How the Housing Market is Changing Globally
From the United States to the United Kingdom, the global housing market is changing and started strong—with 55 countries out of 56 experiencing higher home prices in the first quarter of 2020 against a good market demand. But as Covid-19 took over, a whopping 81% of the world’s labor force of 3.3 billion people experienced retrenchment, affecting their capability to pay their mortgages or to buy their dream home.
More and more houses have been foreclosed, with 165,530 properties now back in the market in the U.S. alone. Buyers are not buckling down just yet though as 84% of Americans say that buying a home is still a top priority and the British feel the same.
Despite the global health emergency, the demand for residential property is still high around the world and home prices are still following a steady climb based on data from the International Monetary Fund. The only country that did not see a price hike between January and March this year is Finland.
Financing Basics for Home Buyers
One of the biggest banks in the UK announced in early September that there will be changes as to how much home buyers can borrow from them. In the U.S. and other parts of the world, the situation is pretty much the same but this should not discourage buyers as foreclosures are balancing the situation and government-guaranteed loans are still an option. China, for example, introduced a number of quantitative easing measures to keep the housing market going and to make sure that its citizens can get housing loans at low interest rates.
The availability of affordable loans is not the only consideration though as there are other important matters at hand. American residential specialist Carol Staab said in a CBS News interview that individuals thinking of buying a home will need to get pre-approved for a loan before they begin house hunting.
Other financial decisions need to be made, too. This includes getting a home warranty, which covers accidental damages to the home, as well as home appliance warranties, which cover the repair and replacement of appliances and other home components such as electrical wiring, HVAC, and plumbing. Both policies are extremely important for homeowners as they will save them a lot of money in the long run.
A Changing Market
A BBC report in June 2020 revealed that work from home arrangements in the UK is already influencing the local housing market. According to British property website Rightmove, more people are now looking for homes away from city centers, and want houses that have large gardens and enough space for an office. While the report says that the change isn’t likely permanent, the predilection is loud and clear – people want homes that can provide them a good balance, at least for the moment.
Across the pond, metropolitan areas are experiencing higher prices for residential properties, with only 4% of American cities seemingly impervious to the price hike. The rest of the world is following the same trends and it will likely remain this way until 2022, the forecasted year for the pandemic’s end.
In the meantime, first-time home buyers will need to keep a close watch to the housing market to find their dream home at the right price.