If you’re a homeowner getting ready to sell, you’re likely thinking about how to get the best price for your house. Naturally, getting a good offer is going to be top priority. The other big issue is timing. Homeowners who are using the sale of their home to fund the down payment on their next place have to time it right. But could the timing of your move affect the price your home gets? Well, according to new research that compared the sale price of occupied versus vacant homes, it might. In fact, the research showed that homes whose owners had already moved out sold for $11,000 less and spent six more days on the market than comparable homes that were still occupied. Why would this be? Well, one reason is that buyers looking at an empty house assume its owners aren’t as eager to sell, since they’ve already moved on. Another reason is furnishings can sometimes help a home show better. However, there are a lot of factors to consider. For example, a home with less attractive décor can sometimes drag its price down just as much as being vacant. More here.
It’s hard not to be influenced by your family and friends. After all, their opinions hold more weight because you trust them. When someone you love recommends something, you’re probably more likely to consider it than had you heard it from another source. It doesn’t matter if it’s a restaurant, a new movie, or a vacation destination, if a friend tells you it’s good, you’ll likely believe them. This is also true when deciding to buy a house. At a panel convened by the National Association of Realtors, Dr. Johannes Stroebel – an associate professor of finance at New York University – talked about why that is. According to Stroebel, a recent paper looked at how the positive experiences of people close to us can influence our decision to buy. The research showed that having a Facebook friend who experienced a 5 percent increase in their home’s value over the past two years increased the probability that a current renter would purchase a home over the next two years. “Individuals do discuss property value with their friends, and this changes behavior,” Stroebel said. In short, if you have a friend who’s seen their home’s value rise, you’re more likely to … Read More
Recently, there has been a growing number of young Americans interested in buying homes. But though there’s been increasing demand, the number of affordable homes available to these buyers has lagged behind in many markets. In short, there are more potential first-time buyers than entry-level homes available for sale. This is a problem for the housing market, since it means many buyers get priced out or simply can’t find a home to buy. Fortunately, inventory is beginning to rebound. And, according to one recent report, the number of starter homes available for sale rose 3.5 percent over the last year. That’s the fastest pace in more than 6 years. It’s also good news for younger home buyers and the market overall. But though the news is good, the data also suggests inventory is growing fastest in more expensive markets. That means, some of the inventory growth is due to homes remaining on the market longer due to higher prices. More here
There’s a reason they’re called wish lists. After all, home buyers can’t expect to get every single thing they want in a house unless they have one custom built. Which is to say, you’re, undoubtedly, going have to make some sacrifices and some of your wishes are going to go unfulfilled. For that reason, a recent survey took a look at what new homeowners say are the things they most wish their home had. According to the results, a walk-in pantry was the most common response. Around a third of respondents said it was the thing their home didn’t have that they regretted most. Other popular answers included granite countertops, kitchen islands, tankless water heaters, and hardwood floors. But though that might make it sound like recent buyers are dissatisfied with their new homes, the survey found that 95 percent of participants said they like or love the house they purchased. Which should be encouraging to prospective home buyers who worry that they’ll get it wrong and end up in a house they dislike. More here.
Naturally, home prices are important to home buyers. When they’re high, you get less house for your money. And, if you’re a buyer, you’re most likely trying to get as good a deal as you can. That’s why the most recent S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices should be encouraging news. www.homeprice.spdji.com The Index – which is the leading measure of U.S. home prices – found that, on a month-over-month basis, prices are flat and, on an annual basis, the rate of increases has continued to slow. David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, says prices have been following a gradual trajectory. “The pace of increases for home prices continues to slow,” Blitzer said. “Homes began their climb in 2012 and accelerated until late 2013 when annual increases reached double digits. Subsequently, increases slowed until now when the National Index is up 4 percent in the last 12 months.” More here.
Where and how you live has a lot to do with your job and money. After all, if money were no issue, you’d likely have a far different list of priorities when it came time to buy a house. But since most of us have to stick to a budget, we choose what type of house to look for and in which neighborhood based on our financial situation. That’s why it’s not surprising that a recent report on where millennials want to move found that the most popular areas for younger home buyers are those that offer good jobs and affordable homes. Naturally, these aren’t just priorities for millennials, as older buyers also want to live somewhere close to work that won’t break the bank. But because younger home shoppers are at the beginning of their careers and are often first-time home buyers, who have to come up with a down payment from scratch, this is especially true. That’s why the list of most popular areas for millennial buyers is made up of metro areas that have lower rates of unemployment, higher wages, and more homes in entry-level price ranges. More here.
Choosing a house to buy takes a little bit of vision. After all, it’s easy to know what you want in a home today, but more difficult to know for sure what you’ll want years from now. Things change and your life will undoubtedly take some unexpected twists and turns. But just how long should you expect to live in the house you buy? Well, according to ATTOM Data Solutions’ Q1 2019 U.S. Home Sales Report, https://www.attomdata.com/ homeowners who sold in the first quarter of this year had lived in their home an average of 8.05 years. For comparison, that’s close to double what it was prior to the housing crash, when homeowners tenure averaged 4.21 years. In short, you’re likely going to spend close to a decade in the house you buy. That means, home buyers need to be thinking of, not only what they need from a house today, but also what they hope and plan for over the next several years. More here.
The spring home sales season is underway and there’s no better proof than new numbers from the National Association of Realtors. According to their most recent existing home sales report, 47 percent of homes sold in March were on the market for less than a month. Additionally, the average number of days properties remained on the market was 36 days, down from 44 days the month before. That’s a significant drop and evidence that buyer demand is heating up and homes are selling more quickly. But, despite the fact that homes are selling faster, the overall sales numbers were down from February. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, says that’s to be expected after the previous month’s sales surge. “It is not surprising to see a retreat after a powerful sales surge in the prior month,” Yun said. “Still, current sales activity is underperforming in relation to the strength in the job market. The impact of lower mortgage rates has not yet been fully realized.” In other words, though buyer demand may be increasing and homes are selling quickly, the market should be doing even better. One reason it’s not is low inventory. However, that may be changing. In fact, the … Read More
There are many ways to gauge the housing market. You can follow home prices and mortgage rates, buyer traffic and sales, new home construction, or access to credit. But, if you’re a potential home buyer or seller, there may be no better indicator than inventory. That’s because, it’s an easy way to determine whether or not the market favors buyer or sellers. When there are too few homes for sale, buyers have to compete for available homes, which leads to higher home prices. When there are too many homes for sale, the pressure’s on sellers, who have to make sure their home is attractively priced. Typically, inventory is measured by how long it would take to sell the homes currently for sale. A six-month supply is considered a balanced market. Recently, inventory has been low. But new data shows a dramatic improvement. For example, one analysis found that the number of metropolitan areas with less than three months of available inventory has fallen to 3.1 percent from 12.6 percent last year. It also found that two-thirds of metros now have between four and eight months of remaining inventory, which is considered healthy. Overall, the numbers indicate that the housing market … Read More
The typical home seller lives in their house for more than a decade before they put it up for sale. And during that 10 years, there are probably a few things they let go. So it’s no surprise that the vast majority of them feel the need to fix their place up before putting in on the market. In fact, according to one recent analysis, nearly 80 percent of home sellers complete one home improvement project before they invite potential buyers to have a look. This can include anything from a fresh coat of paint to a bathroom remodel. Fortunately, the money sellers spend sprucing up their home often helps them sell it for more than their asking price. So, if you’re thinking about selling, how much should you expect to spend on home improvement projects? Well, the national average is $6,570, though it does depend a lot on where you are. For example, in San Francisco, sellers usually spend closer to $8,000, while in St. Louis the cost is under $4,000. Wherever you are, though, it’s good to consider not only what needs to be repaired and refreshed but also which projects are most likely to provide some return … Read More