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Is It Getting More Affordable To Buy a Home In Oak Island and Southport North Carolina?

Over the past year or so, a lot of people have been talking about how tough it is to buy a home in the Southport, Oak Island and Bolivia NC area. While there’s no arguing affordability in the coastal North Carolina area is still tight, there are signs it’s starting to get a bit better and may improve even more throughout the year. Elijah de la Campa, Senior Economist at Redfin, says:

We’re slowly climbing our way out of an affordability hole, but we have a long way to go. Rates have come down from their peak and are expected to fall again by the end of the year, which should make homebuying a little more affordable and incentivize buyers to come off the sidelines.”

Here’s a look at the latest data for the three biggest factors that affect home affordability in North Carolina: mortgage rates, home prices, and wages.

1. Mortgage Rates

Mortgage rates in North Carolina have been volatile this year – bouncing around in the upper 6% to low 7% range. That’s still quite a bit higher than where they were a couple of years ago. But there is a sliver of good news for buyers looking into the North Carolina Real Estate Market.

Despite the recent volatility, rates are still lower than they were last fall when they reached nearly 8%. On top of that, most experts still think they’ll come down some over the course of the year. A recent article from Bright MLS explains:

Expect rates to come down in the second half of 2024 but remain above 6% this year. Even a modest drop in rates will bring both more buyers and more sellers into the market.”

Any drop in rates can make a difference for you. When rates go down, you can afford the home you really want in Oak Island NC or Southport NC more easily because your monthly payment would be lower.

2. Home Prices in North Carolina

The second big factor to think about is home prices in North Carolina. Most experts project they’ll keep going up in coastal North Carolina this year, but at a more normal pace. That’s because there are more homes coming on the market this year, but still not enough for everyone who wants to buy one in Southport NC or Bolivia, NC. The graph below shows the latest 2024 home price forecasts from seven different organizations:

These forecasts are actually good news for you because it means the prices aren’t likely to shoot up sky high like they did during the pandemic in Oak Island NC, Southport, NC and Bolivia, NC. That doesn’t mean they’re going to fall – they’ll just rise at a slower pace in North Carolina.

3. Wages in North Carolina

One factor helping affordability in North Carolina right now is the fact that wages are rising. The graph below uses data from the Federal Reserve to show how wages have been growing over time:

Check out the blue dotted line. That shows how wages typically rise. If you look at the right side of the graph, you’ll see wages are climbing even faster than normal in North Carolina right now.

So how does this help you? If your income has increased, it’s easier to afford a home because you don’t have to spend as big of a percentage of your paycheck on your monthly mortgage payment to buy a home at the beach on Oak Island NC or in Southport NC.

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Jon Langley

Hi! Nice to 'meet' you and thanks for visiting our Southport and Oak Island Real Estate Blog! My name is Jon Langley, and I'm a REALTOR® in Brunswick County, NC. I work alongside some of the best Realtors in the Southport & Oak Island area. I'd love to learn more about you if you'd like to connect with me on Facebook and Instagram or connect with our team at Southport Oak Island Realty Group. Looking forward to connecting!

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