How Much Time do you Need to Save for a Down Payment?

One of the biggest hurdles homebuyers face is saving for a down payment. As you’re budgeting and planning for your home purchase, you’ll want to understand how much you’ll need to put down and how long it will take you to get there. The process may actually move faster than you think.

Using data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Apartment List, we can estimate how long it might take someone earning the median income and paying the median rent to save up for a down payment on a median- priced home. Since having a down payment can be a great time to practice budgeting for housing costs, this estate also uses the concept that a household should not pay more than 28% of their total income on monthly housing expenses.

According to the data, the national average for the time it would take to save for a 10% down payment is right around two and a half years (2.53). Residents in Iowa can save for a down payment the fastest, doing so in just over one year (1.31). The map below illustrates this time (in years) for each state:

What if you only need to save 3%?

What if you’re able to take advantage of one of the 3% down payment programs available? It’s a common misconception that you need a 20% down payment to buy a home, but there are actually more affordable options and down payment assistance programs available, especially for first time buyers. The reality is, saving for a 3% down payment may not take several years. In fact, it could take less than a year in most states, as shown in the map below.

Bottom Line:

Wherever you are in the process of saving for a down payment, you may be closer to your dream home than you think. Let’s connect to explore the down payment options available in our area and how they support your plans.

February 2021 Market Activity

Check out market activity from February!

While there is a decrease from previous years in New Listings, the number of pending sales is up by 51.6% compared to the previous year and sold sales is increased by 35.2%.
Looking at this February compared to past years, the number of condos/TIC/coop on the market has decreased by 16.7%. If you thinking of selling, now could be the time with a decreased number of condos on the market.
The number of pending condo/TIC/coop sales has skyrocketed this February compared to previous years, explained by the current hot real estate market.
The number of sold listings was increased for February, again explainable by the increased market activity in recent months

The real estate market, specifically focusing with condos, tic, and co-ops for February continues to be hot. In the past few months, the market has seen much increased activity with the number of pending and sold sales. If you are considering buying or selling your condo or home, there is no better time than now! Feel free to reach out to discuss the current market, or for any advice!

Sources: San Francisco Association of Realtors

Market Updates -January 2021

The Condo Market is hot right now! Check out some updates from January

Looking at 2020 compared to 2021, pending sales are up by 77.4% and sold listings are up by 68.4%. The condo market saw a huge increase in activity during the month of January.
Looking at a monthly breakdown of condo pending sales, December 2020 and January 2021 have seen a large increase as condo activity has greatly increased
Looking at a breakdown of condo inventory, over the past year, inventory was incredibly high from June to November 2020, and looks to be decreasing as we are heading into 2021 more, possibly due to the increased sale and pending rates.

If you are considering selling or purchasing a condo now is a great time! Feel free to reach out with any questions as I would love to discus the current market with you!

New Condo Listing!- 199 New Montgomery #1007

Sunny 1-BR/1-BA in Vibrant Yerba Buena

Located in the heart of the vibrant Yerba Buena, this sunny one bedroom corner unit enjoys a rare floor plan and expansive windows that capture views of downtown and bring the space to life. Filled with natural light and high up on the 10th floor facing historic New Montgomery Street, the home features glistening hardwood floors and a flexible open floor plan, ideal for living, working, and entertaining (post covid). The kitchen seamlessly flows into the living and dining space, with handsome wood cabinets, lots of granite counters space along with breakfast bar, stainless steel appliances, and views of downtown. The bedroom has its own set of windows and a large walk in closet great for storage. A large bathroom, in unit washer and dryer as well as parking make the home all that more comfortable. Building amenities include a 24 hour front desk attendant, incredible Roof deck with wrap around views, barbecue and lounge area. Constant activity and entertainment surrounds the building including Michelin rated restaurants, museums and shopping. Near the Financial District, Union Square, Embarcadero. Easy access to Muni, Bart, and highways.

Just Listed- 355 1st Street #S1808

Spectacular 1 BR/1 BA overlooking the city at the Metropolitan

Property Website

Experience luxury highrises condo living at its finest on the 18th floor of the exquisite urban-modern Metropolitan. This 1 BR 1 BA condo offers a flexible live/work space in the heart of San Francisco. The floor to ceiling windows invite in an abundanc of natural light filling the open space and bedroom. The expansive chef’s kitchen features state of the art stainless steel appliances, granite countertops and opens to the living space, wonderful for cooking and entertaining post COVID. The upgraded condo has gorgeous bamboo floors throughout, freshly painted walls, in unit washer and dryer as well as storage and a coveted parking space. The unit is located in the luxurious Metropolitan with an abundance of wonderful amenities including a 24 Hour Doorman, movie theater, indoor pool, huge gym, business center, conference room, bike parking, and concierge services. Not to forget, the prime lotion of the unit in the heart of south beach, this condo is in walking distance to world class restaurants, the Embarcadero, the Ferry Building, Financial District, Union Square, AT&T Park, and CalTrain.

Where Have all the Houses Gone?

In today’s housing market, it seems harder than ever to find a home to buy. Before the health crisis hit us a year ago, there was already a shortage of homes for sale. When many homeowners delayed their plans to sell at the same time that more buyers aimed to take advantage of recording- low mortgage rates and purchases a home, housing inventor dropped even further. Experts consider this to be the biggest challenge facing an otherwise hot market whole buyers continue to compete for homes. As Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com explains:

“With buyers active in the market and seller participation lagging, homes are selling quickly and the total number available for sale at any point in time continues to drop lower. In January as a whole, the number of for sale homes dropped below 600,000.

Every month, realtor.com releases new data showing the year- over-year change in inventory of existing homes for sale. As you can see in the map below, nationwide, inventory is 42.6% lower than it was at this time last year:

Where Have All the Houses Gone? | MyKCM

Does this mean houses aren’t being put on the market for sale?

Not exactly. While there are fewer existing homes being listed right now, many homes are simply selling faster than they’re being counted as currently inventory. The market is that competitive! It’s like when everyone was trying to find toilet paper to buy last spring and it was flying off the shelves faster than it could be stocked in the stores. That’s what’s happening in the housing market: homes are being listed for sale, but not at a rate that can keep up with heavy demand from competitive buyers.

In the same realtor.com report, Hale explains:

“Time on the market was 10 days faster than last year meaning that buyers still have to make decisions quickly in order to be successful. Today’s buyers have many tools to help them do that, including the ability to be notified as soon as homes meeting their search criteria hit the market. By tailoring search and notifications to the homes that are a solid match, buyers can act quickly and compete successfully in this faster- paced housing market.”

The Good News for Homeowners

The health crisis has been a major reason why potential sellers have held off this long, but as vaccines been more widely available, homeowners will start making their moves. Ali Wolf, Chief Economist at Zonda, confirms:

“Some people will feel comfortable listing their home during the first half of 2021. Others will want to wait until the vaccines are widely distributed.”

With more homeowners getting ready to sell later this year, putting your house on the market sooner rather than later is the best way to make sure your listings shines brighter than the rest.

When you’re ready to sell your house, you’ll likely want to sell as quickly as possible, for the best price, and with little to no hassle. If you’re looking for these selling conditions, you’ll find them in today’s market. When demand is high and inventory is low, sellers have the ability to create optimal terms and timelines for the sale, making now an exceptional time to move.

Bottom Line

Today’s housing market is a big win for sellers, but these conditions won’t last forever. If you’re in a position to sell your house now, you may not want to wait for your neighbors to do the same. Let’s connect to discuss how to sell your house safely so you’re able to benefit from today’s high demand and low inventory.

Construction Update! The Serif

Serif, a chic, urban condo residence has been making much construction progress!

Located in Mid- Market, 950 Market Street, San Francisco, this 12 story new construction is working to create a space that is more than just your home, but also your lifestyle combining theater, art, retail, dining, and nightlife in a up and coming dynamic area in the city.

Here are a few updates:

  • Mockups of the interior finishes and fixtures are in progress including countertops, cabinetry, some appliances, bathroom tile, shower enclosures, plumbing fixtures, and door hardware.
  • Cabinets are being installed in homes on the 3rd floor.
  • The final construction hoist will be removed and exterior paneling completed in February. 
  • The framing of the lobby has begun and the Market St. entry structural steel is installed.
  • The structural steel of the rooftop solarium is in place and undergoing fireproofing and painting.

Come Spring, the sales gallery will be ready to view and explore.

Head over to the property website to learn so much more about the personal residences available, building including amenities, exclusive features, and so much more about this new chic story building in San Francisco.

*information sourced from website and email updates

Perfect Life/Work Loft Condo for Lease

Have you been looking for the perfect space to combine your work and life space? Look no further because this condo could be the perfect place for you.

Characterized by its soaring ceilings & enormous windows, this fabulous loft-condo corner unit is a true live/work space with its own separate entrance along with an entrance from the lobby. The main live/work space has spectacular double high ceilings, great natural light, built-in shelves, & an open stairway which leads to the BR on the second floor, great for sheltering in place, working from home,& entertaining (post Covid). The recently renovated eat-in kitchen has quality stainless steel appliances, a beautiful tile floor, handsome Caesarstone countertops, recessed lighting, & ample cabinetry for maximum storage. Adjacent to the kitchen is a full bath with W/D. The upper-level BR has floor to ceiling windows, wood floors, a large closet, and remodelled ensuite bathroom. One car parking is included. Building amenities include a shared courtyard. Close to many wonderful restaurants,shops & parks, w/easy access to freeways, BART/MUNI,& corporate shuttles.Property is virtually staged.

Reach out to schedule a COVID Compliant listing today!

Just Listed

101 Lombard Unit 712W


This remarkable condo features exceptional finishes, wide plank floors and quality upgraded fixtures making it a lovely oasis in North Waterfront. Designed with entertaining in mind, this condo has plenty of space to move around in, also ideal for working from home. The condo also features a private terrace with views of Coit Tower and Telegraph Hill. This prestigious 5-star amenity building has Resort-style Amenities, including 24-hour concierge services, heated outdoor pool and hot tub, and a fabulous club room and library. Close to Telegraph Hill, the Ferry Building, Waterfront, Parks, North Beach, FiDi, and Transportation.

Reach out to schedule a private showing today!

How to Make the Dream of Ownership a Reality This Year

1. How Can I Better Understand the Process, and How Much Can I Afford?

The process of buying a home is not one to enter into lightly. You need to decide on key things like how long you plan on living in an area, school districts you prefer, what kind of commute works for you, and how much you can afford to spend.

Keep in mind, before you start the process to purchase a home, you’ll also need to apply for a mortgage. Lenders will evaluate several factors connected to your financial track record, one of which is your credit history. They’ll want to see how well you’ve been able to minimize past debts, so make sure you’ve been paying your student loans, credit cards, and car loans on time. If your financial situation has changed recently, be sure to discuss that with your lender as well. Most agents have loan officers they trust and will provide referrals for you.

2. How Much Do I Need for a Down Payment?

In addition to knowing how much you can afford on a monthly mortgage payment, understanding how much you’ll need for a down payment is another critical step. Thankfully, there are many different options and resources in the market to potentially reduce the amount you may think you need to put down.

If you’re concerned about saving for a down payment, start small and be consistent. A little bit each month goes a long way. Jumpstart your savings by automatically adding a portion of your monthly paycheck into a separate savings account or house fund. AmericaSaves.org says:

3. Saving Takes Time: Practice Living on a Budget

As tempting as it is to pass the extra time you may be spending at home these days with a little retail therapy, putting that extra money toward your down payment will help accelerate your path to homeownership. It’s the little things that count, so start trying to live on a slightly tighter budget if you aren’t doing so already. A budget will allow you to save more for your down payment and help you pay down other debts to improve your credit score.

survey of millennial spending shows, “68% reported that shelter in place orders helped them save for their down payment.” Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com, also notes:

“If there is any silver lining to the current economic landscape, it’s that mortgage rates are hanging around record lows…Additionally, shelter-in-place orders helped many who were fortunate enough to keep their jobs save for a down payment — one of the largest hurdles of buying a home. The combination of low rates and the opportunity to save is enabling many millennials to move up their home buying timeline.”

While you don’t need to cut all of the extras out of your current lifestyle, making smarter choices and limiting your spending in areas where you can slim down will make a big difference.

Bottom Line

If homeownership is on your dream list this year, take a good look at what you can prioritize to help you get there. To determine the steps you should take to start the process, let’s connect today.