Contributed by Stuart Sauders, Loan Officer, Bank South

With the beginning of a new year, some exciting new home purchase opportunities are available. First, interest rates are close to the lowest they have been since 1960. After the presidential election in November, interest rates experienced a jump. Going forward, it remains to be seen if the policies and legislation of the new administration will impact rates further. Second, home prices have continued to appreciate, and the Case-Schiller reports for 2016 shows that the Atlanta real estate market experienced a 5.5% increase in average sales prices over the last year. This means that a home priced at $400,000 now will likely be selling for over $420,000 next year at this time, assuming the trend lines from the last three years hold. And third, a unique opportunity exists for you to secure your mortgage interest-rate for up to half of the year, with no upfront cost for locking the rate.

Here is how the six-month lock works. If you wish to purchase a home that is not yet complete, once you are within six months of closing, its possible to lock in your interest rate so that you know what your house payment will be and you will not be exposed to any rate increases going forward. If rates happen to drop after you did the extended six-month lock, during the final two months prior to your closing date, your rate can be lowered, one time, at no cost to you. If rates go up, you’re protected because you already locked in. If rates fall, you’re protected because you can float down to the lower rate. It’s the best of both worlds and takes some of the uncertainty out of your new home purchase. There is no upfront cost to do a six-month rate lock and also no cost to exercise the one-time float down option.

If trends continue, rates and prices may rise so learn more about these historic low rates and this limited time six-month lock today. Contact new home specialist Vanessa Hunter or Bank South Loan Officer, Stuart Saunders.