June is National Homeownership Month. National Homeownership Week began in 1995, which was the strategy of the administration under President Bill Clinton, to increase homeownership across America. Later, in 2002, President George W. Bush expanded the period of observation from a week to the entire month of June. National Homeownership Month reinforces the belief that owning a home is one of the steps towards achieving the American dream!
Tracy B (00:08):
Welcome to the Feeling is Mutual podcast. I'm your host, Tracy Beker, vice President of Marketing at First Federal Savings Bank. We are a community bank with a mutual charter. If you thought banking was boring, the feeling is mutual. But we're here to take the boring out of banking. In this podcast, we will bring our listeners real life stories and education on financial topics. Our topic today is the American Dream, and in honor of National Homeowners Month, we are joined by our very own chief lending officer, Tracy Tunnel. So we're gonna keep things on a fun, light, and informative basis today. So as I mentioned, June is celebrated as National Home Ownership month. And good morning, Tracy. How are you?
Tracy T (01:05):
I'm great. How are you Trace? I'm
Tracy B (01:06):
Doing great. Well, I think all of us dream of owning our own home one day, do we not? Uh, nothing can get more American than hosting your friends and your family and making your house a home. So, Tracy, I know this is one of your favorite topics to talk about mortgages and home lending. So before we dive into some fun facts and origins, why don't you tell us how this month came about?
Tracy T (01:34):
Absolutely. National Home Ownership Week began in 1995, which was the strategy of administration under President Bill Clinton to increase home ownership across America. Later in 2002, George W. Bush expanded the period of observation from a week to an entire month of June. National Home Ownership Month reinforces the belief that owning a home is one of the steps toward achieving the American dream. Did you guys know 66% of Americans own a home?
Tracy B (02:03):
Oh my goodness.
Tracy T (02:04):
Yeah. That's great. That's a
Tracy B (02:05):
Pretty high statistic.
Tracy T (02:06):
It is. So First Federal is celebrating national Home Ownership month by offering up to $450 off your appraisal on some purchase transactions this month. If you need help on your journey to home ownership, first Federal Savings Bank is here to help.
Tracy B (02:20):
Well, that is kind of a neat special that we're running, Tracy. You know, it seems like everything has their national observant days. There is. So, um, here our presidents went from a week to celebrating it for the whole month. So Tracy, there are so many benefits to owning a home. Why don't you tell our listeners just a few of 'em?
Tracy T (02:39):
Sure. One of the first ones is building wealth. Home ownership provides an opportunity to build equity and wealth over time as you pay off your mortgage and property values. Appreciate you can accumulate financial assets and create a stable foundation for your future. Home ownership also helps stability and security Owning a home stability and a sense of belonging. It provides a safe and comfortable environment for you and your family. You need to take pride in your ownership. Homeowners have vested interest in their communities and home ownership helps create strong and vibrant communities.
Tracy B (03:13):
And especially when you can get into a neighborhood where everyone gets along and everyone keeps their yards all tidy and
Tracy T (03:19):
Yeah, and have some little get togethers in the community.
Tracy B (03:22):
Some barbecues, some backyard barbecues. Yeah.
Tracy T (03:24):
And uh, another one to point out is educational opportunities. Research shows home ownership positively impacts educational outcomes, especially for children. Stable housing can lead to improved academic performance and increase educational attainment.
Tracy B (03:39):
That sounds like a good one. Well, I know that when my husband and I first bought our very first home, it was a big deal and the pride that we felt. I know. Um, because it did take us a long time to save and especially for that down payment. And, you know, there are so many benefits to owning a home. Thank you for all of that great information. So, okay, Tracy, you gave us all the benefits, so now come the mortgage payments. Now I have an interesting fact for you. So I learned that mortgage is a French term for death pledge <laugh>. So with the intention of being, um, that the pledge, the obligation dies when the debt is fully paid off. So I think we all dream of making that last mortgage payment. I know I do. I guess till death do us part takes on a different meaning here, I guess <laugh>.
Tracy T (04:34):
Yeah, it does. I'll add another fun one. Um, do you have any idea how housewarming parties came about? No. Because we all like housewarming
Tracy B (04:41):
Parties. Yes, we do.
Tracy T (04:43):
In the early days of the mortgage interest rates were pretty high. People think interest rates are high. Now they were 15 to 20%. That's
Tracy B (04:50):
Tracy T (04:51):
This made paying off a mortgage an even more momentous occasion. And homeowners would celebrate by throwing a big party and burning their mortgage documents. <laugh> calling it a mortgage burning party. Guests would bring gifts to help commemorate the home being owned free and clear. And this tradition has since involved into what we now call housewarming parties.
Tracy B (05:14):
And now it takes on the opposite. Usually you get your housewarming party at the beginning. At the beginning. So
Tracy T (05:19):
I probably would rather have that type of party than too, but hey, if you manage to pay off your mortgage, you can celebrate however you want.
Tracy B (05:26):
You got that right. So how about home ownership? Which age group makes up the largest percentage of home buyers? Because I know it, it's probably across the board, but I'd be interested to see which demographic is
Tracy T (05:38):
In 2022, millennials made up the largest group making up 43% of total buyers. A few other fun facts. This one was kind of fun. Sears, we all have heard of Sears before. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it used to be like the catalog mail order houses from 1908 to 1940, Sears took DIY to a whole new level. As many as 75,000 kits were sold in hundreds of styles, believe it or not, some in which are still in existence. Can you believe that?
Tracy B (06:05):
No. But you know, after, um, we were talking about this, I did of course get on my Google machine and look up all some interesting facts about that. And it said that there are over 70,000 still standing and most of them being in the Midwest. And they even had pictures of like the locations of 'em. So, and they look wonderful. They look like they're in style and traditional and probably very well built.
Tracy T (06:32):
Maybe we need a road trip to find, like, to go on the, to find them. A few other fun facts that I found, we were doing some research, guess the square footage of the largest home out there right now? 400,000 square feet and it's in India. So oh my, the smallest home, 25 square foot. I don't know if I could manage that at all. Like something else that's important. You know, everyone asks like, well, you're buying your first house. Well, I don't know how long I'm gonna be in the house. Average homeowners are in their first house about 13.2 years.
Tracy B (07:01):
I can believe
Tracy T (07:02):
That. And average Americans will own about three homes in their lifetime. So I think I'm probably at my last house right now. <laugh>.
Tracy B (07:09):
Those are fun facts. Tracy. A more serious note, I want our customers to know that banks are here to help their dreams come true. Of course, you know, with home ownership comes so much responsibility and you know, we save and we scrap and it's just not the cost of the home. Um, but I think buyers also need to be aware of the other expenses that come along with home ownership. You know, there's taxes, insurance, of course your home improvement projects. And I know that we do strive to help the buyer underst understand all of their expenses that they might incur and um, kind of just to understand every part of the buying process. So Tracy, where do you suggest, and I know we've talked about this many times, but if someone's truly interested in buying a home, what's the first thing to do?
Tracy T (08:05):
The first thing that anyone who's potentially looking for a house should meet with one of our loan officers. You know, our community bank, we're local to get pre-qualified. It's no charge for it. It's good for 120 days. The loan officers gonna look over their financials and find the best mortgage program to fit their needs. Everyone's needs and wants are different. First, federal Saving Bank offers a variety of mortgage products to fit everyone's needs from low down payment to grant programs, government loans, conventional loans, arm loans, jumbo loans, construction loans. We are a one-stop shop. And
Tracy B (08:38):
I know just from our conversation, you know, you talked about getting pre-approved and I just really wanna stress the importance of this. I know inventory is very low out there and I know that you've mentioned that it's really important if you wanna get your no pun intended, foot in the door and get that home that you and your partner are looking at. By having those
Tracy T (09:02):
Pre a prequalification
Tracy B (09:03):
Letter, qualification letter really does help that process.
Tracy T (09:06):
Absolutely. A realtor and a seller are gonna take you much more seriously. If you're coming in from a local bank and showing them a prequalification letter, we're ready to go. You are pre-qualified. You write up a sales contract, we can get the appraisal order. It's a much smoother transaction.
Tracy B (09:21):
Well, Tracy, thank you so much. I know I've learned a lot. Thank you all for tuning in. And just a reminder once again that your friends at First Federal Savings Bank can help you walk through that home buying process. We have so many knowledgeable and respected loan officers that are here to help. And of course, you can always go to our website, F f f b web.com for more information on this topic as we celebrate June as National Homeowners Month. Thank you all for listening, and we will join you on our next podcast.