Q. My wife and I want to buy our first home, but rising interest rates are making that monthly payment pretty near unaffordable for us. Any advice?
The best advice I can give you is to stay flexible, and talk to the experts.
People often don’t think about how much property taxes add to their monthly housing payment. If you stay flexible about where you buy, the difference could be hundreds of dollars each month.
For example, let’s assume you’re looking at homes priced at $500K.
In York, with its property tax rate of $8.55 per thousand, property taxes would add approximately $356 per month to your principal and interest payment. The same house in Eliot would add around $562. Over in Berwick, the property taxes are going to add around $759 each month. That’s a $400 per month difference in towns that are all in the same general area.
And right over the border from Berwick, Maine, in Somersworth, NH, (property tax rate of $27.88 per thousand) the property tax would add $1,198 per month to your principal and interest payment.
Besides being open about which town you live in, never make assumptions on what you can afford based on headlines. Talk to actual mortgage professionals. Talk to people who have been in the business for a long time and have seen almost every scenario imaginable.They have products and ideas that may fit your situation like a glove. Adjustable rate mortgages, for instance, have a bad rap from the mortgage crisis of 2008, but they are not necessarily the devil incarnate.
Don’t give up - keep your eyes open and get good people out there working for you!
Troy Williams has been the #1 agent in York county since 2012. His work ethic and unmatched expertise and knowledge of the local real estate market keep him consistently one of the top realtors in Maine. His office can be reached at 1-207-351-8188.
"Ask Troy" and other articles focused on New Hampshire and Maine real estate and area information are featured monthly in the Williams Realty Partners newsletter Connect; if you'd like to receive the newsletter please email jenna@williamsrealtypartners.