Equity Offers Homeowners Several Options

Rising home prices have meant that more Dallas homeowners once again have equity in their homes.

This doesn’t mean they have a huge amount, but enough that they are no longer considered underwater. The latest negative equity report from Zillow shows that underwater homes in the Dallas area range from about 9 percent in the 75244 zip code to as much as 62 percent in the 75217 zip code. Being underwater means that these homeowners owe more on their homes than the current worth of these homes.

Zillow Negative Equity Reports

Zillow puts out these reports every quarter, calculating the estimated value of a home to all outstanding mortgage debt and lines of credit on homes nationally down to the zip code level. The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area underwater rate was at 20.4 percent, lower than the national average of 25.4 percent of homes that were underwater in the first quarter of 2013. The percentage of underwater homeowners nationally has gone down from the first quarter of 2012, when that number was 31.4 percent. In Dallas-Forth Worth metro area, that percentage has gone down eight percent.

What does all this mean?

More Homeowner Options

For many homeowners, it may just mean that they can sleep a little better at night, knowing they no longer hold a home loan that’s bigger than their home is worth. Others might be happy to be able to refinance for a more affordable mortgage deal since interest rates are still relatively low.

Yet others may be considering putting their home on the market, although some economists are noting that many homeowners still don’t have enough equity to sell their homes. In order to sell, a homeowner should have about 20 percent equity in their homes to provide for real estate commissions and other seller costs that are typically incurred during a home sale.

Perfect Time to Remodel?

But not all is bleak. Our message to homeowners is that this might be the perfect time to remodel. With home prices inching upward, this is a good time to invest in your home, whether you intend to stay in your home long term or sell as soon as you can. Cost-effective renovations that make your home more attractive to home buyers can help secure a quicker sale at a higher price. This may be particularly true in a market with tight inventory.

Remember, we at Unique Home Properties are specialists on the home renovation front and can help you determine what home improvements would make a difference in today’s market. Or we can simply help you hone in on the projects that you feel are most needed in your home.

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