Today's Headlines - Realty Times
Posted On Monday, 01 April 2024 09:41 Written by

If you look at social media at all, you would think the real estate world has come to an end. As usual, those who largely make a living generating clicks as opposed to clients are running crazy with their views on the NAR settlement with the DOJ. The problems come from the fact that many people actually believe what they have read and are panicking themselves and others over things that are NOT set in stone

What you need to focus on is current reality. NOTHING is done until a judge agrees to whatever settlement terms are placed on the table. That said, as of this writing, there isn’t even a firm time for a judge to issue any type of comment, much less approve a deal. The next part of this is that NOTHING about this deal prohibits anyone or anything outside of NAR from operating as they always have.

While I am not an attorney, there are many who are that are offering widely different interpretations of this agreement, and I am just sharing my thoughts from what I have read, and that leads me to say that we may have to add a few disclosures, share some information differently than we currently do; and the possibility does exist that some form of buyer’s agency agreement will need to be executed, the basic structure won’t change all that much.

One thing I want to address is that I disagree that this will lower the cost of housing. In much the same way FSBO deals have proven not to lower the cost of housing, any of these current changes won’t likely do so in any meaningful way, unless more homes are built and available for sale, I don’t see any downward pressure on home prices in the near future, and certainly not as a result of anything I have read in the agreement put forward.

There is much more to unpack here, but it is simple to say, just go out and list and sell homes, do loans for those that you can help, and wait until you see actual documents approved by a judge, the DOJ, and the state in which you work before making any choices. Besides, we can only go with what we know, and there is nothing that has been finalized yet so just keep working 

Questions or comments: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Posted On Monday, 01 April 2024 00:00 Written by

-- Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.79 percent.

“Mortgage rates moved slightly lower this week, providing a bit more room in the budgets of some prospective homebuyers,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “We also are seeing encouraging data on existing home sales, which reflects improving inventory. Regardless, rates remain elevated near seven percent as markets watch for signs of cooling inflation, hoping that rates will come down further.”

News Facts

  • The 30-year FRM averaged 6.79 percent as of March 28, 2024, down from last week when it averaged 6.87 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 6.32 percent.
  • The 15-year FRM averaged 6.11 percent, down from last week when it averaged 6.21 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 5.56 percent.

The PMMS® is focused on conventional, conforming, fully amortizing home purchase loans for borrowers who put 20 percent down and have excellent credit. For more information, view our Frequently Asked Questions.

Freddie Mac’s mission is to make home possible for families across the nation. We promote liquidity, stability, affordability and equity in the housing market throughout all economic cycles. Since 1970, we have helped tens of millions of families buy, rent or keep their home. Learn More: Website

Posted On Sunday, 31 March 2024 06:32 Written by

Over one-third of home purchases in February were made in all cash—not far from the record high

The median down payment for U.S. homebuyers was $55,640 in February, according to a new report from Redfin (redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage. That’s up 24.1% from $44,850 a year earlier—the largest annual increase in percentage terms since April 2022.

The typical homebuyer’s down payment last month was equal to 15% of the purchase price, up from 10% a year earlier.

This is based on a Redfin analysis of county records across 40 of the most populous U.S. metropolitan areas going back through 2011.

“Homebuyers are doing whatever they can to pull together a large down payment in order to lower their monthly payments moving forward,” said Rachel Riva, a Redfin real estate agent in Miami. “The smallest down payment I’ve seen recently is 25%. I had one client who put down 40%.”

Home prices rose 6.6% year over year in February, which is part of the reason down payments increased; a higher home price naturally leads to a higher down payment because the down payment is a percentage of the home price. But elevated housing costs (from both high prices and high mortgage rates) are also incentivizing buyers to take out larger down payments.

A bigger down payment means a smaller total loan amount, and a smaller loan amount means smaller monthly interest payments. For example, a buyer who purchases today’s median-priced U.S. home ($374,500) and puts 15% down would have a monthly payment of $2,836 at the current 6.79% mortgage rate. A buyer who puts 10% down on that same home with that same rate would have a monthly payment of $2,968. That’s $132 more per month, which adds up over the course of a mortgage. Mortgage rates are down from their October peak of roughly 8%, but are still more than double the all-time low hit during the pandemic.

Over 1 in 3 Home Purchases Are Made With Cash—a Near Record Share

Over one-third (34.5%) of U.S. home purchases in February were made with all cash, up from 33.4% a year earlier. That’s just shy of the 34.8% decade-high hit in November, and isn’t far below the record high of 38% hit in 2013.

Redfin defines an all-cash purchase as a home purchase with no mortgage loan information on the deed.

Some homebuyers are paying in cash for the same reason others are taking out large down payments: elevated mortgage interest rates. While a large down payment helps ease the sting of high rates by reducing monthly interest payments, an all-cash purchase removes the sting altogether because it means a buyer isn’t paying interest at all.

Most buyers, though, can’t afford to pay in cash, and many can’t afford a big down payment either. First-time buyers, especially, are at a disadvantage in today’s market. That’s because they don’t have equity from the sale of a previous home to bolster their down payments, and are often competing against all-cash offers, which sellers tend to favor. Many all-cash offers come from investors, who were buying up more than one-quarter of the country’s low-priced homes as of the end of last year. Overall, though, investors are purchasing far fewer homes than they were during the pandemic housing boom.

“High mortgage rates are widening the wealth gap between people of different races, generations and income levels,” said Redfin Economics Research Lead Chen Zhao. “They’ve added fuel to the fire lit by surging home prices during the pandemic, creating a reality where in many places, wealthy Americans are the only ones who can afford to buy homes. Meanwhile, people who are priced out of homeownership are missing out on a major wealth building opportunity, which could have financial implications for their children and even their children’s children.”

FHA Loans More Popular Than They Were During Pandemic Because the Market Is Less Competitive

Roughly one in six (15.5%) mortgaged U.S. home sales used an FHA loan in February, up from 14.9% a year earlier and just shy of the 16.3% four-year high hit a month earlier. FHA loans are more common than they were during the pandemic homebuying boom (they represented 12.1% of mortgaged sales in February 2022) because the market today is less competitive.

Roughly one in 14 (7%) mortgaged home sales used a VA loan in February, down from 8% a year earlier. The share of home sales using a VA loan typically doesn’t change much over time, though it fluctuated more than usual during the topsy-turvy pandemic market.

Conventional loans are the most common type, representing over three-quarters (77.5%) of mortgaged home sales in February, up slightly from 77.1% a year earlier. Jumbo loans—used for higher loan amounts and popular among luxury buyers—represented 5.3% of mortgaged sales, compared with 4.7% a year earlier.

Metros with biggest increases/decreases in down payment amounts

In Las Vegas, the median down payment jumped 60.9% year over year—the largest increase among the metros Redfin analyzed. Next came San Diego (49.8%), Charlotte, NC (47.4%), Virginia Beach, VA (45%) and Newark, NJ (32.2%). Down payments only fell in two metros: Milwaukee (-13.9%) and Pittsburgh (-0.4%).

Metros with highest/lowest down payment percentages

In San Francisco, the median down payment was equal to 25% of the purchase price—the highest among the metros Redfin analyzed. It was followed by San Jose, CA (24.9%) and Anaheim, CA (21.9%). The following metros all had median down payments of 20%: Fort Lauderdale, FL, Los Angeles, Miami, Montgomery County, PA, New Brunswick, NJ, New York, Oakland, CA, Sacramento, CA, San Diego, Seattle and West Palm Beach, FL.

Down payment percentages were lowest in Virginia Beach (1.8%), Detroit (5%), Pittsburgh (5%), Baltimore (5%) and Philadelphia (7.3%).

While the Bay Area has among the most expensive home prices, it also has a high concentration of wealthy residents, many of whom can afford large down payments. Meanwhile, Virginia Beach is at the bottom of the list because it has a high concentration of veterans, many of whom take out VA loans, which require little to no down payment.

Metros where all-cash purchases are most/least common

In Jacksonville, FL, 54.4% of home purchases were made in cash—the highest share among the metros Redfin analyzed. Next came West Palm Beach (53.4%), Cleveland (48.8%), Fort Lauderdale (46.2%) and Atlanta (46.1%). These metros are popular among investors, who often pay in cash.

All-cash purchases were least common in San Jose (18%), Oakland (21.6%), San Diego (21.7%), Los Angeles (23%) and Providence, RI (23.3%).

Metros with biggest increases/decreases in share of all-cash purchases

In Atlanta, 46.1% of home purchases were made in cash, up 12.5 percentage points from a year earlier—the largest increase among the metros Redfin analyzed. It was followed by Jacksonville (8 ppts), Oakland (6.2 ppts), Portland, OR (5.7 ppts) and New Brunswick (5.2 ppts).

In Columbus, OH, 28.5% of home purchases were made in cash, down 6.1 percentage points from a year earlier—the largest decrease among the metros Redfin analyzed. Next came Cincinnati (-4.4 ppts), Philadelphia (-3.3 ppts), Chicago (-3.3 ppts) and Phoenix (-2.8 ppts).

To view the full report, including charts and metro-level data, please visit:
https://www.redfin.com/news/all-cash-homebuyers-february-2024

Posted On Sunday, 31 March 2024 06:26 Written by

The typical U.S. monthly housing payment hit an all-time high of $2,721 during the four weeks ending March 24, up 10% from a year earlier, according to a new report from Redfin (redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage.

Housing payments are at a record high because of the one-two punch of elevated mortgage rates and rising home prices. Mortgage rates remain elevated near 7%, and the median home-sale price is up 5% year over year to roughly $375,000, just about $9,000 shy of June 2023’s record high.

Many sellers are trying to take advantage of rising prices by listing their home. New listings are up 15%, the biggest increase in nearly three years, and the total number of homes for sale is up 6%, the biggest increase in nearly one year.

Increased supply is bringing back some demand, which is the main reason price growth remains robust. Mortgage-purchase applications are up 14% from a month ago, and pending home sales are just 1% lower than they were a year ago, the smallest decline since the beginning of the year.

“High mortgage rates aren’t deterring buyers as much as they were last year; a lot of people want to get in now before prices go up more,” said Miami Redfin agent Rachel Riva. “All of my recent listings have gone under contract in under 10 days, and most of them have received multiple offers. Buyers are lessening the impact of elevated rates in a few ways: Some are making high down payments to lower their monthly payments, and some are willing to take on a high rate now in hopes of refinancing when and if rates come down.”

There are a few signs that price growth could soften a bit in the coming months. Nearly 6% of home sellers dropped their asking price this week, on average, the highest share of any March on record. Months of supply hit its highest level of any March since 2020–when the onset of the pandemic ground the housing market to a halt–indicating that the market is becoming more balanced.

Leading indicators

Indicators of homebuying demand and activity

 

Value (if applicable)

Recent change

Year-over-year change

Source

Daily average 30-year fixed mortgage rate

6.91% (March 27)

Down from 7.11% a week earlier

Up from 6.44%

Mortgage News Daily

Weekly average 30-year fixed mortgage rate

6.87% (week ending March 21)

Up from 6.74% a week earlier

Up from 6.42%

Freddie Mac

Mortgage-purchase applications (seasonally adjusted)

 

Essentially unchanged from a week earlier; up 14% from a month earlier (as of week ending March 22)

Down 16%

Mortgage Bankers Association

Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index (seasonally adjusted)

 

Up 2% from a month earlier (as of week ending March 24)

Down 8%

Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index, a measure of requests for tours and other homebuying services from Redfin agents

Google searches for “home for sale”

 

Up 6% from a month earlier (as of March 25)

Down 5%

Google Trends

Touring activity

 

Up 28% from the start of the year (as of March 25)

At this time last year, it was up 21% from the start of 2023

ShowingTime, a home touring technology company

Key housing-market data

U.S. highlights: Four weeks ending March 24, 2024

Redfin’s national metrics include data from 400+ U.S. metro areas, and is based on homes listed and/or sold during the period. Weekly housing-market data goes back through 2015. Subject to revision.

 

Four weeks ending March 24, 2024

Year-over-year change

Notes

Median sale price

$374,500

4.6%

 

Median asking price

$405,451

5.1%

 

Median monthly mortgage payment

$2,721 at a 6.87% mortgage rate

9.8%

Record high

Pending sales

85,048

-1.1%

Smallest decline in over 2 months

New listings

92,087

14.8%

Biggest increase since June 2021

Active listings

807,227

6.3%

Biggest increase since May 2023

Months of supply

3.3 months

+0.4 pts.

4 to 5 months of supply is considered balanced, with a lower number indicating seller’s market conditions

Share of homes off market in two weeks

42.3%

Essentially unchanged

 

Median days on market

40

-2 days

 

Share of homes sold above list price

26.8%

Up from 26%

 

Share of homes with a price drop

5.8%

+1.6 pts.

 

Average sale-to-list price ratio

98.8%

+0.2 pts.

 

Metro-level highlights: Four weeks ending March 24, 2024

Redfin’s metro-level data includes the 50 most populous U.S. metros. Select metros may be excluded from time to time to ensure data accuracy.

 

Metros with biggest year-over-year increases

Metros with biggest year-over-year decreases

Notes

Median sale price

West Palm B

each, FL (20.7%)

San Jose, CA (17.6%)

Miami (16.1%)

Detroit (15%)

New Brunswick, NJ (14.5%)

San Antonio, TX (-0.3%)

Declined in just 1 metro

Pending sales

San Jose, CA (25.1%)

San Francisco (20.1%)

Cincinnati (11.6%)

Anaheim, CA (9.9%)

Seattle (8.2%)

Atlanta (-15.4%)

Houston (-13%)

San Antonio, TX (-12.7%)

West Palm Beach, FL (-12.5%)

Miami (-10.7%)

Increased in roughly half of the metros

New listings

San Jose, CA (41.8%)

Sacramento, CA (38%)

Phoenix (31.7%)

Las Vegas (27.3%)

Austin, TX (26%)

Atlanta (-6.6%)

Chicago (-2.9%)

Declined in just 2 metros

To view the full report, including charts, please visit:

https://www.redfin.com/news/housing-market-update-housing-costs-inventory-increase

Posted On Friday, 29 March 2024 10:55 Written by
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