Best U.S. Real Estate Markets for First-Time Home Buyers in 2015
Real estate in the U.S. has always followed the law of supply and demand. Whenever the economy is doing well, real estate is a thriving industry. In the early 1990’s and mid 2000’s, various recessions hit the U.S, which caused the real estate market to crash. Nowadays, it seems as if the real estate market is as stable as ever, with U.S markets such as New York, Los Angeles, and Washington being the most expensive places to buy homes in. For new homeowners, buying an affordable home really depends on where you plan to live for 2015; these are perhaps the best markets to invest in:
Atlanta is currently the top market that many experts predict will be the cheapest for investors to buy homes in. The cost of investing in Atlanta is currently very low yet experts agree that this will change in 2015 as more and more homeowners are expected to invest in this city.
The second best market in 2015 that investors should consider buying homes in is Dallas, which has a booming economy due to the numerous jobs available in many industries such as food, medicine, and education. The city is expected to make a lot of progress in providing employment, which should work parallel at improving investments on housing real estate.
- Des Moines
Des Moines, Iowa was a very surprising entry that made the list of most affordable housing real estate markets for 2015. The reason for this is because this market features some of the most affordable housing in the nation. Additionally, the market is set to make a substantial improvement in providing jobs, which should allow more people to relocate here.
Since the recession, Denver was one of the fastest markets to recover due to the healthy rate of employment that continued on till today. For 2015, experts predict an improvement in the rate of employment, which should improve the number of people living in Denver.
What makes Houston a likely candidate for best market for housing real estate is that this city is economically diverse with petroleum, education, and medicine being the primary markets that offer a substantial number of jobs. It is also one of the largest cities in the U.S, which has more than enough land to provide housing and other real estate ventures.
Like Iowa, Minneapolis also features one of the most affordable housing in the nation. It also has one of the lowest unemployment rates, which allows people to afford investing in homes. This is why for the year 2015, many experts agree that Minneapolis will only attract more investors to buy property and even relocate here.
The housing market in Phoenix suffered substantially during the recession. With a dip in the housing prices, many people immediately relocated to this city to invest. Today, however, many experts believe that the market will make a complete recovery, allowing previous home investors to make substantial profits selling their homes.
Passing that Exam!
So, you have worked hard to get through your real estate licensing education; the application and fingerprints are on file. The only hurdle left is passing the state licensing exam. To be successful, you have to put in as much effort to prepare for the exam as you put into completing the education.
The majority of real estate agents enter the profession later in life as a second (or third or fourth) career. While having the life experience is a bonus once you start selling, it can be an issue getting licensed if it has been a while since you have taken a standardized test. Before the panic sets in, sign yourself up for an exam prep program.
The more comfortable you are taking the exam, the better your chances of passing. I spoke with a newly licensed agent today who, on her third attempt at the Florida licensing exam, finally decided to use the exam prep she had purchased with her course. She also said taking the exam in her PJ bottoms so she felt more at home helped with the anxiety. While I cannot offer test-taking fashion advice, I can tell you what to look for in a test prep program.
First, make sure the program has all of the content over which you will be tested. Every state licensing exam has questions on both state and national real estate law and regulations. If you purchase a prep program that only has state or only national questions, you are short-changing yourself. Better versions will offer some variety in how the content is covered – some exams with just state-specific questions, some with just national content and the majority with a mixture.
You will want a program that has interaction with you. Answering question after question then getting an overall score is not helpful unless you are in the final days before the exam. Make sure your program has a way to get information on the questions you missed AND why you missed them. Some programs will rank the questions or categories of questions so you know what to study again. Others will actually provide you with individual feedback on each question you miss (or each question) so you can build your knowledge.
Ultimately the program is to prepare you for the actual exam. Before purchasing, make sure the program contains at least one, if not two, exams that are similar in length to what you will experience on test day. Taking shorter practice exams to prepare for a long one can lead to anxiety and burn-out during the real exam.
Finally, watch out for programs that offer questions ‘identical to’ or actually from the state real estate exam. In every state it is illegal to use questions that appear on the state licensing exam in an exam prep product. Most state exam providers do have test questions or ‘retired’ questions on their websites for review. Sometimes they are free, some providers charge for them. These are a great way to get additional practice, but do not take the place of a quality exam prep program.
On the big day, remember what your high school teacher used to tell you – take a deep breath, go with your first instinct and never go back to change an answer unless another question on the exam explicitly tells you your answer is wrong. And, when all else fails, put on your PJ pants.