Only the Loan-ly

by Stephanie Sims

Stephanie Sims, Editor

Stephanie Sims is Chicago Agent’s managing editor

Even though these early months are typically slow for housing, from what I’ve heard from agents, the market is already picking up, which means in a few months, you can count on the spring market to be even busier. Buyer confidence has increased, and given the inventory, I’ve already heard about several multiple offer situations.

But since this is our mortgage issue, I wanted to investigate whether any of this year’s mortgage changes will affect the housing market and buyer demand. In particular, interest rates have everyone talking. No one can predict exactly how much the rates will increase, but given all the other factors we should take into consideration with this year’s market – inventory levels and rising home prices, for example – this year is still a good year for sellers and buyers to “get off the fence.”

“Certainly as rates increase, homes become less affordable, but by the same token, customers are probably in a safer situation now than they have ever been,” said Steve Calk, the chairman and CEO of the Federal Savings Bank, who appears on this issue’s cover. Rates will start to increase this year, but as a whole, they are still historically low. Buyers who don’t want to miss a great deal on rates will be more inclined to buy this year. Read more about how changes in the mortgage market will affect this year’s housing market in our cover story on page 16.

On a separate note, we have launched our annual Truth About Agents survey to help prepare for our upcoming Truth About Agents issue. Everyone’s opinion is important when it comes to this survey, so please head over to chicago.staging312.com/2014-truth-agents-survey and fill out our quick, 10-minute survey. And this is an anonymous survey, so please, be honest – tell us how you really feel! And for all your other opinions involving this issue or anything on our website, please email me: stephanie@chicago.staging312.com.

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