When shopping for something, having more to choose from is generally a good thing. This is especially true for homes. Not only do home buyers have more options, but prices stay at a reasonable level. When there are enough homes to meet demand from interested home buyers, prices moderate. However, over the past few years, available housing inventory has been lower than normal in most markets. At this time last year, inventory was down 9.1 percent on an annual basis, according to new data by Zillow. Because of this, home values have been increasing. That may be starting to change, however. The number of homes for sale has now increased year-over-year for three consecutive months. Although the most recent improvement was only 0.4 percent, it’s still a good sign for home buyers. If inventory continues to gain, even small increases could lead to more favorable affordability conditions. More here.
Real estate is about location. From neighborhood to neighborhood, conditions may differ. Pricier neighborhoods will have different dynamics than more affordable areas. Hot spots that offer home buyers features and amenities will have different conditions than less popular areas farther from the action. That’s why most people work with real estate professionals when buying or selling a home. It’s advantageous to work with someone who has expertise in the specific parts of town you’re interested in. But that’s not to say you can’t have a general sense of where the market is headed. Take the most recent forecast from Freddie Mac, for example. The outlook says, though the housing market will slow down this fall and winter, high demand for homes will mean more sales and competition next year. It also says home price growth will begin to slow next year. Overall, according to Freddie Mac’s outlook, home buyers and sellers should expect next year’s market to look relatively similar to this year’s. More here.
Typically, spring and summer are thought of as the prime times to buy or sell a home. There are a number of reasons for this, including the good weather and the end of the school year which makes moving easier for home buyers. There are more homes for sale and more active home buyers during the busiest sales season. Fall and winter, on the other hand, are the time of the year when the housing market slows down. The approaching holidays and colder temperatures across much of the country mean fewer Americans are in the mood for a move. However, that can provide opportunities for home buyers who are ready to move. A recent analysis looked at the country’s largest metro areas and compared typical affordability levels, projected rent increases, and price cuts to determine where home buyers might have the best chances in the coming months. The results showed conditions in hot markets like Orlando, Boston, Seattle, and Las Vegas are becoming more favorable as the end of the year approaches. That means, interested home buyers may be in a better position this fall and winter than they will be next spring when things begin to heat back up. […]
When an offer on a home has been accepted, that home’s sale is considered pending. It isn’t final until closing, which typically takes place a few weeks later. But, because most accepted offers result in completed sales, the National Association of Realtors tracks contract signings as an indicator of what sales should look like in the near future. In September, the NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index showed a slight increase from the month before, though it’s still below where it was at the same time last year. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, says the month-over-month increase is a good sign. “This shows that home buyers are out there on the sidelines, waiting to jump in once more inventory becomes available and the price is right,” Yun said. In other words, though tight housing inventory and the end of the summer season may lead to slower sales in the near term, home buyer demand remains elevated. Additionally, Yun points out that compared to data going back to the year 2000, affordability levels are favorable and should help keep housing demand steady in the coming months. More here.
First-time home buyers are important to the health of the housing market, since they typically account for around 40 percent of the homes sold. Although that number has fallen in recent years, a stronger economy and job market has led to increasing demand from younger home buyers. According to one recent survey, an overwhelming majority of Americans between the ages of 18 and 34 say they want to own a home, if they don’t already. The youngest respondents were among the most enthusiastic. Generation Z – which includes Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 – were more than twice as likely to have started, or plan to start, saving for a home before the age of 25 than previous generations. Also, two in five Gen-Z participants said they hope to become homeowners by that age. This shows that members of Generation Z are saving up for down payments as well as building credit to be eligible for mortgage loans in the near future. While they want to become homeowners, they don’t necessarily have the same motivations as previous generations. Fewer of them said they wanted to become homeowners “to live the American Dream” or because they think […]
Sometimes picking a house to buy can cause anxiety. After all, what if you choose the wrong one and aren’t happy living there? What if there are structural or mechanical issues that go undetected and will end up meaning costly renovations? It’s hard to imagine that you could possibly cover all the potential issues in just a few walkthroughs. And so, it’s natural to worry about buyer’s remorse. But, according to a new survey, you might be worrying yourself unnecessarily. The results show an overwhelming majority of respondents said they love their current home. In fact, 83 percent of participants said they were happy in their house. To some degree, the responses fell along demographic lines, with people 55 years or older and retirees being the most likely groups to say they love their home and have no plans to move. Respondents between 18 and 34 were more likely to want to move. There were also regional differences. For example, residents in Boston and Detroit were more likely to say they like their current home and would rather renovate than move, while the survey found Los Angeles residents were the most likely to say they’d prefer a new house. […]
When builders feel confident that there are a lot of home buyers looking for new homes, they build more homes. It’s simple, really. It’s also good for the housing market, as more new homes help provide choices and keep prices from spiking. That’s why the National Association of Home Builders tracks builder confidence each month. In October, their survey found that builders are optimistic about the market for newly-built homes, and are confident that home buyer demand will remain high. “Builders are motivated by solid housing demand, fueled by a growing economy and a generational low for unemployment,” Randy Noel, NAHB’s chairman, said. “Builders are also relieved that lumber prices have declined for three straight months from elevated levels earlier this summer, but they need to manage supply-side costs to keep home prices affordable.” Among the survey’s three components – scored on a scale where any number above 50 indicates more builders view conditions as good than poor – current sales conditions rose a point to 74 and expectations for the next six months increased to 75. The results are an encouraging sign that new home inventory will improve and help bring more balance to the market, which is […]
The housing market is competitive, but just because homes are being swept up quickly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do your homework. Make sure you’re paying attention during a house tour. Don’t forget to look out for things like leaks and mold. This article will tell you how to get the most out of a tour: https://realestate.usnews.com/real-estate/articles/how-buyers-can-make-the-most-of-a-house-tour
Property listings give you plenty information about the house itself, like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, when the house was built, etc. But it’s much harder to find out what your neighbors are like. Just one visit won’t determine if you’ll get along with them or not. Fortunately, though, most Americans say they have good neighbors. In fact, according to the results of a new survey from the National Association of Realtors’ consumer website, three out of four people said they have good neighbors. That means that you’ll likely get along with the people living around you. But what exactly makes a neighbor good? Well, respondents said being trustworthy and quiet were the most important qualities in a neighbor and being disrespectful of property was the worst trait a neighbor could have. But while everyone wants to have a good relationship with their neighbors, they don’t necessarily expect to become best friends. Very few participants said a close friendship was a must, with just 9 percent of women saying so and 20 percent of men. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/three-out-of-four-people-believe-they-have-good-neighbors-300733475.html?utm_source=AKZO+Media+Subscribers&utm_campaign=579a41f907-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_10_18_08_07&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_134f701abc-579a41f907-276542805
A home’s price isn’t the only factor to consider when calculating the cost of a home. Things like mortgage rates, potential maintenance and upkeep, property taxes, and insurance are all part of the equation. However, the listed price is still the main factor, and it’s the easiest to measure. Because of this, prospective homebuyers are always thinking about where home prices are headed. New numbers from ATTOM Data Solutions offer homebuyers some good news. According to their Q3 2018 U.S. Home Sales Report, home prices only rose 1 percent in the third quarter and are now up 4.8 percent from last year. That’s the slowest price appreciation since 2016. The report found that price increases slowed in 74 of the 150 metro areas analyzed, including Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, and Miami. Despite the encouraging news, however, not all housing markets are cooling down. In fact, some metros continue to see double-digit gains year-over-year, while others are seeing as little as 3% or lower price gains. Housing markets differ vastly from metro to metro, so it’s best to research the area. More here.