Three Reasons Homeowners May be Waiting to Sell

When shopping for a house, you have to choose from the homes that are for sale at the time you’re looking. In other words, unless you’re having a house custom built to your specifications, you’re going to have to make do with what’s on the market now. These days, that’s become more challenging in some areas due to the fact that there aren’t as many homes for sale as is historically normal. So why is that?

Well, there are a couple of different factors behind current inventory levels. One is homes that have yet to recover their value. If a homeowner purchased their home just before the housing crash, they may be waiting for prices to reach pre-crash levels before selling.

Another is mortgage rates. Many homeowners were able to refinance their loans while rates were low and – though they remain lower than historical norms – these potential sellers fear they won’t be able to get as good a deal, if they move now.

Finally, and perhaps most significantly, current homeowners are less likely to put their homes on the market if they feel they won’t be able to find a house they like in their price range. However, despite the factors keeping more homeowners from putting their homes up for sale, there are also some reasons to believe that homeowners who have been waiting may end up selling sooner than later. Among them, surging buyer demand, higher prices, and mortgage rates still hovering near historic lows top the list.

 

 

 

This advertisement is provided by Jennifer Bixby, member of the Bixby and Sorensen Team and the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

 

 

Repairs and the Cost of Selling

It isn’t just the home’s buyer who has to settle up at the end of the closing process, sellers have costs too.

According to one recent estimate, the average seller spends $15,000 before they hand over the keys to their home’s new owner. A big part of that is closing costs, agent commission, and any repairs required following the home’s inspection.

Another chunk of that is renovations done before the sale. In fact, a large majority of homeowners fix up their homes before putting them on the market. Things like having the home painted, cleaned, and staged can add up for the 80 percent of homeowners who decide to spruce things up before showing their house.

Nationally, the average cost of home improvements done before selling was $2,650, though that can vary greatly from region to region and is also dependent on the type of work that is done to get the house in shape. Of course, unlike buyers, home sellers have the sale of their home to help cover their costs but – assuming they’re going to buy another home – these expenses will obviously have an effect on how much money they have left over to put toward their next house.

 

 

This advertisement is provided by Jennifer Bixby, member of the Bixby & Sorensen Team and the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

Prices Move Higher as Homeowners Stay Put

Widely seen as the leading measure of U.S. home prices, the S&P Dow Jones Indices is a monthly look at home values that has been conducted for more than 27 years. According to the most recent release, national home prices are up 5.8 percent over last year, with the largest gains seen in the West and South.

David M. Blitzer managing director and chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, says there’s some regional variation in how quickly prices are rising, but generally the issue is the number of homes available for sale. “Over the last year, analysts suggested that one factor pushing prices higher was the unusually low inventory of homes for sale,” Blitzer said in a press release. “People are staying in their homes longer rather than selling and trading up.” Because of this, there are fewer homes for buyers to choose from but home sellers, on the other hand, enjoy increasingly favorable conditions. And yet, many current homeowners are staying put.

If more homeowners put their homes up for sale, and new home construction continues to improve, the market will balance in the coming months and home price increases will begin to moderate.

 

This advertisement is provided by Jennifer Bixby, part of the Bixby & Sorensen Team and the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

 

Today’s Typical Home Sells in Less than a Month

Home buyers are out in large numbers this spring. Proof of that can be found in the most recent sales report from the National Association of Realtors. Their monthly tally of how many previously owned homes sold the month before found that the typical home for sale was on the market for just 29 days in April, down from 34 days the previous month.

That’s a strong indication that buyer demand is outpacing the number of homes for sale this spring. And that’s saying something, especially since April saw a 7.2 percent increase in for-sale inventory by the end of the month. In other words, there are more homes coming on the market but still not enough to match the number of interested home buyers.

Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, says affordable homes are going fastest. “Homes in the lower and mid-market price range are hard to find in most markets, and when one is listed for sale, interest is immediate and multiple offers are nudging the eventual sales prices higher.” But despite the competition, buyers aren’t deterred. In fact, the number of first-time home buyers was up for the month and, a look at regional results, shows existing home sales are above or even with last year’s results in the South, West, and Midwest.

 

 

 

This article is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate and member of the Bixby & Sorensen Team, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

Housing Markets Nationwide Hit Key Milestone

There are many ways to gauge the health of the housing market. But no matter which way you look at it, the ultimate goal is to figure out where things are headed and how that will affect home buyers and sellers, as well as current and future homeowners.

In other words, the data may differ but it’s all getting at the same question. Take the National Association of Home Builders’ Leading Markets Index – which compares current conditions to previous norms. The NAHB’s index looks at employment info, home prices, and building permits in 340 metropolitan areas across the country in an effort to determine how those markets have rebounded since the housing crash and what they should expect going forward.

According to the latest results, markets nationwide are running at an average of 100 percent of normal economic and housing activity. And, if that sounds good, it’s because it is. “This is the first time the LMI has reached this key milestone and it shows how much our industry has improved since the depth of the Great Recession,” Granger MacDonald, NAHB’s chairman, said in a press release. But though the data shows great strides across a majority of markets, it also shows that – while employment levels and home prices have rebounded strongly – building permits still lag behind. That’s an issue because many markets are in need of new homes to help provide options for buyers and keep affordability conditions under control.

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his article is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

 

Spring Has Homeowners Seeing Opportunity

This year’s housing market depends a lot on whether or not current homeowners decide now’s the time to put their home up for sale. With inventory low, home prices have been climbing and causing affordability concerns for buyers.

There are two ways to relieve upward pressure on prices. One is more new home construction. The other is more homeowners putting their homes on the market. Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae’s senior vice president and chief economist, says the market may get a boost, if current homeowners become more active. “The housing market could get some tailwinds from a seasonal rise in for-sale inventory, particularly as some sellers seek to lock in profits from recent rapid home price gains,” Duncan said. “The market could also get a boost from homebuyers who decide to jump into the market before rates rise further.”

The good news is there are an increasing number of Americans who believe this is the time to sell. In fact, Fannie Mae’s most recent Home Purchase Sentiment Index saw a 9 percent jump in the number of survey participants who said they feel it’s a good time to sell a house. If more homeowners begin to list their homes this spring, it’ll offer buyers better choices. It’ll also help moderate future price increases.

 

This article is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

Why Aren’t More Homeowners Looking To Sell?

Recent real estate data shows home buyer demand is high. There are a lot of buyers looking to take advantage of current conditions out of concern that mortgage rates may go up this year or prices will rise further. That, along with pent-up demand from younger buyers and previously underwater homeowners looking to finally move, means it should be a great time to sell a house.

So, if buyer demand is up and conditions are right, why aren’t more homeowners putting their homes up for sale? Well one reason, according to a recent survey, is that they’re afraid they won’t be able to find a suitable replacement for their current home. With inventory tight in many markets, some homeowners – who may otherwise be ready to sell – say they’re hesitant.

However, as more homeowners get in the market and off the sidelines, that will begin to change. In the meantime, buyers looking to purchase a home this spring should expect to see available homes for sale selling more quickly than they did last year.

In other words, there will likely be some competition for hot properties. Interested buyers will have to move fast. One way to beat the competition is to be prepared. If you’re a buyer, have your financing lined up in advance and have a professional Realtor working for you. Experienced representation will be key to winning negotiations in this hot market.

 

This article is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

Will This Year Be Better For Buyers Or Sellers?

If you want to know whether this year is going to be good for buyers or sellers or both, you need to watch for a couple of factors. First, take a look at the housing market. A recent uptick in mortgage rates, combined with higher prices and lower inventory, have made buying a home slightly less affordable than it was a couple of years ago.

However, mortgage rates are still historically low and, though prices continue to rise, they have slowed down. That means, though affordability isn’t what it was a few years ago, buying a home remains an affordable choice. This is especially true when taken together with recent economic data. That’s because, whether or not higher rates will deter potential buyers really depends more on whether or not those buyers feel financially secure and optimistic about their prospects. In other words, if Americans continue to see better job opportunities and higher wages, they’ll be less likely to hesitate when thinking about buying a house regardless of where rates and prices go.

According to the most recent outlook from Fannie Mae’s Economic & Strategic Research Group, how things play out will depend largely on young Americans. “Tight inventory remains a boon to home prices and Americans’ net worth, but it also continues to price out many would-be first-time homebuyers.” However, our research suggests that aging millennials, now boasting higher real wages, are beginning to narrow the homeownership attainment gap.

 

This advertisement is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St. Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

The Absolute Best Time to List Your Home

Though it’s commonly said that spring is the most popular time for home buyers to begin looking at houses, a new analysis has narrowed it down even further. In fact, the Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends pinpointed the best two weeks of the year to list a house. The study found that homes listed between May 1st and 15th sold nine days faster than the average listing. Additionally, homes that were listed during that time frame sold for 1 percent above average.
However, you may not be able to expect the same success if you’re selling a house in an area with a warmer climate. That’s because, regions where the weather doesn’t change as drastically from season to season will see less variation in sale price. According to Zillow’s chief economist, Dr. Svenja Gudell, there’s one possible reason homes listed near the end of April or beginning of May do so well. “Many home buyers who started looking for homes in the early spring will still be searching for their dream home months later,” Gudell said. “By May, some buyers may be anxious to get settled into a new home – and will be more willing to pay a premium to close a deal.”

 

This article is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St. Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.

Will Low Inventory Affect Your Home Search?

If you’ve followed the housing market at all this year, you’ve likely heard something about inventory. Inventory refers to the number of homes available for sale. This year, it’s been lower than usual. And, when for-sale inventory is low and buyer demand is high – as it’s been this year – prices rise and sellers hold most of the negotiating power.

In many markets, that has been the story this year. However, according to a new analysis from Trulia, whether or not low inventory will affect a buyer’s home search depends on where that buyer is looking and what kind of home they’re looking to buy. For example, starter homes had the largest drop in inventory last year, falling 10.7 percent.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the number of high-end homes for sale only fell 3.7 percent. Naturally, that means a first-time buyer looking for an affordable home may have fewer homes to choose from than a luxury home buyer. However, it also depends on where you live.

Here in Fremont, we have averaged 27 sales a month over the past 6 months. With only 57 active listings today, that is an inventory supply for 2 months. A balanced market is closer to 4-6 months of inventory. If you are thinking of selling now is the time!

 

This advertisement is provided by Jennifer Bixby, the broker for Don Peterson and Associates Real Estate, 100 E. 6th St.  Jennifer can be reached at 402-721-9700 for answers to questions regarding real estate.