The homebuying process has become slightly more difficult for some folks following the COVID-19 pandemic. Figuring out how to navigate the process can be difficult and understanding how buyers approach the process can help lenders find more effective ways of marketing. So, how exactly are folks approaching the homebuying process?
Porch conducted a survey of 998 homeowners to see how they approached the homebuying process from searching for a home to securing a mortgage. When searching for a home, 67.7% of first-time homebuyers and 75.3% of previous homeowners depended on online home listings. In addition, 63.9% of first-time homebuyers and 70.3% said they also depended on real estate agents.
When it comes to the mortgage process, some of the results may surprise you. When taking out a mortgage, 48.4% said they went with a bank they already used, 21.7% went with a bank that had better financing options, 17.5% went with a bank recommended by a real estate agent, 7.2% went with a bank recommended by friends or family, 1.9% went with the only bank that would grant them a loan and 3.2% answered other.
The Porch survey also asked the respondents who advised them through the mortgage process and the top three results were 57.4% by family, 49.5% said they were advised by a real estate agent and 36.7% were advised by a friend. The report revealed that 26% of homeowners read none or very little of their mortgage documents before signing. Of that 26%, 30.1% said they regretted not reading more of their mortgage agreements. Porch also reported that three out of four homeowners said they don't completely understand the terms of their mortgage.
A recent WSFS regional study showed that folks in Delaware and greater Pennsylvania were feeling more stressed out when it comes to the homebuying process. However, buyers have been gaining confidence given the series of safety guidelines and new approaches of conducting business by lenders. Buyers are still willing to purchase a home but are still looking for guidance through the process.
From this small survey, we see that folks haven't done enough research when it comes to securing the best rates possible. They aren't aware of better financing opportunities and are making decisions without reading through agreements. As a lender, the more exposure you can get to homebuyers the better. What's also important is maintaining a good relationship with former clients. Homebuyers will trust you as long as their friends and family do. So, maintaining a good relationship can be the key for future referrals.
Click here for more information on the survey from Porch.