Auburn University is one of the largest institutions of higher education in Alabama, with an annual enrollment of more than 30,000 students each year. Considering Auburn has a population of only 65,000, it stands to reason that affordable housing is a constant commodity here. If you’re relocating to take a job at the university as a professor, faculty, or staff member, you may want to consider home buying rather than worrying about fluctuating rent affordability. The following first-time home buyer guide to Auburn University should give you an overview of the housing market to help you make an informed choice about where to put your down payment and monthly payments.
Why Consider Buying in Auburn?
Low vacancy rates and high demand have combined to create a perfect storm of rising rents in Auburn in recent years, especially around the University. The cost of off-campus housing shot up by 25 percent from 2015 to 2018, according to the Auburn Plainsman, and rents across the area have gone up uniformly, as well. For students looking to live off-campus, rentals may still make sense since they’re only needed for nine months out of the year. However, for faculty and staff taking up permanent residence, buying a home may make more financial sense for the long term than renting.
Another group that may benefit from buying in Auburn: parents of college students. If you’re footing the rental bill for your student to attend school at Auburn University, you might want to consider buying an investment property as an alternative. It provides your kid(s) a lower-cost housing option, plus it may afford other opportunities for rental income to offset the cost of a mortgage.
Where to Buy Your First Home in Auburn
While buying near the University itself may be convenient, it also tends to be more expensive. Median property values are higher around the University and points north and west, while they tend to be more affordable toward the south and east. Fortunately, the city is small enough that you can often find a deal within several miles of campus if you’re willing to commute.
What Kind of Property to Buy
Auburn has existing homes for sale in many different sizes, price points, and architectural styles, ranging from historic fixer-uppers to new constructions. However, the city’s growing population means there are a number of newer subdivisions available, and a brand-new construction home in Auburn is comparable in value to a pre-existing home of the same size. For busy university personnel, buying a new construction makes a lot of sense because everything is new, and less upkeep is required.
Find the New Construction Home of Your Dreams
If you’re moving to the Auburn area in connection with the University, Lowder New Homes is a preferred builder in the new Summerlin subdivision. Located just a few miles from campus, Summerlin is known for its brand-new luxury homes at surprisingly affordable prices.
Ready to get started, but need a little help with the home buying process? Our real estate agents can guide you through the house-hunting process — from open houses to home inspections. Our preferred mortgage lenders can walk first-time buyers through the home loan process step-by-step — including how credit scores, preapproval, mortgage rates, homeowners insurance, mortgage insurance, closing costs, and property taxes work. To discuss your homeownership options with one of our real estate agents, give us a call at 334-270-6789.