COVID-19 may lead more prospective buyers to purchase a home sooner rather than later.
A recent LendingTree survey found that more than half of potential buyers (53%) said that they will buy a home in the next year, due to the impact of COVID-19 on mortgage rates, as well as their own budget, with 32% claiming they are spending less and are able to save more for costs associated with homebuying. First-time buyers and millennials, at 73% and 66% respectively, are more apt to feel this way.
However, COVID-19 may be making buyers reconsider how much they put in their housing budget. Forty-four percent of prospective buyers said they will spend less on a house than they had originally planned, while 21% now plan to spend more. Of those who plan to spend more, 28% of first-time buyers say they’ll buy a more expensive home, while 17% of repeat buyers felt the same way.
Technology is continuing to aid buyers in finding their new properties in today’s world. Sixty-one percent of buyers have done a virtual tour for a home over the past two months. Another one-third of buyers said they plan to do a virtual tour. And 30% of buyers reported they would purchase a home without looking at it physically.
Yet, with record low mortgage rates, 44% of buyers are concerned about qualifying for a mortgage, including more than half of first-time buyers and millennials.
However, 20% of buyers said they were less likely to buy a home due to COVID-19. Economic uncertainty is the top reason cited by those surveyed. Lack of in-person showings and a loss of income were two other reasons buyers felt hesitant.