only day to buy a new home that is better than today was yesterday. An individual must do the math for themselves. Use all of the trends and statistics you can find on the cost of housing and you will find the best way to protect your finances long term is to invest in homeownership.
The nation faces a housing shortage of epic proportions and California is not faring any better. Over the next several years, the log jam will begin to lift as policy makers and policy advocates recognize the positive economic impacts brought about by new home construction. If you are one of the many Southern Californians that are living in overcrowded conditions or otherwise just waiting for the opportunity to acquire a home, I would encourage you to advocate for the production of more housing, of all types and sizes, in all regions. Your specific form of advocacy may simply include signing a petition or it may include speaking in favor of the latest proposed new community at the next City Council meeting in your area, or it may just include applying for a new home loan. As long as there are more forces aligned against housing than there are for it, production of homes will never keep up with the actual demand.
Thanksgiving should be a time of reflection and appreciation. Take a moment over the coming weeks and ponder all that you have to be thankful for. Then, take some time to consider what you will be thankful for at this same time next year. Will you be living in your own home; will you be in the process of gathering your down payment funds or in the final throws of repairing your credit? Whatever the case is for you individually, I hope that you find the will to push through and pursue obtaining your piece of the American Dream.
I truly believe that home ownership is the core of individual and community success in our country and my wish for all this holiday season is that each of you can find your path to home ownership.
The BIA Baldy View Chapter seeks to advance the opportunity to attain the American Dream of home ownership. For additional information on home buying or the benefits of homeownership, go to www.biabuild.com on the web.
Have a great and happy Thanksgiving.