Forget the Price of the Home. The Cost is What Matters.

Home buying activity (demand) is up, and the number of available listings (supply) is down. When demand outpaces supply, prices appreciate. That’s why firms are beginning to increase their projections for home price appreciation going forward. As an example, CoreLogic increased their 12-month projection for home values from 4.5% to 5.6% over the last few months. The reacceleration of home values will cause some to again voice concerns about affordability. Just last week, however, First American came out with a data analysis that explains how price is not the only market factor that impacts affordability. They studied prices, mortgage rates, … [Read more...]

How to Determine If You Can Afford to Buy a Home

The gap between the increase in personal income and residential real estate prices has been used to defend the concept that we are experiencing an affordability crisis in housing today. It is true that home prices and wages are two key elements in any affordability equation. There is, however, an extremely important third component to that equation: mortgage interest rates. Mortgage interest rates have fallen by more than a full percentage point from this time last year. Today’s rate is 3.75%; it was 4.86% at this time last year. This has dramatically increased a purchaser’s ability to afford a home. Here are three reports validating that … [Read more...]

Think Prices Have Skyrocketed? Look at Rents.

Much has been written about how residential real estate values have increased since the housing market started its recovery in 2012. However, little has been shared about what has taken place with residential rental prices. Let’s shed a little light on this subject. In the most recent Apartment Rent Report, RentCafe explains how rents have continued to increase over the last twelve months because of a large demand and a limited supply.  “Continued interest in rental apartments and slowing construction keeps the national average rent on a strong upward trend.” Zillow, in its latest Rent Index, agreed that rents are continuing on an “upward … [Read more...]

Depending on the Price, You’re Going to Need Advice

To understand today’s complex real estate market, it is critical to have a local, trusted advisor on your side – for more reasons than you may think. In real estate today, there are essentially three different price points in the market: the starter-home market, the middle-home market, and the premium or luxury market. Each one is unique, and depending on the city, the price point in these categories will vary. For example, a starter or lower-end home in San Francisco, California is much more expensive than almost any other part of the country. Let’s explore what you need to know about each of these tiers. Starter-Home Market: This market … [Read more...]

3 Signs the Housing Market Is on the Rebound

The residential real estate market has been plodding along for most of the year. However, three recent reports show the market may be on the verge of a rebound. The residential real estate market has been plodding along for most of the year. However, three recent reports show the market may be on the verge of a rebound: 1. Existing Home Sales (closed sales) are up, marking two consecutive months of growth. 2. Pending Home Sales (contracts signed) are up with each of the four major regions reporting both month-over-month growth and year-over-year gains in contract activity. Here is the month-over-month growth: The Northeast rose 0.7% The … [Read more...]

Are You Ready for the ‘Black Friday’ of Real Estate?

According to a new study from realtor.com, the week of September 22 is the best time of year to buy a home, making it ‘Black Friday’ for homebuyers. Every year, ‘Black Friday’ is a highly anticipated event for eager shoppers. Some people prepare for weeks, crafting and refining a strategic shopping agenda, determining exactly when to arrive at each store, and capturing a wish list of discounted must-have items to purchase. But what about buying a home? Is there a ‘Black Friday’ for the home-buying process? Believe it or not, there is. According to a new study from realtor.com, the week of September 22 is the best time of year to buy a home, … [Read more...]

Is Your House “Priced to Sell Immediately”?

In today’s real estate market, more houses are coming to market every day. Eager buyers are searching for their dream homes, so setting the right price for your house is one of the most important things you can do. According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, home values have risen at over 6% a year over the past two years, but have started to slow to 3.6% over the last 12 months. By this time next year, CoreLogic predicts home values will be 5.4% higher. With prices slowing from their previous pace, homeowners must realize that pricing their homes a little over market value to leave room for negotiation will actually dramatically … [Read more...]

Home Prices Increase in Every Price Range

Price appreciation can differ depending on your price range. CoreLogic analyzed four individual home prices tiers and shares the increase in each one. CoreLogic’s Home Price Index (HPI) Report revealed, “National home prices increased 3.6% year over year in July 2019 and are forecast to increase 5.4% from July 2019 to July 2020.” They also analyzed four individual home-price tiers, showing the increase in each. Here’s the breakdown: To clarify the methodology, CoreLogic explains, “The four price tiers are based on the median sale price and are as follows: homes priced at 75% or less of the median (low price), homes priced between 75% and … [Read more...]

Experts Predict a Strong Housing Market for the Rest of 2019

We’re in the back half of the year, and with a decline in interest rates as well as home price and wage appreciation, many are wondering what the predictions are for the remainder of 2019. Here’s what some of the experts have to say: Ralph McLaughlin, Deputy Chief Economist for CoreLogic “We see the cooldown flattening or even reversing course in the coming months and expect the housing market to continue coming into balance. In the meantime, buyers are likely claiming some ground from what has been seller’s territory over the past few years. If mortgage rates stay low, wages continue to grow, and inventory picks up, we can expect the U.S. … [Read more...]

The Benefits of Growing Equity in Your Home

Over the last couple of years, we’ve heard quite a bit about rising home prices. Today, expert projections still forecast continued growth, just at a slower pace. One of the often-overlooked benefits of rising home prices is the positive impact they have on home equity. Let’s break down three ways this is a win for homeowners. 1. Move-Up Opportunity With the rise in prices, homeowners naturally experience an increase in home equity. According to the Homeowner Equity Insights from CoreLogic, “In the first quarter of 2019, the average homeowner gained approximately $6,400 in equity during the past year.” This increase in profit means if … [Read more...]