Buying A Home

Cost of Owning a Used Home and the Benefits of Owning a New Home

When you're looking to buy a home, you obviously have two options: buy a used home or one that's new. While both undoubtedly have their perks, when it comes to the latter, there's nothing quite like the experience of buying a new home. While we'll discuss more about the benefits later, right now, let's talk money. While it can be a touchy subject, it’s also a rather important one considering what the cost of a home could be. You work hard for your money, so you want to make sure it's being used wisely, right?

There are several factors involved in the cost of a home (such as size and location), and according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) the median cost of a new home in April 2017 was $309,200 while the median cost of an existing home was $246,100. However, what if we told you that a 2014 NAHB article, New Homes are Less Expensive to Maintain, claimed that over time, it's going to be cheaper to maintain a new home? With that said, let's discuss some of the costs you may potentially face with buying a used home over one that's new.

Repairs

While you might think that the previous owners are going to repair everything in the home that needs to be taken care of before you move in, that’s not necessarily true in many cases. It all depends on the agreed upon terms. In some cases, you may have to take some, most, or all of the repairs on yourself so you'll have to be financially, and emotionally, prepared to do that. You might find yourself fixing a loose railing in the backyard, repairing a fence, or having to fix loose stairs. Individually, they might not seem like much, but when added together, it could be a pretty big amount especially...

Westharbor Homes Award-Winning Designs

The Olympic Peninsula’s premier, award-winning home builder, Westharbor Homes has been building homes in the master-planned community at Port Ludlow for more than a quarter-century.

This village that sits at the edge of the Olympic Rain Shadow is becoming an increasingly popular destination for retirees throughout the Greater Seattle, Bellevue, Portland regions, and beyond, to downsize, reduce costs and maintenance of ownership, while enjoying an active neighborhood of like-minded people who want to take advantage of the spectacular surrounding beauty of the area.

Westharbor helps make that dream happen by creating first class homes for those seeking intentionally designed properties that have a focus on what these homeowners are looking for: downsizing, limited property maintenance and aging in place. Not only can they enjoy easy access to boating, golfing, hiking and the region’s bounty of fresh local cuisine, but they can live in a home designed to take advantage of the sights and peaceful sounds of this tranquil village by the bay in the village.

Westharbor Homes has been honored with multiple awards over the years, offering assurance to those considering a move to Port Ludlow that moving forward with that decision may be one of the smartest they’ll ever make.

Ludlow Cove Cottages, The Townsend: 2015 Gold Nugget Awards

In 2015, Westharbor Homes was honored as the Grand Award winner in the annual Gold Nugget Awards competition, which recognizes excellence in architectural design and planning, and draws entries from throughout the U.S. and the world. The panel of judges included some of the most creative and successful designers, planners and builders in the industry.

The honors were earned for “The Townsend,” a three-bedroom, 2.5 bath, 1,866-square-foot home, named the Best Single Family Detached Home under 2,000-square-feet for Ludlow Cove Cottages, a new neighborhood of 42 homes, on...

Mortgage Interest Rates: Then, Now and Tomorrow

When it comes to purchasing a home, whether it’s your first or your tenth, few people are in a position to pay cash. Most of us need to rely on a mortgage, and of course securing the best interest rate possible is a goal we all have when we take out any type of loan.

Events That Have Influenced Mortgage Interest Rates

Dating back to about 1910, rates had been fairly consistent at 5%, although mortgages were not very common. That changed with the growth of the 1920s. At the beginning of the Great Depression, mortgage interest rates had risen to around 6%. With the collapse of the economy and the hardships faced by many Americans, mortgage interest rates decreased as the decade progressed and fewer and fewer people could afford to take out a mortgage. Instruments put in place by the federal government helped establish fixed rate mortgages as the new norm.

World War II was the next major influence on mortgage interest rates. With most of the country’s men off to fight the war, there was less demand for consumer goods, including housing, and a shortage of materials to build them. This encouraged lenders to let the mortgage interest rate drop below 5% for the first time. Following the war, returning soldiers and their families were again in the market for new homes. Many took advantage of the VA loans but the demand for mortgages overall escalated and with the rising demand, so did the interest rates for the next few decades.

The Arab oil embargo of 1973 plunged the country into a recession. Rates leapt from around 6% at the beginning of the decade to 8% and 9% halfway through the decade. Inflation was rampant and rates continued to soar, passing 10% by 1980. During the early 1980s, mortgage interest rates reached an all-time high of nearly 17%, a rate which has not been seen since. A change in policies and a slow recovery helped alleviate the mortgage rate climb. As the decade progressed, the country bounced back and the interest...