If all goes well, it looks like I’ll be closing on my first house (actually condo) on Friday, joining thousands and thousands of other Americans eager to pick up a good deal in what everybody is calling a buyer’s market — and, of course, to get that 10% (up to $8,000) tax credit — though in my case, I guess I’ll be spending most of my tax credit money on repairs rather than that dream vacation to Europe!
Anyway, the economy is at last beginning to get a boost from the real estate market. MSNBC reports new home sales rose 11% in June, the largest number in 8 years. And a few days before, existing home sales were reported to have gained for the third straight month.
Could it be that the economy is finally beginning to turn around, led by real estate of all things, that crazy beast with its sub-primes and alt-As which just about took our financial system down just a few short months ago? Who knows? But lots of folks think this is one of the best times in many years to invest in a home.
If you think maybe you’d like to jump into the real estate market, Greensboro Public Library has lots of books on home buying. Try some of these: Mortgages for Dummies by Eric Tyson and Ray Brown; Home Rich: Increasing the Value of the Biggest Investment of Your Life by Gerri Willis; The Wall Street Journal Complete Home Owner’s Guidebook: Make the Most of Your Biggest Asset in Any Market by David Crook; Nolo’s Essential Guide to Buying Your First Homeby Ilona Bray, Alayna Schroeder, and Marcia Stewart; Buying a Homeby the Better Business Bureau, with Alice LaPlante (on order); All Real Estate is Local: Why Understanding the Housing Trends in Your Area is Essential to Building Wealthby David Lereah; Clark Smart Real Estate: The Ultimate Guide to Buying and Selling Real Estate by Clark Howard & Mark Meltzer; The Single Woman’s Guide to Real Estate: All You Need To: Buy Your First Home, Buy a Vacation Home, Keep a Home After a Divorce, Invest in Property by Donna Raskin and Susan Hawthorne; Buyers are Liars & Sellers are Too!: The Truth About Buying or Selling Your Home by Richard Courtney; The New Complete Book of Home Buyingby Michael Sumichrast and Ronald G. Shafer, with Martin A. Sumichrast; Buy It, Fix It, Sell It: Profit!: A Comprehensive Guide to No-sweat Money-making Home Rehab by Kevin C. Myers; and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Buying and Selling a Home by Shelley O’Hara and Nancy D. Lewis.
By the way, I’d say that last one is the one I should of read before I began this little adventure!