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The Louisville Real Estate Blog

Buying a Home/Selling Your Home

Where Will Home Prices Be Next Year? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Where Will Home Prices Be Next Year? [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some interesting facts:

  • 25 states are forecasted to achieve higher levels of appreciation in the next 12 months than already achieved in the last year.
  • 25 state and the District of Columbia are forecasted to experience a slow in appreciation.
  • All 50 states & D.C. are forecasted to achieve some level of positive price appreciation.

Even though each state is appreciating at different levels, you need to know the Cost of Waiting until next year to buy your dream home!

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New Home Sales Surge

New Home Sales Surge | Keeping Current Matters

According to the latest report from the US Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, newly constructed home sales jumped 5.7% month-over-month and 21.6% year-over-year to an annual pace of 552,000.

Many buyers are looking to the new homes market to make up for the lack of existing home sales inventory. National Association of Home Builders Chief Economist David Crowe explains:

"Today's report indicates the release of pent-up housing demand as the overall economy strengthens, consumer confidence grows and mortgage interest rates remain low. The housing market should continue to move forward at a modest but more persistent pace throughout the rest of 2015."

Regionally, the Northeast led the way with a 24.1% increase in new home sales, followed by the South (7.4%) and West (5.4%). Sales in the Midwest declined by 9.1%.

The inventory of new homes for sale currently sits at a 4.7-month supply down slightly from July (4.9) and significantly from August 2014 (5.4).

Buyers who purchased a new home were willing to spend more to get the amenities that they wanted. The median home price for new homes was $64,000 higher than existing homes in August at $292,700!

Approved applications...

How Quickly Are Homes Selling In Your State?

How Quickly Are Homes Selling In Your State? [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • The National Association of REALTORS® surveyed their members for their Confidence Index
  • The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a key indicator of housing market strength based on a monthly survey sent to over 50,000 real estate practitioners. Practitioners are asked about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions.
  • Homes sold in less than 60 days in 39 out of 50 states and Washington D.C.
  • Only Vermont had a median sold date longer than 90 days.
...

Is it Time to Downsize your Home?

Is it Time to Downsize your Home? | Keeping Current Matters

A recent study by Edelman Berland revealed that of homeowners who are contemplating selling their house in the near future 33% plan to scale down. Let’s look at a few reasons why that would make sense to many Americans.

In a recent blog post, Dave Ramsey, the financial guru, discussed the advantages of selling your current house and downsizing into a smaller home that better serves your current needs. Ramsey explains three potential financial advantages to downsizing:

  1. A smaller home means less space, but it also means less time, stress and money spent on upkeep
  2. Let’s assume you save $500 a month on your mortgage payment. In 30 years, you could have an additional $1–1.6 million in the bank to get you through your golden years.
  3. Use the proceeds from selling your current home to pay cash for a smaller one. Just imagine what you could do with no mortgage holding you down! If you can’t pay cash, aim for a 15-year fixed rate mortgage and put at least 10–20% down on your new home. Apply the $500 you saved from downsizing to your new monthly payment. At 3% interest, you could pay off a $200,000 mortgage in less than 10.5 years, saving almost $16,000 in the process.

Realtor.com also addressed downsizing in a recent article. They suggest you ask yourself some questions before deciding if downsizing is right for you and your family. Here are two...

Existing Home Sales Slow Amongst Tight Inventory [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Slow Amongst Tight Inventory [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • Existing Home Sales slowed down slightly in August but remained 6.2% higher than August 2014.

  • Inventory levels remain below the 6 months necessary for a normal market at a 5.2-month supply.

  • First Time Buyers rebounded in August to make up 32% of sales, matching a 2015 high.

...

Economic Impact of Every Home Sold [INFOGRAPHIC]

Economic Impact of Every Home Sold [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • Every time a home is sold, the surrounding economy feels a boost.
  • Different industries and businesses benefit at each stage of the process of moving into a home!
  • Hawaii leads the way with a $177,000 boost to the local economy.
...

A+ Reasons to Hire A Real Estate Professional [INFOGRAPHIC]

A+ Reasons To Hire A Real Estate Professional [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • Hiring a Real Estate Professional to buy your dream home, or sell your current house is one of the most 'educated' decisions you can make!
  • A Real Estate Professional has the experience needed to help you through the entire process.
  • Make sure that you hire someone who knows current market conditions & can simply & effectively explain them to you & your family!
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NAR’S Latest Existing Home Sales Report [INFOGRAPHIC]

NAR's Latest Existing Home Sales Report [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • Existing Home Sales are up 10.3% year-over-year across the country.
  • Sales rose to an annual rate of 5.59 million marking the 10th month in a row of year-over-year gains
  • Prices are up 5.6% year-over-year in the U.S. to a median price of $234,000
  • Marked the 41st consecutive month of year-over year price gains.
...

Home Prices Up in 93% of Measurable Markets [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Prices Up in 93% of Measurable Markets [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • The national median home price for Q2 is up 8.2% to $229,400
  • The income needed to afford the median home in each region is directly impacted by the amount of the down payment. The larger the down payment the lower the income needed to pay the monthly mortgage payment.
  • The West led the way with the highest median home price at $325,200.
...

Home Values: Where Are They Headed Over The Next 5 Years?

Home Values: Where Are They Headed in the Next 5 Years? | Keeping Current Matters

Today, many real estate conversations center on housing prices and where they may be headed. That is why we like the Home Price Expectation Survey.

Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists about where prices are headed over the next five years. They then average the projections of all 100+ experts into a single number.

The results of their latest survey

  • Home values will appreciate by 4.1% in 2015.
  • The cumulative appreciation will be 18.1% by 2019.
  • That means the average annual appreciation will be 3.4% over the next 5 years.
  • Even the experts making up the most bearish quartile of the survey still are projecting a cumulative appreciation of 10.5% by 2019.

Individual opinions make headlines. We believe the survey is a fairer depiction of future values.

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Foreclosure Inventory Hits Lowest Mark in Over 7 Years [INFOGRAPHIC]

Foreclosure Inventory Hits Lowest Mark in Over 7 Years [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • The number of homes in the US in some stage of foreclosure is down 28.9% to 472,000.
  • Only 3.5% of homes in the US are currently in serious delinquency.
  • Foreclosure Inventory levels hit the lowest level since January 2008 at 1.2% of all homes with a mortgage.
...

Don’t Wait to Move Up to Your Dream Home!

Don’t Wait to Move Up to Your Dream Home! | Keeping Current Matters

Now that the housing market has stabilized, more and more homeowners are considering moving up to their dream home. With interest rates still near 4% and home values on the rise, now may be a great time to make a move.

Sellers should realize that waiting while mortgage rates are increasing probably doesn’t make sense. As rates increase, the price of the house you can afford will decrease if you plan to stay within a certain budget for your monthly housing costs.

Here is a chart detailing this point:

Buyer's Purchasing Power | Keeping Current Matters

With each quarter percent increase in interest rate, the value of the home you can afford decreases by 2.5%, (in this example, $10,000). Experts predict that mortgage rates will be closer to 5% by this time next year.

Act now to get the most house for your hard earned money.

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An Easy Way to Find the Perfect Real Estate Agent

An Easy Way to Find the Perfect Real Estate Agent | Keeping Current Matters

There is a plethora of real estate information available today in the news and on the internet. It can be extremely confusing at times.

If you are thinking of buying or selling, you need an agent who can help make sense of this rapidly evolving housing market. You need an agent who can help you price your home correctly at the beginning of the selling process. You need an agent who can help you determine what to offer on your dream home without paying too much or offending the seller with a low-ball offer.

Dave Ramsey, the financial guru advises:

“When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.”

Hiring an agent who has their finger on the pulse of the market will make your buying/selling experience so much easier.

But, how do you identify which agents truly understand what is happening and will take the time to simply and effectively explain what it means to you and your family?

One simple way is to check out the agent on social media. What are they posting on Facebook and Twitter? Are they using their social media platforms to share relevant, helpful information or are they just posting cherry pie recipes and cartoons? The best agents are committed to educating the consumer...

Spring Buying Season Extends Into Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

Spring Buying Season Extends Into Summer [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • Existing Home Sales are up 9.6% over last year.
  • Homes Sold on Average in just 34 days!
  • Inventory now stands at a 5.0-month supply.
  • Distressed Sales made up only 8% of all sales.
...

Are Home Values REALLY at Record Levels?

Are Home Values REALLY at Record Levels? | Keeping Current Matters

Last week, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their Existing Home Sales Report. The report announced that the median existing-home price in June was $236,400. That value surpasses the peak median sales price set in July 2006 ($230,400). This revelation created many headlines exclaiming that home prices had hit a “new record”:

Wall Street Journal: Existing-Home Prices Hit Record

USA Today: Existing home sales surge, prices hit record

Though the headlines are accurate, we want to take a closer look at the story. We do not want people to believe that this information is evidence that a new “price bubble” is forming in housing.

NAR reports the median home price. That means that 50% of the homes sold above that number and 50% sold below that number. With fewer distressed properties (lower valued) now selling, the median price will rise. The median value does not reflect that each individual property is increasing in value.

Below are the comments from Bill McBride, the author of the esteemed economic blog Calculated Risk. McBride talks about the challenges with using the median price and also explains that in “real” prices...

Buyer Demand Continues To Outpace Housing Supply

Buyer Demand Continuing to Outpace Housing Supply | Keeping Current Matters

The price of any item is determined by the supply of that item, and the market demand. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released their latest Existing Home Sales Report.

Inventory Levels & Demand

Sales of existing homes rose 3.2% from May, outpacing year-over-year figures for the ninth consecutive month. Total unsold housing inventory is at a 5.0-month supply.

This is down from May’s 5.1-month supply and remains below the 6 months that is needed for a historically normal market.

Consumer confidence is at the highest level in over a decade. Pair that with interest rates still around 4%, new programs available for down payments as low as 3%, and you have an attractive market for buyers.

Buyer demand for housing surged to it’s highest level since June 2013.

Prices Rising

June marked the 40th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains as the median price of existing homes sold rose to $236,400 (up 6.5% from 2014).

So What Does This Mean?

The chart below shows the impact that inventory levels have on home prices.

Inventory & Pricing | Keeping Current Matters

NAR’s Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun gave some insight into the correlation:

...

Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC]

Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • With interest rates still around 4% now is a great time to look back at where rates have been over the last 40 years.
  • Rates are projected to go up a full percentage point by this time next year according to Freddie Mac.
  • The impact your interest rate makes on your monthly mortgage cost is significant!
  • Lock in a low rate now while you can!
...

45% of Homes Sold in Less Than A Month! [INFOGRAPHIC]

45% of Home Sold In Less Than A Month [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • The National Association of REALTORS® surveyed their members for their Confidence Index
  • The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a key indicator of housing market strength based on a monthly survey sent to over 50,000 real estate practitioners. Practitioners are asked about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions.
  • Homes sold in 60 days or less in 35 out of 50 states and Washington D.C.
  • Only 7 states had a median sold date longer than 90 days.
...

What is a Housing Bubble? Is One Forming?

What is a Housing Bubble? Is One Forming? | Keeping Current Matters

The recent talk of Greece and its financial challenges has some questioning whether the U.S. could also return to the crisis we experienced in 2008. Some are looking at the rise in real estate values and wondering whether we are in the middle of another housing price bubble.

What actually is a price bubble?

Here is the definition according to Jack M. Guttentag, Professor of Finance Emeritus at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania:

“A price bubble is a rise in price based on the expectation that the price will rise. Sooner or later something happens to erode confidence in continued price increases, at which point the bubble bursts and prices drop. What makes it a price bubble is that the cause of the price increase is an expectation that the price will increase, which sooner or later must reverse itself.”

Does Professor Guttentag believe we are in another housing bubble?

In a recent article, he explained:

“My view is that we are a long way from another house price bubble. Home buyers, lenders, investors and regulators now understand that a nationwide decline in house prices is possible -- because we recently lived through one.”

What are home prices doing?

Though home values are continuing to appreciation, the acceleration of the increases has slowed to...

Pending Home Sales Reach Highest Mark In 9 Years!

Pending Home Sales Reach Highest Mark In 9 Years! | Keeping Current Matters

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released their Pending Home Sales Index Report and revealed that it is at its highest level since April 2006.

The Pending Home Sales Index is “a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings”. The higher the Pending Home Sales Index number, the more contracts have been signed by buyers that will soon translate to sales.

Every region of the country has experienced year-over-year gains in pending sales as seen below:

Pending Home Sales by Region | Keeping Current Matters

NAR’s Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun cites job creation as a major reason that the housing market has boomed this spring, going on to say,

"It's very encouraging to now see a broad based recovery with all four major regions showing solid gains from a year ago and new home sales also coming alive."

Yun went on to caution that,

"Housing affordability remains a pressing issue with home-price growth increasing around four times the pace of wages. Without meaningful gains in new and existing supply, there's no question the goalpost will move further away for many...