As most of you, I was glued to the TV set on Tuesday, watching the election results come in. No matter who won, or who you were for or against, the question remains: How will this affect (fill in the blank here)? As the current President of the Stark County Association of REALTORS®, I wondered myself what the pundits, industry gurus and the like had to say on the subject. And after about two hours researching and reading everything I could find (ad nausea), I’m still confused.
The best compilation of what I read follows: “Ralph McLaughlin, Trulia’s chief economist, who said “homebuyers in economically healthy Democratic states could be discouraged about the future of the US economy, and become less interested in making big purchases. In economically stagnant Republican states, however, homebuyers confidence and demand may rise.
He said investors are buying US mortgage-backed securities as a safe-haven asset, pushing down yields, and reflecting confidence in the relative safety of the housing market. “Furthermore, the Fed is likely to delay a December rate hike because of global economic turmoil,” McLaughlin said in a note. “Both effects mean short term win for borrowers, and we’ll likely see an increase in mortgage refinancing if rates continue to plummet.”
Other news articles report a possible softening of credit requirements due to a “deregulatory atmosphere” expected from this administration. More than one site stated that President-Elect Trump said very little during his campaign on the housing market, interest rates, etc. and that much is still unknown.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the affordability of housing in Stark and surrounding counties compared to other parts of the state and country. I have a friend who lives in a very nice home in a Chicago suburb who pays $14,000 a year in property taxes, on a home that would be priced here for about $250,000! In Columbus (Franklin County), a home valued at $150,000 will cost you approximately $3,157 a year in taxes. In Cincinnati (Hamilton County), that same home will cost you $3,350 a year in taxes. In North Canton a home in the North Canton school district will cost you $2,684 a year in taxes.
So, what can we surmise from our recent election and how it will impact the current LOCAL housing market? That remains to be seen. But here in northeastern Ohio, I believe our housing costs, cost-of-living, amenities, industry, infrastructure and beauty make it the best darn place in the country to live, work and raise our families. I hope you feel the same.
As appearing in the Canton Repository 11-18-16