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Market Analysis

Case Shiller: Maybe They Just Don’t Like December

christmas

Which of the following statements were made today by Standard & Poor’s David Blitzer about the December Case Shiller price indices? “Gains are slowing from month-to-month and the strongest part of the recovery in home values may be over. Year-over-year values for the two monthly Composites weakened and the quarterly National Index barely improved. The seasonally adjusted data also exhibit ... Read More »

Icy Inventories, Diminishing Demand Froze January Sales

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Two unfortunate trends combined to spoil January’s existing home sales and raise concerns about the coming spring season.  After a better than expected December, Sales declined in January to their lowest rate in nine months. Total existing-home sales1, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, fell 6.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of ... Read More »

Tight Inventories Propel Prices

REMAX

  Supplies of listed homes in REMAX’s database lit a fuse under January prices, sending pricing soaring 11.2 percent over a year ago.  Inventories were down 10.2 percent and months’ supply fell to 5.2, pushing the 6.0 boundary where markets are out of balance. The dramatic drop in listings tracked by REMAX echoed findings by NAR, Realtor.com and Zillow that ... 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 »

Forecast: Rents to Rise until 2017

crystal ball

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 »

Price Freeze at the Top Warms Mid-tier Buyers

coldmansion

  This could be the year that the housing economy works for both first-time buyers and the millions of families that want to move up to a new home. Sustained price growth in entry level starter homes is good news for first-time homebuyers. Just as encouraging, the number of potential move-up buyers, who were once locked into underwater mortgages, has ... Read More »

Appraisers: Does CU Mean See You Later?

Things-not-to-say-to-an-appraiser

Will Fannie Mae’s roll out this year of Collateral Underwriter (CU), its proprietary automated appraisal risk assessment tool, reduce appraisers to be nothing more than servants of a computerized tool?  Or is it “just another tool that is reviewing appraisers just as other processes have all along.” as a Fannie spokesperson put it? Will it meld underwriting and appraisal into ... Read More »

Climb to Price Peaks Resumed in November

climber

Though sales petered out in November, they were strong enough to continue America’s steady climb out of price troughs that drove more than 6 million American families into foreclosure. Among the nation’s top 100 largest markets, 93 markets increased their three month average index point change in November, up 35 markets from October, according to Homes.com, which has been tracking ... Read More »

Lessons from the Foreclosure Flood

Photonewman1 | Dreamstime.com - Flooding In Bangkok. Photo

It stands to reason that when you suck the equity out of your home, you’re making yourself more vulnerable to going underwater on your mortgage or defaulting should the market go south in a hurry. Surely that’s low on the list of concerns to the millions of homeowners would have been taking advantage of the never ending decline in interest ... Read More »