First-time buyers weigh real estate market amid high rates, prices

ROCKY HILL, Conn. (WTNH) — With rising mortgage rates and higher prices, potential buyers are being priced out of the real estate market, leaving a young Connecticut couple waiting for the right home.

Bryan Hammerschmidt and Gabby Brzozowski of Rocky Hill said there’s so many opposing forces, and they’re “learning as we go.” The pair just started the journey as first-time home buyers, and while they look for their dream house, they’re living in her parent’s basement to save money.

Brzozowski said that they’re in their late 20s, early 30s, so “it would be nice to have our own space.” However, with debt, inflation, and rising interest rates, there are a lot of roadblocks.

“You don’t know how to budget for it, you never had to deal with it,” Hammerschmidt said. “So it’s just like foreign territory.”

Luckily, Hammerschmidt has the oportunity to work from home, and Brzozowski said her family has been very supportive of the process. By no longer renting, they’re able to save money to put down a larger down payment, though they’re concerned how high they’ll have to bid with homes selling so fast.

“It almost feels impossible,” Brzozowski said. “At our point in our lives, we do want to invest in a property, a home, start the next chapter of our lives. We have to be smart, strategic about it. Not just jump into something.”

Realtor Jason Morgaletti understands the nerves of first time buyers. He showed News 8 a home that was just listed in Watertown, thugh he said it likely won’t be on the market for long.

Data shows that a 5.47% rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage is nearly double than it was last August, however, it’s still far less than the 18% rate in 1981. Demand has been weakening, with mortgage applications hitting a 22-year. low in June. Morgaletti cautions first-time buyers to wait it out.

“I tell them, ‘Make your judgment basex upon if you need a home, your quality of life, you could wait forever, may miss out on a quality home if you do,” Morgaletti said.

Connecticut’s Housing Finance Authority offers a loan program to first-time buyers to help them get past the barrier of a hefty down-payment and closing costs. See if you’re eligible here.

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