If you’re trying to figure out whether or not you can afford something, you typically only have to consider its price. Buying a home, however, is a bit more complicated. When you buy a house, there are variables to consider beyond the list price. You have to take things like insurance and taxes into consideration as well.
That’s why, despite the fact that home prices have been rising lately, buying is still a good deal in many markets. How is that possible? Well, it’s mostly due to mortgage rates. According to a recently released analysis from the National Association of Realtors’ consumer website, historically low-interest rates have helped keep the median monthly mortgage payment relatively flat over the last year.
In fact, the monthly cost to purchase a median-priced home increased just 0.2 percent year-over-year, despite double-digit home price growth during the same period. Danielle Hale, the website’s chief economist, says the news is encouraging but conditions can change. “With interest rates expected to rise over the coming months, buyers may need to act sooner than later to take advantage of today’s affordability or be prepared to adjust their target purchase price,” Hale said. (source)