First-Time Home Buyers, Sellers Optimistic

More than 48 percent of first-time buyers expect home prices to increase by this time next year, according to a survey by Century 21 Real Estate.

The survey posed questions to people who had bought or sold a home in the last year.

Sixty percent of first-time home buyers say they didn’t understand the process of buying a home, and more than 85 percent of both first-time buyers and sellers said that using a real estate professional was important.

The top three skills valued in a real estate professional by both buyers and sellers were knowledge of the area, trustworthiness, and responsiveness.

More than 80 percent of buyers believe now is a good time to buy a home. First-time home buyers rated these three factors as the most influential in their decision:

Current housing prices: 66 percent
Home Buyer tax credit: 63 percent
Low loan rates: 60 percent

In choosing a home, 95 percent of first-time home buyers thought price was the most important consideration, but 90 percent were also very concerned about neighborhood safety.

About 54 percent of first-time sellers think home prices are more affordable now than they were this time last year, and 50 percent were selling because they were purchasing a property they saw as more attractive and better suited to their needs.

Source: Century 21 Real Estate LLC (04/21/2010)