Mortgage and real estate news this week: Homebuyer coping strategies, mortgage credit scores and more
This normally-sleepy Thanksgiving week is bucking the trend this year. There’s a surprising amount of news to get to, so let’s dive in.
1. Dealing with homebuying insanity
Although things have cooled off a little since the pandemic peak, the housing market is still super competitive, and it’s leaving some shoppers at their wits’ end. If you’re struggling to break through and stay calm while looking for a house, here are some strategies to cope and keep a level head.
2. Housing affordability update
The real estate boom hasn’t been even, and some areas continue to have better deals than others. Rust Belt metros remain the most affordable non-rural areas, while California dominates the field for priciest markets.
3. This flag won’t fly, Realtors say
The National Association of Realtors issued new guidance at its annual convention this month that officially classifies the Confederate flag as a hate symbol. As a result, the banner will be banned from listing photos. NAR members and Realtors who ignore the ruling could be expelled from the organization.
4. Addressing biased home appraisals
The real estate market put people of color at a disadvantage for generations, and properties in majority-minority communities continues to be valued at less. One way to address the disparity, experts say, is to diversify the ranks of appraisers, who are currently around 90 percent white.
5. Typical borrower credit scores fall slightly
The pandemic mortgage boom has let lenders be extra picky about who can borrow housing funds, but the third quarter saw a slight reprieve. The median credit score for a mortgage borrower fell to 781, a few points lower than where it stood in Q2.