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New Studies Illustrate How Consumers Misjudge Home Values

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Encouraged by strong price increases and hot sales this spring, increasing numbers of owners are listing their homes for sale. But chances are good that millions of owners are making wrong assumptions about the value of their homes, according to two new studies. Wrong valuation assumptions can lead to bad decisions about whether to sell, when to sell and how ... Read More »

Nascent Demand, Tight Inventories Supercharge April Prices

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  Prices took an unexpectedly big leap upward in April as rising demand collided with tight supplies to propel sale prices. With headlines like The Re-Explosion of U.S. House Prices Is Over, most forecasts in January had prices rising 4-5 percent over 2014.  Only the CoreLogic and NAR were on the sunny side, predicting 5/9 and 6 percent respectively. Only ... Read More »

Freddie Forecasts Higher Prices, Volatile Rates

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  Freddie Mac’s economists expect the balance of the year to be a hectic one as housing markets are likely to see increasing interest rate volatility for the remainder of the year and consumers try to anticipate the Federal Reserve’s timing around rising short term interest rates.  Home buyers may encounter “bouts of affordability shock” if rates rise suddenly. With ... Read More »

Experts Split on Loosening Lending Standards

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Almost half (46 percent) of the real estate economists and experts surveyed in Zillow’s latest Home Price Expectations Survey believe mortgage underwriting standards are about right today, but an equal number, 47 percent, said they are too still restrictive. Though the experts couldn’t agree on where standards should be, most agreed on where they are going. More than 60 percent ... Read More »

Negative Equity Freezes Lowest Tier Owners

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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

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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 »

HELOC Resets? No Worries!

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Perhaps you’ve seen the headlines crafted to conjure up fearful memories of Alt-A and Option ARM loan defaults during the depths of the housing depression. Tidal wave of HELOC resets about to hit! HELOC Resets Will Undermine Any Housing Recovery. Boom-Era HELOC Resets Raise Concerns. Not to worry.  Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) resets are not going to cripple the housing ... Read More »

CoreLogic Kicks off 2015 in Style

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CoreLogic reports shows that home prices nationwide increased 5.7 percent in January 2015 compared to January 2014. This change represents 35 months of consecutive year-over-year increases in home prices nationally. On a month-over-month basis, home prices nationwide increased by 1.1 percent in January 2015 compared to December 2014*.  Some 27 states and the District of Columbia are at or within 10 ... Read More »

Forecast: Rents to Rise until 2017

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Rent increases aren’t likely to ease up for at least two years, according to the latest Zillow® Home Price Expectations Survey of 101 economists and experts conducted quarterly by Pulsenomics LLC.  Survey respondents were asked “How much longer to you expect rental affordability to continue deteriorating?” Of those with an opinion, 5 percent said less than one year, 33 percent said ... Read More »

What’s Happening to the Most Important Homes in Real Estate?

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  What’s really happening with homes in the bottom price tiers? These are the most important homes in the entire real estate economy.  They are where the housing ladder begins: they are then entry point for new buyers, the starter homes that MUST be available and affordable for Millennials if the housing economy is to ever function again as it ... Read More »

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