lake county real estate. and then some…

selling homes…a family tradition


Leave a comment

Housing inventory is it’s lowest point since when?!

The National Association of Realtors issued their most recent housing report, at the end of last week.  Thinking of selling?  The housing inventory is at it’s lowest point in 10 years.  While that is good news for sellers, it will make buying a home a bit more challenging.  Buyer demand is expected to be greater than seller supply.  Exposing your property to the market before the spring rush may help you achieve top dollar as a seller.  And starting the search property earlier may help a buyer beat the competitive spring market.  Not sure what to do?  Call me, and we will discuss your options.

Existing Home Sales Rebound in December | Keeping Current Matters

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) just released their latest Existing Home Sales Report on Friday. Sales of existing homes rose by the largest increase ever recorded as they rebounded 14.7% over November’s numbers and now stand at 7.7% higher than a year ago.

While this is great news for the housing market, let’s take a look at one of the main reasons why there was such a large increase in sales.

As we explained last month, the implementation of the “Know Before You Owe” (TRID) initiative delayed some closings, pushing a portion of November’s would-be transactions to close in December.

“December’s rebound in sales is reason for cautious optimism that the work to prepare for ‘Know Before You Owe’ is paying off,” says NAR President Tom Salomone.

Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist, had this to say about the surge in December sales:

“While the carryover of November’s delayed transactions into December contributed greatly to the sharp increase, the overall pace taken together indicates sales these last two months maintained the healthy level of activity seen in most of 2015. Additionally, the prospect of higher mortgage rates in coming months and warm November and December weather allowed more homes to close before the end of the year.”

The most important realization to come out of the report is the fact that inventory of existing homes for sale dropped dramatically from a 5.1-month supply in November to the lowest figure since January 2005, at a 3.9-month supply.

A normal market, where prices rise with inflation, is defined as having a 6-7-month supply of homes for sale. As you can see in the chart below, inventory levels in 2015 were at or below a 5.2-month supply for the entire year.

2015 Months Inventory of Homes For Sale | Keeping Current Matters

If inventory levels do not recover, this could be a challenge for sales moving forward as buyer demand remains strong and competition for the homes that are on the market continues to rise.

Bottom Line

If you are considering listing your home for sale in 2016, now is the time! With inventory levels at their lowest mark in over 10 years, listing your home for sale before the busy spring buying season will give you the most exposure to buyers and allow you to get the best price for your home.

Advertisements


Leave a comment

If money were no object…

… and you could pick any of these celeb’s features to go into YOUR home…which would you choose? I like Gaga’s bowling alley 🙂 HGTV Canada put together a spread featuring some well known homeowners.  Some of the amenities that their homes include are impressive!  And some are down right enviable. Click on the link HERE to view the photo gallery
 

 
 


Leave a comment

Fannie Mae recently surveyed Americans on their knowledge of the mortgage process.

Almost 60% were uninformed, on items such as minimum FICO and various mortgage programs available. Do you have questions? I can connect you with some reputable mortgage brokers to walk you through the process.
 
What Do You Actually Need to Get a Mortgage? | Keeping Current Matters

Fannie Mae recently released their “What do consumers know about the Mortgage Qualification Criteria?” Study. The study revealed that Americans are misinformed about what is required to qualify for a mortgage when purchasing a home. Here are three takeaways:

  • 59% of Americans either don’t know (54%) or are misinformed (5%) about what FICO score is necessary
  • 86% of Americans either don’t know (59%) or are misinformed (25%) about what an appropriate Back End Debt-to-Income (DTI) ratios is
  • 76% of Americans either don’t know (40%) or are misinformed (36%) about the minimum down payment required

To help correct these misunderstandings, let’s take a look at the latest Ellie Mae Origination Insight Report, which focuses on recently closed (approved) loans.

FICO SCORES

Average FICO Score | Keeping Current Matters

BACK END DTI

Average Back End DTI | Keeping Current Matters

DOWN PAYMENTS

Average Down Payments | Keeping Current Matters

Bottom Line

Whether buying your first home or moving up to your dream home, knowing your options will definitely make the mortgage process easier. Your dream home may already be within your reach.


Leave a comment

Do you believe that “owing a place of your own” is one of the most appealing aspects of homeownership?

You aren’t along. Twenty-six percent of US households agree with you. What’s the number one reason…  
 

The Most Appealing Aspects of Homeownership | Keeping Current Matters

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) just released their first issue of the Housing Opportunities & Market Experience Survey (HOME). In the report, NAR revealed what Americans believe to be the most appealing aspects of homeownership.

Here is a graph showing the results:

The Most Appealing Aspects of Homeownership | Keeping Current Matters

It is interesting to see that the two most appealing aspects had nothing to do with money, but instead, addressed the non-financial benefits of homeownership.

 


Leave a comment

If you are thinking that 2016 is your year to move…

listing your home sooner than later may put you at a selling advantage. Last January, housing was off to a slow start due to the bitterly cold weather. This year, a lack of inventory is the driving force in slow sales. 
 

Lack-Of-InveLack of Listings Slowing Down the Housing Market | Keeping Current Matters

The housing crisis is finally in the rear view mirror as the real estate market moves down the road to a complete recovery. Home values are up. Home sales are up. Distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) have fallen dramatically. It seems that 2016 will be the year that the housing market again races forward.

However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory. While buyer demand looks like it will remain strong throughout this winter, supply is not keeping up.

Here are the thoughts of a few industry experts on the subject:

Calculated Risk:

“Low inventory is probably holding down sales in many areas.”

Capital Economics:

“A lack of housing inventory continues to drive developments in the market. As demand has slowly recovered, low inventory levels have weighed on home sales.”

Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist for CoreLogic:

“Many markets have experienced a low inventory of homes for sale along with strong buyer demand… These conditions are likely to persist as we enter 2016.”

Doug Duncan,Chief Economist at Fannie Mae:

“Several factors point to constrained housing affordability in 2016, particularly for first-time home buyers, including slow single-family supply response and limited inventory of starter homes on the market.”

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR:

“Sparse inventory and affordability issues continue to impede a large pool of buyers’ ability to buy, which is holding back sales.”

Bottom Line

If you are thinking of selling, now may be the time. Demand for your house will be strong at a time when there is very little competition. That could lead to a quick sale for a really good price.

 


Leave a comment

Thinking about signing a lease? You may want to think again…

The median asking rent is at its’ highest point since 1988. 

 

 When Is It A Good Time To Rent? NOT Now! | Keeping Current Matters People often ask whether or not now is a good time to buy a home. No one ever asks when a good time to rent is. However, we want to make certain that everyone understands that today is NOT a good time to rent.

The Census Bureau recently released their third quarter median rent numbers. Here is a graph showing rent increases from 1988 until today:

Median Asking Rents | Keeping Current Matters

A recent Wall Street Journal article reports that rents rose “faster last year than at any time since 2007, a boon for landlords but one that has stoked concerns about housing affordability for renters.”

 The article also cited results from a recent Reis Inc report which revealed that average effective rents rose 4.6% in 2015, the biggest gain since before the recession. Over the past 15 years, rents have risen at a rate of 2.7% annually.

Where are rents headed?

Jonathan Smoke, Chief Economist at realtor.com recently warned that:

“Low rental vacancies and a lack of new rental construction are pushing up rents, and we expect that they’ll outpace home price appreciation in the year ahead.” 

Bottom Line

According to the WSJ article:

“In general, the higher rents go, the more difficult it will be for young people to save for down payments, making them likely to rent even longer.”

One way to protect yourself from rising rents is to lock in your housing expense by buying a home. If you are ready and willing to buy, meet with a local real estate professional who can help determine if you are able to today!




Leave a comment

Thinking of selling your home this spring?

Housing inventory remains low in most markets. Get a jump start on competing sellers by beating them to the market. Not sure what your home is worth? Call me and we will run through the numbers!

Top Reason to List Your House For Sale Now! | Keeping Current Matters

If you are debating listing your house for sale this year, here is the #1 reason not to wait!

Buyer Demand Continues to Outpace the Supply of Homes For Sale

The National Association of REALTORS’ (NAR) Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun recently commented on the inventory shortage:

“While feedback from REALTORS® continues to suggest healthy levels of buyer interest, available listings that are move-in ready and in affordable price ranges remain hard to come by for many would-be buyers.”

The latest Existing Home Sales Report shows that there is currently a 5.1-month supply of homes for sale. This remains lower than the 6-month supply necessary for a normal market and well below November 2014 numbers.

The chart below details the year-over-year inventory shortages experienced in 2015:

Housing Supply Year-Over-Year | Keeping Current Matters

Anything less than a six-month supply is considered a “Seller’s Market”.

Bottom Line

Meet with a local real estate professional who can show you the supply conditions in your neighborhood and assist you in gaining access to the buyers who are ready, willing and able to buy now!