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The Cost of Waiting: Why Delaying a Home Purchase Might Cost You

When it comes to making large investments, timing is often said to be everything. This is especially true when it comes to purchasing a home, as many people believe that waiting for the perfect moment when interest rates and prices are low is the best way to get the most out of their investment. However, as attractive as this strategy may seem in theory, the reality is that there is no way to time the market perfectly.

The real estate market is subject to both macroeconomic and microeconomic factors that can cause prices and interest rates to fluctuate. While there have been periods of significant price drops, such as during the Great Recession and the COVID-19 pandemic, these events are rare, and it is impossible to predict when the next one will occur. Interest rates, meanwhile, are influenced by the Federal Reserve, which adjusts them as it sees fit based on economic conditions.

For those who are waiting for the perfect moment to buy a home, there is a real cost to waiting. Inflation can cause the cost of goods and services to rise, eating away at a housing budget and leaving less money available for a down payment. Moreover, if interest rates decrease significantly, demand for homes will pick back up, leading to more bidding wars and no relief from high prices. If interest rates increase, on the other hand, this will eat away at a housing budget and add hundreds of dollars to monthly mortgage payments.

For those who are currently renting, there is also a cost to waiting. Annual rent increases can eat away at a housing budget and leave renters with less money to put towards a down payment. In some areas, rental rates have increased by as much as 24% in a year, putting a lot of extra money into someone else's pocket.

The good news is that there is an alternative to waiting for the perfect moment to buy a home. By buying now, homeowners can take advantage of current price softening and then refinance their mortgage down the line when interest rates are better. It's like hedging your bets, and it allows homeowners to take advantage of appreciation over time while avoiding the high cost of waiting.

Ultimately, there is no way to time the market perfectly, and waiting for the perfect moment to buy a home can be a costly mistake. By buying now and taking advantage of current price softening, homeowners can lock in a fixed rate mortgage that will never increase while still having the option to refinance in the future when interest rates are better. If you're considering buying a home, it's important to speak with a financial professional to discuss your unique financial situation and the current housing market.

We’re happy to tell you more. Give us a call today to discuss your unique financial situation, as well as the current housing market.

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