Buying a Home in 2021?

Buying a house is stressful at even the most sedate of times, but when there’s a pandemic sweeping the globe and you’re dealing with

brand-new rules and regulations, you're entitled to feed panicked.

It is clear by now that the Covid-19 crisis has forever altered the way we live and work. The World Health Organisation declared it a global health emergency and pandemic on March 11, 2020. The sentiments of businesses worldwide have been severely impacted and are mostly negative in their outlooks. Our offices, our homes, our outdoor spaces, each and every sector of the economy has been impacted by the virus, including the previously healthy real estate sector, which has been hit by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Covid-19 has changed the way buyers think. The concept of owning a home has gained renewed importance despite an unavoidable economic slowdown and the palpable uncertainty in the market. The lockdown has also reinforced the importance of owning a home because it is probably one of the only places where one can feel safe and secure. For this reason, people who were previously comfortable living in rented accommodations would now prefer to buy homes soon. The home will once again take prominence over the place of work and influence urban development and our real estate choices.

The real estate industry, like all others, has also been quick to adopt digital solutions. Many listing agents and sellers are making virtual home tours available to buyers online so that you can walk through the home or attend a virtual open house via Livestream. Making also home tours more convenient by sharing all aspects of the home’s potential value including community perks such as nearby parks, local dining, and shopping.

You might have the option to view inside a house through a virtual showing. Watching a video tour has become a popular way to work around social distancing efforts during home deals. And with easier access to video technology, this pandemic might just make virtual showings the new norm as a no-hassle resource when searching for a home you love.

Compared with 2020, the number of homes for sale has gone down as would-be sellers have kept their homes off the market. There were fewer listings, so you had fewer opportunities to buy. Since mid-March, new listings have declined 50 percent or more in some markets. Also, many sellers were pulling their listings. Just waited when conditions improve, to re-list. They weren't prepared to go through with the process of selling in the pandemic environment. There’s only so much that lower mortgage rates can do to stimulate home sales while fewer homes are on the market. Mortgage rates and affordability weren’t the biggest challenges in the housing market. A lack of affordable homes for sale was.

It seems to me that home-buying decisions, even in non-pandemic times, are usually very complex and most of us don’t get a lot of practice at making them, as we only buy or sell a few houses over our lifetime. All of these uncertainties mean that it is very difficult, and perhaps even impossible, to provide a blanket statement confirming whether this is a good or a bad time to buy a house. Instead, the focus should be on whether it’s a good time or a bad time for you, given your personal situation.

If you're thinking about buying a home as an investment, don't overestimate your return on investment (ROI). Also, bear in mind that real estate does not appreciate at all times. Putting all your money toward your home is never encouraged by financial experts. Consequently, you should ideally look at your home purchase as your right to housing, as opposed to viewing it as an investment. 

The time of the year you plan to buy a house tends to have an effect on the competition you face from other prospective homebuyers. Spring and early fall account for the two busiest periods in real estate sales. This is because several buyers wish to move during warm weather, and settle in place before the beginning of a new school year. This aspect can vary based on different regions and properties, as well as an owner’s reason for selling.

Buyers tend to thin out during the colder months, which results in reduced competition. This can also lead to better deals because sellers who haven't managed to sell their homes in earlier months become more open to negotiation.

Preparing your credit is a very important first step! Preparing finances for home ownership begins the day someone decides they actually want to buy a home, by knowing what your credit rating is ahead of time, you can allow yourself some time to improve your rating. Everyone knows good credit is needed in order to qualify for a mortgage, but preparing your credit also encompasses an important component of financially preparing for homeownership.

Preparing your budget as well, is a step that can be completed months or years in advance of a first home purchase. Have you thought about what your budget will look like post-closing? The expense audit will help make some room, but to see if you can truly afford a home, try building out a sample budget of what your monthly expenses will look like after you buy a home.

I recommend using Mortgage calculators, they can help you get a rough estimate of what your monthly mortgage payment will look like and what makes this service unique are graphs of loan repayment along with monthly and yearly amortization tables.

Another important thing, rate shopping for a mortgage, so don’t go with the first-rate you’re offered. Shopping for the most competitive interest rate is one of the few ways to actually save money on a home, because the lower the interest rate, the less money you’ll pay over the life of the loan. Thanks, Internet! Rate shopping is now super quick and doesn’t impact your credit score, so the few minutes you spend rate shopping will pay off big time for your future self. 

There are so many other tips, I’m trying to keep this post short, so I would be happy to share them in another post if you would love to, let me know on the comment. Thank you so much for stopping by  Let us know if you have any other areas to tackle in order to ensure home buying success?


  1. here (in Malaysia) I think it's difficult for the bank to approve a housing loan, especially for the B40 group. we also know that in times of crisis like this, money (read as 'cash') is very much needed. and for public, guarantee to repay (housing loans) are very slim.


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