Go ahead… buy a home! | SummitDaily.com

Go ahead… buy a home!

special to the daily

If one looks at the news headlines about the economy, falling home prices, a weak dollar, and the like, it can be scary. Buyers continue to “wait” to see what’s going to happen to the market, not realizing that a failure to act now is both economically unwise, and will slow the recovery. Someone once said, “There has rarely been a moment in history when you couldn’t scare yourself into doing nothing.” Don’t let the daily headlines keep you from making a wise decision. More than ever, now could be the best time in 50 years to purchase real estate.

Famed money manager, Peter Lynch, says that purchasing a home, especially if you don’t already own one, should be your first investment. He goes on to point out that an owner-occupied home is nearly always profitable. Lynch states “When prices are falling few people have the discipline to buy stocks, a house, gold, art, or any other asset. But those who do pull the trigger excel in the long run.”

Home prices continue to fall, but as we emerge from this recession, it’s likely that interest rates will go up. The money you save on price now may well be canceled out by a higher interest on the mortgage later, so once again… the time to buy is now. If you wait a year to buy, you will save nothing and you will spend another year living someplace you’d rather not be.

There’s another common saying, “The time to move up is in a down market.” But what if you have to sell before you buy a new home? It’s true that you may have to wait a bit but in the meantime, try to refinance at today’s low mortgage interest rates. Above all remember the saying by (Joseph) Rudyard Kipling “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you; If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowance for their doubting too; . . . If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster and treat those two impostors just the same . . . Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it.”

And I know we’ve said it a million times already, but until Nov. 30, 2009, first-time buyers are eligible for a “federal tax credit” up to $8,000 on the purchase of a home. Pure credit. Not repayable. Anyone who hasn’t owned a home in the past 3 years may be eligible, if they meet income limits — single buyers, $75,000 a year; married couples $150,000. The credit decreases for single buyers earning between $75,000 and $95,000, and between $150,000 and $170,000 for home buyers filing jointly. If you finance your home through FHA, you may use the tax credit money to help pay for down payment or closing costs. If you’ve been sitting on the fence, now is the time to get OFF that fence. Arm yourself with the facts, and join the 75 million homeowners nationwide who enjoy the benefits of home ownership — equity build-up, home appreciation, tax advantages, and the pride of ownership.

Butch Elich and his team includes associate broker, Paula Parker. Find them on the Web at http://www.elich.com, or at RE/MAX Properties of the Summit, 305 Main St., Frisco.

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