A new survey has some mortgage experts a little worried. Americans seem to know more about the Kardashians than they do about how to buy a home.
While it may not be overly surprising, it is a little concerning. Here's what the Zillow survey says and why the information gap may be problematic in the coming years.
Keeping Up - With Buying a Home?
A new Zillow survey has highlighted a concerning information gap: people understand more about their favorite reality stars than they do about the home-buying process as a whole.
Over two thirds of respondents do not know the benefits of getting a pre-approved mortgage. However, nearly 85% know that Kim Kardashian had four children with Kanye West.
The Hill writes, "Americans are also more well versed in professional sports than home buying essentials with 71 percent saying they were aware 7-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady left the New England Patriots for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The average American answered 3 out of 5 questions correctly regarding celebrities, their love lives, and the NFL.
However, the average adult answered only 2 out of 5 questions correctly on Zillow’s homebuying basics section of the quiz. But most understood the impact of payment histories on a credit score and that a home appraisal evaluates the accuracy of a listing price."
Of course, people ask - if there are experts to help me navigate it, why do I need to know these things? As they say, knowledge is power.
The more you know about the buying process, the better chance you have at finding a deal that benefits you - not the experts setting up the deal. Having a pre-approved mortgage makes you more appealing to sellers, helps you set a budget plan, and expedites the buying process.
Of course, knowing those facts won't help you on your next gossip dish session with your best friend over coffee - but you can have that coffee in your very own home if you know enough.
Americans Often Fall Short on Understanding a Lot of Basics, but is it a Schooling or a Home Life Issue?
The information gap on basic life skills among Americans is nothing new. But it may be growing.
Older Americans often spent more time learning the basics from their parents; from changing the oil in a car to repairing appliances in the kitchen, balancing a checkbook and more.
Now, those same basic hands-on experiences are often made so complicated by technological advances that people choose to hire repairpeople instead. So instead of focusing on closing the information gap in other areas, many middle-aged parents have been letting YouTube answer their kids' questions. This is reflected in the absolutely booming influencer market designed to help viewers with basic "how to" questions they never learned from their parents.
It's not just at home where the lessons are failing to connect with those who need them. School budget shortfalls have forced many schools to cut non-core classes, which often includes home economics, life management and others.
That means kids who could once learn cooking, cleaning, and budget basics in the classroom if their parents weren't teaching them suddenly have nowhere to go but the internet. And you often don't know what you don't know.
So it's not surprising that scores of adults are getting to stages in their lives where they're discovering how many basics skills they haven't learned yet, and turning to YouTube for help.
While it's easy to scold adults for not knowing basic life skills, it's a societal problem. It's convenient to be able to dial up a repairman for your advanced technology and not try to earn a whole degree in electrical engineering to fix your toaster, but that doesn't mean other life skills should go unshared.
When the housing market eventually stabilizes, it will be a good time for those who have been renting and waiting for their chance to buy to swoop in and jump into the home-buyers experience. Now is the time to build that knowledge portfolio so you'll be ready. While the housing market doesn't look to cool tomorrow, it can't sustain this upward expansion for long.
With interest rates for average mortgages topping 6% now, the seller's market that has been booming for the past year is slowing to a crawl, and when rates come back down, it will be a buyer's market.
Experts recommend researching the process online or looking for community classes that guide first-time homebuyers through the process.
The more you know, the less unnecessary money you'll spend. Since most of us aren't Kardashians with more money than we can spend - that's a good thing.