Is it really the perfect time to buy a home?

I really wish that I could afford to buy my own home right now. Not only do I dream of a big backyard where I can start a garden to grow my own fresh veggies and see my future kids playing outdoors, I also wish that my hard-earned money was going toward a home that I could fix up however I liked and that I would own forever. Or at least the foreseeable future.

Well, it finally seems that--at least for some of us--that reality may be within reach. A new report has determined that home prices are currently the lowest they have been in the past 10 years. So what are you waiting for?!

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In case you didn't know, the burst of the housing bubble affected many across the nation. Since prices hit their peak back in 2006, prices have been dropping like lead. But a recent report by S&P/Case-Shiller indexed the housing markets of 20 major cities and found that the average home prices were still dropping by 2.6% from a year before, with Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, New York and Portland hitting new lows.

On the one hand, this isn't great news for home owners who are hoping to sell their property. But on the other hand, now may be the best time to buy a house or apartment if you've been saving up money and have been thinking to take the plunge into home ownership. Paul Newport, an analyst for HIS Global Insight, confirms: "It's probably the best time to buy a home in decades."

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That being said, he adds that "unless you have good credit, you are probably going to have trouble qualifying for a loan."

Robert Shiller, a professor of economics at Yale University, thinks that "there's still a good chance we'll continue down for a year still." 

This is actually great news for me, since I don't think I would qualify for a good loan at this stage in my life. If Professor Shiller is right, it might not hurt to wait another year or two anyway. As someone who dreams of owning my own home, I am definitely excited about the plunging home prices—even though it doesn't say anything great about the current state of our economy.

Will you be investing in a home now that prices are so low? Share with us in the comments below!

Image via haglundc/flickr