Fairway Branch Sales Manager Karen Moravus Talks Homebuying on Podcast

A recent recipient of the Freddie Mac Home Possible® RISE Award, Fairway of the Carolinas Branch Sales Manager Karen Moravus joined the popular Freddie Mac Single-Family Home Starts Here podcast to discuss topics related to the homebuying industry.

Below is a portion of what she had to say.

On clearing up some buyers’ misconceptions about buying a home right now…

“A big part of it is education. When you speak with a customer from the very start, you need to learn what their circumstances are and what their goals are so we can start narrowing down the options available. A lot of people are still thinking that 20% is required for any type of down payment, and they don’t understand that there are a lot of opportunities through the local agencies and state programs that can help them get into a house without having those large sums of money to invest into the purchase. So, I think a lot of it is just going through and working with the local agencies and talking through the products and learning more about the customers and sharing with them the various program availabilities in the marketplace.

“There’s a misconception out there that these are difficult programs, and it’s not that they’re difficult or that the borrower is any less qualified. We just have to get creative in some of the financing options that are available to them. Keeping referral partners educated in what that looks like will certainly help facilitate more opportunity for the buyers that need these types of programs.”

On how homebuying technology has changed since COVID…

“Technology has really helped facilitate that homebuying experience, for sure. At Fairway, we worked hard to make sure we were firing on all cylinders to keep it easy for the homebuyers to keep the real estate market moving. And we really gave the customers a safe environment … whether it was a refinance or just that homebuying process.

“Fairway has an amazing phone application that gives the buyers the tools to scan documents, view their loan process, see what their stipulations are. So, if we are moving toward smartphones and staying away from some of those computers and printers, and we’re moving toward e-signing and e-documents and e-disclosures, then I think technology is something that we definitely need to keep in the forefront of what we do every day.”

On best homebuying practices developed during the pandemic…

“It’s about communication in this business. Communication is the key to making sure it’s a smooth process from start to finish for all parties. I think it’s about ongoing education to the community through webinars in this COVID world we’ve been living in, continued partnership growth with Realtors who’ve expressed interest in ways of showing homeowners that financing options really do exist and that now is still a really, really good time to invest in the real estate market in spite of the inventory challenges. So, I think we need to stay very communicative and engaged in the community to ensure that this keeps going in a positive direction.”

On low interest rates vs. price points and low inventory…

“I think that in a market where the inventory is challenged and low in some markets, in the Carolinas we’re starting to see it come back a little bit. It’s not quite where we want it to be just yet, but we’re moving in that direction. It can be easy – especially for first-time homebuyers who’ve never been through this process before – to feel discouraged. So it’s about encouraging patience and a positive reinforcement that rates still remain really low. It may take a little bit longer to make that dream happen, but homeownership is still a great way to go. We must remind buyers not to give up. You can continue to not only build personal wealth, but it’s definitely a place we want to see more opportunity open up.

“So we have to make sure we’re just keeping buyers focused and on the right track. I have heard frustration from some customers because they make multiple offers and they’re hearing the word ‘no’ more often than they want to hear. But I think it’s going in the right direction. Keeping them positive is definitely something we want to stick with. And we want to continue to show our real estate partners they just need to keep on keeping on. Homeownership is still the way to go.”

On what’s on the horizon in the homebuying industry…

“Everyone always asks that question, and it’s a valid question, for sure. If I tell someone the market is going to improve, it could slip a little bit. As soon as I tell them it’s about to take a downward turn, we’re going to see some improvement. So, we try not to give them specific direction other than to say it’s changing. It’s an ever-changing animal and something could change in the world tomorrow that impacts our markets here in the states today. We could see the rates shift in a completely different direction than we were expecting. So, that’s a hard question to answer.

“I don’t know that there’s a right answer to give. I always tell my customers we need to look at what their goals are first. If they’re happy with the payment they’re looking at and the house they’ve found, then they need to pull the trigger today. What happens tomorrow could end up putting them in a situation that they didn’t want to be in to begin with. It’s kind of like stock market investment. You never know when the perfect time to buy or sell a stock is until that exact moment has come and gone. We just hope we are pinpointing that exact time when we pull the trigger.”

For more…

To hear the entire podcast, go here. To learn more about Karen, visit her page.

Are you currently working with a Fairway Mortgage Planner?

Yes No

Are you currently working with a Fairway Mortgage Planner?

Yes No