The plans of homeowners everywhere have been totally derailed due to the devastation that the ongoing pandemic has inflicted upon the U.S. housing market. This situation looks quite different for everyone, yet, the primary issue is weakening finances. Over 40 million people are now unemployed due to the massive waves of furloughs and business closures across the country. This has left people with little to no options on how to sustain themselves during this time, much less afford a new home. If you’ve found yourself in the whirlwind of financial impacts that have led to your inability to afford your desired home, there are a few things you can do to get yourself back on track.
1. Pause Your House Hunting and Continue to Build a Savings
Though it may be a heartbreaking drawback at first, disruptions to your home-buying experience as a result of the pandemic may not be entirely negative. Moving into a new home during a global pandemic is not the best idea, especially if it is a significant distance from the home you currently live in. Instead of succumbing to the bleak economic climate, take this time to go back to the drawing board and build a more reliable financial plan.
If you are fortunate enough to maintain a job during this time, continue to build your savings as you wait for the economy to revitalize. Who knows, you may be able to afford an even better home once the pandemic subsides! If it turns out that you must continue waiting for a new home once restrictions are lifted, consider refinancing your mortgage. This will ease the financial burden even more.
2. Adjust Your Expectations
Waiting for the economy to reopen is, unfortunately, not an option for everyone. You may be in a situation where your current home has already sold, and you must leave by a specific time. If so, you are still not out of luck. Instead of trying to force your budget to accommodate your dream home, opt to readjust your new home criteria. What are the non-negotiables for your new home? Are there elements you can do without? Identify your home-buying criteria and prioritize them according to necessity and luxury. This way, you’ll have the room to make your budget a bit more pandemic-friendly. You’ll be able to follow through with your move without breaking the bank, and without compromising your primary needs.
3. Be Open to New Options
Once you’ve made these changes, you may have a bit of difficulty in finding a home that calls to you in the same way your dream home did pre-pandemic. Do not give up hope. The perfect home for you is still out there! You must simply return to resources such as Trulia and Zillow to get a feel of the current status of the real estate market. Review your brand-new budget and see what types of houses match your expectations and buying capacity. If you must wait a bit longer to find the ones that call to you, do not be discouraged. A better home will surely come your way, and you will be in a much safer, more financially stable position after COVID-19 restrictions and economic impacts have subsided.