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Latest Market Activity for March 2017

by Galand Haas

Good Monday Morning!

Home sales in Lane County were on the rise again last month, but the number of homes actively on the market for sale took a dive.  It still remains a great market for home sellers and a challenging market for homebuyers in Lane County.  Home price in our area also continues to climb.  With the recent decrease in mortgage loan interest rates, don't look for any change soon.  Here are the numbers for Lane County Real Estate in March of 2017.

Activity is warming up for the season in Lane County, although numbers seem to be a bit cooler this year compared to 2016. Closed sales (355) ended 3.3% below the 367 closings recorded last year in March 2016, but were a 43.7% improvement over the 247 closings recorded last month in February 2017. 


New listings (537) fared similarly, ending 3.8% under the 558 new listings offered in March 2016 but increasing 36.6% compared to last month in February 2017. 

There were 478 pending sales, a 29.5% increase from last month (369) but 7.7% under the offers accepted in March 2016 (518). 

Inventory in Lane County edged down to 1.7 months in March. Total market time averaged downward as well, ending at 69 days. 

Average and Median Sale Prices 

Comparing the average price of homes in the twelve months ending March 31st of this year ($268,100) with the average price of homes sold in the twelve months ending March 2016 ($244,600) shows an increase of 9.6%. The same comparison of the median shows an increase of 7.9% over that same period. 


Have An Awesome Week!

 

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

398 69th Place
398 69th Place
Price: $275,000 Beds: 3 Baths: 1 Half Baths: 1 Sq Ft: 1729
Wonderful home with a lot to offer! In Thurston neighborhood and distant view of mountain tops. Heat pump, granite tile counters, ash hardwood floors, tile floor, 2 bay windows, lots of storage space & natural light. Living room with wood-burning fi...

 



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8 Quick Tips On Preparing Your Home For Sale

by Galand Haas

Good Monday Morning!

Even in the hot sellers market that we currently have here in the Eugene and Springfield area, it is important to prepare your home for sale if you are going to put it on the market. Paying attention to detail and having your home in great condition can mean a quicker sale and far more money.  Even in this market, I see homes sit out there and not sell.  You still have to price your home right, but condition is an extremely important factor for most homebuyers.  Here is an article from "Realty Time" that will give you some pointers on preparing your home for sale.

Unless you've never bought or sold a house before and have never looked at home listings or watched a single show about real estate (which is pretty hard these days), you have some semblance of an idea of how your home should look when you go to sell it. You probably also have a clue about how best to show off that home in photos (or, at least, you know the importance of showing off that home in photos), even if you personally lack the skill to take them yourself.

But what happens when you ignore the rules? Does a hot market render them irrelevant? Is it OK to list a home for top dollar when the condition is more fixer-upper? "You might think that buyers can see the potential of a house that just needs a little bit of work, but most are looking for a house that is move-in ready and doesn't need any major repairs," said Business Insider. "And even a home that only needs minor repairs may still look like a bad deal to some buyers, turning them off based on appearance alone."

The truth is that if you want good money for your home, you have to do a little work to get it "show ready." Buyers expect to be able to walk into a clean, decluttered home - at the very least. If it's not updated, it better at least look like it's move-in ready.

So how do you explain this listing, then? We'll leave the address and other identifying info out of it to protect the innocent. But a few things we can say: The home is brand-new to the market, and is no bargain, as you might think from looking at the photos; It's priced at least $10,000 over what it should be, just based on comparables, which, for a house in the low $200,000s, is considerable. The photos were obviously taken by the homeowner, who clearly didn't know how to best show off the property (although there were a couple snaps that were passable for an amateur) and who, it looks like, didn't even care enough to try to get it right by: Getting the camera in focus, cleaning out cluttered spaces, and even making sure there weren't random people in the frame of one shot.

At least it will serve as a great example of "what not to do" when selling your home.

1. Don't take your own photos

We'd be remiss if we skipped over one of the main problems here before getting into the details. Don't Take Your Own Listing Photos. Oh, were we screaming? Photos that were not professionally done stick out like, well, photos that weren't professionally done.

"You already know that a listing with pictures attracts a lot more attention than one without, but do you know how to take great pictures of a home? Whether you're an agent or a person trying to sell his own home, it's vital that you make a big first impression, and pictures are the best (and maybe only) opportunity that you will have to do just that," said Inman.

If you absolutely insist on taking your own photos, at least consult some basic rules. Most of which were broken in the listing in question. Note that the photo below was one of the better of the bunch.

2. Address your kitchen

Don't want to make any upgrades to your kitchen before you get the home on the market? That'll cost you (literally). Even painting out those cabinets, a cheap and easy fix, would make a huge difference. But, if you're not going to make changes to improve this key area, at least make the most basic effort to show it in its best light by removing as much clutter as you can. That means everything off your countertops. And your fridge. And the top of our fridge. There's no reason that stuff can't be put away for photos, and for showings. Basic staging rule #1. 

3. Emphasize the space and function, not the other way around

That printer on the kitchen counterop says: "We don't have room for a home office." Unplug. Put in closet. Problem solved. 

4. Always keep your selling points in mind

People like bedrooms - clean and tidy bedrooms that they can imagine their children sleeping and playing in. What, exactly, are we trying to show off here? The dead animal on the wall? The clutter on the floor? The glare from the windows? Perhaps the unique angle of the image that ignored all those basic listing photo rules? This shot shows none of the attributes of the room and only makes a potential buyer question the seller's taste level—and gives them closet space concerns. 

5. Focus!

Maybe check the photo to make sure nothing is blurry before posting it? Just a suggestion. Also, even if this picture was in focus, it still wouldn't be effective. You're not selling bedding, you're selling a home. This image tells a potential buyer nothing about the size or condition of the room. 

6. Show off your bathroom

Where do we even start here? From the weird angle that doesn't show the space, to the missing light bulb, to the clutter in the shower/hanging robe, this is just all wrong. 

7. Emphasize outdoor space

It goes without saying that showing off your outdoor space is important. A little effort to repaint the unkempt patio would have helped. At the very least, mow the yard, trim the bushes, and remove the ladder. An unkempt backyard will only make a potential buyer wonder what else needs attention, especially if they've seen some questionable spaces indoors. 

8. Keep people out of your photos

Stalker alert! The straggler near the fence draws attention away from the other features of the yard - which, in this case, might not be so bad, really. Still…If you only have one photo of the yard or if the best of the bunch has a person in the frame, there's still one thing you can do: Learn how to use the camera's crop feature.

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

755 Horn Ln

Price: $295,000  Beds: 4   Baths: 2   Sq Ft: 1868

Tranquil & spacious property! Beautifully landscaped 0.41 acre lot provides seclusion & great entertaining spaces. Remodeled home offers updated kitchen & baths, large living rm w/ gas fp, formal dining, large windows+skylight. Private master ste w/...View Home for Sale>>



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Consider These 4 Criteria When Looking For Your Next Home

by Galand Haas

Good Monday Morning!

The low inventory of homes for sale that we currently have in our local Real Estate market has made home buying much more difficult.  The current shortage of homes for sale has driven prices up and made our home purchase market very competitive, especially in the price ranges where most first time homebuyers are looking.  It is easy to get caught up in this competitive market and pay too much for a home or purchase a home that may not fit your needs.  In this market, the help of a knowledgeable homebuyer specialist Realtor is a must.  They can help keep you from making mistakes that will haunt you down the road. It is also important to educate yourself about the current market and to not be forced into a rush purchase.  The following article from "Realty Times" talks about how to deal with a home purchase during this market.

There's no perfect home, but some homes are more ideal for your household than others. When you look for your next home, carefully consider these four criteria - price, features, location and condition. The closer you get to meeting all four criteria, the better your chances are of making a good buy.

Price

In any market, price has to come first. To determine what you can comfortably afford, talk to your real estate professional. He or she can recommend a lender who will prequalify you for a purchase loan. When you know how much you can spend, it will be easier to shop for homes within your price range. With luck, one will stand out.

Features

The size of your household and your activities determine the features you want in your next home. The number of bedrooms, baths and living areas are a matter of comfort and convenience. You may want an extra bedroom for guests or a second master suite for parents.

If you work a lot at home, you'll want a private home office or a computer nook. You may want a playroom for the kids, a separate laundry area, and fenced yard and covered patio for entertaining. An eat-in kitchen may be more important to you than a formal dining room. You may want an outdoor kitchen or at least an entertainment area.

Think about your daily life from morning to bedtime, and how your next home can make these activities more pleasant. This should be your "must-have" list, and will help you look at homes more objectively.

Location

Some areas will always be more expensive to live in than others. Neighborhoods that are well-kept tend to maintain higher home values. Homes that are close to jobs, schools and shopping centers tend to sell for more money than homes without as much infrastructure.

What is the best home you can find in the area where you want to live? If these homes are out of your range, you can compromise -- buy a smaller home or a home that needs lots of work in the best neighborhood you can afford.

Condition

Condition refers to the state of repair. Does the home have curb appeal? Is it updated and well-maintained, or does it need extensive and expensive remodeling? Carefully consider any deferred maintenance, such as a roof that may need to be replaced in only a few years. Consider the design and functionality -- is the kitchen too small and would you be able to afford to remodel it? Look closely at repairs, cleanliness and traffic flow.

The one advantage of buying a home that needs updates and repairs is that these homes cost less than updated homes in the same neighborhood.

Be prepared to compromise. Don't frustrate yourself or your family looking for perfection. Sometimes the home of your dreams doesn't have every feature on your checklist, or it may be a little further away than your favorite neighborhood, but you'll be happy if it has most of criteria you want at the price you can afford.

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEK'S HOT HOME LISTING!

32538 Hatfield St

Price: $485,000 Beds: 5 Baths: 3 Sq Ft: 2472

Beautiful new craftsman style home located in the heart of Coburg. Located within walking distance to restaurants, shops and city park. Master suite and guest suite on the main level. Great room concept with a bonus room upstairs. Front yard landscaping and RV parking. Completion date mid-July. Hurry so you can select your own colors! Updated exterior view/picture coming soon. Taxes not yet determined.

Beautiful new craftsman style home located in the heart of Coburg. Located within walking distance to restaurants, shops and city park. Master suite and guest suite on the main level. Great room concept with a bonus room upstairs. Front yard landscaping and RV parking. Completion date mid-July. Hurry so you can select your own colors! Updated exterior view/picture coming soon. Taxes not yet determined. - See more at: http://www.eugeneoregonhomesforsale.com/Property/32538-Hatfield-St-Coburg-Oregon#sthash.51RvKbXF.dpuf
Beautiful new craftsman style home located in the heart of Coburg. Located within walking distance to restaurants, shops and city park. Master suite and guest suite on the main level. Great room concept with a bonus room upstairs. Front yard landscaping and RV parking. Completion date mid-July. Hurry so you can select your own colors! Updated exterior view/picture coming soon. Taxes not yet determined. - See more at: http://www.eugeneoregonhomesforsale.com/Property/32538-Hatfield-St-Coburg-Oregon#sthash.51RvKbXF.dpuf



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Good and Bad News For Current Home Sales

by Galand Haas

Good Morning!

Here in the Eugene and Springfield area and nationally, new home sales are down.  This has contributed to the current national and local shortage of available homes for sale.  The following is an article from "Realtor.com" that will give you more information on why the inventory of homes for sale is so low at this time.

Here’s the good news: Sales of newly constructed homes rose in the beginning of the year. The bad news? It wasn’t enough to ease the housing shortage that is frustrating would-be home buyers across the nation.

Buyers purchased about 3.7% more new homes in January than in December, according to a joint report by the U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The January purchases were also 5.5% above where they had been a year earlier. (Realtor.com® looked only at the seasonally adjusted numbers, which have been smoothed out over 12 months to account for seasonal fluctuations.)

Sounds good, right? Well, not exactly.

“New-home sales should be growing much more than they are,” says Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke of realtor.com. “We should be seeing twice the volume of new-home sales, and we’re not.”

The reason is that there aren’t enough buyers who can afford the median $312,900 price tag of one of those new homes, often decked out with the latest appliances and finishes. They are nearly 37% more expensive than the median $228,900 price for an existing home in January, according to the most recent National Association of Realtors® data.

Prices on those new homes dipped 1% from December—but were nearly 7.5% higher than in January 2016.

New residences cost more because they’re expensive to build, with increased local red tape, high land and material costs, and a shortage of construction workers. So builders are going to erect only what they’re sure they can sell, Smoke says.

“It effectively limits who can buy the new homes and how many new homes can be built and sold,” Smoke says.

For example, about 55% of the new homes sold in January cost more than $300,000, according to the report.

Just 5% were under $150,000 and only 9% were between $150,000 and $199,999—the price categories that are most likely to fit into the typical first-time buyer’s budget.

The bulk of sales, about 30%, were between $200,000 and $299,999, and 27% were between $300,000 and $399,999.

Most of the home purchases were in the South—about 290,000—where prices are typically lower. The purchases were up 4.3% from December, but down 1% from January 2016.

The West, the country’s most expensive region, saw the second-most sales, at about 151,000. Monthly sales dropped 4.4% but rose 16.2% annually.

In the Midwest, new-home sales were up 14.8% from December and 4.5% from the same month a year earlier. There were about 70,000 sales in the region.

Meanwhile, the Northeast saw the largest surge in home purchases. Sales of the roughly 44,000 homes were up 15.8% from the previous month and rose 22.2% from a year earlier.

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

755 HORN LN

Price: $295,000    Beds: 4    Baths: 2    Sq Ft: 1868

Tranquil & spacious property! Beautifully landscaped 0.41 acre lot provides seclusion & great entertaining spaces. Remodeled home offers updated kitchen & baths, large living rm w/ gas fp, formal dining, large windows+skylight. Private master ste w/...View Home for Sale >>

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Latest Market Activity for February 2017

by Galand Haas

Good Morning!

Here are the numbers for the February 2017 Real Estate market in the Eugene and Springfield area.  As you can see, there was little change.  The inventory of homes for sale remains critically low and the result is fewer sales and higher home prices.  The Eugene/Springfield area remains as one of the lowest areas in the country for active homes for sale at just 2.2 months of active inventory available.  All that I can say is the same thing that I have been saying.  If you are thinking about selling your home in the near future, this is the top of the market for home pricing and you should take advantage of it. Here are the numbers for February.

 

February Residential Highlights

Activity in Lane County continued a cooling trend this February, but some numbers showed gains over January. New listings (393) showed a 22.8% gain over January 2017 but ended 5.5% below the 416 new listings offered last year in February 2016.

Similarly, pending sales (369) rose 16.0% above the 318 orders accepted last month in January 2017 but were 12.1% under the 420 orders accepted last year in February 2016.

Closed sales, at 247, ended 13.0% under February 2016 (284) and 9.5% under January 2017 (273).

February saw inventory in Lane County rise just slightly to 2.2 months. Total market time during the same period rose three days to 75 days.

Average and Median Sale Prices

Comparing the average price of homes in the twelve months ending February 28th of this year ($266,000) with the average price of homes sold in the twelve months ending February 2016 ($244,400) shows an increase of 8.8%. The same comparison of the median shows an increase of 8.3% over that same period.

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

1471 BARRINGTON AVE

Price: $514,900    Beds: 5    Baths: 3    Sq Ft: 3756

Luxurious & grand! Great Rm w/ surround sound, Brazilian cherry hardwd & gas fp. HUGE theater/bonus rm. Open KIT w/ cherry stained cabinets, island, LED under+above cabinet & toe-kick lights. Private mstr ste w/ access to back, bath w/ heated marble...View Home for Sale >>


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This Month in Real Estate March 2017

by Galand Haas

Good Morning!

Nationally, the housing market is experiencing little change.  So far, this is what I predicted for the first half of 2017 with a fairly flat market.  The second half of 2017 could see some change, especially if we see mortgage interest rates begin to creep up.  Here in the Eugene and Springfield area, the inventory of homes for sale remains at a crippling low level for first time home buyers.  Homes in the $175,000 to $300,000 range are scarce.  

If you are thinking about selling your home this year, don't hesitate.  Right now is the time to get it on the market.  The worst thing you could do this year is to wait for Spring and Summer.  The present market may be the best market we see in years for home sellers!

Have An Awesome Week!

Video Link: http://eugeneoregonhomesforsale.com/video/This-Month-in-Real-Estate-March-2017

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!


114 Hayden Bridge Way

Price: $249,900    Beds: 3    Baths: 2    Sq Ft: 1451

Pride of ownership shows. Over 1/4 of an acre offers oversize attached garage, detached garage/shop with workbench, long wide drive with room for RV parking, large fenced backyard with covered patio, plus timed sprinkler system. Great room with fire...View Home for Sale >>



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Good Morning!

Eugene's recent housing market is currently seeing record low number of homes on the market for sale.  In fact, the inventory right now is less than two months and second lowest in the nation.  The price range of homes that is hardest hit by this shortage is those that are at or below the median sales price of around $265,000.  This is the price range that most young families and first time home buyers are in.  The housing shortage has created some severe problems in our area as the shortage continues to drive home prices higher, making them less affordable.  Home price increases have outpaced the increase in income for our local area and as a result have actually pushed many first time home buyers completely out of the market or pushed them into price prices where there are low inventory and high demand.

Why does Eugene have one of the lowest inventories of available housing?

One major culprit is the fact that city and county land planners have refused to extend the urban growth boundary for Eugene.  This has caused a dire shortage of building lots and the shortage has lead to huge price increases for the existing lots.  The result of this is lack of new construction, which has fallen well below demand and has lead to a very high price for any new construction.  The urban growth boundary freeze is the primary culprit for low inventories and non-affordable housing, especially for young families and first-time home buyers.  As available lots become even more scarce the cost of housing continues to skyrocket and the affordability factor continues to decline.  This is not a healthy situation for any community.

Right now, City and County land planners are again refusing to expand the urban growth boundary for residential in Eugene.  This means a continuation of lot shortages, high priced lots, housing shortages and non-affordable housing for Eugene.  This refusal to extend the urban growth boundary for residential has choked our community for years and now during a time of crisis in the local housing market the planners refuse to help remedy our problem.

If you are concerned with the current housing crisis in Eugene, then I urge you to contact both county and city land planners and express your concern.  The failure to create affordable housing in Eugene will continue to choke our economy and drive our young families to other cities.

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!


1471 BARRINGTON AVE

Price: $514,900    Beds: 5    Baths: 3    Sq Ft: 3756

Luxurious & grand! Great Rm w/ surround sound, Brazilian cherry hardwd & gas fp. HUGE theater/bonus rm. Open KIT w/ cherry stained cabinets, island, LED under+above cabinet & toe-kick lights. Private mstr ste w/ access to back, bath w/ heated marble...View Home for Sale >>


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3 Steps To Save Money For Your Dream Home

by Galand Haas

Good Morning!

Today, with home prices rising faster than wages and a slight bump in mortgage interest rates, the home market for first-time homebuyers is tougher than it has been in a long time.  Saving enough money for a downpayment and also enough money to keep monthly payments in check can be a tough task.  The following article from "Realty Times" gives would be first-time homebuyers some good advice on how to prepare for a home purchase.

According to Harvard University's "State of the Nation's Housing" report, while more people than ever before want to own their own home, fewer feel financially ready to do so yet. Reasons range from high rents to student loan debt. Millennials, in particular, are waiting longer to get married, start families and purchase their first home. But this is not necessarily bad news for the housing market. In fact, it could mean that the millennial generation has something to teach us all about saving consistently towards a big life goal such as owning your own home!

In this article, learn three important steps to take when you start saving for your dream home.

Step 1: Pay down your debt to clean up your credit.

Your credit score is a tricky business when it comes to saving for your first home. You have no history of carrying a mortgage, so you can't make any real impact there. What you can do is to clean up your overall credit report so your general credit score is as healthy as possible before you apply for your mortgage loan.

According to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), a surprising number of Americans think they have "above average" (60 percent) to "very good" (41 percent) credit, although a full 48 percent have not seen their credit score in the past three years or ever.

So clearly, this is where you need to start. The best way to differentiate yourself from your competition (other people who are trying to convince a direct lender to give them a mortgage loan) is to pay down your debt, clear up any disputes on your credit report and, in so doing, boost your credit score so you can qualify for the best mortgage at the lowest interest rates.

Step 2: Separate and automate your savings.

Saving money is never going to be the easiest goal you attempt. In fact, according to The Atlantic, one of the chief reasons that nearly half of all Americans have little or no emergency savings to fall back on is taking on too much mortgage debt.

So here is a clear area where you should proceed with caution. First, save. Then, buy a home. The best approach to make saving as painless as possible for you is to automate your savings. You can do this by setting up direct deposit on your paycheck and then regular auto-drafts into a savings account reserved just for dream home savings. This way, you never even touch those funds and feel tempted to spend them instead.

Step 3: Downsize to upsize

Finally, one effective change many adults today are making to save more towards their dream home is to downsize while they save. This can mean anything from moving to a smaller apartment to getting rid of your cable television subscription. Also, you must continually remind yourself why you have downsized in order for this step to work well.

But the key to making downsizing work to serve your greater goals is to make sure you deposit every cent of what you save into your dream home fund. Referring back to Step 2 here, the easiest way to do this is to calculate for yourself exactly what you are saving by paying less rent, giving up cable, etc., and then setting up a monthly auto-draft in that amount to deposit directly into your dream home savings account.

By following these three steps, you can make tangible financial progress in saving to buy your dream home. If you can save 20 percent towards a downpayment, you can avoid paying expensive Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) and you may even qualify for a lower interest rate. Scrimping and saving is never fun or easy, but it will be worth it when your realtor hands you that brand-new set of house keys!

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT LISTING!

Hilltop Drive #1

Price: $225,000    Beds: 0    Baths: 0    Sq Ft: 0

Development property platted for 8 residential building lots. Easy access for roads and utilities. Lot sizes range from 6,700 sq. ft. to 14,000 sq. ft. Plat map and estimate on development costs available upon request....View this property >>


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Local Market Activity for January 2017

by Galand Haas

Good Morning,

The January numbers are in for the Eugene and Springfield Real Estate market.  Our current trend continues with higher home prices and a very low inventory of homes on the market for sale.  Home prices are up over 8% over the past twelve months, which along with a slight bump in mortgage interest rates has made our local market the least affordable it has been in over three years.

Don't look for this trend to end quickly.  If you are wanting to purchase a home this year, you may have more difficulty finding that perfect home.  Many of the homes that we are currently finding for our buyers are homes that we have knowledge of before they hit the market.  If you are serious about purchasing a home this year, your best bet would be to contact us, so that we can determine what you are wanting to purchase and then work to find you that home.  It's harder, but we have been very successful at it.

 

January Residential Highlights

Lane County started the year a little cooler than last January. Closed sales (273) fared 5.0% better than in January 2016 (260) although falling 26.2% compared to last month in December 2016 (370).

Pending sales, at 318 for the month, ended 3.6% under the 330 offers accepted last January but were 27.7% ahead of last month in December 2016.

Similarly, new listings, at 320, ended 23.8% below last January (420) but showed a 48.8% increase from the 215 new listings offered last month in December 2016.

Inventory increased in Lane County to 2.1 months in January, with total market time decreasing by twelve days to end at 72 days.

Average and Median Sale Prices

Comparing the average price of homes in the twelve months ending January 31st of this year ($264,800) with the average price of homes sold in the twelve months ending January 2016 ($244,400) shows an increase of 8.3%. The same comparison of the median shows an increase of 7.7% over that same period.


Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

 

1004 Leopold

Price: $257,500    Beds: 4    Baths: 3    Half Baths: 1    Sq Ft: 2715

A beautiful & luxurious home built along a wonderful park. This spacious home includes 2 master suites (1 upstairs & 1 downstairs), large kitchen, formal dining, open living room with gas fireplace, an upstairs bonus & plenty of storage throughout. ...View Home for Sale>>


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2017 Housing Forecast

by Galand Haas

Good Monday Morning!

Anyone who has been keeping in touch with either the local or national housing market trends knows that 2016 was a record year for home sales.  2017 is starting off totally different than the previous year, though.  There are many questions as to what kind of Real Estate market 2017 will turn out to be.  Here is an article from Realtor.com that talks about the direction that the 2017 housing market will most likely take.

The days of multiple bids and offers that are typically way higher than a home’s asking price—you know, that stuff that we now consider to be normal in the housing biz—aren’t expected to disappear anytime soon. But here’s the good news: Things aren’t expected to get too much worse in 2017 either.

Rising mortgage rates, as well as a dearth of affordable, existing homes (i.e., previously lived-in residences) on the market, are expected to lead to a smaller increase in sales in 2017, according to the latest quarterly survey from the National Association of Realtors®.

The survey was of nearly 2,800 U.S. households and conducted from October through early December.

Existing-home prices are expected to go up 4% in 2017, slowing down just a bit from 5% in 2016, according to NAR.The pace of sales is also expected to slow, rising just 2% in 2017, compared with 3.3% in 2016

All in all, 2016 is expected to be the best year for existing-home sales since the height of the housing boom in 2006.

The challenges ahead2017 will “be a year of growth in both sales and prices,” says Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke of realtor.com®. “But that growth will be slower than what we’ve seen over the last three years.”

Those higher mortgage rates have already driven monthly mortgage payments up 7% since the presidential election, Smoke says. And those bigger bills are expected to make it harder for wannabe homeowners, particularly first-time buyers, to qualify for loans.

That’s in addition to the low inventory of available homes on the market that they need to contend with. In November, there were 12% fewer new and existing homes for sale on realtor.com than the same month a year earlier.

Still, the majority of households surveyed still believe now is a good time to buy a home, But fewer renters are getting the buying bug these days. That’s because housing prices are continuing to go up, making affordability an ever bigger challenge, says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.

“Younger households, renters, and those living in the costlier West region—where prices have soared in recent months—are the least optimistic about buying,” Yun said in a statement.

According to the survey, about three-quarters of current homeowners who are over 45, make more than $50,000 a year, and live in the Midwest or South were the most confident that now is the time to close on the homes of their dreams.

They are typically the most financially stable or live in the most affordable regions of the country.

But for everyone else, it’s not all doom and gloom. Lenders are beginning to make more loans to buyers with lower credit scores and down payments as well as higher debt-to-income ratios as a result of rising mortgage rates, says Smoke.

That’s because fewer homeowners are likely to refinance their mortgages now that rates have gone up. To make up for that loss in business, lenders have to issue more loans. And higher rates can net mortgage makers higher profits, he says.

“Lenders are getting more aggressive,” Smoke says. “Credit access already appears to be improving because of the rates.”

Have An Awesome Week!

THIS WEEKS HOT HOME LISTING!

1615 Taney St

Price: $269,000    Beds: 4    Baths: 2    ス Baths: 1    Sq Ft: 1913

Brand new home! Great quality construction with plaster finished walls, maple hardwood & porcelain tile floor, hickory cabinets, granite counters, 9 ft ceiling, LED dimming lights, 3 skylights one of which opens. Great room layout with gas fireplace...View Home for Sale >>


AND HERE'S YOUR MONDAY MORNING COFFEE!!

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