After a number of years of lusterless contribution in the housing market, first-time homebuyers are enjoying a boost from the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) this present year.

During the past year, homes sold to first-time buyers stayed at 29 percent for the 2nd straight year, which, as outlined by a study from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), is that demographic's weakest market share since the year 1987. On top of that, existing-home sales as a whole slipped 3.1 percent from its 2013 value.

stgeorgerealestate-fhaAt the same time, average house prices accelerated to a the highest level since 2007. On January 8, in a decision thought to beef up home ownership, President Obama and the FHA unveiled that they were reducing annual mortgage insurance premiums (MIP) for new individuals with mortgages.

Starting January. 26, the 12-month premium dropped from close to 1.35 percent of the loan balance to 0.85 percentage points, primarily based on loan specifics. The FHA forecasts this will help save the typical FHA house buyer approximately $900 annually. These numbers may very well be on the lower side – especially for home buyers with large mortgage costs. To illustrate, this past 3rd quarter, the average house sales price in the New York City metropolitan region was $410,800.

At the previous mortgage insurance premium, a house buyer at this price point would be charged $5,445.35 for MIP per year; a buyer who buys the very same house with the new discounted MIP, however, will have to pay just $3,428.55 on a yearly basis – financial savings of a little over $2,000. As you can imagine, even at only $900 each year, the discounted premiums could lead to savings of as much as $27,000 over the course a 30-year home loan.

These numbers are truly convincing, this lowering could possibly imply much more than simply lower monthly expenses for prospective buyers. Yearly premiums are included when determining a borrower's debt-to-income relation, and the smaller rates may well help credit seekers who in the past did not meet the 43 percent limit for the debt-to-income ratio imposed by the FHA.

At the same time, the following cost savings will probably also enable house buyers to make larger investments, permitting them to get a lot more house for the money. By bringing down the cost of owning a home, the FHA may enlarge the pool of new home buyers, especially in the previously dull first-time home buyer market segment.

With lagging income growth and demanding credit standards in the previous years, consumers with lower initial payment and credit ratings had trouble to meet the requirements for owning a home. Even FHA loans, which are tailored for this market group, were not capable of reaching plenty of prospective borrowers as a consequence of lowered loan limits and higher premiums.

This newest step by the FHA appears to be accepting the demand for further help to jump-start the first-time home buyer segment. To put it accurately, the FHA forecasts that, over the course of the next 3 years, the reduction will encourage 250,000 new buyers to invest in their first home property.

Real estate professionals addressing first-time home buyers or applicants with inferior credit scores need to be aware of how the MIP reductions influence their clients purchasing power.

Besides promoting lower-cost mortgage loans with pay-in requirements as little as 3.5 percent, the FHA's  programs provide many different products and guidance that pave the way for underserved consumers who would normally be shut out of owning a home. FHA-insured home mortgages may be the solution for many of these people.

As the year advances and first-time buyers head back into the marketplace, it could produce a ripple effect all the way through the industry. If interest for starter homes grows, it may inspire more move-up buyers as well, and this year could see more overall sales when fresh buyers and sellers leave the side lines.

Want to learn more about buying a home? Give Lance a call or text at 435-200-5508!