Message from the President

by Dawn Brown

Majority of Americans See Homeownership as Good Investment; Affordability Woes Remain

According to NAR’s
2017 National Housing Pulse Survey, which measures consumers’ attitudes and concerns about housing issues in the nation’s 25 largest metropolitan statistical areas, eighty-four percent of Americans believe that purchasing a home is a good financial decision, the highest number in 10 years. Yet six in 10 said that they are concerned about affordability and the rising cost of buying a home or renting in their area. 

American’s still believe in homeownership and aspire to own a home of their own. Building equity, wanting a stable and safe environment, and having the freedom to choose their neighborhood remain the top reasons to own a home. Yet, Americans consider the lack of affordability as a big obstacle to ownership

Concerns over housing affordability show clear demographic divides, especially among unmarried and non-white Americans. More than 50 percent of unmarried and non-white Americans view the lack of available affordable housing as a big problem, compared to only four in ten of married and white Americans.

Nationally, 44 percent of respondents categorized the lack of available affordable housing as a very big or big problem. In the top 25 densest markets, more than half see the lack of affordable housing as a big problem, an increase of 11 percentage points since 2015. The lower income Americans, renters and young women most acutely feel the housing pinch. There is also greater concern about affordable housing among the working class (65 percent) than for public servants such as teachers, firefighters or police (55 percent).  The survey found that over half of respondents strongly agree that homeownership helps build safe and secure neighborhoods and provides a stable and safe environment for children and family members.

There are many benefits of homeownership, and they resonate more strongly as age increases. Over half of Americans between the age of 50 and 64 believe that home ownership is associated with a stable home environment, which also leads to greater educational success for children
. It’s important that younger Americans also have access to affordable and sustainable homeownership.

We need your help! 
Please TAKE ACTION and tell Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign our NY First Home bill into law! Both houses of the state Legislature passed the bill in June, but now we need the governor to approve it. 

CLICK HERE - The petition is open to the public, so please share this link on Facebook and social media! 

The NY First Home initiative would allow New Yorkers to establish a tax-free savings account to help them save for the purchase of their first home and achieve the dream of homeownership. 

If NY First Home is signed into law, New Yorkers could: 

• Deposit up to $5,000 annually ($10,000 for couples) in a special savings account to go toward the purchase of a first home in New York State.

• Receive a state income tax deduction on the principal investment and any gains would NOT be subject to state income tax;

• Apply the savings and any interest earned toward closing costs and down payment for the purchase of a first home in New York State.

Thanks to REALTOR efforts, this bill has strong bipartisan support in the state Legislature, but now we need to make our voices heard by the governor. 

Niagara Falls Board of REALTORS 100 Year Anniversary Celebration
Wednesday, September 13 – 3:00 – 5:00 pm – Double Tree by Hilton, 401 Buffalo Ave, Niagara Falls
Come join us for some cocktails & hors d’Oeuvres to celebrate the anniversary.  If you have any photos or documents to share, bring them with you so we can share memories of the past!  The event is free however you must register.

Agents’ Day & Trade Show – Oktoberfest
Tuesday, October 3 – Registration opens at  7:30 am – Adams Mark Hotel, with plenty of free parking. Gather up your lederhosen and yodel over to this years’ Agents’ Day & Trade Show.  Yes, you guessed it – our theme this year is Oktoberfest.  New this year is we  are offering four one-hour free CE Credit Sessions and an RPAC Lounge with new donations of $99.00. Keynote Speaker is Robert Priest, “The Theatre of the Mind” an act alive with action, laughs and mental challenges.  Special thanks to our sponsors – 2FindYourHome, Bank of America, Clareity Security LLC and Showing Time.  Enjoy complimentary Beer & Wine tasting from 12 Gates Brewing Company Bully Hill. So register today – it’s only $10.00.  

Joe Cecconi
West Herr Benefits