Barriers to Homeownership: How to Bridge the Gap

The barriers to homeownership remain significant according to the latest NAR surveys of Realtors and potential borrowers. Lenders and LOs are challenged to overcome these obstacles if they want to grab their share of a shrinking market and generate revenue.

Here’s what you need to know:

• Limited housing inventory, high interest rates and high housing prices are the top three factors vexing buyers in their quest for homeownership, NAR reported.

• 53% of Realtors cited “current rent or mortgage payments, credit card balances or payments” as the most common issues their latest buyers failed to purchase a home. But, only 23% of these Realtors encouraged buyers to apply for down payment assistance programs. 

• Jessica Lautz, NAR’s deputy chief economist and vice president of research, noted that down payment assistance programs could help bridge the gap for borrowers: “Down payment assistance programs often fly under the radar for potential homebuyers. Using programs – like FHA, VA or USDA loans – can make homeownership more attainable. Experts, such as agents who are Realtors, can educate potential buyers about these programs. Doing so will bring in more first-time buyers and narrow the racial homeownership gap.”

For additional details, check out National Mortgage Professional’s article, “Too Many Blockades Stopping Would-Be Homebuyers.”