Dallas-Fort Worth-area homeowners optimistic about the long term

When thinking about homeownership, experienced buyers in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area overwhelmingly see its positive long-term impacts, according to the second annual Bank of America Homebuyer Insights Report. Compared to the national average (84 percent) and 10 markets surveyed, Dallas homeowners (90 percent) were most likely to say homeownership will have a positive impact on their long-term financial picture. Additionally, they are more likely to define homeownership as a financial investment (61 percent) than other sentiments, such as family (55 percent) and responsibility (47 percent).

The report, a study exploring homebuying perceptions and behaviors among adult consumers, also found that amid rising rental rates across the country, 86 percent of Dallas-area homebuyers believe owning is more affordable than renting. In fact, current Dallas owners were most likely to have purchased their first home because they thought money spent on rent would be better invested toward a mortgage (55 percent).

Dallas-specific highlights from the report include:

Experienced Dallas buyers also see the sentimental value of homeownership

  • Nearly all local homeowners feel proud of owning their own home (90 percent) and treasure the memories they have made (90 percent).
  • Only 36 percent of Dallas homeowners say a home’s value is determined by how much it cost to purchase, but they are increasingly investing in this asset. Eighty-six percent look for ways to make their home more valuable, and 75 percent spend a lot of free time working on their home.

Aspiring Dallas homeowners are planning ahead

  • Although they are juggling a variety of financial responsibilities, including paying off debts and bills (51 percent), improving credit scores (45 percent) and saving for retirement (33 percent), nearly half of prospective buyers say saving for a home is a major priority.
  • More than one in four Dallas residents say they will buy their first home within the next two years, and 38 percent have started to plan for a down payment.
  • Local first-time buyers are open to support. Forty-nine percent think they would qualify for a down payment assistance program, and 75 percent say they would take advantage of these programs.

Motivations to purchase among Dallas homebuyers

  • When making the decision to buy their first home, prospective homeowners are motivated by wanting a place to call their own (54 percent), having a steady job with a steady income (45 percent) and wanting more space (42 percent).
  • Current Dallas owners were influenced to buy their first home because they thought money spent on rent would be better invested toward a mortgage (55 percent), they wanted a place to call their own (48 percent) and had the financial means to purchase (41 percent).

Dallas owners reflect on their homebuying experience

  • When Dallas owners started the homebuying process, the most common steps they took were engaging a real estate professional (61 percent) and getting prequalified (44 percent), both higher than the national averages of 52 percent and 39 percent, respectively. Forty-two percent of local homeowners set a budget.
  • In looking back at their homebuying experience, current Dallas homeowners’ advice includes: start saving for a home early (69 percent), consider the maintenance costs and unexpected expenses (48 percent), and create and stick to a budget (30 percent).

View the complete 2017 Homebuyer Insights Report here.

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