Awareness about emotional and mental health challenges is crucial for reducing the stigma involved. Many professionals, including realtors, secretly struggle with depression, anxiety and a host of other issues. The stress and pressure in the real estate industry can amplify these problems.

Fluctuations in market conditions, for instance, can contribute to the stress realtors face. Overdoing it in sales or even not having the proper focus to drive sales can result in burnout. Deals that fail or clients who are unsatisfied can impact realtors’ sense of self. Self esteem and resilience are needed in the field to succeed. Setbacks are a big part of real estate. Overcoming them is expected and almost necessary to excel. 

Furthermore, real estate agents often work independently, which can lead to feelings of isolation. Loneliness is a real thing. It can negatively impact day-to-day job demands. To make matters worse, dealing with unhappy or insatiable clients can be taxing. Buying a new property is an incredibly demanding experience and if you can’t deal with your own emotional challenges, how can you possibly handle that of your clients and prospects. It can certainly take a toll.

Finally, realtors are faced with long hours and irregular schedules. This can take a big toll on their physical well-being, which then can impact mental well-being and enthusiasm to persevere. Lack of sleep, inconsistent family time and time to regroup will leave anyone feeling burned out.

SOLUTIONS

Learning to set boundaries is a huge skill worth learning. Real estate advisors can feel better by seeking support from colleagues and mentors and saying no to overdoing tasks. Having a quiet time-out for regular meditation can work wonders too. Knowing what works best for you will be an individual discovery process. We are all different. Pay attention to what you need – is it to socialize more or to get in extra quiet time? We all recharge our batteries differently. Brokers should create a supportive work environment that emphasizes open communication. Those who speak openly about mental health challenges can make a huge positive impact on realtors and their team.

It is crucial for realtors and brokers to prioritize their mental health by practicing physical self care. Going to the gym or doing a physical activity that one enjoys can make a huge difference! Exercise releases feel good hormones (endorphins)! It is the best natural anti-depressant in the world. If the sun is out, taking an hour long walk in the morning is powerful. It also regulates sleep. Grounding is an activity that involves walking on the earth for at least 10-15 minutes each morning. It resets our circadian rhythm. It can be done right now during these warmer months ahead!

Mental health challenges are nothing to be embarrassed about. Additional tips for realtors to support their own well-being include: 1. Establishing boundaries between work and personal life to prevent exhaustion, 2. Managing stress by identifying specific stressors like time management and delegating tasks, 3. Setting attainable goals by breaking things down to smaller, more manageable tasks. Feel good about doing the small things and keep track of your own progress. Finally, if the struggles are just too much, seek professional help. Therapy is nothing to feel bad about. It can support and improve your overall well-being. This is why such professionals exist. Therapists, too, rely on other therapists.

Posted On Tuesday, 21 May 2024 06:13 Written by

For a limited time only, Chase is increasing their Closing Guarantee program from $5K to $20K. Chase promises their clients that they’ll close the loan on or before the contract closing date or pay the buyer $20,000. 

The grant can be used to discount underwriting fees paid at mortgage closing or pay down interest rate and down payment. This special time offer is available until July 27, 2024. 

Chase wanted to honor spring homebuying season in an extra special way this year, knowing how challenging the housing market has been. They also have a whole en-suite of offerings and tools to help prospective homeowners. 

The housing affordability crisis—with high interest rates, high homes prices, and low supply—has been widely reported. To help homebuyers address these challenges, Chase Home Lending is focused on providing financial resources and homebuyer education, including increasing its Closing Guarantee from $5,000 to $20,000.  

“Current market dynamics have impacted the affordability of homeownership for many Americans, and at the same time, competition has only increased,” said Sean Grzebin, head of Consumer Originations for Chase Home Lending. “We’re focused on the things we can control in this environment and that’s supporting our customers all the way home. Increasing our Closing Guarantee to $20,000 is a reflection of our confidence in getting customers into their new home without delay.”  

Affordability and Access to Credit  

Chase offers low down payment options—as low as 3%—and flexible credit guidelines to create more homeownership opportunities for more people across the income spectrum. Another way Chase is helping customers manage affordability is with the Chase Homebuyer Grant. This grant offers up to $7,500 in eligible areas, which can be combined with state and local homebuyer assistance, to lower the interest rate and/or reduce closing costs and down payment.  

  

Since 2020, Chase has provided more than $96 million in Chase Homebuyer Grant funds for more than 29,000 customers. In 2023, Chase also connected homebuyers with approximately $15.8 million in state and local homebuyer and down payment assistance programs. Buyers can use Chase’s Homebuyer Assistance Finder to research assistance programs for which they may be eligible. 

  

Chase launched its grant program nationally in 2018 with a $2,500 grant for people buying in low-to-moderate income census tracts. Then in in 2021, the bank launched a $5,000 homebuyer grant in census tracts designated as majority-Black, Hispanic or Latino under its Special Purpose Credit Program (SPCP), in accordance with the federal requirements of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and Regulation B. Recently, the bank increased this grant from $5,000 to $7,500 in 15 markets across the U.S.: 

  

  • Atlanta, GA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Fort Worth, TX
  • Houston, TX
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Miami, FL
  • New York, NY
  • Orlando, FL
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Riverside, CA
  • San Diego, CA
  • Washington, DC

  

Homebuyer Education 

The homebuying process can be overwhelming, whether you’re a first-time or experienced homebuyer. Chase is helping to educate prospective buyers on the ins and outs of the home purchase process, homeownership and everything in between. The JPMorgan Chase Institute recently released research calling out the importance for consumers to be educated when it comes to their mortgage and lender options. The Institute’s report, Hidden Costs of Homeownership: Race, Income, and Lender Differences in Loan Closing Costs, reveals that closing costs vary significantly by type of lender, with banks being less expensive on average than nonbanks and brokers.  

“Homebuyers don’t always realize what’s negotiable and what may differ from lender to lender,” said Grzebin. “Being informed can help save you money in the long run. I’d advise customers to make lenders compete for your business—take the time to consult with more than one lender and always check with your bank.” 

Additional resources include Chase’s Homebuyer Education Center—a comprehensive learning center for those looking to buy a home and get a mortgage. Chase’s award-winning podcast, Beginner To Buyer comes complete with two seasons of episodes featuring conversations with real buyers and expert guests discussing homebuying and ownership, home equity, common misconceptions, renovations, and investment properties. 

Convenience and Speed to Close 

A quick closing process can be key, especially in competitive situations. The Chase Closing Guarantee commits to an on-time closing in as soon as three weeks or eligible customers get $20,000. This limited time offer is available for qualifying customers purchasing a home with a Chase mortgage until July 27, 2024. Customers must submit necessary financial documentation and provide a fully-executed purchase contract. Then, Chase will close the loan on or before the contract closing date or pay the buyer $20,000. Funds can be used to discount underwriting fees paid at mortgage closing or pay down the interest rate and down payment. 

Chase continues to offer a full suite of digital tools to support buyers on the path to homeownership, including Chase MyHome. This digital platform provides “all things home, all in one place” with an advanced property search and the ability to review loan options, apply for and manage your mortgage. Additionally, Chase offers various digital mortgage calculators that help buyers understand how much they can afford. 

For more information about Chase Home Lending, visit Chase.com/afford

Posted On Sunday, 19 May 2024 04:25 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 7.02 percent.

“Mortgage rates decreased for the second consecutive week,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “Given the news that inflation eased slightly, the 10-year Treasury yield dipped, leading to lower mortgage rates. The decrease in rates, albeit small, may provide a bit more wiggle room in the budgets of prospective homebuyers.”

News Facts

  • The 30-year FRM averaged 7.02 percent as of May 16, 2024, down from last week when it averaged 7.09 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 6.39 percent.
  • The 15-year FRM averaged 6.28 percent, down from last week when it averaged 6.38 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 5.75 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 Friday, 17 May 2024 06:49 Written by

I am a big believer in business planning and success scheduling. My entire coaching philosophy is rooted in these two prime building blocks. While your annual business plan can create a structure and vision for the entire year, I like to work in three mini-90-day plans that help allow for local market trends and aspects of business that is also based on seasonal awareness. The first 90-day plan runs from about the third week of January through the April 15th tax filing deadline.

The second 90-day plan runs from your local calendar from about two weeks before the schools let out for the year in your area, until about three weeks after they return back to school. This really depends on your local area because these times really deviate significantly around the country. Some kids get out in May and return early August; while others get out in late June and go back after Labor Day! In some cases, there might not be much of a gap between plans.

The third 90-day plan runs from about September 15th through the last day in December you can take a loan application and get it closed before the end of the year, say December 15th or so. This will vary depending on your access to programs and your own ability to expedite a file.

While I don’t have to space here to go into details on all of these, if you have followed these blog posts you have already seen these strategies. For today, lets just take a quick look at the second 90-day block and the components you will need to address:

•  End of school and return to school dates.

•  Your personal summer availability.

•  Your team members time off requirements.

•  Your referral partner vacation schedules.

•  All holidays and community event schedules.

Without having this information, it is difficult for you to navigate time off and the opportunities the summer will present you! The ability to have a schedule and plan in place will help you take advantage of all of the summer opportunities, both personal and professional. Without it, you could really miss out!

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

Posted On Monday, 20 May 2024 00:00 Written by

Pending home sales are down and new listings are flat during a time of year when they typically rise. But this week’s softer-than-expected inflation report sent mortgage rates down, which could bring back some homebuyers and sellers.

rates down, which could bring back some homebuyers and sellers.

SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- (NASDAQ: RDFN) —Pending home sales fell 4.3% from a year earlier during the four weeks ending May 12, the biggest decline in roughly three months. That’s according to a new report from Redfin (redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage. Pending home sales also posted a week-over-week decline, unusual for early May.

Inventory is losing momentum, too, as would-be sellers stay put to hang onto their low mortgage rate. New listings rose 10% year over year, but they were essentially flat from a week earlier, which is significant because listings typically increase this time of year.

The housing market slumped because of sky-high housing costs. The median U.S. home-sale price is up 4.7% year over year to a record $386,951, and the median monthly mortgage payment is sitting at $2,858, just $26 shy of the all-time high set in April. But affordability is starting to improve a bit: Daily average mortgage rates have steadily declined since the start of May, and this week’s slightly softer-than-expected inflation report sent rates below 7% for the first time in over five weeks. And 6.3% of home sellers are dropping their price, on average, the highest share in a year and a half, which may mean price growth loses momentum soon.

“High prices and rates are challenging, but there are ways for buyers to take advantage of the somewhat slow market,” said Marsha McMahon-Jones, a Redfin Premier agent in Palm Springs, CA. “Sellers know that high mortgage rates mean they should expect negotiations, expect offers to come in under list price, and be ready for some back and forth on things like repairs and closing costs. Buyers may not be able to get a lower mortgage rate, but they’re often getting homes for slightly less than the asking price. It’s also a good time to buy a fixer-upper at a lower price point because those aren’t selling as quickly.”

For Redfin economists’ takes on the housing market, including more on how current financial events are impacting mortgage rates, please visit Redfin’s “From Our Economists” page.

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

6.99% (May 15)

Down from a 5-month high of 7.52% three weeks earlier

Up from 6.55%

Mortgage News Daily

Weekly average 30-year fixed mortgage rate

7.09% (week ending May 9)

Down from 5-month high of 7.22% a week earlier

Up from 6.35%

Freddie Mac

Mortgage-purchase applications (seasonally adjusted)

 

Declined 2% from a week earlier (as of week ending May 10)

Down 14%

Mortgage Bankers Association

Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index (seasonally adjusted)

 

Lowest level in 2 months (as of week ending May 12)

Down 13%

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

Touring activity

 

Up 5% from the start of the year (as of May 13)

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

ShowingTime, a home touring technology company

Google searches for “home for sale”

 

Down 8% from a month earlier (as of May 13)

Down 15%

Google Trends

Key housing-market data

U.S. highlights: Four weeks ending May 12, 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 May 12, 2024

Year-over-year change

Notes

Median sale price

$386,951

4.7%

All-time high

Median asking price

$418,455

6.6%

All-time high

Median monthly mortgage payment

$2,858 at a 7.09% mortgage rate

12.7%

Just $26 below all-time high set during the 4 weeks ending April 28

Pending sales

90,457

-4.3%

Biggest decline since 4 weeks ending Feb. 25

New listings

102,269

10%

 

Active listings

890,224

14.2%

 

Months of supply

3.2

+0.5 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

45.2%

Down from 49%

 

Median days on market

33

+2 days

 

Share of homes sold above list price

30.8%

Down from 33%

 

Share of homes with a price drop

6.3%

+2 pts.

Highest level since Nov. 2022

Average sale-to-list price ratio

99.4%

Unchanged

 

Metro-level highlights: Four weeks ending May 12, 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

Detroit (18.8%)

Anaheim, CA (18.6%)

West Palm Beach, FL (16.2%)

San Jose, CA (13.6%)

Newark, NJ (11.7%)

San Antonio (-0.5%)

Declined in just 1 metro

Pending sales

San Jose, CA (16.6%)

Anaheim, CA (9.2%)

San Francisco (5.3%)

Newark, NJ (5.2%)

Sacramento, CA (3%)

Phoenix (-14.9%)

Atlanta (-13.6%)

Houston (-13.2%)

West Palm Beach, FL (-11.8%)

Nashville, TN (-11.1%)

Increased in 15 metros

New listings

San Jose, CA (40.2%)

Seattle (26.4%)

Phoenix (24.7%)

Oakland, CA (24.6%)

Montgomery County, PA (21.9%)

Chicago (-8.1%)

Atlanta (-3.4%)

Detroit (-3.1%)

Virginia Beach, VA (-1.9%)

Newark, NJ (-1.6%)

Warren, MI (-1.1%)

Declined in 6 metros

To view the full report, including charts, please visit:
https://www.redfin.com/news/housing-market-update-mortgage-rates-dip-sales-decline

Posted On Thursday, 16 May 2024 05:41 Written by

Despite low buyer demand, home prices remain steep throughout the U.S. Owing to this, many homeowners have seen the amount of equity they’ve built into their houses increase.

When a homeowner utilizes the LendingTree marketplace to shop around for a home equity loan lender, they select one of five reasons for why they’re seeking the money. By analyzing borrowers’ home equity loan requests in the first quarter of 2024, we determined why homeowners across the 50 states are thinking about tapping into their home equity. Here's what we found.

  • Across the 50 states, 40.58% of those seeking a home equity loan cited paying for home improvements as their primary reason.
  • 33.78% of homeowners considered tapping their home’s equity to help consolidate debt. This was the second most commonly cited reason among LendingTree users. However, in some states like Wyoming, Idaho and South Dakota, it was the most commonly cited. 
  • Using a home’s equity for investment purposes — other than home improvements — was the main goal for 7.68% of homeowners. Examples of investments include buying a property to rent or purchasing shares of a company via the stock market.
  • Only 2.56% of homeowners considered using their home’s equity as retirement income. 

You can check out our full report here: https://www.lendingtree.com/home/mortgage/reasons-for-home-equity-study/

LendingTree's Senior Economist and report author, Jacob Channel, had this to say:

"While a home equity loan can be a good idea for some, getting one isn’t something to take lightly. As is virtually always the case when borrowing money, getting cash via a home equity loan isn’t without risk. In a worst-case scenario, defaulting on a home equity loan can result in a person losing their house. Owing to this, homeowners considering a home equity loan should tread carefully and be sure that they’re in a position to pay back whatever they borrow without serious financial strain."

Posted On Wednesday, 15 May 2024 07:01 Written by

The median down payment in the U.S. last quarter was $26,000, an average of 13.6% down, according to a new down payment trends report from Realtor.com, published this morning

The analysis of down payment trends at the national, state and top-100 metro levels found that while down payments fell from the all-time-high in Q3 2023, down payments climbed annually – up 3 percentage points and roughly $12,000 from Q1 2023 – as homeshoppers contended with higher mortgage rates and home prices and a restricted home supply.

Despite the drop from the historical peak, down payments remain well above pre-pandemic levels –  larger percent down on today’s typically higher priced homes means buyers paid 87.8% more as a down payment in Q1 2024 ($26,400) compared to Q1 2020 ($14,000). 

Here are the key takeaways: 

  • In Q1 2024, down payments reached an average 13.6% down, or $26,000, the highest first quarter average on record. 
    • Down payments fell from their Q3 2023 peak of 14.7% or $30,400. 
    • Down payment grew annually 0.6 percentage points, or $2,300, from Q1 2023. 
  • The typical down payment as a dollar amount increased in all but 8 states. 
  • In Q1 2024, the top 7 metro areas where buyers made the largest down payments were all expensive California markets. These pricey metros tend to see large down payments as both interest rates and interest payments increase with larger loan amounts, incentivizing buyers to put down as much as possible to avoid these costs. Also, these high-priced locales tend to have wealthier, high-earning residents who have the funds to put more down on a home.
  • Three of the five metros with the fast growing down payments, as a percentage of purchase price, were also in California and included Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, Calif., Modesto, Calif, and Stockton, Calif along with New Haven-Milford, Conn. and Springfield, Mo.
  • Measured in dollars, down payments for investment and second homes were three and four times larger than for primary homes, in Q1 2024.

According to Realtor.com Sr. Economic Research Analyst Hannah Jones: “Despite a slight decrease from their peak, current buyers are still shelling out higher down payments compared to pre-pandemic norms. This trend may stem from intense local competition from a lack of homes for sale, compelling some to increase down payments to win the home, while others aim to lower their monthly payments by putting more down and taking out a smaller loan.”

According to Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale: “The current housing market's overall unaffordability has an impact on who is buying homes right now. Given persistently high home prices and elevated mortgage rates, many of today’s purchasers are likely either high-earners or repeat buyers leveraging existing home equity to use as a down payment, and this may explain why down payments have dipped but remained relatively high.”

You can read the full report here. If you're interested, I would be happy to coordinate an interview. 

Posted On Tuesday, 14 May 2024 06:21 Written by

In my Anticipatory Leader Program, I talk about being Anticipatory in how you approach your business future, identifying disruption before it has the opportunity to disrupt. However, an Anticipatory Mindset is a key strategic tool that can be applied to all areas of life, including the conversations we have both at work and in our personal lives.

I recently had the benefit of speaking with Phil Jones, who is a leading expert on the power of language for influence and persuasion. We discussed the art of structuring conversations and word choices. This is to promote safe spaces where information can be shared with trust and, in turn, innovation can thrive. In fact, Phil and I had such a great conversation, I am able to write even more about what we discussed in yet another article!

My first article was about eliminating friction and creating a gray space of curiosity to facilitate more efficient decision making, which you can read here. In this article, we will dive deep into actionable ways that business leaders can use anticipation to have more effective conversations that lead to productive results.

Anticipating the Conversation

The worst time to think about what you are going to say is the moment when you are saying it. On many occasions, we come away from conversations thinking, “I could have said this” or “I should have said that.” These hindsight comments often leave us believing that adjusting our words would have portrayed an idea better. This way of thinking doesn’t help us because the conversation or presentation is already over.

The conversation has already not gone the way you wished, but what if instead of wishing things went differently, we took the time prior to the conversation to look to the future on what the conversation could be? What if we anticipated any opposition in a conversation and prepared for it?

Your conversations can be exponentially more effective with anticipation! As I teach in my Anticipatory Organization® Model, the future is not an enigma. There are signs that point to the known future, and there are signs that point to how conversations will play out, especially if you use language strategically to drive the conversation in a beneficial direction.

Much like using Hard Trends and Soft Trends to help anticipate the future, using strategic language is a skill that takes time to master. It requires consistent practice and constant refinement in pre-solving problems any given conversation could have. Words are a tool used to help you get a desired result, and similar to every tool, you have to dial it in to use it.

A Formula for Conversational Success

During our conversation, Phil and I discussed a formula for taking any conversation to the next level. He identified six categories of principles outlined in his bestselling book Exactly What to Say: The Magic Words for Influence and Impact that any leader can use to enhance their skills, and I will outline them briefly below:

1. Rejection-Free Opening

A rejection-free opening is a way to get the ball rolling and to get someone to consider an idea by positioning yourself beside it. Use the phrase, “I’m not sure this is for you, but . . .” The first part of the phrase lights up their subconscious brain by piquing their curiosity. The “but” shifts their focus to what you really think.

Example: I’m not sure it’s for you, but there is an opening within our leadership team.

2. Perspective Change

You cannot change someone’s mind on a subject, but you can change how they perceive it. A perspective change involves words that nudge others in a new direction so they begin to look at something a different way. Giving an individual multiple reasons to view something differently is key.

Example: What is your experience with project management and streamlining operations?

3. Assumption Frame

An assumption frame is a tool that allows you to streamline decision making by giving an individual three options to choose from. The first option should be the hard choice, the second should be something they do not want, and the third should be what you want them to choose. By giving someone options, you empower them to feel that they are making their own decision.

Example: We have three options. One, I could take the lead, but I believe your unique skill set is precisely what we need for this project. Alternatively, we could have someone else manage the project, but it might lack the innovative touch and efficiency you bring to our team. Of course, considering your exceptional experience, leading the upcoming project could be a fulfilling opportunity for you.

4. Labeling

A label is a phrase that helps us to quickly accept something that is true. A caveat to this is that the label must be used with integrity and followed by something that actually is true to build trust.

Example: Don’t worry, your skill on this past project proves you are competent.

5. Staying in the Game

This principle involves words that help keep the conversation going when it might have ended otherwise. When objections arise, indecisiveness takes over, or you hear the dreaded “I’ll get back to you on that,” implement the following example:

Example: Help me to understand what it would take for you to be confident in this role.

6. Making Conversations Count

The last principle in Phil’s formula is to make the most of the conversation by inserting “just one more thing.” You can ask for referrals or get a review, but the best use of this principle is to ask a question to get more information that you can use down the road.

Example: Just one more thing. What are the three things you look forward to or are concerned about in this position?

Turn This System into a Template for Effective Communication

We all have desktop files and online templates that make repetitive work easier to navigate, but these documents must be customized to align with each situation. Why shouldn’t the conversations we have in our work and personal lives follow the same structure? Why shouldn’t we have a template that helps us to be more strategic in how we speak?

We should, and you can!

Words are a vehicle that we use to get our points across and create more efficient conversations that lead to streamlined decisions. Learn to fine-tune your words, implement anticipation in this process, and experience the results for yourself! Join my Anticipatory Leader Membership to access the episode and master the art of anticipatory thinking.

Posted On Tuesday, 14 May 2024 00:00 Written by

The issue is REAL! The reality is becoming more and more apparent. Debt is a national problem, and it’s going to get far worse before it gets better! The main culprit is the federal government. NOBODY has more debt on the planet than the United States of America. That debt continues to pressure the markets as the ability to borrow larger and larger sums of money gets more and more expensive. Nobody wants to acknowledge it, but it does impact our everyday lives more than you think it does.

The other issue we have is that consumers are piling up debt faster than ever! We are not only setting records for outstanding debt; but consumers are relying on more and more debt to simply cover what they feel are their basic costs of living. Especially young people, who seem to think $1,000+ cell phones and $500+ car payments, and $150 a month for coffee are things worth putting on credit! They see the government use credit as a solution, so they think it’s fine, the government doesn’t need to balance its budget, why should I?

We all know that there is “good” debt and “bad” debt. Well, the lines have become blurred! People are racking up huge piles of debt and the ability to keep adding new sources is eventually going to dry up and we will see higher rates of default, repossessions, and potentially foreclosures! The reason I say potential foreclosures is that we have many people with significant equity to refinance and buy their way out of trouble IF they learn and don’t repeat past poor habits. However, while some do; many don’t, and a few years later, they are back in the same trouble and this time, there might not be equity enough to save them!

Now is really a good time to engage your accountants, financial planners, and accountants, and do a few videos covering different topics in the area of financial literacy. Many have never had any professional guidance and would appreciate the information. You may also want to work with your local high schools to have talks with your team to explain budgeting, debt, and the world of finance to high school students because many will never get this information if you aren’t there to share!

Questions or comments about this topic, please feel free to reach out to me and I can share how my clients make this work for them. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Posted On Monday, 13 May 2024 00:00 Written by

High home prices and rates sent home sellers and buyers to the sidelines in April and the start of Maybut last week’s encouraging economic news drove mortgage rates down a bit

The median U.S. monthly housing payment hit an all-time high of $2,894 during the four weeks ending May 5, up 14% from a year earlier, and home prices rose 4.5% to their own record high. That’s according to a new report from Redfin (redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage.

The supply of homes for sale lost momentum, with prospective sellers jittery about high rates. New listings rose 9% year over year, the smallest increase in three months (with the exception of the four weeks ending March 31, when there was an artificially small decline due to Easter). There were fewer new listings during the four-week period ending May 5 than any comparable period on record except 2020 and 2023. Many would-be sellers backed off when rates rose throughout April, opting to stay put to hold onto their low mortgage rate.

Home sales fell due to high rates and low supply. Pending home sales dropped 3% from a year earlier, the biggest decline in two months. There are also signs that competition for homes is slowing during a time of year when it typically speeds up: 30% of homes sold above asking price, flat from a week earlier and down from 32% a year earlier and more than 50% two years earlier. And 6.2% of home sellers dropped their asking price, the highest share since November and up from 4.3% a year ago. But there is one signal that demand is starting to pick up: Mortgage-purchase applications increased 2% week over week.

Recent economic news brought rates down from their peak. Encouraging economic news pushed daily average mortgage rates down from a five-month high of 7.5% on April 30 to about 7.2% at the end of last week and into this week, bringing buyers a modicum of relief. The Fed held interest rates steady and kept open the possibility of a rate cut later this year at their May 1 meeting, and last Friday’s soft jobs report was another step in the right direction.

“The market is a mixed bag, with high mortgage rates causing some listings to sit longer than I would expect in the springtime and high prices holding steady,” said David Palmer, a Redfin Premier agent in Seattle. “Sellers can rest assured that there are plenty of motivated buyers who are jumping into the market now; they finally understand that rates aren’t going to plummet anytime soon. Those buyers are the people who are moving because they need to: They’re relocating for a new job, going through a divorce, or growing their family. So even though some of my listings are taking longer to sell than they would in a typical spring market, they are selling eventually.”

For Redfin economists’ takes on the housing market, including more on how current financial events are impacting mortgage rates, please visit Redfin’s “From Our Economists” page.

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

7.2% (May 8)

Down from a 5-month high of 7.52% two weeks earlier

Up from 6.5%

Mortgage News Daily

Weekly average 30-year fixed mortgage rate

7.22% (week ending May 2)

Highest level since Nov. 2023

Up from 6.39%

Freddie Mac

Mortgage-purchase applications (seasonally adjusted)

 

Increased 2% from a week earlier (as of week ending May 3)

Down 17%

Mortgage Bankers Association

Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index (seasonally adjusted)

 

Down 6% from a month earlier (as of week ending May 5)

Down 12%

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

Touring activity

 

Up 32% from the start of the year (as of May 7)

At this time last year, it was up 27% from the start of 2023

ShowingTime, a home touring technology company

Google searches for “home for sale”

 

Essentially unchanged from a month earlier (as of May 5)

Down 18%

Google Trends

Key housing-market data

U.S. highlights: Four weeks ending May 5, 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 May 5, 2024

Year-over-year change

Notes

Median sale price

$384,721

4.5%

All-time high

Median asking price

$419,519

6.5%

All-time high

Median monthly mortgage payment

$2,894 at a 7.22% mortgage rate

14.1%

All-time high

Pending sales

90,542

-3%

Tied with the 2 previous 4-week periods for the biggest decline in 2 months

New listings

102,449

9.3%

Smallest increase since 4 weeks ending Feb. 11, with the exception of a 6.6% increase during the 4 weeks ending March 31 (that uptick was artificially small because of the Easter holiday)

Active listings

877,829

13.3%

 

Months of supply

3.2 months

+0.5 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

44.9%

Down from 47%

 

Median days on market

34

+1 day

 

Share of homes sold above list price

30.4%

Down from 32%

 

Share of homes with a price drop

6.2%

+1.9 pts.

 

Average sale-to-list price ratio

99.4%

+0.1 pt.

 

Metro-level highlights: Four weeks ending May 5, 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

Anaheim, CA (21%)

West Palm Beach, FL (15.9%)

Detroit (15.7%)

San Jose, CA (13.2%)

New Brunswick, NJ (12.8%)

San Antonio, TX (-1.9%)

Declined in just 1 metro

Pending sales

San Jose, CA (21.9%)

Anaheim, CA (9.1%)

Oakland, CA (6.1%)

San Francisco (6.1%)

Seattle (5.9%)

Phoenix (-13%)

Atlanta (-11.7%)

Houston (-11.1%)

Jacksonville, FL (-10.3%)

Orlando, FL (-10.2%)

Increased in 15 metros

New listings

San Jose, CA (35.6%)

Phoenix (25.9%)

Seattle (22.4%)

San Diego, CA (21.5%)

Oakland, CA (21.1%)

Chicago (-9%)

Newark, NJ (-4.3%)

Warren, MI (-3.9%)

Atlanta (-3%)

Detroit (-2.5%)

Providence, RI (-1.5%)

Declined in 6 metros

To view the full report, including charts, please visit:
https://www.redfin.com/news/housing-market-update-record-high-monthly-payments-mortgage-rates-decline

Posted On Thursday, 09 May 2024 13:32 Written by
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