Vail Daily column: Is it time to buy? |

Vail Daily column: Is it time to buy?

Joan Harned

Dear Joan,

Ever since I went to see my grandmother last month, I have been rethinking my plan to rent my housing for my whole life. I am in my 20s, and people in my generation doesn’t really talk about buying a home. We like to stay mobile and free to spend our money on trips and concerts and exciting recreation adventures​ that are great fun.

However, when I visited with Granny, she had trouble remembering almost everything, except her first and only home. She kept talking about the corner window in her kitchen and how she had made the curtains herself. We would try to talk about other things and then she would say, with such pride, how she fell in love with that house when she saw her beautiful corner kitchen window.

She was a single mother at the time and she used all her savings, and we all loved that home as long as she could live there.

How important do you think it is for a person my age to buy​ a​ home? My friends think I am nuts to even be considering it now.

Dear Nuts,

What a nice story. Your home or​, for some, your second home, ​is​ where so many memories are made when friends and family get together, as well as on special occasions. Some say home ownership is not for everyone, because it does involve responsibility, some maintenance and attention and it is stationary, but there really is no better first investment. There may be tax benefits, you may utilize a forced savings program and hopefully,​ ​you are​ building ​equity ​from the first day​ ​(you need a great Realtor to help you accomplish this).

Did you know that over 30 percent of the home sales in the U.S. are to first-time home buyers? Also, the interest rates are still very low, which enables buyers to get more for less. D​o​ you realize that if you could get a $400,000 mortgage now at 4 percent interest rate, but ​if ​instead you waited a year or two and the rates went up to 5.5 percent interest, that you would be paying $362 more a month for the next 30 years?

Things to consider

There are several factors for you to think about when you are making your decision to move forward when looking at homes​ ​​with your Realtor​. ​Consider where you are in life.

For one thing, what life events are coming up in your future​?​ Graduation, marriage, children, more schooling and other events may be relevant. Another item to consider is your job status and professional plans. Your ​current investments, or lack of them​,​ may increase the urgency to buy now​ as well.

Assistance moving forward

Your Realtor will likely advise you to visit with a lender and discover your next step in working toward qualifying for a home loan. As long as you get good ​Realtor​ and receive lender advice, I would say that if you move forward now, you will ​start to experience a pride similar to your Granny’s, and hopefully you will be on your way to financial stability for your future. Best of luck to you!

Joan Harned is an owner and broker for Keller Williams Mountain Properties and heads up Team Black Bear, her own real estate team. Harned has been selling real estate in Eagle County for 27 years, is a past chairman of the Vail Board of Realtors, past Realtor of the Year, past director on the Great Outdoors Colorado Board and a member of the Luxury and Land Institutes. Contact Harned with your real estate questions at, 970-337-7777 and

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