MINNEAPOLIS — Bankrate ranked 50 metro areas across the U.S. for first-time homebuyers, and Minneapolis ranked fourth best overall.
Minneapolis got that ranking because of a low unemployment rate, strong job growth and short commutes. The city also did well in affordability and wellness.
But if you're buying for the first time, experts say this is a strange market for buyers to navigate.
Even though the housing market has slowed, home prices are still high, which can be difficult for buyers struggling to pay down credit cards or student loans.
Minneapolis is also a competitive market.
If sellers have a lot of offers, they tend to choose bids that include more cash and less financing.
And we can't forget that mortgage rates are significantly higher than a couple of years ago.
While buyers navigate that, sellers will have to navigate a market that's changed within the past two years.
Experts say sellers need to take more care in staging their homes and consider readjusting their home's price.
"A year or two ago, sellers could ask whatever they wanted, and it didn't matter. Now, it's a little more important that sellers have a realistic list price," said Jeff Ostrowski, an analyst at Bankrate. "You don't want to ask for too much and then have your house sitting there on the market for weeks and weeks."
Ostrowski ended with some advice for first-time homebuyers looking for an affordable house: you don't need to put 20% down. Sometimes, 10% or 5% will do. And some programs allow you to put down as little as 3.5%.
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