In Which Markets Should You Look to Buy an Affordable 1st-Time Home?

Buying a home for the first time is an exciting, but often nerve-wracking rite of passage for American consumers. The process can be overwhelming and many people are still wary about buying a home after the housing bubble and subsequent economic collapse of 2008. Knowing where to find a truly affordable home can help ease some of the fear and stress that comes with the buying process.

“Many of the employees at CSS have recently bought their 1st home, and are excited to take on the responsibility of driving a career to new heights so they can enjoy all the pleasure of owning a home!” says Maria McMahon, Human Resource Manager at CSS

Top Markets for First-Time Homebuyers

In our post-recession economy, people shopping for their first home are more likely to look for overall value as they look for the right location to put down their roots. Some of the most popular and affordable markets for first-time buyers include:

    • Philadelphia suburbs of Pennsylvania: Housing prices in the Philly suburbs in the Commonwealth itself are attractive and attainable for new homebuyers, with a median listing price of $219,000, placing the region at number seven in Bankrate’s top ten.
    • Southern New Jersey Suburbs: The suburbs in New Jersey are a great place for new buyers and ranks number three on Bankrate’s list of best locations to buy your first home. The average listing price is $174,900 and the unemployment rate in this area is 6.4%.
    • Jacksonville, Florida: Jacksonville is experiencing a bit of a boom. Unemployment is only 5.6%, and the average listing price for a new home is $198,000 putting at number six on Bankrate’s top ten list.
    • Delaware: This region didn’t make Bankrate’s list, but the median price of a home is currently $215,000, making it an affordable choice, given its proximity to the coast and major cities.
    • Phoenix, Arizona: This area is the 10th most affordable region for first-time buyers, per Bankrate. The median listing price of a new home in Phoenix is $244,000, and they move quickly. The average age of housing inventory in Phoenix is just 59 days.

Your Home, Your Market, Your Research

Before choosing a home, it is important to get an idea of the price ranges of homes in that area.  Be sure to study median price ranges for different neighborhoods as well as property taxes and homeowners association fees, both which can significantly increase annual payments.

If you have your heart set on a specific municipality or neighborhood, it may be necessary to make some compromises in order to achieve affordability.  For example, you may want a home with four bedrooms and a two-car garage, but may discover that three-bedroom homes with a one-car garage are more within your price range.

You may also discover a world of affordable possibilities in the fixer-upper space. Not all fixer-uppers require extensive work.  In many cases, fresh paint, new floors and updated windows can transform the look and feel of a bargain home.

The right professionals can help attract first-time homebuyers into the market and make the process as smooth and successful as possible. If your company is looking for underwriting or finance talent, or if you are a mortgage professional seeking new opportunities, contact the expert recruiters at Contemporary Staffing Solutions today.