The holidays have passed and the most common question we get currently this time of year is, “What’s going on in the market?” It’s not just potential buyers and sellers who are curious; homeowners always want reassurance their home’s value is going up. The good news is the American real estate market is strong and healthy: home values are up, prices and sales are strong, and millennial first-time buyers are eager to become homeowners. The local Phoenix Metropolitan area is continuing strong for Sellers. The local market place in the under $500,000 range was truly to the Seller’s advantage in 2017. As we enter the New Year 2018, we are down 12% on active listings when compared to 2017 this time this year. This means that it will continue to be challenging for buyers as the competition is fierce!
For up to date market information REAL ESTATE INFORMATION
We often use national real estate numbers to give us a clearer view of our local market. However, real estate is local, and while statistics and predictions help us understand the overall real estate market, our local market may be different. If you’re thinking of buying or selling, or just want to know how much your home is worth, give us a call! We are happy to advise as to what is going on in your neighborhood. Many clients are happy to see what is going on in their neighborhoods.
What to Expect in the Real Estate Market in 2018
The American housing market is stronger than ever! Home values, prices and sales had their strongest numbers in 2018, a sure sign the market is healthy and strong. According to the Home Price Index from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), property values have increased in 58 of the last 62 months and have increased more than 35 percent nationally. Homeowners continue to build equity in their largest investment—their homes. The Phoenix Metro area saw an average increase in per square foot of 6.2%. The sales in the $200,000 priced home accounted for 33% of our market sales.
First-time buyers are back.
Housing forecasts from the National Association of REALTORS (NAR), the Mortgage Bankers’ Association, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae all predict existing-home sales will surpass 6 million in 2018, higher than anticipated sales for 2017. Who’s driving the surge? According to NAR, millennials who have put off buying a home are ready to buy. While they may have avoided buying a home due to student debt and limited employment, many are entering their 30’s, a time when their attention turns to marriage, family and setting roots with home ownership. They’re predicted to be the driving force behind home and condominium sales from now until into 2020. (Source: MarketWatch)
What does this mean to you? Renting is only costing you money! If you’re a millennial who’s been on the fence about buying, now is the time to act. Give us a call to answer your questions about the market and the buying process.
Renters are embracing home ownership
Additionally, many renters who’ve resisted buying are starting home searches due to the economic weight of rising rents. This year’s home buyers seek to take advantage of comparatively low interest rates and, in most cases, static payments each month—an advantage of home ownership. Rental costs will only continue to rise; if you’re thinking of buying, now is an ideal time to do so. Our local market has increased significantly in rent amounts as there is a shortage of leases available. When you buy a home your mortgage builds equity into your home. This will increase your financial worth in the long run.
What does this mean to you? Every month you pay rent, you lose the opportunity to build equity in a home of your own. Break free from the limits of renting and invest in your financial future. Come in the office and we’ll discuss your options.
Home prices are on the rise.
According to NAR, the median existing-home price not only increased 6.0 percent year-over-year in October, it’s also the 56th consecutive month of year-over-year increases. Prices are approaching the pre-recession peak.
What does this mean to you? Home prices, and subsequently home values, are increasing. If you’ve been waiting to list your home until you know you can sell it for what you think it’s worth, now is a great time to do so. We’ll be happy to give you a comparative market assessment of your home and help you get your home in list-ready shape.
If you’re in the market to buy, be prepared to act.
Homes were on the market for the shortest amount of time recorded since 2009: 52 days. The increase of qualified buyers in the market along with the increasing efficiency of the real estate process means homes are selling faster than ever, and in many cases buyers are engaging in bidding wars and paying over the list price to get the home of their dreams. This is why it is crucial for you to have a pre-qualification form with a local lender today. You also need to know what our market is like prior to entering this process.
What does this mean to you? The home you have your eye on one day may be gone the next. In competitive markets, be prepared to come to the table with a competitive bid.
Looking for a new home?
New-home construction will increase to an average of 1.5 million per year to 2024, according to a report from NAR. However, experts anticipate housing starts will only increase to 1.22 million in 2017, which is less than the 1.5 million new homes required to keep up with growing demand. This inventory shortage of new entry-level homes—typically purchased by first-time buyers—may drive up prices in some areas. Home builders have been focusing on multi-family construction for the last few years, but this type of construction has begun to level off providing hope that builders will once again focus on single-family home construction. However, stricter proposed immigration policies may impact new home construction and tighten inventory.
What does this mean to you? First-time and repeat home buyers agree—there are plenty of advantages of buying a new home. Whether you want a home customized to your family’s needs or you don’t want to bother with age-related maintenance, a new home has much to offer. Having a Buyer’s Representation is an important consideration when purchasing a new home. Give us a call to discuss your options.
Affordability pressures are increasing in many markets
Housing affordability in many of the nation’s largest cities has declined over the past few years, a trend that is expected to continue in 2018. However, there is hope. NAR created the Affordability Index to measure the affordability of homes across the United States. The Affordability Index assesses whether the typical family earning the median family income can qualify for a mortgage on a typical home based on the prevailing mortgage interest rate on loans closed on existing homes from the Federal Housing Finance Board.
The NAR Affordability Index is 170.2 (composite) and 169.8 (fixed), meaning a family earning the median family income has 170.2 percent of the income necessary to buy a median-priced, single-family home. Nationally, the qualifying income is $41,616, but it varies by region. In the Northeast, the qualifying income is $45,024. In the Midwest, it’s $32,640. In the South, it’s $36,960. In the West, it’s $61,824. Phoenix is rated as a very affordable city. With the mean home price at $240,000 in the Valley of the Sun is a very affordable area to buy a home!BEST REAL ESTATE INFO
What does this mean to you? If you’ve had your eye on a new home, but weren’t sure if you could afford it, you may be pleasantly surprised. We may have homes in our area that meet your needs and budget. Give us a call today to discuss your home search.
3 Things to Do Now if You Plan to Buy This Year
- Get pre-approved for a mortgage. If you’re like most buyers who plan to finance part of the home purchase, getting pre-approved for a mortgage will allow you to put in an offer on a home and may give you an advantage over other buyers. The bonus: you can see how much home you can afford and budget accordingly.
- Start looking. While most buyers start their searches online, be sure to look at homes in neighborhoods you’d like to live in as well. Keep a notebook to write down what you like and dislike about each home you view in person or online. This will help you narrow down where to look and what to look for in your next home.
- Come to our office. The buying process can be tricky. We’d love to guide you through it. We can help you find a home that fits your needs and budget. Give us a call to make an appointment today!
3 Things to Do Now if You Plan to Sell This Year
- Make repairs. Most buyers want a home they can move into right away, without having to make extensive repairs. While the repairs may or may not add value, making them will give your home a competitive advantage over other similar homes on the market.
- Get a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). A CMA not only gives you the current market value of your home, it’ll also show how your home compares to others in the area. This will help us price your home to sell in our market. Call us for your free CMA!
- Start packing. Help your buyers see themselves in your home by packing up items you don’t use regularly and storing them in an attic or a storage space. This will make your home easier to stage as well as make it easier to move later.
Are you thinking of buying or selling? Would you like to invest in property?
Whether you’d like to buy or sell a home this year, want to know how much your home is worth, or have general questions about our local market, give us a call! We’d love to discuss the market with you. Investing is a great way to build wealth; we can walk you through this process also.