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Early Warning Signs

Negative Equity Freezes Lowest Tier Owners

frozen

One reason inventories for first-time buyers are chronically depleted is that lower priced homes continue to bear a more of the brunt of negative equity that those priced higher. A new report from Black Knight found that in March the number of underwater borrowers decreased by 1.6 million from this time last year and that the negative equity population has ... Read More »

Take a Closer Look at the Spring Boomlet: It’s a Remarkable Start

Take a look

It’s official.  Early signs and forecasts of an extraordinary sales season are proving to be true.  NAR’s March existing home sales rocketed to their highest annual rate in 18 months. Total March sales increased 6.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.19 million in March from 4.89 million in February—the highest annual rate since September 2013 (also 5.19 ... Read More »

Buyers Bail Just as Spring Arrives

boy and dpg

With the arrival of the first robins, families’ thoughts turn to buying a new home. Except maybe not this year, according to a new consumer survey by Fannie Mae. Consumer attitudes toward housing appear to have stalled somewhat amid a recent dip in confidence regarding personal finances and income growth, according to Fannie Mae’s March 2015 National Housing Survey™. Among ... Read More »

Lower Income Homeowners Face Negative Equity Forever

Budgeting burdens

  First came the news that last fall saw an uptick in negative equity.  Now Zillow has found that most low end homes, including those already underwater, are losing value, not gaining as one would expect with the tight supplies of entry-level properties.  Suddenly negative equity is no longer yesterday’s news.  Its a huge threat to the entry point for ... Read More »

REO’s: They’re B-A-A-A-A-A-ACK

Theyre Baaack

Four years of declining distress sales quietly ground to a halt last year and now real estate owned properties (REOs) have increased steadily for four months in a row, rising to 23.2%, based on a three-month moving average, according to the latest Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance HousingPulse Tracking Survey. The distressed property share of home sales peaked at 45.5% in March ... Read More »

Winter Inventories Plant Seeds for Spring Surprises

winter for sale

Behind the headlines proclaiming heather inventory levels, there are good reasons to be concerned that tight inventoiers today might presage price explosions tomorrow, especially in two areas where the real estate economy is vulneratble to bubbles:  hot regions that led demand and price increases last year and lower tiered entry level homes popular with new home buyers. On a national ... Read More »

Is the Recovery Coming to a Screeching Halt?

halt

  After slowly winding down over the summer months, the third and fourth quarter data now being released shows that price appreciation is no longer slowing.  It is now within inches of a total screeching halt that could presage a shift in the recovery’s momentum as real estate markets don their pajamas for the winter hibernation. The September 2014 index ... Read More »

Zillow: Don’t Buy a Home in Hartford!

Poor-Copy

The folks in Conecticut will be unpleasantly surprised to learn they beat out Vegas and Miami as the riskiest market to buy a home. Zillow set out to look at the markets where housing prices have declined the most over the past 35 years  and chained the Zillow Home Value Index (ZHVI) backward in time to 1979 Q4 using the ... Read More »

Weak March Sales Threaten To Rain on Price Parade

IMG_2061

The year over year price increases that the real estate industry has grown accustomed to may be in for some dicey days if sales in April aren’t better than March.  March prices registered an 11.1 increase over 2013, 1.3 percent higher than February, but CoreLogic is forecasting a rise of only 0.8 percent in April. The CoreLogic HPI Forecast indicates ... Read More »

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

fuzzy-TV

  April is supposed to be the month that real estate agents’ phones ring off the hooks, yard signs sprout like dandelions, buyers line up for showings and offers fall from the sky like cherry blossom petals. Above all, this was to be the spring season when at last all the stars were properly aligned in the real estate galaxy ... Read More »

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