As you already know, everything has gone up in price lately. Gas, groceries, electricity – the list goes on and on. And now the government has stepped in, raising interest rates to try and slow the increase in prices. While those higher rates are working to a degree to slow inflation, you may have noticed it has another consequence: your credit card and consumer loan payments have gone up.
It seems like – even for homeowners and people with good income – the squeeze is on…and staying afloat is getting harder. Getting ahead can seem out of the cards completely.
What I want to tell you is that, in every market, there is opportunity. In this particular market, what most people are finding is that while the price of groceries and gas are up…so is the value of your home! In fact, over the last 3 years, the national average appreciation of primary homes is up 74.2%! National average home sales prices have skyrocketed from $383,000 in Q1 2020 to $516,000 in Q1 2023.
Many people think that home prices will fall, however, as market experts Barry Habib, Dave Stevens and others are pointing out, the Millennial generation is coming of home buying age (33-36 years old) over the next couple of years. That’s in addition to the millions we already have…yes, millions more people looking for homes that there are currently for sale in the US. There is a serious LACK of homes for sale in the US right now…and it looks like it will be that way for years to come. That kind of demand means that there is no way home prices will fall anytime soon. Ask any realtor – right now, people are offering over asking price, waiving inspections, and going over appraised value in order to beat the people they’re competing with to get into a home.
So, what can you do with this information?
I’ve identified 5 important categories. If you own your home and fall into any one of these categories, it might make sense for you to use that newfound value and equity in your home to change your life and actually get ahead. If you fall into 2 or more of these categories, you should stop what you’re doing and call us today to see what we can do together to get back on track.
First: Credit Card and Consumer Debt
If you’ve got some credit card debt that you keep paying on but never seem to be able to pay off…this is for you. You can use the new and improved value of your home and refinance that high interest, and more importantly high payment, debt into your mortgage. As an added bonus and a huge hidden opportunity, if you put less than 20% down when you bought your home, you’re probably paying PMI or “mortgage insurance” on your loan. It’s part of your payment. For many loans, when you can prove that your loan amount is less than 80% of the value of your home, you can eliminate that PMI payment. With 74.2% appreciation in the last 3 years, it’s probably easier than ever to get rid of your MI payment early, potentially saving you hundreds just for that. Refi a couple of hundreds of dollars of credit card payments and add in the savings for getting rid of your MI payments… and a cash out refinance could save you hundreds, potentially thousands of dollars per month.
Second – and kind of related – Retirement Savings
The average American has $141,000 in retirement savings…however, that’s an average…and the amounts vary widely by age and demographic. What’s clear in all the statistics is that it’s not enough. With the potential insolvency of Social Security, increased inflation and cost of goods, we don’t, as a nation, have enough retirement savings. By using our newfound equity to refinance and consolidate our debt we can save hundreds or thousands per month. This is the opportunity to use those savings to pay your future self…invest more in your 401k, start an IRA, get some whole life insurance with cash value, invest in an annuity…There are many choices, but the first step is to put yourself in a position where you HAVE choices. Leverage your equity…pay off your debt…use the savings to INVEST!