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America's 20 Hottest Real Estate Markets for June 2017
Yuba City: The 19th Hottest Housing Market in the Country

Realtor.com
June 29, 2017

Are you ready for the housing market's Endless Summer? At least it might feel endless, because there seems to be no end in sight for the national housing shortage now that we're waist-deep in the busiest season for buying and selling, according to a preliminary analysis of June data by realtor.com®.. ...

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The Euphoria Debate: U.S. Stocks Vs. U.S. Real Estate
Identifying a bubble is not the same as quantifying one

Seeking Alpha
June 1, 2017

When an asset class (e.g., stocks, bonds, commodities, real estate, collectibles, etc.) skyrockets in price - when it surges higher without sufficient economic reason - a bubble develops. Technology stocks in the late 1990s. Housing in the mid-2000s. When the asset class inevitably nose-dives? The balloon implodes. ...

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U.S. home prices rising twice as fast as wages

San Jose Mercury News
May 30, 2017

WASHINGTON — U.S. home prices climbed in March at the strongest rate in nearly three year as a dwindling supply of houses for sale is causing prices to significantly outpace income growth. ...

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Sacramento Is California's Newest Real-Estate Hot Spot

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
May 25, 2017

Price cuts have been replaced by bidding wars. A once-sleepy downtown is flush with urban-renewal projects. A luxury condo tower with penthouses priced over $4 million is under construction. Sacramento, Calif., long seen as a fairly bland government town, is in the midst of a real estate boom. ...

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Housing crisis’ tops California’s legislative agenda this year

San Jose Mercury News
May 8, 2017

Rents are too high. Home prices are out of reach. Decent listings and rentals are hard to find. Homeless encampments are growing. And many residents are cutting back on food, clothing and medical care to keep a roof over their heads. ...

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Town hall discussion on ‘sensible growth’ sees varying opinions on affordable housing crisis solution

San Jose Mercury News
May 8, 2017

Elected officials from all corners of Santa Clara County gathered recently for a discussion that veered toward affordable housing but ended without agreement about how to provide it. ...

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Homeownership Rates Vary Considerably by Race and Ethnicity, Study Finds

California Association of Realtors Magazine
May 2, 2017

Homeownership rates vary by race and ethnicity in California, and the differences are pronounced, a new report from the California Department of Housing and Community Development found. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau showed that 64 percent of households that identified as White (Non-Hispanic) were homeowners in 2010-2014. In comparison, only 35 percent of households identified as Black or African-American. ...

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Here’s who will suffer most if California doesn’t end housing crisis

Sacramento Bee
May 2, 2017

As California legislators weigh, yet again, whether to do something about the housing crisis, they shouldn’t think about the young techies of San Francisco, who often are pitied for paying a small fortune to live in an apartment the size of a crawl space.

They should think about the single moms with full-time jobs who are living out of their cars because they can’t afford rent. The homeless men sleeping in increasingly crowded encampments. The young people who died in the Ghost Ship fire in Oakland, many of whom lived in the death trap because they couldn’t afford anything else. ...

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Politicians fiddle as state’s housing crisis gets worse

Sacramento Bee
May 1, 2017

Capitol politicians – most of them, anyway – are celebrating a multibillion-dollar package of new taxes and fees to shore up the state’s dilapidated transportation network.

Meanwhile, however, they take a lackadaisical attitude on a crisis that’s infinitely more serious than rough roads and congestion – an ever-worsening shortage of housing. And some “solutions” would make it even more intractable. ...

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California must confront the exorbitant cost of housing

Sacramento Bee
March 6, 2017

California, a state that long has prided itself on welcoming newcomers, is out of reach for far too many people who want to build their lives here. ...

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How Vancouver got its housing bubble under control: a lesson for cities like London and San Francisco

Quartz
February 4, 2017

Good news Londoners, Stockholmers, and San Franciscans: Vancouver may have solved one of your toughest problems. Last year, the Canadian city topped UBS’s Global Real Estate Bubble index, a ranking of cities most at risk of being in a property bubble ...

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2017 National Housing Outlook

MetroStudy
January 26, 2017

Watch and listen as Metrostudy’s Chief Economist, Mark Boud, delivers the 2017 Housing Forecast live from the Metrostudy Housing Outlook Breakfast at the International Builders’ Show. ...

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Feel-good efforts won’t solve California’s housing crisis

Sacramento Bee
January 23, 2017

Two new documents – a report by the state housing agency and Gov. Jerry Brown’s 2017-18 budget – focus harsh economic reality on fanciful political “solutions” to the state’s severe housing crisis. ...

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The Big Challenges Home Buyers Face in 2017

Realtor Magazine
January 20, 2017

What are the top challenges your home buyers face this year? A recent survey from realtor.com® reveals the following: ...

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Home builder sentiment down in January but still remains high

CNBC
January 18, 2017

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) sentiment index dropped 2 points to 67. Diana Olick details some of the reasons for the decline in sentiment ...

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Sold Out: These 10 U.S. Cities Have the Biggest Housing Shortages
Sacramento is 6th, Santa Rosa is 10th

Realtor.com
January 11, 2017

It’s a parched, scorching desert out there for many U.S. home buyers. For the past 28 months, the housing market has been defined not just by demand—which remains sky-high in many parts of the nation—but also by the shrinking number of available homes for sale. ...

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Forget What You Know: This Year, Sellers May Benefit From Listing Early

Realtor.com
January 13, 2017

Conventional wisdom in real estate holds that sellers should time the market to maximize their price. Why? Because home sales are extremely seasonal: ...

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Where Are Millennials Buying Homes? – 2017 Edition
Elk Grove and Roseville make the nationwide list

SmartAsset
January 10, 2017

... it’s not surprising that young adults today are struggling to buy their own homes. However in some American cities, millennials are bucking the trend and buying rather than renting. ...

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Five Critical Questions for Housing in 2017

Wells Fargo
January 4, 2017

Following another year of modest gains in home sales and new single-family home construction, the new year brings forth considerable promise and genuine concerns. Stronger job and income growth has clearly bolstered consumer confidence, nudging more potential buyers into the housing market. With for-sale inventories incredibly lean across much of the country and construction restrained by land development costs and an onerous zoning approval process, home prices have continued to firm at a pace well ahead of wage and salary growth. ...

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Bank of America's recession warning: This market is scary

CNBC
October 10, 2016

There's a chilling trend in the market, and it could wreak havoc on your portfolio, a top market watcher said.

"We are seven years into a full-fledged, all out, central bankers doing everything they can to stimulate demand," Bank of America-Merrill Lynch's head of U.S. equity and quantitative strategy Savita Subramanian recently warned on CNBC's "Fast Money." ...

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Supply Constraints Appear to Be Holding Back Sales

Wells Fargo
October 13, 2016

The majority of housing data for the month of August came in below expectations. Sales of both new and existing homes fell during the month and pending home sales also declined (Figure 1). Moreover, sales in previous months were also revised lower, leaving the market with less momentum than previously thought. One recurring theme has been that the lack of available inventory is restraining sales throughout much of the country. ...

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San Francisco’s real estate market has reached 'peak unaffordability': housing expert

Yahoo! FINANCE
September 21, 2016

For San Francisco Bay Area residents long accustomed to skyrocketing rents and real estate prices, there’s some relief on the horizon.

According to Trulia Chief Economist Ralph McLaughlin, San Francisco Bay Area rents and real estate prices are cooling off, down from 15%-17% growth year-over-year to 5%-6% — a trend McLaughlin expects to continue for at least the next two to three years ...

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Negative equity mortgages keep homeowners in the red

CNBC
August 18, 2016

CNBC's Diana Olick takes a look at the housing market five years after the recovery where 5.9 million borrowers still owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth.

The negative equity rate in the U.S. is now at 12%. That's down from 30% at the worst of the crisis. ...
Housing video











Illegal immigrants aren't taking your houses, or your jobs
Actually, they’re not even migrating

HousingWire
August 18, 2016

Illegal immigration. It’s one of the hottest topics in politics today. Republican presidential candidate nominee Donald Trump expressed repeatedly his plan to build a wall, and make Mexico pay for it. Claims are tossed around about how they are taking our houses and jobs, but how true are those claims really? A recent report from Goldman Sachs provides a deeper look into the subject. ...

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NAHB, AIA, AND ABC CHIEF ECONOMISTS PREDICT ONGOING GROWTH THROUGH 2017

Builder
August 16, 2016

National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Chief Economist Robert Dietz, Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Chief Economist Anirban Basu, and American Institute of Architects (AIA) Chief Economist Kermit Baker delivered a collaborative midyear economic forecast Monday afternoon. ...

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Housing Numbers Jumps

CNBC
August 16, 2016

CNBC's Diana Olick provides insight to the latest housing data.

Single family housing starts are still operating at 25% below historical norms and that doesn't even make up for the pent up demand we have seen over the last several years ...
Housing video











Freddie Mac August 2016 Outlook

Freddie Mac
August 16, 2016

Freddie Mac released today its monthly Outlook for August showing that for the first time since 2012, mortgage originations are expected to top $2 trillion in 2016. Low mortgage interest rates are spurring a burst of refinance activity, and strong home sales and house price growth are supporting purchase mortgage activity.

Outlook Highlights: ...

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Delinquencies and Foreclosures Continue to Drop

MORTGAGE BANKERS ASSOCIATION
August 11, 2016

Second Quarter Delinquency Rate Lowest in Ten Years

The delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties decreased 11 basis points to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.66 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the second quarter of 2016. This was the lowest level since the second quarter of 2006. The delinquency rate was 64 basis points lower than one year ago, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) National Delinquency Survey. ...

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Housing Chartbook: 2016 Half-Time Report

Wells Fargo Bank
July 29, 2016

Housing Remains on Pace for a Solid 2016

With the first half of the year now in the books, the housing market appears to be on pace for a solid 2016. June was a breakout month for home sales, ...

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Homeowner Rate at Record Low

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
July 29, 2016

The U.S. homeownership rate fell to the lowest level in more than 50 years in the second quarter of 2016, a reflection of the lingering effects of the housing bust, financial hurdles to buying and shifting demographics across the country.

But the bigger picture also suggests more Americans ...

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It’s Not a Housing Bubble, It’s Just Expensive

Bloomberg
July 18, 2016

Despite record home prices in some big cities, the U.S. market is nowhere near as bad as it was a decade ago. Home prices have hit record highs in some major U.S. metropolitan areas, and house-flippers are behaving like it’s 2005: It’s no wonder people are chattering about another housing bubble. ...

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Strong housing market helps reduce lingering foreclosure inventory

HousingWire
May 19, 2016

A little less than 20k residential properties in the foreclosure process lie vacant (zombies), representing 4.7% of all foreclosures, according to the Q2 2016 U.S. Residential Property Vacancy and Zombie Foreclosure Report by housing data provider RealtyTrac. ...

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Ask the Economist: Challenges Facing Housing in 2016

DSnews
March 18, 2016

You and many other economists have talked a great deal in recent months about a continuing lack of inventory in the housing market. What needs to happen in order to fix this problem? ...

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More New Homes Are Entering the Pipeline

Realtor Magazine
March 18, 2016

Nationwide housing starts climbed 6.6 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million, according to Commerce Department data released Tuesday. Permits, a gauge of future construction, also jumped 3.6 percent month over month, showing the uptick will likely stay. ...

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Here's why Freddie Mac says the mortgage credit box is so tight

HousingWire
May 17, 2016

As the spring home-buying season struggles to lift off, people point to tight credit as one reason to blame, ...

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Economic Growth Outlook Subpar Again as 2016 Progresses

Fannie Mae
May 17, 2016

Fannie Mae’s Economic & Strategic Research (ESR) Group lowered their full-year economic growth forecast to 1.7 percent, down from 1.9 percent growth in the prior forecast and 2.2 percent at the start of the year. ...

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Consumer Confidence in Home Selling Market Picks Up, but Overall Housing Sentiment Remains Flat

Fannie Mae
May 9, 2016

Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index™ (HPSI) increased 3.5 points to 83.7 in April, bouncing back from an 18-month low in March, yet overall consumer housing sentiment has remained generally flat. ...

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Is the Housing Market Finally Becoming Unstuck?

Wells Fargo
April 29, 2016

The housing market has been stuck in low gear throughout most of this recovery, as a dwindling proportion of households have chosen to purchase a home and persistent affordability hurdles have prevented renters from becoming homeowners. ...

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Where Have All the Sellers Gone?

Real Estate Economy Watch
March 17, 2016

It looks like we are headed for the third season in a row when shortages of homes for sale will drive prices up too high for first-time buyers, keep renters renting and make it tough for move-up buyers from to move up. Where have all the sellers gone? ...

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Are We Entering A New Housing Bubble?

Forbes
March 14, 2016

Home prices are rising too fast in much of the country. In Dallas and Denver, prices have surpassed their prior peak and have risen over the past two years by 18% and 20%, respectively. Similar gains were recorded in many Western cities, including Seattle and San Francisco, ...

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Four Reasons to Be Enthusiastic about the Housing Market

National Mortgage News
March 10, 2016

After a strong rebound from the depths of the recession, the housing market has leveled off, but opinions differ about its overall trajectory. ...

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4 Big Trends to Watch in Real Estate

Realtor Magazine
January 28, 2016

What should you watch for this year? The Urban Land Institute recently released its "Emerging Trends" in Real Estate report, covering the U.S. and Canada, for the coming year. The report covers some of the top trends expected to impact real estate in the short and mid-term. ...

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U.S. Housing Market Posts Strong Improvement

Freddie Mac
December 30, 2015

Freddie Mac offers a recap of the U.S. housing market in 2015 ...

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Freddie Mac December 2015 Insight & Outlook

Freddie Mac
December 22, 2015

Freddie Mac discusses it's expectations for the 2016 real estate market ...

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More bad news for renters

CNN
December 15, 2015

Next year, experts predict rents will rise faster than inflation, increasing around 3%-5% on a national level.

"We are already in a rental affordability crisis, and 2016 won't let up," said Svenja Gudell, chief economist at Zillow. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Chartbook: Housing is Poised for Stronger Gains in 2016

Wells Fargo Bank
December 14, 2015

Our forecast calls for overall economic growth to remain in line with recent growth in 2016, as the drag from federal spending cuts lessens, and consumer spending, homebuilding and commercial construction all improve. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie Mae's Doug Duncan explains the Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI)

CNBC
November, 2015

Doug Duncan explains how HPSI is calculated and how it gives a preview of housing trends to come.
Housing video











Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI) Decreases to 80.8 from 83.2: Economy Continues to Drag Housing Upward Despite Lackluster Consumer Financial Sentiment

Fannie Mae
November, 2015

The HPSI decreased 2.4 points to 80.8 in November, with more Americans reporting lower income prospects. The challenge of housing affordability coupled with tight supply may be preventing overall housing sentiment from gaining momentum as income growth isn't keeping pace with the cost of housing. ...

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This is Where the Equity-Rich Live

Realtor Magazine
October 26, 2015

The following metro areas with a population of at least 500,000 are seeing the highest share of equity-rich residential properties – those with at least 50 percent equity – according to RealtyTrac’s Third Quarter 2015 U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report:

San Jose, Calif.: 43.9%

San Francisco: 37.9%

Honolulu: 36.5%

Los Angeles: 32.1%

New York: 30.4% ...

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Inventory Relief Coming Soon?

Realtor Magazine
October 26, 2015

New-home production is predicted to surpass 1 million next year and reach 1.2 million in 2017, according to the National Association of Home Builders’ recent annual Fall Construction Forecast Webinar. That will put the new-home market on track to reach 91 percent of its average norm by 2017. ...

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Number of Seriously Underwater Properties Drops 525,000 in Q3 2015 From Previous Quarter, Down 1.2 Million From Year Ago

Realty Trac
October 21, 2015

Renting is unlikely to get easier anytime soon.

RealtyTrac® (www.realtytrac.com), the nation’s leading source for comprehensive housing data, today released its Q3 2015 U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report, which shows that as of the end of the third quarter there were 6,917,673 U.S. residential properties that were seriously underwater — where the combined loan amount secured by the property is at least 25 percent higher than the property’s estimated market value — representing 12.7 percent of all properties with a mortgage. ...

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Need a Home Mortgage? Fannie Says Forget the Pay Stubs

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
October 20, 2015

Collecting pay stubs for a home-mortgage application has been a time-honored tradition, barring a few ill-fated years running up to the financial crisis. But if changes announced by mortgage-finance company Fannie Mae catch on, that process could go the way of the dodo. ...

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Think your rent's too darn high? Just wait

CNBC
October 20, 2015

It is the year of the apartment — 2.0.

While some thought the skyrocketing rents of 2014 couldn't be sustained, they did, and then some. There's no sign of any easing any time soon. ...

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Renters Will Continue to Struggle for the Next Decade, Harvard Study Says

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
September 21, 2015

Renting is unlikely to get easier anytime soon.

An estimated 11% more households will pay more than half of their incomes in rent in 2025, according to a new report from Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies and Enterprise Community Partners, an affordable-housing organization. ...

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Chase Mortgage CEO red flags FHA loans

CNBC
September 21, 2015

"FHA requirements are down to a 520 FICO (credit score) and you only have to put 3.5 percent down; that's subprime lending, and we're not in the subprime lending business", said Kevin Watters, CEO of Chase Mortgage Banking. ...

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Bubble, bubble? Number of overvalued markets doubles since first quarter

Housing Wire
September 14, 2015

A new report from CoreLogic (CLGX) identifies 14 of the top 100 markets in the U.S. as currently overvalued, double the number as of the end of the first quarter 2015. ...

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Soaring Rental Income Unlikely to Continue

Forbes
September 4, 2015

Rental vacancy rates fell to the lowest point in 30 years and still appear to be falling. Rents, not surprisingly, are rising at a brisk pace. For people who have invested in rental properties, the income from rents has been soaring. By one rough measure the net rental income has more than doubled in the past decade. ...

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Yun: 'Prices Are Rising Just Too Fast'

Realtor Magazine
August 11, 2015

The tight supply of available homes is prompting more house hunters to bid up home prices, housing analysts say.

"Prices are rising just too fast," says Lawrence Yun, chief economist with the National Association of REALTORS®. "And certainly far ahead of people's income." ...

the rest of the story ...


Homeownership rate drops to 48-year low

Housing Wire
July 28, 2015

The homeownership rate in the United States in the second quarter declined to 63.4%, the lowest it has been since 1967, according to data from the Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau. ...

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Rising Rents Hit 47-Month High, June Occupancy Matches Record

Real Estate Economy Watch
JuLY 17, 2015

The rental market set new records in June as the national annual effective rent growth rate reached 5.1%, a 47-month high for the national apartment market and continued a streak of 5.0%-plus rent growth that is the longest in at least six years, according to Axiometrics. ...

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Homebuilders take a 'beating' from lack of labor

CNBC
JuLY 17, 2015

Single-family home construction fell to a three-month low in June, which is usually the busiest time for homebuilding. Even building permits are not showing signs of robust growth. Builders claim there is good demand, but they complain they're handcuffed by a lack of skilled labor to build new homes. ...

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Economists Assign Blame For Housing Shortage

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
June 26, 2015

The national supply of homes for sale is getting squeezed by the small amount of equity millions of would-be sellers have in their properties and relatively weak output from home builders, according to economists speaking Friday at a real-estate conference in Miami. ...

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Economists: Home Builders Neglecting Entry-Level Market

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
June 25, 2015

Nela Richardson, chief economist for brokerage Redfin Corp., and Selma Hepp, chief economist for Zillow Group Z -2.12%'s Trulia real-estate website, both said builders aren't constructing enough entry-level housing to meet demand. They’re focusing more of their resources instead, the economists said, on building pricey homes for buyers with ample credit. ...

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New-Home Sales Climb to 7-Year High

National Association of Realtors
June 24, 2015

New-home sales surged to the highest rate since February 2008, as the new-construction market continues to gain ground this year. ...

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Pivoting Toward Normalcy
Freddie Mac
June 23, 2015

Freddie Mac's Deputy Chief Economist, Len Kiefer, gives a video preview of the June 2015 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook. ...

Housing video









Freddie Mac June 2015 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook

Freddie Mac
June 23, 2015

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) released today its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for June, showing that with low debt servicing costs and improving household balance sheets, more Americans may be at a point where they are ready to start taking on more mortgage debt. ...

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Mortgage Rates Spike
CNBC
June 5, 2015

America's rental apartments are full. Historically full, in fact.

The national occupancy rate hit 95.3 percent in May, the highest on record, according to Axiometrics, a real estate analytics firm. ...



Apartment occupancy at all-time high: Here's why

CNBC
June 18, 2015

America's rental apartments are full. Historically full, in fact.

The national occupancy rate hit 95.3 percent in May, the highest on record, according to Axiometrics, a real estate analytics firm. ...

the rest of the story ...


1.5 Million Homeowners Negatively Impacted by Mortgage Crisis Could Re-Enter Housing Market in Next Three Years

TransUnion
June 17, 2015

More than 1.5 million home buyers negatively impacted by the financial crisis could potentially re-enter the mortgage market in the next three years, according to a new study from TransUnion. ...

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Top 10 Housing Markets with Home Prices Above Pre-Crisis Peaks

RealtyTrac
June 17, 2015

Using data from its February 2015 U.S. Home Price Appreciation Analysis, RealtyTrac identified the top 10 markets that have exceeded their pre-housing crisis peaks in the last year. Probably not a big surprise is San Jose, California with all its Facebook millionaires at the top of the list. ...

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Dodd-Frank continues to smother mortgage lending

Housing Wire
June 9, 2015

ABA survey: 78% say less credit available, 1/3 only do QM.

Ninety percent of the typical bank’s mortgage loans made last year were “qualified mortgages,” according to the American Bankers Association’s 22nd annual Real Estate Lending Survey.

The survey results, released today, revealed that nearly 80% of respondents expect the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s mortgage lending rules will continue to cause a reduction in credit availability with 19% characterizing the impact as severe. ...

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Homeownership Rate Will Continue Decline Into 2030, Study Estimates

DSnews
June 9, 2015

New renters will outpace new homeowners in the next decade and a half and the homeownership rate will decline even though there will be more homeowners than renters, thus creating intense competition for rental housing, according to a study released by the Urban Institute ...

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Four Metro Areas Account For 10 Percent of Nation’s Completed Foreclosures

DSnews
June 9, 2015

While the number of foreclosures has been steadily declining since reach a peak four to five years ago, large percentages of the nation's foreclosures are still concentrated in a few areas, according to recent reports. ...

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Americans' Housing Optimism Gains More Momentum amid Reported Income Growth; Supports Forecast of Pickup in Housing Activity This Year

Fannie Mae
June 8, 2015

Consumer attitudes about the housing market showed marked improvement last month, strengthening the case for a lift in housing activity this year, according to results from Fannie Mae's May 2015 National Housing Survey™ ...

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Mortgage Rates Spike
CNBC
June 5, 2015

CNBC's Diana Olick reports on the steep climb in mortgage rates and what it means for homebuilders and housing. ...



Mortgage Credit Availability Increases in May

Mortgage Bankers Association
June 4, 2015

Mortgage credit availability increased in according to the Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI), a report from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) which analyzes data from Ellie Mae's AllRegs® Market Clarity® business information tool. ...

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Housing Market Will Benefit From Increased Job Gains, Economists Say

DSnews
June 5, 2015

While the nation's unemployment rate (5.5 percent) and the number of unemployed persons (8.7 million) for May 2015 remained virtually unchanged from the previous month, the number of jobs added in May increased substantially from April up to 280,000, according to the May 2015 Employment Summary released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on Friday. ...

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Average Down Payment Drops to Three-Year Low of 14.8 Percent for U.S. Home Purchased in the First Quarter

Realty Trac
June 4, 2015

RealtyTrac® released its Q1 2015 U.S. Home Purchase Down Payment Report, which shows the average down payment for single family homes, condos and townhomes purchased in the first quarter was 14.8 percent of the purchase price, down from 15.2 percent in the previous quarter and down from 15.5 percent a year ago to the lowest level since Q1 2012.

"Down payment trends in the first quarter indicate that first time homebuyers are finally starting to come out of the woodwork, albeit it gradually," ...

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Housing Activity Ramps Up

Wells Fargo
June 1, 2015

Demand for new and existing homes continues to ramp up heading into the peak spring selling season. New home sales through the first four months of this year are running 22.4 percent ahead of their year-earlier pace and homebuilders generally report strong demand across much of the country. ...

the rest of the story ...


Hispanics to Drive Housing Demand in Coming Decades, But Obstacles Persist

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
May 28, 2015

Hispanic homeowners make up a huge portion of potential future housing demand in the country. The problem is that many can’t afford to buy homes, a new report says. ...

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Mortgage Rates Reach 2015 High

Freddie Mac
May 28, 2015

Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates moving higher amid positive housing data and pushing fixed mortgage rates to their highest level of the year. ...

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2015 Economic Growth Forecast Downgraded, but Housing on a Better Path

Fannie Mae
May 21, 2015

Economic growth is expected to pick up in the second quarter and through the second half of 2015, but continued financial conservatism among consumers suggests modest growth for the year, according to Fannie Mae’s (FNMA/OTC) Economic & Strategic Research (ESR) Group ...

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Freddie Mac May 2015 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook

Freddie Mac
May 19, 2015

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) released today its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for May, showing that while low mortgage rates helped to keep homebuyer affordability high in the first quarter of this year, housing markets are likely to see increasing interest rate volatility for the remainder of the year as market participants ...

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Existing home sales to finish 2015 at record level

Housing Wire
May 15, 2015

Existing home sales are expected to finish the year at their highest level since 2006, the National Association of Realtors’ economic forecast forum revealed at its 2015 Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo. ...

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MONTHLY OUTLOOK

Wells Fargo
May 13, 2015

This recovery has been reminiscent of the movie Groundhog Day. Economic growth seems destined to replay the story from prior years, ...

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1 in 4 renters use half their pay for housing costs

USA Today
May 3, 2015

More than one in four U.S. renters have to use at least half their family income to pay for housing and utilities. ...

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15 Hottest Housing Markets Right Now

Realtor Magazine
May 1, 2015

The housing market has been gaining strength this spring, according to realtor.com®’s latest housing report. Median list prices rose to $225,000 in April – up 9 percent year-over-year. As prices rise, homes are staying on the market for less time too. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Data Wrap-Up: April 2015
Housing Is Set to Spring Forward (A Little Bit)

Wells Fargo
April 30, 2015

Real GDP grew at just a 0.2 percent annual rate during the first quarter, as lower oil prices and a stronger U.S. dollar weighed on manufacturing activity ...

the rest of the story ...


Why New Homes Have Become More Expensive: They’re Much Bigger

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
April 28, 2015

Prices of new homes have zoomed higher over the past few years. One big driver: the growing size of the American home.

Economists at CoreLogic last year concluded that around half of the 18% gain in new-home prices between 2010 and 2013 stemmed from changes in the size and quality of new homes, ...

the rest of the story ...


Blackstone CEO: Housing makes a 'good investment'
CNBC
April 27, 2015

Housing is a "good investment" even though prices aren't rising as much as after the financial crisis, Blackstone chief Steve Schwarzman said Monday. ...

Housing video









Rents soar 14.8 percent in San Francisco, rise 3.7 percent nationwide

San Jose Mercury News
April 22, 2015

Home rental prices are soaring in San Francisco, while pockets of the Midwest and South are also posting big annual increases. ...

the rest of the story ...


Wells Fargo Monthly Economic Outlook
CNBC
April 14, 2015

In this video update, Wells Fargo Chief Economist John Silvia, and Economist Sarah House discuss the pace and impacts of growth, employment, real estate activity, inflation, rates and more. ...

Housing video









California’s high cost of living helping Las Vegas housing

MPC
April 13, 2015

California’s high cost of living is helping Las Vegas Valley’s housing economy and will continue into the foreseeable future, according to RealtyTrac. ...

the rest of the story ...


Californian homebuyers take longer to ‘break even’

MPC
April 10, 2015

Renters in California who want to make the move to home ownership will take longer than those in other major metros to break even, according to a recent survey from Zillow. ...

the rest of the story ...


Researchers Say Real Wage Growth Since Recession is Slower Compared to Other Recoveries

DSnews
April 10, 2015

While the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported real wage growth of 22 cents year-over-year in February up to $10.54 per hour, researchers from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland have conducted their own study and discovered that real wage growth and real compensation since the end of the recession are slower compared with other recoveries. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage rates decline on weaker jobs report

HousingWire
April 9, 2015

Average fixed mortgage rates moved lower following a weaker than expected jobs report for March, according to the latest from Freddie Mac. ...

the rest of the story ...


Cash home sales share drops to 38.9% in January 2015

HousingWire
April 9, 2015

Cash sales made up 38.9% of total home sales in January 2015, down from 41.4% in January 2014, and from the peak of 46.5% in January 2011, according to CoreLogic ...

the rest of the story ...


Lackluster Income Growth Weighing on Americans' Housing Sentiment

Fannie Mae
April 7, 2015

Consumer attitudes toward housing appear to have stalled somewhat amid a recent dip in confidence regarding personal finances and income growth, according to results from Fannie Mae's March 2015 National Housing Survey™ ...

the rest of the story ...


April 8: Calif. Supreme Court will hear suit over San Jose’s new-housing penalty

RealEstateRama
April 2, 2015

Next Wednesday, April 8, the California Supreme Court will hear oral argument from Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) in a challenge to San Jose’s “Inclusionary Housing Ordinance,” which imposes a significant financial penalty on the providers — and purchasers — of new homes. ...

the rest of the story ...


How to Use Real Estate Trends to Predict the Next Housing Bubble

Harvard Division of Continuing Education
Added to our blog on March 31, 2015

The destructive wave that swept across the US economy in 2008 seemed to catch the world completely by surprise. The phrase so often used to describe it, a "financial tsunami," reinforces the popular belief that the disaster arose suddenly. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Affordability Hits 2 Extremes

Realtor Magazine
March 25, 2015

A look at housing affordability across the country paints a picture of two stark contrasts, one very high and the other very low, according to realtor.com®’s new Mortgage Affordability Report, which gauged affordability by culling data from 25 of the largest housing markets. ...

the rest of the story ...


California's High Housing Costs: Causes and Consequences
Legislative Analyst's Office, State of California
March 17, 2015

The Legislative Analyst's Office provides and excellent report on the causes and effects of the high cost of homes in California. This video is just a brief synopsis of the report. ...

Housing video









California's High Housing Costs: Causes and Consequences

State of California Legislative Analyst's Office (LAO)
March 17, 2015

...

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Housing starts down 17.0%
CNBC
March 17, 2015

CNBC's Rick Santelli has the latest data on housing and what it indicates about the health of the U.S. economy. And CNBC's Steve Liesman provides perspective. ...

Housing video









Renters Feeling Heat from Heightened Housing Costs

RIS Media
March 17, 2015

The gap between rental costs and household income is widening to unsustainable levels in many parts of the country, and the situation could worsen unless new home construction meaningfully rises, according to new research by the National Association of REALTORS® ...

the rest of the story ...


US homebuilder sentiment slips in March

The Washington Post
March 16, 2015

U.S. homebuilders are feeling slightly less confident in their sales prospects, even as their overall sales outlook remains favorable. ...

the rest of the story ...


Is household formation set for a rebound?

HousingWire
March 12, 2015

Despite ongoing concerns about the delay in household formation by younger buyers, demographically speaking things may be about to turn a corner. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. Economic & Housing Outlook
Freddie Mac
March 11,2014, 2015

Freddie Mac's Deputy Chief Economist, Len Kiefer, gives a video preview of the March 2015 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook ...

Housing video







Freddie Mac March 2015 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook

Freddie Mac
March 11, 2015

Freddie Mac released today its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for March, highlighting some of the positive tailwinds at the start of the spring homebuying season. ...

the rest of the story ...


Spring Is Coming, and These 20 Markets Are Heating Up

REALTOR.COM
March 6, 2015

You wouldn't know it from the weather in the Northeast (and Kentucky and the Midwest), but the housing market has been heating up the past few weeks. ...

the rest of the story ...


Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates at 21-month low

Housing Wire
March 5, 2015

Average fixed mortgage rates moved lower for the first time in four weeks and remaining near late May, 2013 lows, according to the weekly Freddie Mac survey ...

the rest of the story ...


Are Builders Building the Wrong Type of Home?

Realtor magazine
March 4, 2015

Recent surveys of millennials and baby boomers have shown a preference for walkable, urban, and smaller housing options – pretty much the opposite of a McMansion in a far-off suburb from the city. So why are developers continuing to build sprawling McMansions far away from urban corridors? ...

the rest of the story ...


Bidding Wars Brew Under Tight Supplies

Realtor Magazine
March 4, 2015

As housing inventories remain constrained in many markets, some buyers may face increased competition and more bidding wars heading into the spring-selling season ...

the rest of the story ...


Freddie Mac Forecasts Strong Year for Multifamily Markets

Freddie Mac
March 2, 2015

Another strong year is expected for the multifamily markets based on the Freddie Mac Multifamily economic outlook for 2015 ...

the rest of the story ...


Strong Job Growth Foreshadows Solid Full-Year Economic Growth

Fannie Mae
February 26, 2015

The economy is poised for a pickup in growth in 2015 amid a strengthening employment sector, rising income growth, and declining commodity prices, according to Fannie Mae’s (FNMA/OTC) Economic & Strategic Research (ESR) Group ...

the rest of the story ...


Hidden in plain sight: The face of the Tri-Valley's working poor

Contra Costa Times
February 25, 2015

LIVERMORE -- The cold, hard reality of skyrocketing Bay Area housing prices hit Brittany Baker when, returning to Livermore after six years in Kansas, she discovered she couldn't afford a place of her own in the city where she grew up. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. Housing Market Tracker

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
February 25, 2015

The U.S. housing market has struggled to find equilibrium after the bubble of the past decade. Here’s a look at where various gauges of supply and demand stand today...

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2015 Housing Market Forecast
National Association of Realtors
January 7, 2015

NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun takes a look at the year ahead, discussing the outlook for housing and the economy in 2015. ...

Housing video







ROBERT SHILLER: The San Francisco Housing Market Is Getting 'A Little Bit Bubbly'

Business Insider
December 30, 2014

Home prices rose 0.76% in October according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, topping expectations.

Wall Street expected the index would show home prices rose 0.4% month-on-month.

But Yale professor Robert Shiller — the Shiller half of the Case-Shiller name — said that some of the increases seen in markets around the country are worrying.

the rest of the story ...


Rents Surge to Highest Pace in 6 Years

Realtor Magazine
December 19, 2014

Rents are rising at the fastest pace in six years, according to newly released data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics this week.

The following metros saw the lowest vacancy rates for rental apartments in the fourth quarter, according to NAR:

Orange County, Calif.: 2.2%
Sacramento, Calif.: 2.2%
Providence, R.I.: 2.3%
New Haven, Conn.: 2.3%
Hartford, Conn.: 2.4%

the rest of the story ...


Drop in Oil Prices Is the Real Stimulus

LinkedIn
December 15, 2014

Does the cavalry get here in time? The cavalry that is the growth engine of lower crude prices? Or does the destruction in credit set us back so far that the gains from a lower key ingredient cost and the stimulus that it can provide can't bring us back up to where we were or take us even higher? ...

the rest of the story ...


Best time to list a home for sale? Winter, Redfin says

LOS ANGELES TIMES
December 14, 2014

So you've begun thinking about selling your house and you figure: Let's wait until the spring or early summer before listing. The yard will look its best and potential buyers will be out in force. And everybody knows that winter is dead time for real estate. ...

the rest of the story ...


Lawmaker Criticizes FHFA’s Decision to Allocate GSE Money to Housing Groups

DSnews
December 12, 2014

U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-California), a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, has issued a statement calling the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)'s announcement that the Agency will divert GSE money to the Housing Trust Fund and Capital Magnet Fund "outrageous." ...

the rest of the story ...


Cities Poised for a Surge in Sales

REALTORMagazine
December 11, 2014

More baby boomers are planning a move, and they're targeting cities with a lower cost of living, greater job potential, and warmer weather, according to new research by the National Association of REALTORS®. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie Mae Announces 97 Percent LTV Option for First-Time Homebuyers

Fannie Mae
December 8, 2014

Fannie Mae Announces 97 Percent LTV Option for First-Time Homebuyers ...

the rest of the story ...


AEI study: Share of first-time buyers higher than estimated

HOUSINGWIRE
December 5, 2014

A new index from the American Enterprise Institute suggests the share of mortgages going to first-time buyers is actually much higher than estimated by National Association of Realtors. ...

the rest of the story ...


Long-term mortgage rates hit lowest level since May 2013

Market Watch
December 4, 2014

Long-term mortgage rates have reached their lowest level in more than a year, giving families an opportunity to secure cheap home loans, according to data released Thursday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Forecasts for 2015: Resurgent Home Building and Restrained Optimism

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
December 4, 2014

With the door closing on 2014, economists are starting to tout their housing forecasts for next year. Count Realtor.com chief economist Jonathan Smoke among the more conservative optimists. ...

the rest of the story ...


Apartment Construction Boom Slowing Rent Increases as Market Shifts Into Expansion Phase

CoStar
December 3, 2014

With construction on new apartments back in full swing and vacancy rates beginning to trend upward, the robust rent increases enjoyed previously by landlords in most U.S. metro areas are expected to decelerate to below 2% in 2015 as the multifamily market shifts from full recovery into an expansion phase. ...

the rest of the story ...


21 Percent of U.S. Housing Markets Now Less Affordable Than Their Historical Averages
1 in 5 Markets Developing Housing Bubble?

Realty Trac
December 2, 2014

RealtyTrac® today released a report identifying county-level housing markets with early warning signs of a possible home price bubble — where prices over inflate and eventually decline. ...

the rest of the story ...


Did Mortgages Just Get Easier to Obtain?

Realtor Magazine
December 2, 2014

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's new lending guidelines went into effect Monday, which are expected to help loosen up the tight credit standards that home buyers and refinancers have faced in recent years.

The guidelines clarify when lenders will be penalized for making mistakes on mortgages they sell to the mortgage financing giants. ...

the rest of the story ...


Investors scoop up apartments as rents rise, vacancies fall in Sacramento area

THE SACRAMENTO BEE
November 30, 2014

The Sacramento real estate market has been a bargain basement for out-of-town investors for the last few years. They bought single-family homes by the thousands, scooped up warehouses by the dozens, and purchased entire city blocks of office space, often at rock-bottom prices.

Now with vacancy rates falling and rents on the rise, they’re snapping up apartments. ...

the rest of the story ...


More owners tapping home equity lines of credit

Los Angeles Times
November 30, 2014

If you're thinking about taking out a home equity line, you're hardly alone. Credit lines tied to home equity — popularly known as HELOCs — are one of the fastest-growing segments in the mortgage market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Nearly Half of All States and Half of the Top 50 Metro Housing Markets Now Showing Positive Momentum

Freddie Mac
November 26, 2014

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released its newly updated Multi-Indicator Market Index® (MiMi®) showing the U.S. housing market continuing to stabilize as nearly half of the markets tracked are now showing positive momentum. ...

the rest of the story ...


Spread the Word: Mortgage Rates Below 4%

Realtor Magazine
November 21, 2014

"If you are planning to buy a home in the next year, it’s better to do it sooner rather than later," Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said in the video commentary embedded here. ...

the rest of the story ...


Will 2015 be the Turnaround Year for First-Time Home Buyers?

The Wall Street Journal
November 20, 2014

First-time home buyers only made up 29% of sales of previously owned homes in October, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday.

The share of those buyers has represented less than 30% of all buyers in 18 of the last 19 months, the trade group said.

But chief economist Lawrence Yun said 2015 could mark a turnaround. ...

the rest of the story ...


Could Decline in Median New-Home Size Herald Return of Entry-Level

The Wall Street Journal
November 19, 2014

Newly built, single-family homes in the U.S. finally are getting smaller, a sign that a long-awaited shift of builders to slightly smaller, more affordable homes likely has started. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Prices and Rates going higher in 2015
Freddie Mac
November 17, 2014, 2014

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates slightly down from the previous week with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dipping just below four percent. ...

Housing video









Mortgage Delinquencies Continue to Decrease in Third Quarter

Mortgage Bankers Association
November 14, 2014

The delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties decreased to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.85 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the third quarter of 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic: Home price growth "clearly slowing"

HousingWire
November 4, 2014

“The month-on-month increase in house prices in September suggests that the housing market is putting the very weak mid-year period behind it. But underlying rates of house price appreciation are still slowing, and with mortgage demand stagnating, there are few signs of an imminent pick-up,” Capital Economic said. ...

the rest of the story ...


First-Time Buyers at Lowest Level in Decades

Realtor Magazine
November 3, 2014

Despite an improving job market and low interest rates, the share of first-time buyers fell to its lowest point in nearly three decades, according to an annual survey released today by the National Association of REALTORS®. ...

the rest of the story ...


Black Knight's September Data: At Least 7.4 Million 30-Year Loans Could Benefit by Refinancing; Negative Equity Share Drops Under 8 Percent

MarketWatch
November 3, 2014

"Before the most recent reductions in the average 30-year mortgage interest rate, approximately six million borrowers met broad-based 'refinancibility' criteria," ...

the rest of the story ...


Zillow: Millions of potential houses lost to "doubling up"

HousingWire
November 3, 2014

It’s not just millennials that are moving back in with mom and dad. The number of Americans living with roommates or adult family members jumped to more than a third of U.S. adults in 2012, up from 27.4% in 2006, a new report from Zillow said. ...

the rest of the story ...


Despite equity boom, many homes remain seriously underwater

Los Angeles Times
November 2, 2014

The equity boom, which has added an estimated $1.6 trillion to the personal net wealth of American homeowners in the last year, has slowed dramatically. It's not over by any means. It has just lost some of its previous pep. ...

the rest of the story ...


Single-Family Production Poised to Take Off in 2015

National Association of Home Builders
October 31, 2014

A growing economy, rising household formations, low mortgage rates and pent-up demand will help single-family housing production to rev up in 2015 while a growth in renters will keep the multifamily market at cruising altitude or higher, according to economists who participated in yesterday’s National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) 2014 Fall Construction Forecast Webinar. ...

the rest of the story ...


Freddie Mac 2014 Third Quarter Refinance Report

Freddie Mac
October 31, 2014

Freddie Mac today released the results of its third quarter 2014 quarterly refinance analysis, showing the share of borrowers who are tapping their equity by cashing out at the time of refinance has doubled from the same quarter last year as a result of broad-based house price appreciation. However, the dollar volume remains very low at an estimated $8.0 billion. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie, Freddie to take on more credit risk

HousingWire
October 30, 2014

Proposals to lower the minimum down-payment on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac-backed mortgages at the same time as reducing banks’ exposure to put-back risk may help accelerate the modest loosening in mortgage credit conditions that is in train. ...

the rest of the story ...


Serious Delinquencies Decline by 21 Percent in September

DSnews
October 30, 2014

The number of seriously delinquent mortgage loans, which are those that are more than 90 days past due or in foreclosure, dropped nationwide by 21 percent year-over-year in September, according to CoreLogic's September 2014 National Foreclosure Report released on Wednesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage Rates Rebound, Remain Below Four Percent

Freddie Mac
October 30, 2014

Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates moving higher across the board this week and rebounding from the lowest rates of the year. ...

the rest of the story ...


‘Erratic income’ rule an unfair barrier?

Charlotte Observer
October 29, 2014

Ed Fine’s recent rejection for a refinancing of his home loan wasn't exactly like former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s. But there are enough similarities to raise questions about current tight mortgage market standards and how lenders scrutinize applicants’ incomes. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. services sector growth slows, pending home sales miss forecast

Reuters
October 27, 2014

U.S. services sector activity dipped to a six-month low in October, pointing to some moderation in economic growth early in the fourth quarter.

Another report on Monday showed contracts to buy previously owned homes rebounded less than expected in September, an indication that the housing recovery remains gradual. ...

the rest of the story ...


Outlook for U.S. Economic Growth Still Solid Even as Global Growth Slows

Fannie Mae
October 23, 2014

Real economic growth in the U.S. appears ready to exceed 3.0 percent for the second half of the year, providing a sound basis for growth in 2015, according to Fannie Mae's (FNMA/OTC) Economic & Strategic Research (ESR) Group. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Equity Rebound Slows its Pace

Realtor Magazine
October 23, 2014

More home owners are eeking out equity again on their properties, but with slowing home appreciation, millions of home owners may still be at risk of foreclosure. ...

the rest of the story ...


September existing-home sales jump to highest annual pace

Housing Wire
October 21, 2014

Despite last month’s slight retreat, existing-home sales jumped back up to their highest annual pace of the year, the latest National Association of Realtors report said. ...

the rest of the story ...


Find out which four housing markets CoreLogic says are overvalued

Housing Wire
October 20, 2014

Market Condition Indicators designed by CoreLogic (CLGX) identified only four of the top 50 markets in the U.S. as currently overvalued, based on data through August 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Treatment Centers Can Impact Home Prices

Realtor Magazine
October 17, 2014

Residential substance abuse treatment centers can impact the price of neighboring homes, according to a study that uses MLS data to show just how much it can potentially hamper nearby values. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home builder confidence slips off nine-year highs

Los Angeles Times
October 16, 2014

Home builders are taking a slightly dimmer view of the housing market, but they’re still generally bullish. ...

the rest of the story ...


Survey Shows Lenders Believe New Regulations Have Had "Significant" Impact on Their Business

Fannie Mae
October 15, 2014

The survey results show that most lenders believe new regulations have had "significant" impact on their business. In particular, lenders reported a nearly 30 percent median increase in compliance costs compared with 2013. Lenders also reported increased reliance on outsourcing due to increased regulations and associated costs, particularly in relation to post-closing Quality Control (QC) review and servicing. Moreover, compliance risk is reported by most lenders as their top area of focus this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Where Are the Home Buyers?
First-time buyers will resurface as the economy expands, jobs become more available, and salaries increase

Builder
October 02, 2014

ingle-family home sales fell dramatically from almost 7 million at the peak in 2005, to 4 million in 2010. Since the trough, sales have risen to 4.9 million in 2013. Assuming the late 1990s and early 2000s exhibited a more normal market balance, a typical level of home sales is 5.6 million per year made up of 900,000 new-home sales and 4.7 million existing home sales. That means we are short at least 700,000 annual sales. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic Reports 946,000 Residential Properties Regained 1 Trillion Dollars in Total Equity in Q2 2014

CoreLogic
September 25, 2014

CoreLogic® ... today released new analysis showing nearly 950,000 homes returned to positive equity in the second quarter of 2014, bringing the total number of mortgaged residential properties with equity in the U.S. to more than 44 million. ...

the rest of the story ...


Investors Continue Gradual Pullback

Realtor Magazine
September 23, 2014

Investors are gradually pulling out of the housing market after helping to propel it to double-digit gains in 2012 and 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Markets Struggle to Keep Stable Momentum

Freddie Mac
September 24, 2014

"We will continue to see 'two steps forward and one step backward' movement in our housing stability index until the broader economy sees better growth, labor markets tighten further and household formations pick-up to bring more first-time and move-up buyers into the market." ...

the rest of the story ...


Is the surge in US new home sales a false dawn?
CNBC
September 24, 2014

James Carlisle, Analyst at Intelligent Investor, explains why the 18 percent jump in August new home sales could be short-lived. ...

Housing video









First time home buyer reappearing?
CNBC
September 24, 2014

Bob Wetenhall, RBC Capital Markets, discusses the state of housing and what's behind the earnings miss of KB Home. Bradley Hunter, Metrostudy, provides insight. ...

Housing video









New homes sales soar, mortgage apps decline
CNBC
September 24, 2014

New home sales jumped 18 percent last month as mortgage applications fell. CNBC's Diana Olick breaks down the latest housing data. ...

Housing video









Housing: Why West is the best
CNBC
September 24, 2014

What's behind the Western housing boom? Bradley Hunter, Metrostudy chief economist, discusses data from today's housing report and explains why the Western housing market is so hot. ...

Housing video









Investors Continue Gradual Pullback

Realtor Magazine
September 23, 2014

Investors are gradually pulling out of the housing market after helping to propel it to double-digit gains in 2012 and 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


Student loan debt curbs housing market by $83 billion, study says

Los Angeles Times
September 22, 2014

There’s been lots of debate lately in housing circles about the impact of student debt on home ownership.

Now there’s a new study out that attempts to put a number on that impact: 414,000. ...

the rest of the story ...


Lawmakers Weigh Credit Score Changes

Realtor Magazine
September 22, 2014

During a recent hearing of the House Financial Services Committee, lawmakers reviewed credit reporting and scoring system practices. Some advocated changes to help erase blemishes faster from a credit report and urged other factors to be considered in the scoring process. ...

the rest of the story ...


Without parents’ help, many could not buy their first home

The Boston Globe
September 22, 2014

The Bank of Mom and Dad is playing a growing role as lender of last resort for a housing recovery struggling to provide more traction for the US economy.

Last year, 27 percent of those purchasing a home for the first time received a cash gift from relatives or friends to come up with a down payment, ...

the rest of the story ...


Existing-Home Sales Lower in August

Realtor Magazine
September 22, 2014

Existing home sales dropped in August, the first slip after four consecutive months of gains. Total existing-home sales fell from 5.14 million in July to 5.05 million in August.

While the Northeast and Midwest regions of the U.S. actually experienced gains in total existing-home sales, these increases were outweighed by slipping numbers in the South and West. The Midwest experienced existing-home sales increases of 2.5 percent, and sales in the Northeast jumped 4.7 percent. Existing-home sales in the South and West declined by 4.2 percent and 5.1 percent, respectively. ...

the rest of the story ...


Castro: Hispanics key to US housing sector future
HUD Secretary Castro says Hispanics, immigration overhaul could boost US housing market

The Associated press
September 20, 2014

The nation's housing secretary says a booming Hispanic population will drive the future of America's residential real estate market and predicts that a major overhaul of federal immigration laws would create a further boon to home sales across the country. ...

the rest of the story ...


FHA Loans Plunge 19% as Lenders Haggle With Officials

Bloomberg
September 19, 2014

Home loans to lower-income Americans are dwindling as Washington regulators and major banks continue to haggle over who pays when riskier mortgages go bad. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage Rates Move Higher

Freddie Mac
September 18, 2014

Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates making their biggest one-week gain so far this year and bringing them to their highest level since the week ending May 1. ...

the rest of the story ...


Close look at home construction plunge
CNBC
September 18, 2014

CNBC's Diana Olick reports a huge monthly swing in multi-family construction drove the drop, but apartments are hot. ...

Housing video









Maybe Millennials' Housing Tastes Aren't So Different

Realtor Magazine
September 17, 2014

The majority of millennials’ housing preferences may not be as different from previous generations as once believed, according to a new report released this week from The Demand Institute, Millennials and Their Homes: Still Seeking the American Dream. ...

the rest of the story ...


Renters Account for Growth in Household Formation

Realtor Magazine
September 16, 2014

Construction on buildings with at least five apartments reached the highest monthly pace since the beginning of 2006, Freddie Mac reports in its Economic and Housing Market Outlook for September. But one big difference compared to 2006, Freddie economists note, is that there is less development of condominium complexes, and most of the multifamily offerings are rentals. ...

the rest of the story ...


Here’s why mortgage rates won’t hit 2014 expectations

Housing Wire
September 12, 2014

Mortgage rates have continuously defied expectations in 2014, according to an article in the Washington Post.

Back at the end of 2013, the market was trying to predict where rates would go in 2014, with most experts predicting rates to steadily increase. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. mortgage applications fall to lowest since Dec 2000: MBA

Reuters
September 10, 2014

Applications for U.S. home mortgages fell last week to the lowest since December 2000 as interest rates rose for the first time in four weeks, an industry group said on Wednesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie Mae widens credit box for failed homeowners
Updates minimum wait periods

HousingWire
September 9, 2014

Good news for failed borrowers who were negatively impacted during the financial crisis — Fannie Mae updated the policy related to the minimum waiting periods following a preforeclosure sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, making it easier for distressed borrowers to jump back into the market sooner, according to a new fact sheet released by Fannie. ...

the rest of the story ...


Cash sales accounted for one in three home sales in June

HousingWire
September 9, 2014

Cash sales made up 33% of total home sales in June 2014, the lowest share since September 2008, and down from 36.3% in June 2013, CoreLogic (CLGX) reports. ...

the rest of the story ...


Toll Brothers Doubles Profit On Higher Home Prices, Says More Demand Is Still To Come

Forbes
September 3, 2014

Luxury home builder Toll Brothers doubled its profit and grew its revenue by more than 50% during the third quarter, the company reported Wednesday morning. In attributing the surge to higher home prices and deliveries, Toll Brothers executives painted a picture of a housing market that is slowly and sometimes choppily recovering but still has room to grow, pointing to "pent-up demand [that is] still yet to be unleashed." ...

the rest of the story ...


The Next Housing Crisis: Aging Americans' Homes

Forbes
September 2, 2014

There’s another potential housing crisis coming and this one won’t be a collapse in home values.

The nation is facing a lack of affordable, physically-accessible and well-located homes for America’s aging population — especially those with low incomes, according to a new, gloomy study released today by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies & AARP Foundation. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. housing regulator seeks more support for poor borrowers

Reuters
August 29, 2014

The regulator for U.S. housing finance giants Fannie Mae (FNMA.OB) and Freddie Mac (FMCC.OB) said on Friday it wants the two firms to provide more support to some low-income Americans taking out mortgages and refinancing their home loans. ...

the rest of the story ...


Redfin: Here's why now is the ideal time buy a home

HousingWire
August 29, 2014

Winter brought a surprise polar vortex that fed into a spring home-buying season that didn't produce astounding results, but the remaining month of summer and rest of the year are projected to finally produce strong housing activity, according to Redfin Chief Economist Nela Richardson. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie Mae: Serious Delinquency Rate At Lowest Level Since ’08

DSnews
August 29, 2014

In Fannie Mae's July 2014 Monthly Summary released on August 29, the GSE reported that July's serious delinquency rate of 2.0 percent for single-family properties is at its lowest level since October 2008. ...

the rest of the story ...


Credit scores still a mortgage-borrowing logjam

Charlotte Observer
August 29, 2014

Are mortgage lenders finally loosening up a little on their credit score requirements – opening the door to larger numbers of home purchasers this summer and fall?

It depends on what type of loan you’re seeking. ...

the rest of the story ...


Listing Price Drops Will Help Drive a Fall Surge in Home Sales
Housing Market Activity After Labor Day Likely to Be the Strongest in 5 Years

RedFin
August 29, 2014

Homebuyers who have been willing to wait for better deals are starting to be rewarded for their patience, as sellers drop listing prices to meet buyers’ more value-focused expectations. Two market developments in July are spurring this change in housing activity as the market transitions from the summer to the fall buying season. ...

the rest of the story ...


Here’s why home price growth will slow to 4% in 2015

HousingWire
August 29, 2014

Home-price growth has slowed across the board, and Capital Economics says the slowdown is on track to meet the company's forecast for inflation to slow to 4% in 2015. ...

the rest of the story ...


College grads face high hurdles to buying first homes

MarketWatch
August 28, 2014, 2014

The ladder to home-ownership is a lot steeper for debt-laden graduates. They need to earn a lot more money if they want to buy a home — in some cases, over 50% more. ...

the rest of the story ...


Freddie Mac: Top 5 most improved housing markets

HousingWire
August 28, 2014, 2014

While the housing recovery remains at a snail’s pace, it is still improving, with the markets that exhibit stronger local economies and favorable demographics on an even faster pace of improvement. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Markets Stabilizing, Fundamentals Normalizing

Reuters
August 27, 2014

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released its newly updated Multi-Indicator Market Index(SM) (MiMi(SM)) showing the U.S. housing market continuing to plod along with most markets still generally weak, while those with stronger local economies and favorable demographics continue to improve at a much stronger pace. ...

the rest of the story ...


Consumer Confidence Reaches 7-Year High

DSnews
August 26, 2014

Consumer confidence ticked up for the fourth straight month in August, rising once again to a new seven-year high. ...

the rest of the story ...


Report: Foreign-Born Fared Housing Crisis Better

U.S. News & World Report
August 25, 2014

Immigrants in the U.S. weathered the storm of the housing crisis better than native-born Americans in at least one key criteria, a new report shows. Additionally, the foreign-born population is expected to be a big source of future demand for the still-rebounding housing market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage applications drop sharply as purchases plummet

HousingWire
July 16, 2014

Mortgage applications decreased 3.6% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending July 11, 2014.

This week's decline comes after applications rose almost 2% last week, following two weeks that saw a 0.2% reversal and a 9.2% free fall in late June. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Affordability Continues to Soften as Prices Rise

Realtor Magazine
July 16, 2014

Rising home prices pushed housing affordability down in May compared with last year, making homes a little less affordable to the average family, according to the National Association of REALTORS®' latest Housing Affordability Index. ...

the rest of the story ...


20% of nation’s homes are now losing value
Where are the strongest and weakest markets going forward?

HousingWire
July 15, 2014

The nation’s home prices are still on the rise, but the rate of growth is slowing considerably. According to VeroFORECAST from Veros Real Estate Solutions, home prices are expected to rise 2.5% in the nation’s 100 top metro areas between now and June 1, 2015 ...

the rest of the story ...


Yellen: Fed may move sooner if labor market keeps surprising

MarketWatch
July 15, 2014

The Federal Reserve may have to raise interest rates sooner and higher than expected if the labor market keeps surprising the central bank, Chairwoman Janet Yellen said Tuesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Prices Expected to Fall in Some Markets

DSnews
July 15, 2014

With ongoing home price gains continuing to trend downward, one in five markets are poised for depreciation over the next year, according to one analytics firm. ...

the rest of the story ...


Wells Fargo Financial Report Reinforces Recovery

DSnews
July 11, 2014

Wells Fargo reported strong financials for the second quarter, driven in part by an uptick in mortgage lending and ongoing improvements in credit quality. ...

the rest of the story ...


Bay Area home builders struggle to keep up with demand

San Jose Mercury News
July 11, 2014

Bay Area home builders struggle to keep up with demand ...

the rest of the story ...


Is wage stagnation keeping homebuyers away?
Home price increases are outpacing wage growth

HousingWire
July 10, 2014

Perhaps the reason buyers are staying away from the housing market is because they simply can’t afford it. ...

the rest of the story ...


Foreign Buyers Competing in U.S. Housing Market

DSnews
July 9, 2014

As analysts, industry participants, and policymakers struggle to boost homeownership among Americans, foreign activity in the U.S. housing market remains strong. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie, Freddie foreclosure inventory hits new peak in Florida
Foreclosures in judicial states dwarf non-judicial states

HousingWire
July 9, 2014

Foreclosure inventory continues to decrease nationally, down 4.8% in May. That marked 31 consecutive months of year-over-year declines. But as HousingWire reported on Tuesday, the divide between the amount of foreclosures in judicial states and the amount in non-judicial states is massive. ...

the rest of the story ...


Market Changes Challenge Home Buyers, Sellers

DSnews
July 9, 2014

As the housing recovery downshifts from last year's pace, the latest survey of real estate agents by national brokerage Redfin finds homebuyers and sellers are having trouble getting on the same page with each other and with the new shape of the market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Second-half outlook: Housing
CNBC
July 7, 2014, 2014

Here's what to watch for in the housing sector in the second half. Affordability. It will determine home sales and prices for both new and existing home in the second half after a weaker than expected start. It will also determine who chooses to buy and who chooses to rent. ...

Housing video









Housing's hand in rising markets
CNBC
July 3, 2014

The good news that we can count on the strong indicators for this to continue, but it's definitely going to moderate moderate because a lot of this growth is driven, of course, by the market simply correcting. We're now at a point where three quarters of the U.S. markets are within, on average, about 3% of the actual market value. We're not going to see those big jumps. We're also seeing investors backing out, so we need to see buyers getting in. ...

Housing video









Housing Helps Dow Hit 17K
CNBC
July 3, 2014

It's not the home builders pushing the Dow and overall market higher, though D.R. Horton did hit a 52-week high. The index is up, but it could be home prices, that is the return of home equity. Home prices have been rising on a year-over-year basis for 27 straight months, now 19% below their peak of 2006, but up 26% from their drop in 2012. ...

Housing video









Green Building Features

National Association of Home builders
July 2, 2014

A focus on energy efficiency is the most important development and design strategy that is making new housing greener according to a recent industry survey. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic Reports Home Prices Rose by 8.8 Percent Year Over Year in May
Ten states reached new home prices highs

CoreLogic
July 1, 2014

CoreLogic® today released its May CoreLogic Home Price Index (HPI®) report. Home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased 8.8 percent in May 2014 compared to May 2013.

Additionally, ten states reached new home prices highs, including ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. regulators warn banks on home equity loan defaults

Reuters
July 1, 2014

U.S. regulators on Tuesday urged banks to work with clients to avoid defaults on hundreds of billions of dollars of home equity lines of credit taken out during the housing bubble that will come due in the next several years. ...

the rest of the story ...


When Will Americans Get a Raise?

LinkedIn
June 30, 2014

The first quarter was waaaaay worse then originally thought. The government’s third and final estimate of GDP showed that the economy contracted by a 2.9 percent annual pace, the biggest decline since early 2009. ...

the rest of the story ...


Credit scores might soon reflect rent payments

The Columbus Dispatch
June 29, 2014

Anybody buying a first home quickly learns how important credit scores are to mortgage lenders.

But if you’ve been renting for years and have a stellar record of monthly payments to your landlord, you typically run into a sobering reality when you shop for a mortgage: All your on-time payments show up nowhere in your credit- bureau files and don’t contribute to your scores. ...

the rest of the story ...


Bubble Watch: Home Prices Still Undervalued, But Not For Much Longer

Forbes
June 27, 2014

Is there another housing bubble looming? Trulia’s Chief Economist Jed Kolko investigates. Home prices now look 3% undervalued compared with long-term fundamentals. Of the 100 largest metros, 76 are undervalued while just 7 are more than 10% overvalued. ...

the rest of the story ...


4 Reasons Why Homebuyers Can Breathe a Sigh of Relief

Redfin
June 27, 2014

There’s been a dramatic change in the housing market lately, and it’s almost all good news for homebuyers. As we head into summer, here are a few thoughts to consider: ...

the rest of the story ...


The Long-Term Unemployment Crisis Is as Bad as Ever

LinkedIn
June 27, 2014

As of May, 3.4 million Americans had been out of work for more than six months. That's far too many -- two and a half times the prerecession level -- but the number is falling fast, down more than 20 percent in the past year alone.

But as I wrote on FiveThirtyEight today, the ranks of the long-term unemployed are shrinking for all the wrong reasons. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie Mae Revises First Quarter Forecast

DEnews
June 27, 2014

The latest economic forecast from Fannie Mae shows that the under whelming performance of the economy in the first three months of the year and a shrinking GDP have significantly dulled the optimism economists once had for the overall 2014 economy. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing — the economy's needy friend

HousingWire
June 27, 2014

Americans’ concerns about the direction of the economy and their household income appear to be weighing on housing growth, according to results from Fannie Mae’s May 2014 National Housing Survey. The share of respondents who believe the economy is headed in the wrong direction remained at 57 percent last month, ...

the rest of the story ...


Obama administration expands affordable housing plan

Reuters
June 26, 2014

The Obama administration said on Thursday it would tap Treasury funds to bolster the construction of affordable rental housing and extend the life of a program aimed at helping homeowners avoid foreclosure. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. GDP Dropped 2.9% In The First Quarter 2014, Down Sharply From Second Estimate

Forbes
June 25, 2014

The latest data shows the U.S. economy contracted significantly more than previously estimated in the first quarter of this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Markets Show Little Improvement

Freddie Mac
June 25, 2014

Freddie Mac today released its Multi-Indicator Market Index(SM) (MiMi(SM)) showing mixed signals for the U.S. housing market. Most housing markets remain weak despite declining mortgage delinquencies, improving local employment, house price gains and attractive mortgage rates due to weak home purchase mortgage applications. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rooftop Solar Leases Scaring Buyers When Homeowners Sell

Bloomberg
June 24, 2014

Dorian Bishopp blames the solar panels on his roof for costing him almost 10 percent off the value of the home he sold in March. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Bubble Fears Brew Overseas

Realtor Magazine
June 13, 2014

The International Monetary Fund says that several global housing markets are overheating, even in the U.S. – which is still digging itself out of a housing bubble that popped in 2008. Most of the warnings, however, have been issued for overseas. ...

the rest of the story ...


Consumer Concerns Regarding Economy Slow Housing Activity
Spring-Summer Buying and Selling Season Sputters Despite Drop in Mortgage Rates
Fannie Mae
June 9, 2014

Americans’ concerns about the direction of the economy and their household income appear to be weighing on housing growth, according to results from Fannie Mae’s May 2014 National Housing Survey. The share of respondents who believe the economy is headed in the wrong direction remained at 57 percent last month, ...

the rest of the story ...


More Americans Stayed Put Last Year
Realtor Magazine
June 3, 2014

Fewer Americans are on the move, with newly released Census data showing that only 11.7 percent of Americans moved between 2012 and 2013 due to job, family, or housing reasons. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic Reports 312,000 Residential Properties Regained Equity in Q1 2014
CoreLogic
June 5, 2014

CoreLogic® today released new analysis showing more than 300,000 homes returned to positive equity in the first quarter of 2014, ...

Nevada had the highest percentage of mortgaged properties in negative equity at 29.4 percent, followed by Florida (26.9 percent), Mississippi (20.1 percent), Arizona (20.1 percent) and Illinois (19.7 percent). These top five states combined account for 31.1 percent of negative equity in the United States. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Challenges Real For Many Americans, Finds 2014 How Housing Matters Survey
MacArthur Foundation
70% Believe we are still in the midst of a housing crisis
June 3, 2014

During the past three years, over half of all U.S. adults (52%) have had to make at least one sacrifice in order to cover their rent or mortgage, according to a new survey of housing attitudes released today by MacArthur. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic Reports Home Prices Rise by 10.5 Percent Year Over Year in April
23 states and the District of Columbia are at or within 10 percent of their peak home price appreciation
CoreLogic
June 3, 2014

Home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased 10.5 percent in April 2014 compared to April 2013. This change represents 26 months of consecutive year-over-year increases in home prices nationally. ...

the rest of the story ...


Most home builders see shortage of lots to build
Market Watch
June 3, 2014

Families buying new homes can expect prices to continue to rise, as builders say there’s a low supply of developed lots and that properties suitable for new housing have become more expensive. ...

the rest of the story ...


Most Homebuyers Don't See This Cost Coming
Yahoo! Finance
June 2, 2014

Buying a house is expensive. Everybody knows that, but even people who work very hard to prepare for the cost of owning a home are often surprised by how much they end up paying. That’s particularly true among consumers whose loans require private mortgage insurance (PMI). ...

the rest of the story ...


The U.S. Goes From Big to Still Bigger on the New Home Front
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
June 2, 2014

The new-home market’s shift to pricier homes resulted last year in the average newly built home getting larger still, with more including trappings of affluence such as four or more bedrooms and three-car garages. ...

the rest of the story ...


Cash Property Deals Reach Record With U.S. Boomers Retiring
BloombergBusinessweek
June 2, 2014

Mike Trafton bought a house in a suburb of Boise, Idaho, where he plans to retire. He made the deal without signing a stack of mortgage papers.

Trafton, 55, and his wife Cindy, 54, paid $400,000 in cash for the 3,200-square-foot house in Eagle after selling their 4,400-square-foot home in a Portland, Oregon, suburb for $680,000. Like a growing number of baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, the Traftons had no desire to get a mortgage. ...

the rest of the story ...


Black Knight: 2 million borrowers face rate resets
...increased risk in years ahead
HousingWire
June 2, 2014

There are approximately 2 million modified mortgages facing interest rate resets, and of that amount, 40% are currently underwater, Black Knight’s April Mortgage Monitor Report found. ...

the rest of the story ...


E-Mortgages Will Speed Closings, Cut Costs
Realtor Magazine
June 2, 2014

An electronic mortgage process could cut 30 days off the average 52 days it takes to close a loan, according to a team developed by Fannie Mae to study e-mortgages. What’s more, going paperless could save the mortgage industry an average of about $1,100 per mortgage—or about $1 billion a year. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. house price gains seen moderating over next few years: poll
Reuters
May 30, 2014

U.S. house price rises will likely slow further over the next two years, curbed by tight lending standards, slow wage growth and a lack of first time buyers, a Reuters poll found. ...

the rest of the story ...


Converting Commercial Properties into Homes

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
May 29, 2014

The interiors had peeling plaster walls covered in layers of old wallpaper and paint. A leaky roof and mostly abandoned second-story required immediate attention. In short, the place was a wreck. And yet, "we really just fell in love with it," says Jay McKinney of his Birmingham, Ala., home. ...

the rest of the story ...


Economists and Experts Expect 2014 Price Increases to Average 4.4%
RISMedia
May 27, 2014

More than 100 housing economists and experts participating in a recent quarterly survey expect nationwide home values to appreciate 4.4 percent through the end of this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


2014 Luxury Report: Sales of Priciest 1% of Homes Climb While Rest of Home Sales Still Down
Redfin
May 27, 2014

Home sales so far this year are lower than they were in 2013, but there’s one sliver of the housing market that’s going strong: the very top of it. Sales of the priciest 1 percent of homes are up 21.1 percent so far this year, following a gain of 35.7 percent in 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Sales, Inventories Reach a Turning Point?
RealtorMagazine
May 23, 2014

Existing-home sales posted the first rise of the year in April as inventory levels of for-sale homes also showed improvement, the National Association of REALTORS® reports.

Existing-home sales rose 1.3 percent in April compared to March, reaching a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.65 million last month. Still, home sales are 6.8 percent below the 4.99 million-unit pace set in April 2013, NAR reports. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fixed Mortgage Rates Near Seven Month Low
Freddie Mac
May 22, 2014

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates moving lower for the fourth consecutive week with fixed mortgage rates hitting new lows for this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Sellers Have Nowhere to Go After the Sale
RealtorMagazine
May 22, 2014

More home owners say now is a good time to sell, surveys show, but low inventories have them worried about what their next move would be. ...

the rest of the story ...


Economy Appears to Gain Strength After Flat First Quarter
Fannie Mae
May 21, 2014

After stalling out in the first quarter of the year, recent indicators suggest the economy is poised for a pick-up in growth in the second quarter of 2014, according to Fannie Mae’s (FNMA/OTC) Economic & Strategic Research Group. ...

the rest of the story ...


Pricey mortgages hurting U.S. home sales: San Francisco Fed
Reuters
May 19, 2014

A rise in mortgage rates could explain much of the weakness in U.S. home resales and further increases in the cost of home loans could dampen the recovery, a Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco economist said in a paper published on Monday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Single-family home starts stall out at 0.8% April growth
HousingWire
May 16, 2014

Single-family housing starts stalled out in April, rising just 0.1%. If builders and the industry were looking for a break out of pent-up home demand, it wasn't there. ...

the rest of the story ...


Where is all that investor and all-cash action?
The top housing markets where investors see profit
HousingWire
May 16, 2014

More than four in 10 residential property sales in the first quarter this year were all-cash sales, the highest level since RealtyTrac began tracking all-cash purchases in the first quarter of 2011. ...

the rest of the story ...


More Home Buyers Bring Cash to Closing
Realtor Magazine
May 9, 2014

All-cash purchases are on the rise, despite a decrease in distressed sales and investor activity, according to NAR's REALTORS® Confidence Index of about 3,000 survey respondents. All-cash sales made up 33 percent of transactions in the first quarter, compared to 31 percent in 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


40% of Home Sellers Plan to Price Above Market Value
Redfin Agents Caution that Buyers are Less Tolerant of Overpricing this Year
Redfin Research Center
May 8, 2014

Home sellers are shrugging off weak sales this year and kicking off the spring season with what might be considered a risky pricing strategy: 40.3 percent of sellers say they plan to price their homes above market value, ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic: Foreclosed homes cut by more than one third
Despite improvement, inventory remains elevated
HousingWire
April 28, 2014

The number of homes in foreclosure fell 37% year-over year, declining to 720,000 from 1.1 million in March 2013, analytics firm reported. ...

the rest of the story ...


GSE reform will drive up mortgage rates
HousingWire
April 28, 2014

The Senate will put its hand to the future of GSE reform Tuesday morning, and how Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac evolve could affect the future of the housing market. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. Pending Home Sales Rise 3.4% in March
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
April 28, 2014

A gauge of upcoming home sales ticked higher in March after eight straight months of declines, a sign the sector could be pulling out of its malaise. ...

the rest of the story ...


Wall Street: Home price appreciation still expected to hit 7%
HousingWire
April 28, 2014

Despite a weak first quarter, home prices are still expected to rise by 7% in 2014, according to Wall Street analysts.

1. Barclays’ analysts highlight the projected home price appreciation for the four "sand states": Arizona, California, Florida and Nevada

Barclays’ raised its home price appreciation projections for Arizona and Florida from its previously reported projections. Barclays’ projection for Arizona was raised from 6.8% to 8.2% and Florida was raised from 7.7% to 8.3%. Barclays’ expectation for California remains static at 9.4%. ...

the rest of the story ...


Trulia: 10 most out-of-touch housing markets
HousingWire
April 28, 2014

Using Trulia’s database of homes for sale, Kolko listed the top 10 housing markets with the highest share of for-sale homes above the local loan limit, showing just how out of touch conforming loan limits are. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rick Sharga: Is this the end of the housing recovery?
HousingWire
April 24, 2014

The double whammy over the past few days of flat existing home sales and a disastrous drop in new home sales appears to have dimmed many analysts’ views of the housing market recovery. ...

the rest of the story ...


Homes are selling quickly, so why aren't builders building more?
MarketWatch
April 23, 2014

New single-family homes aren't on the market for long, selling quickly at record prices, according to government data released Wednesday. So why are building rates so low? ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. new home sales dive to eight-month low in March
Reuters
April 23, 2014

Sales of new U.S. single-family homes tumbled to their lowest level in eight months in March, dealing a setback to the housing market recovery. ...

the rest of the story ...


Santelli Exchange: Housing recovery & interest rates
CNBC
April 23, 2014

After today's disappointing home sales data, CNBC's Rick Santelli explains the dissipation in housing momentum. ...

Housing video









March new home sales drop
CNBC
April 23, 2014

New home sales not that good today. Not good at all. Right on the heels of a poor showing for existing home sales, newly built homes surprise down. ...

Housing video









Why Aren't There More Homes For Sale?
Over Half of Homeowners are Not Currently In a Financial Position to Sell
REDFIN Research Center
April 22, 2014

From Austin to Boston to Chicago, low inventory continues to be a key point of frustration in the housing market. Buyers don’t see enough options, sellers are afraid to list without having a new home and agents anticipate another competitive season. ...

the rest of the story ...


Robbing...er, Regulating banks is where the money is
HousingWire
April 22, 2014

Gentleman bank robber Willie Sutton is famously (and incorrectly) remembered for saying he robbed banks "because that’s where the money is."

Turns out though, the real money is in being a bank regulator. ...

the rest of the story ...


GSEs lower expectations on housing market for 2014
Fannie, Freddie revise sales, construction forecasts downward HousingWire
April 22, 2014

The government-sponsored enterprises are lowering their housing expectations for 2014, citing shrinking inventory and tightened credit standards among other reasons. ...

the rest of the story ...


Existing-Home Sales Slip in March
DSnews
April 22, 2014

Existing-home sales slid back in March, and price improvements continued to moderate, according to transaction data released Tuesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fracking decreases property values as much as 15%
HousingWire
And 8 other gas-drilling observations from Ballard Spahr
April 22, 2014

Natural gas drilling wells are becoming a more frequent sight throughout the country. The "shale boom” is big business for gas companies and landowners alike. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fannie, Freddie cut housing-market forecasts for 2014
MarketWatch
April 21, 2014

On the heels of a choppy first quarter, federally controlled mortgage-finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have cut their forecasts for the U.S. housing market’s performance in 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Four Mega-Trends Shaping the World—and What They Mean To You
LinkedIn
April 16, 2014

This week, I wrote a letter to shareholders as part of BlackRock's annual report, and I shared my views on what I see as four mega-trends that are shaping our world. These trends don’t just affect shareholders or investors—they matter to us all. ...

the rest of the story ...


Interest Rates Were Up in the First Quarter of 2014
Mickey Sullivan, Evergreen Home Loans
April 16, 2014

Interest rates on thirty year fixed rate mortgages averaged 4.35% in the first quarter of 2014. That is up from the 2013 average interest rate of 3.98% ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. Housing Starts Climb 2.8%--Update
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
April 16, 2014

Home builders stepped up construction for the second straight month in March, but broader trends suggest the market remains in a slump. ...

the rest of the story ...


Is Federal housing money supporting big bank balance sheets?
FHLB lending surges to Bank of America, Citi, JP Morgan and Wells
Housing Wire
April 16, 2014

JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C) and Wells Fargo (WFC) all witnessed a surge in secured loans, known as advances, to their members to promote housing finance, according to a recent report from the Federal Housing Finance Agency – Office of Inspector General. ...

the rest of the story ...


Builders Remain in a Holding Pattern, Expect Improvement
DSnews
April 15, 2014

Builder confidence stayed mostly flat in April, nudging up slightly from a downward revision to March’s findings. ...

the rest of the story ...


Applications for New Home Purchases Increased in March 2014
Mortgage Bankers Association
April 15, 2014

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Builder Application Survey (BAS) data for March 2014 shows mortgage applications for new home purchases increased by 15 percent relative to the previous month. This change does not include any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns. ...

the rest of the story ...


5 brilliant insights in the CoreLogic April MarketPulse
Housing Wire
April 15, 2014

Shorter-term mortgages are on the rise, rising rates and equity may mean more HELOCs and short sales may fall of the cliff.

That’s just some of the depth analysis of housing trends in April’s MarketPulse report ...

the rest of the story ...


Study: Sprawl Damages Economic Mobility
Realtor Magazine
April 11, 2014

A new report from Smart Growth America and the University of Utah’s Metropolitan Urban Center finds that living in sprawling metropolitan areas has major repercussions on a poor child’s chances of moving up the economic ladder as they enter adulthood. ...

the rest of the story ...


Ten Countries Racing to Buy American Homes
24/7 Wall Street
April 11, 2014

International homebuyers are attracted to the United States for a number of reasons. These include favorable housing prices, good weather, the country’s relative economic stability and an attraction to America in general. ...

the rest of the story ...


After Winter Chill, Time to Spring Forward
Freddie Mac
April 10, 2014

Looking forward, our Chief Economist Frank Nothaft anticipates that more than 50% of the mortgage market will be originations for home purchases by the end of 2014. A purchase dominated market hasn't happened in 14 years – not since 2000. ...

the rest of the story ...


Growing demand for apartments pushes up rents
USA TODAY
April 5, 2014

These are good times for U.S. landlords. For many tenants, not so much.

With demand for apartments surging, rents are projected to rise for a fifth straight year. Even a rise in apartment construction is unlikely to provide much relief anytime soon. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fed standards for AMC's will squeeze smaller appraisers
Heavy regulation is the new normal, one AMC says
HousingWire
April 4, 2014

The appraisal management industry has been waiting for months and now they are here: the federal banking and finance regulatory agencies’ proposal of minimum standards for home appraisers and appraisal management companies. ...

the rest of the story ...


HUD: March Housing Scorecard Shows Progress
DSnews
April 4, 2014

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) latest Housing Scorecard for March, released in conjunction with the U.S. Treasury, showed progress in the housing market, but cautioned that the national economy is still healing from the Great Recession. ...

the rest of the story ...


Foreclosure Inventory Down 35 Percent Nationally From a Year Ago

Value of Shadow Inventory Down $70 Billion From One Year Ago
CoreLogic
April 3, 2014

CoreLogic® (NYSE: CLGX), a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled services provider, today released its February 2014 National Foreclosure Report with a supplement featuring quarterly shadow inventory data as of January 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Brown: FHA's Insurance Premiums Sidelining Buyers
Realtor Magazine
April 3, 2014

The rising insurance rates on Federal Housing Administration mortgages are putting home purchases “increasingly out of reach” for many qualified buyers who rely on FHA financing, ...

the rest of the story ...


Affordability Issues Create Housing Bubble Concerns
DSnews
April 3, 2014

Recovery in the housing market is not without its side effects, particularly in major metro markets on the West Coast and in Florida. ...

the rest of the story ...


Top 5 states with the most and least foreclosures
HousingWire
April 3, 2014

CoreLogic’s (CLGX) new national foreclosure report shows there were 43,000 completed foreclosures in the United States in February 2014, down from 51,000 in February 2013, a year-over-year decrease of 15%. ...

the rest of the story ...


Foreclosure and Shadow Inventory Both Decline in February
DSnews
April 3, 2014

CoreLogic released its National Foreclosure Report for February, 2014, reporting 43,000 completed foreclosures for the month, a 13.1 percent decrease from January, 2014. Yearly, foreclosures declined 15 percent from February, 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic: Home prices increase into second year
HousingWire
April 1, 2014

Home prices, including distressed sales, jumped 12.2% in February 2014 compared to a year prior, marking 24 months of consecutive year-over-year increases in home prices nationally, the latest CoreLogic report said. ...

the rest of the story ...


Residential construction spending down for February
HousingWire
April 1, 2014

Construction spending rose a mere 0.1% month-over-month in February to $945.7 million, with private residential construction spending down 0.8% and residential construction down 0.7%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. ...

the rest of the story ...


96% of Markets Better Off Than in 2010
Realtor Magazine
March 31, 2014

A new report by RealtyTrac shows that 96 percent of the counties that they track are better off than they were four years ago. But still, there’s a ways to go in the housing market, with only 8 percent of the 410 U.S. counties analyzed faring better than they did during the housing boom eight years ago. ...

the rest of the story ...


4 reasons the Fed won't raise interest rates anytime soon
HousingWire
March 31, 2014

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said early Monday that the economy and the job market are still ailing and that they will need "extraordinary" assistance from the central bank in the form of low interest rates "for some time." ...

the rest of the story ...


NAR: Pending Home Sales Continue to Cool
Realtor Magazine
March 28, 2014

For the eighth consecutive month, contracts to purchase previously owned homes took a tumble in February, but the slowdown may be nearing an end, according to the National Association of REALTORS®’ latest reading from its Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings. ...

the rest of the story ...


Banks Lending Like It’s 2007 Belied by $10 Trillion Hoard
Bloomberg
March 28, 2014

For all the warnings from the Federal Reserve over excessive risk-taking as loan growth soars to levels last seen just before the crisis, bankers still have 10 trillion reasons to lend. ...

the rest of the story ...


Property Taxes at a 20-Year High
Realtor Magazine
March 27, 2014

Property taxes continue to increase, as the amount collected by state and local governments in 2013 reached the highest level in about two decades, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. ...

the rest of the story ...


February pending home sales down 0.8%
CNBC
March 27, 2014

Pending home sales down 0.8 percent in February month to month from a downwardly revised January figure. Pending home sales, these are signed contracts for existing homes, down 10.5% from a year ago. ...

Housing video









Independent Mortgage Banker Profits Reach New Lows in the Fourth Quarter of 2013
Mortgage Bankers Association
March 26, 2014

Independent mortgage banks and mortgage subsidiaries of chartered banks made an average profit of $150 on each loan they originated in the fourth quarter of 2013, down from $743 per loan in the third quarter, ...

the rest of the story ...


New Freddie Mac Index Measures the Stability of Nation’s Housing Markets
Freddie Mac
March 26, 2014

It has been more than seven years since the beginning of the deepest housing recession since the Great Depression. As housing activity fell, nervous speculation took off in the media and industry about when (if ever) housing would get back to normal. Given the pickup in sales, new construction, and home values over the past couple of years, it’s fair to ask if we’re there yet: is the U.S. housing market back to a normal range of activity with a good balance between demand and supply forces? ...

the rest of the story ...


Real estate agents still 'very integral'
CNBC
March 26, 2014

Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff gives three reasons why online housing data provided by his firm and others are not a substitute for agents. ...

Housing video









'Pent up demand' to drive home sales up 30%: Pro
CNBC
March 25, 2014

David Crowe, chief economist at the National Association of Homebuilders, says "pent up demand" will drive new home sales in the U.S. up 30 percent - but first-time buyers are still struggling. ...

Housing video









U.S. home prices rise in January: S&P/Case-Shiller
Reuters
March 25, 2014

U.S. single-family home prices rose in January and slightly beat expectations, a closely watched survey said on Tuesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Robert Shiller: Housing could weaken more
CNBC
March 25, 2014

The 13.2% increase in the 20 city index really isn't driven by individual home buyers and their excitement. Home buyers don't expect much. The New York Fed survey of home buyers one year expectations has it up only 4%. That's not exciting. so, I think maybe investors played a big role in this -- in the run-up we've seen in the last year. ...

Housing video









Carrington ups ante on Wells Fargo by lowering FICO standard
Lowers minimum FICO score to 550 Housing Wire
March 24, 2014

Carrington Mortgage Services lowered its minimum FICO score to 550 and expanded its guidelines on a number of FHA, VA and USDA loan programs in order to better focus on under served borrowers, typically those in the sub-640 FICO score range. ...

the rest of the story ...


REALTORS® Forecast Home Price Increases
REALTOR Magazine
March 24, 2014

REALTORS® expect home prices to continue to rise over the next 12 months. But they expect them to do so at a moderate pace, given tight credit conditions and the chipping away of home affordability, according to the latest REALTORS® Confidence Index, ...

the rest of the story ...


Borrowing again: Mortgage debt increases most in 6 years
Housing Wire
March 24, 2014

First mortgages increased 2.8% from the same period a year ago, marking the largest year-over-year increase since September of 2008, according to the most recent Equifax national consumer credit trends report. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rise of the renters coming
CNBC
March 24, 2014

Since the height of the housing boom we have seen the home ownership rate go from 69% to 65%. There are now 5 million more single family rental homes than there were just six years ago. ...

Housing video









Unchanged Home Prices Raises Questions
Housing Wire
March 24, 2014

The Data & Analytics division of Black Knight Financial Services (BKFS) reported no monthly change in its Home Price Index (HPI) for January, underlining the question as to where other home price reports—including the monthly Case-Shiller Home Price Indices—will land for the year's first month. ...

the rest of the story ...


Flood insurance rate hike delay becomes law
Housing Wire
March 21, 2014

The White House signed into law comprehensive legislation designed to delay planned rate hikes for flood insurance originally designed to reform the National Flood Insurance Program, which is in debt to the tune of more than $24 billion. ...

the rest of the story ...


Spring Expected to See Increased Growth from Q1
DSnews
March 21, 2014

Following a slowdown in activity over the previous two quarters, Fannie Mae's Economic & Strategic Research Group expects economic activity to pick up in the second quarter of this year, bolstered by increases in the housing sector, consumer spending, and business investment. ...

the rest of the story ...


Bank of America finds the housing recovery hard to believe
Housing Wire
March 21, 2014

Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAC) analysts just emailed a research note reminding clients they feel the Fed needs to continue to back the mortgage market if the so-called housing recovery is to remain intact. ...

the rest of the story ...


10 Markets Where Inventories Are Rising Fast
REALTOR Magazine
March 20, 2014

Buyers who have faced tight housing inventories in recent months may finally be getting more options. Realtor.com® reports that nationwide housing inventories have edged up 10 percent year-over-year. ...

the rest of the story ...


New Year Brings New Strategies for Single-Family Rental Giants
CoStar Group
March 19, 2014

The fast-emerging business in which big investors scooped up thousands of single-family rental homes continues to morph along with the erratic housing recovery.

The big institutional investors that have acquired portfolios of thousands of homes for rent are shifting their acquisition strategies away from buying huge bulk portfolios to become more disciplined and market directed. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. mortgage applications fell last week -MBA
Reuters
March 19, 2014

Applications for U.S. home mortgages fell last week as both purchase and refinancing applications slipped, an industry group said on Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity, which includes both refinancing and home purchase demand, fell 1.2 percent in the week ended March 14. ...

the rest of the story ...


More Homes Hit the Market in Time for Spring
REALTOR Magazine
March 19, 2014

Inventories of homes for sale have increased 10 percent year-over-year, signaling growing seller optimism and a strong, early start to the spring home-buying season, according to realtor.com®’s latest National Housing Trend Report, which tracks 146 markets. ...

the rest of the story ...


Borrowers paying mortgages over credit cards again
CNNMoney
March 19, 2014

As the housing market and hiring continue to recover, consumers are making their mortgage payments a priority again.

A growing number of borrowers are paying off their home loans before their credit card debts, reversing a trend first seen in September 2008, according to a TransUnion study that examined the delinquency rates of borrowers with mortgages, auto loans and credit card debt. ...

the rest of the story ...


Are Big Investors a Big Problem?
National Association of Realtors
March 18, 2014

Investors have played an important part in the housing recovery, but recently concern has grown over their role. In particular, the first ever securitization of single family rentals by Wall Street investors spawned fears that the large number of properties packaged into this type of security could be dumped on the market sending prices downward. ...

the rest of the story ...


Economist: 3 major things you need to know about the 2014 housing market
HousingWire
March 17, 2014

The following list was put together by a veteran housing economist, asked by HousingWire for his opinion on the near-term future of the markets we cover daily.

Here's David Berson's take on the 3 things you need to know about housing in 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Blackstone’s Home Buying Binge Ends as Prices Surge: Mortgages
Bloomberg
March 14, 2014

Blackstone Group LP (BX) is slowing its purchases of houses to rent amid soaring prices after a buying binge made it the biggest U.S. single-family home landlord. ...

the rest of the story ...


Senate Passes Flood Insurance Bill
DSnews
March 14, 2014

The United States Senate passed the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014, a bill aimed at protecting millions of homeowners from being hit by huge insurance premium hikes. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rising Prices and Mortgage Rates Stall Home Sales
DSnews
March 14, 2014

Home sales declined for the fourth consecutive month with sharp drops in West Coast markets, according to the latest Real-Time Price Tracker from Redfin, a national real estate brokerage. The brokerage reported a 10.3 percent decline in sales across the country year-over-year in February. ...

the rest of the story ...


4 million renters want to buy. Can they?
CNBC Realty Check
March 13, 2014

As the housing market moves slowly into recovery, more and more Americans are gaining confidence and hoping to jump into home ownership. ...

the rest of the story ...


The best and worst cities for home price appreciation through 2018
Housing Wire
March 12, 2014

The MSAs likely to see the strongest median increase in the price of a single-family home between 2012 and 2018 will be: ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Prices Actually Undervalued Based on Incomes - CoreLogic
Mortgage News Daily
March 12, 2014

In an article that appeared recently in CoreLogic's blog, Popping the Housing Bubbly Theory, CoreLogic's Chief Economist Dr. Mark Fleming presents a different take on current home prices and whether recent gains are sustainable. Current thinking maintains that a housing bubble may already exist because home price appreciation has substantially outpaced the rate that rents have grown. ...

the rest of the story ...


Generational Differences Drive Housing Preferences?
Realtor Magazine
March 11, 2014

Younger home buyers tend to view their home as a strong investment, more so than older buyers who tend to view their homes as a match to their lifestyle, according to the 2014 NAR Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends study, ...

the rest of the story ...


2 Key senators agree on Fannie-Freddie overhaul
Associated Press
March 11, 2014

A plan to phase out government-controlled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and instead use mainly private insurers to backstop home loans has advanced in Congress. ...

the rest of the story ...


4 Million Homes Return to Positive Equity
Realtor Magazine
March 7, 2014

Rising home prices helped many home owners welcome the return of equity in their homes last year. In 2013, 4 million homes returned to positive equity, bringing the total to 42.7 million, CoreLogic reports in its fourth quarter 2013 Equity Report. ...

the rest of the story ...


What happens to prices when Wall Street is your landlord
CNBC Realty Check
March 6, 2014

It was two years ago, almost to the day, that Warren Buffett said on CNBC he would buy up, "a couple hundred thousand" single family homes if it were practical to do so. Some claim that opened the floodgates to investors in the single-family rental trade. ...

the rest of the story ...


What happens to prices when Wall Street is your landlord
CNBC
March 6, 2014

CNBC's Diana Olick discusses the impact institutional investors are having on key housing markets. ...

Housing video









Google to invest $50 million in real estate site Auction.com
CNBC Realty Check
March 5, 2014

Google is using its sizable power and cash to put a real estate company on the map. Google Capital, a fledgling venture capital arm of the Internet behemoth, announced Wednesday it is investing $50 million in Auction.com, a growing online real estate marketplace. ...

the rest of the story ...


Auction.com knocked on Google's door: CEO
CNBC
March 6, 2014

The board and management made a list of who would be the most strategic partner for auction.com and Google was at the top of the list. We never really made it to number two. ...

Housing video









Dodd-Frank's Negative Impact on Community Banks
Doug Marr, River Valley Community Bank
EVP and Chief Credit Officer
March 3, 2014

I asked Doug "From a banker’s standpoint, how is Dodd-Frank affecting you?"


Here is his response;
Dodd-Frank is an expansive bill with many facets. I believe you would be most interested in how it effects the mortgage industry. Personally, I have withdrawn our participation in mortgage lending due to the excessive compliance and licensing requirements. It is no longer an area that you can operate in unless you are willing to invest significant resources to ensure compliance. At the volume we were running at, it didn't make economic sense. So therefore, assuming we are not alone I believe that mortgage credit to the consumer has now been restricted and it is arguable that it is actually safer. I have talked to the regulators, they don’t even know how it will all play out. I have attached a circular from the American Bankers Association (ABA) that pinpoints the key issues regarding "Mortgage Lending";

The circular that Doug attached was;

Dodd-Frank and Community Banks
Your Guide to 12 Critical Issues


The circular was written in 2012. With regard to mortgage lending, it said "This legislation represents an unprecedented rewrite of the legal regime covering mortgage finance issues. The reforms are so comprehensive that they will require full-scale transformation of mortgage lending systems and processes. Some banks will evaluate whether to continue to make mortgages, because these changes will require burdensome implementation efforts and increased regulatory guidance from federal agencies."

In essence, the circular predicted that many banks, such as River Valley Community Bank, would be forced to cease making home loans ...

the rest of the story ...


Pending Home Sales Mostly Flat in January
Realtor Magazine
March 3, 2014

The National Association of REALTORS®’ Pending Home Sales Index—a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings—ticked up 0.1 percent in January, remaining 9 percent below year-ago levels. Pending home sales showed monthly gains in the South and Northeast, but those gains were mostly offset by declines in the West and Midwest. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rent the American Dream
comstock's
March 2014

Brian Collins is a 26-year-old director of accounts at Sacramento-based mobile applications marketing firm Appency. He makes what he calls "decent money," is putting lots of it into a 401(k) and has an eye on his financial future. And, like most people his age, he’s decided that buying a house is not part of the plan. ...

the rest of the story ...


West leads in U.S. job growth
USA Today
March 2, 2014

Seven of the 10 states with the fastest job growth this year will be in the West, as the region benefits from a stronger housing recovery and continued gains in its bread-and-butter energy, technology and tourism industries, according to forecasts by IHS Global Insight. ...

the rest of the story ...


In California, Great Recession pushes scores of adult children home, and older parents pay
UCLA Newsroom
February 27, 2014

Californians anticipating an empty nest in their golden years are now faced with a rocky reality: The Great Recession and its jobless recovery have forced many adult children home, ...

the rest of the story ...

Lloyd's note: The significance of this story from a real estate perspective is that it confirms that we are still not seeing the increase in household formation necessary to sustain improvements in home prices. It's my opinion that the real estate market is still fragile and largely dependent on an improving economy. If the economy continues to improve and these adult childrens' financial fortunes improve, we will see increased household formation as they move out of their parents' homes.


First timers buying more expensive homes: Zelman
CNBC Halftime Report
February 27, 2014

Over the last 100 years, if you look at housing starts, this is going to be the most massive mean reversion we've ever seen in the history of our post World War II nation. ...

Housing video









Seen easing of credit conditions: Zelman
CNBC Halftime Report
February 27, 2014

I think that there is interest in the new home market for the investors but I would say it's a small percent of the market and if it can make sense from a return perspective I think they will move forward on that. But I think it's only a few percent of the market. With respect to the mortgage applications right now we're surprised on the numbers ...

Housing video









Housing 'nirvana' took a pause: Zelman
CNBC Halftime Report
February 27, 2014

I think nirvana took a pause. During that time house price -- home prices were surging and we had attractive affordability and a few months after I was on we had rates spike about 100 plus basis points and we saw a pause. The consumer was rationally responding to the prices and backup in rates. ...

Housing video









U.S. housing recovery uneven across markets, study finds
Reuters
February 26, 2014

The U.S. housing sector is likely to experience an uneven recovery over the next five years, with some local markets bouncing back faster than others, according to a study released on Wednesday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Average Home Upsized Post-Recession
REALTOR Magazine
February 26, 2014

The average new-home size has increased more than 300 square feet since 2009, growing from 2,362 square feet in 2009 to 2,679 square feet in 2013, according to recently released Census Bureau data. ...

the rest of the story ...


'Boomerang' buyers get another chance at homeownership
Sun Sentinel
February 24, 2014

Just 10 days before Christmas 2009, Ganel Appolon found an envelope taped to his front door. He and his family were being evicted from their Tamarac home. Appolon had fallen behind on his mortgage payments, and the lender repossessed the property under terms of his bankruptcy filing.

Despite the financial setback, Appolon vowed to own again. ...

the rest of the story ...


Cost of owning a home is spiking in 2014
CNBC Realty Check
February 20, 2014

The sharp rise in home prices in 2013 caused two conflicting results: The return of positive home equity for hundreds of thousands of borrowers and considerably weaker affordability for an equally large pool of potential homebuyers. ...

the rest of the story ...


Owners again borrowing against homes as housing market recovers
Los Angeles Times
February 20, 2014

After a home equity credit binge during the housing bubble, banks restricted the loans as home prices crashed. But now second mortgages are back in vogue. ...

the rest of the story ...


Consequences Of A Farmland Bubble, And Who Gets Hurt When It Bursts?
Seeking Alpha
February 18, 2014

The EPA's push to encourage ethanol usage has resulted in an "Ethanol Bubble" that threatens the entire farming industry.

Changes to the EPA's RFS2 mandate and waning political support may provide the catalyst to pop the "Ethanol Bubble."

The popping of the "Ethanol Bubble" will have a catastrophic impact on the farming industry. ...

the rest of the story ...


Are we headed toward a 'retail apocalypse?'
Housing Wire
February 13, 2014

Retail sales have folded like a cheap lawn chair, posting their worst performance since June 2012.

the rest of the story ...


Want to Sell Your Home? The Spring Selling Season May Be Coming Early This Year
The Motley Fool
February 15, 2014

If you're considering selling your home in 2014, now is the time to get ready. Not next month, not next week, not tomorrow. Right now.

Why? Because buyers are already on the hunt.

the rest of the story ...


Housing Affordability Drops in California
DSnews
February 14, 2014

The California Association of Realtors (CAR) released its Traditional Housing Affordability Index (HAI) on Wednesday, revealing declining levels of affordability in the Golden State.

the rest of the story ...


Here's why you can expect weak home sales in 1Q2014
4 charts show you where this quarter is going
Housing Wire
February 13, 2014

There are early signs that housing sales and home prices for the first quarter of 2014 are going to be weak.

the rest of the story ...


Fewer Americans Fall Behind on Mortgage Payments

Aol Real Estate
February 12, 2014

U.S. homeowners are doing a better job of keeping up with mortgage payments, a trend that has reduced the rate of late payment on home loans to the lowest level in more than five years.

The percentage of mortgage holders at least two months behind on their payments fell in the October-December quarter to 3.85 percent from 5.08 percent a year earlier, credit reporting agency TransUnion said Wednesday.

the rest of the story ...


3 signs California housing is on the brink of something huge
Housing affordability finally cools, inventors loosen grip
Housing Wire
February 12, 2014

Six years after the financial crisis and California is still feeling the leftover ripple effects of loose lending standards and an overabundance of foreclosed homes. But things are looking up.

Looking at recent report headlines, California still has a few gems to give it hope going forward.

the rest of the story ...


Is U.S. Housing Unaffordable? It Depends on How You Chart It
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
February 11, 2014

Rising home prices and interest rates made housing less affordable last year than at any time in the last five years, according to data released Tuesday by the National Association of Realtors.

So is it time to sound the siren over a housing bubble? Not really. Nationally, the Realtors’ housing affordability index shows that, excluding the last five years, homes for the U.S. as a whole are still more affordable than at any time since at least 1981.

the rest of the story ...


8 States With the Most Mortgage Fraud Cases
Realtor Magazine
February 10, 2014

Overall, suspicious activity in lending is down, but mortgage fraud remains particularly problematic in certain areas across the country, ... The report highlighted the worst states for mortgage fraud, based on the highest number of investigations in 2012. The states at the top of the list were:

1. Florida (ranked No. 1 on this list for the past five years)
2. Nevada
3. Arizona
4. Delaware
5. Illinois
6. New Jersey
7. California
8. Georgia

the rest of the story ...

Lloyd's note: there is a strong correlation between restrictive growth management, housing bubbles and mortgage fraud;

How Urban Planners Caused the Housing Bubble, The Cato Institute
Financial Crimes Report to the Public 2005, Federal Bureau of Investigation


January shows "unexpectedly" weak jobs growth yet again
Housing Wire
February 7, 2014

Employers added just 113,000 jobs in January, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, well below what economists predicted and 62,000 fewer than what ADP forecast.

the rest of the story ...


Do investor home sales mask a sick housing market?
Housing Wire
February 6, 2014

The sheer volume of institutional purchases in 2013 drove much of the housing price appreciation, without supporting property fundamentals, and that is alarming some experts.

First a little context.

In the pre-meltdown market, about 85% of home sales were individuals purchasing with a mortgage, about 10% were all-cash sales, and about 3-5% were distressed sales.

the rest of the story ...


Rents rising faster in tech hubs than in rest of U.S.
Reuters
February 6, 2014

San Franciscans have long blamed the technology sector for rising rents. Now, a study from real-estate company Trulia backs them up.

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage Bankers Association: Purchase applications down
CNBC Realty Check
February 5, 2014

The flight to the bond market sent yields down. Mortgage rates followed those yields. Loosely, the ten-year treasury, more specifically on the agency MBS pricing. Take a look. The average rate on the 30-year fixed moving from 4 1/2% early last week to just over 4 1/4 at the beginning of this week. The trouble is, like Scott said, it did not move mortgage applications much. As a whole, basically flat, up just .4% week to week according to the Mortgage Bankers Association weekly survey. ...

Housing video









Mortgage applications stuck despite sliding rates
CNBC Realty Check
February 5, 2014

Mortgage applications barely moved last week, even as a run on the U.S. bond market pushed interest rates down.

the rest of the story ...


Visits to real estate websites surge 25 percent from December to January
InmanNews
February 4, 2014

Homes.com, Apartment Guide and Rent.com all moved up in Experian Marketing Services’ rankings of top real estate websites in January, surging past MSN Real Estate.

the rest of the story ...


Economists: Home Market Gains in 2014 Hinge on Job Growth
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
February 4, 2014

A panel of top economists expressed generally optimistic views Tuesday about the U.S. housing market, predicting sizeable gains in home construction and new-home sales this year as long as interest rates don’t rise too quickly and job growth continues to advance at a moderate pace.

the rest of the story ...


Wells Fargo Lowers Credit Scores for FHA Loans
National Mortgage News
February 4, 2014

Wells Fargo is expanding its mortgage credit box now that it has substantially reduced its repurchase risk, according to the head of mortgage production at the giant bank.

the rest of the story ...


Young Adults Living with Parents Up Sharply
National Association of Home Builders
February 4, 2014

According to the most recent American Community Survey (ACS), one in three young adults ages 18 to 34, or more than 24 million, lived in homes of their parents or parents-in-law in 2012.

the rest of the story ...


Vacancy Rates Remain Above Pre-Bubble Levels
REALTOR® Magazine
February 3, 2014

The number of homes sitting empty across the country remains high. The year-round vacancy rate reached 10.2 percent of total housing units, the Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau data shows.

the rest of the story ...


Home prices won't return to peak levels until when?
Clear Capital sees 3-5% appreciation rate
HousingWire
February 3, 2014

Home prices are growing slowly but remain in line with inflation, Clear Capital reported Monday morning in its Home Data Index, but at this pace it will be 2021 before they return to peak prices.

the rest of the story ...


Target data breach could affect real estate transactions
Los Angeles Times
February 2, 2014

The numbers of affected consumers are as yet impossible to predict, but mortgage credit experts warn that the recent massive data breaches at Target, Neiman Marcus and other retailers could have significant effects on some real estate transactions in the coming months as damaged credit files depress scores and jeopardize loan applications and home sales.

the rest of the story ...


Income Growth Remains a Challenge for Housing
The National Association of Home Builders
January 31, 2014

One factor holding back a more robust recovery in housing is the decline in incomes for key prospective renting and home buying age groups. While job creation has been positive, if lackluster, sluggish growth or declines in incomes for those seeking to rent their first apartment or purchase their first home holds back housing demand.

the rest of the story ...


What new appraisal rule means to you
Charlotte Observer
January 30, 2014

A new federal rule could give millions of homebuyers insights they’ve never had before about a crucial element of their mortgage application: the appraisal, including the electronic cross-checks and reviews now used by lenders to determine the amount of the loan they'll approve.

the rest of the story ...


Flip now if you plan to flip that house at all
Profits are high but the market may be peaking
HousingWire
January 30, 2014

It looks like the market for flips is slowing, which could portend ill for housing in general. Flips accounted for 3.8% of all sales in the fourth quarter, down slightly from 3.9% of all sales in the third quarter and down from 7.1% of all sales in the fourth quarter of 2012.

the rest of the story ...


Home prices show signs of topping out
HousingWire
January 28, 2014

Home prices are showing signs of topping out: The S&P/Case-Shiller index posted its first month-over-month decline in 10 months on Tuesday.

the rest of the story ...


The Impact of Urban Containment on America's Housing Market
Viable Opposition
HousingWire
January 24, 2014

While the paper is rather old, an analysis of the American housing market prepared by Randal O'Toole at the Cato Institute provides us with a very succinct analysis of where the American housing market went so wrong. The paper "How Urban Planners Caused the Housing Bubble" is an issue that I have posted on before but rarely have I seen such a complete analysis. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fixed-rate mortgages tumble in popularity
Hybrid ARMs start to reign
HousingWire
January 24, 2014

Adjustable-rate mortgages are gaining in popularity with interest rates on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages trending higher these days.

the rest of the story ...


The Fed continues to worry about too big to fail financial institutions

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
January 24, 2014

The Federal Reserve Board on Friday provided additional information on its expectations for the recovery and resolution preparedness of certain large domestic bank holding companies. Recovery and resolution preparedness aims to reduce the effect of a firm's failure or material weakness on the financial system and the broader economy.

The supervisory guidance is applicable to eight domestic bank holding companies--Bank of America Corporation; Bank of New York Mellon Corporation, PLC; Citigroup Inc.; Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.; JPMorgan Chase & Co.; Morgan Stanley; State Street Corporation; and Wells Fargo & Company. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Recovery Unmoved by Rising Interest Rates
DSnews
January 23, 2014

Mortgage rates may be rising, but the housing market doesn't seem to mind. In fact, several indicators have improved alongside rising rates, according to the HousingPulse Tracking Survey released by Campbell Surveys and Inside Mortgage Finance this week. ...

the rest of the story ...


It's a landlord's world now
Another report suggests multifamily is gaining traction
Housing Wire
January 20, 2014

Another report – this time the Securitization Weekly Overview from Bank of America-Merrill Lynch (BAC) – is forecasting a shift away from single-family home purchases to a rental market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing-Starts Forecast for 2014: Past Is not Prologue
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
January 17, 2014

Blame it on rising interest rates.

The U.S. Census Bureau announced Friday that housing construction starts totaled an estimated 923,400 units for 2013. That’s less than many analysts’ initial forecasts for the year and well below the long-term annual average of roughly 1.5 million starts. ...

the rest of the story ...


5 secrets to winning online property auctions
Place your bets … with knowledge
Housing Wire
January 17, 2014

Online auctions are growing in popularity.

Websites like auction.com are killing it; making bundles of money selling houses online, while giving investors a whole new world for buying properties. ...

the rest of the story ...


4 Keys Identified for a Full Housing Recovery
Realtor Magazine
January 17, 2014

In order to have a fully recovered housing market and economic recovery, economists point to the need for four positive indicators:

1. A healthy job market with low stable unemployment;
2. Mortgage delinquencies that have returned to historical averages;
3. Home prices consistent with an affordable mortgage payment–to–income ratio; and
4. Home sales that are in the range of historical norms.

So, is the housing market inching closer? ...

the rest of the story ...


Latest Housing Starts Data
National Association of Realtors' Economist's Outlook Blog
January 17, 2014

In each Economic Update, the Research staff analyzes recently released economic indicators and addresses what these indicators mean for REALTORS® and their clients. Today’s update discusses the latest housing starts data. ...

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Best Bets for Adding Value to Your Home in 2014
houselogic
January 16, 2014

America’s remodeling dollars are flowing again. If you’re looking to upgrade, Remodeling magazine’s 2014 Cost vs. Value Report tabs these projects as offering the best return on your investment. ...

the rest of the story ...


Fixed Mortgage Rates Move Lower on Economic Data
Freddie Mac
January 16, 2014

Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates fall amid signs of a weakening economic recovery. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Remodeling Spending will be Strong into 2014
Mortgage News Daily
January 16, 2014

The strong growth in the home remodeling market which began in the second quarter of 2013 will continue through the first half of 2014 according to LIRA, the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity. LIRA is a tool developed by the Remodeling Futures Program at the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. ...

the rest of the story ...


Homebuilders Remained Confident in January on Rising U.S. Sales
Housing Wire
January 16, 2014

Confidence among U.S. homebuilders held in January near its highest level in eight years, indicating the residential real-estate market will continue to contribute to economic growth in 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home builder confidence slips to 56
CNBC
January 14, 2014 - Confidence fell one point in january after a big jump in December, the monthly sentiment of index now stands at 56. 50 Is the line between positive and negative. December's four-point jump was also revised down by one point. ...

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Trulia's housing indicator shows mixed market
CNBC
January 14, 2014 -
Becky Quick: Sean, how is the housing market hanging in? What's real estate doing right now, are homes selling?

Sean Aggarwal: It's a mixed market. It will be an uneven recovery. On one hand you have home prices that are increasing. That's going to make housing less affordable. You have mortgage rates that have nowhere to go but up. Those are going to be headwinds for the housing market. On the other hand, as home prices are increasing, it will bring more inventory on the market. ...

Housing video









Mortgage market slows
CNBC
January 14, 2014 - The Mortgage Bankers Association lowered its 2014 forecast for originations by $57 billion. CNBC's Diana Olick looks into the year-over-year decline in mortgage lending rates ...

Housing video









New lending rules hit mortgage market
CNBC
January 14, 2014 - Wells fargo, the leader by volume in home loans, saw a 60% drop in originations in Q-4 from a year ago. They did $50 billion in originations in the quarter. JPMorgan not much better, down 54% to $35 billion in originations. Both were down on an annual and quarterly basis. Refinance volume has been hit the hardest thanks to the higher rates but mortgage purchase applications have also been way down, off 16% last week from the same week a year ago, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Now, the MBA today lowered its 2014 forecast for originations by $57 billion to $1.12 trillion for the year. It's not just the refis. They lowered their purchase originations by $34 billion to $677 billion. ...

Housing video









Mortgage forecasts lowered for 2014
CNBC
January 14, 2014 - Rising interest rates and a still slow housing recovery have some of the nation's largest banks reporting huge drops in residential mortgage originations and as CNBC's Diana Olick reports, the bulk of the drop is in refinance applications, expected to drop 60 percent in 2014 from 2013. ...

Housing video









QM storm could hit in weeks
Lawmakers scramble to set baseline, everyone wants more flexibility
Housing Wire
January 14, 2014

The Consumer Financial Protection Board’s Qualified Mortgage (QM) rule is going to constrict access to mortgage credit and possibly stall housing, and members of Congress and mortgage industry leaders want a lot more flexibility in dealing with the CFPB’s regulations that went into effect Jan. 10. ...

the rest of the story ...


MBA Lowers 2014 Mortgage Originations Forecast
Expects purchase originations to increase by 3.8%
DSnews
January 14, 2014

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) lowered its forecast for mortgage originations in 2014 by $57 billion to $1.12 trillion for the year, based on declining mortgage application activity and increasing interest rates. "Despite an economic outlook of steady growth and a recovering job market, mortgage applications have been decreasing – likely due to a combination of rising rates and regulatory implementation, ..."

"Compared to 2013, purchase originations are expected to increase by 3.8 percent." ...

the rest of the story ...


Bill Seeks to Extend Federal Tax Exemption for Forgiven Mortgage Debt
DSnews
January 14, 2014

Congressman Bill Foster (D-Illinois) introduced the Homeowners Debt Relief Extension Act (H.R. 3856) on Tuesday. The bill would extend the mortgage debt tax exemption that’s been in place since 2007 for another two years. ...

the rest of the story ...


More consumers planning to buy as mortgage concerns ease
Inman News
January 13, 2014

The share of consumers who plan to buy a home rose to 6.9 percent in December, up from 5 percent in November, according to a monthly economic outlook released today by Fannie Mae’s Economic & Strategic Research Group. ...

the rest of the story ...


Far fewer mortgage borrowers 'deeply underwater'
CNNMoney
January 9, 2014

A growing number of mortgage borrowers are keeping their heads above water, according to a report from RealtyTrac. The company reported Thursday that 9.3 million properties, or 19% of all homes with mortgages, were "deeply underwater" in December, ...

the rest of the story ...


Aging Boomers to Boost Demand for Apartments, Condos and Townhouses
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
January 7, 2014

The single-family home isn't obsolete, yet. But the aging of the baby boomers could reshape the U.S. housing market and economy in the coming years.

As the boomers get older, many will move out of the houses where they raised families and move into cozier apartments, condominiums and townhouses ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage rates continue upward creep
Housing Wire
Freddie Mac says uptick is sign of economic recovery
January 2, 2014

The results of Freddie Mac’s mortgage survey indicate that average fixed mortgage rates continue to a slow climb as we enter the new year.

"Mortgage rates edged up to begin the year on signs of a stronger economic recovery," said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for Freddie Mac. ...

the rest of the story ...


Market Analysts Expect Slowdown in Housing Recovery in 2014
DSNews
January 2, 2014

The housing market recovery is entering a new phase, according to the analysts at Capital Economics. They say the rapid bounce in home prices seen this year, which was driven by investors and tight supply conditions, will soon start to moderate, and the next stage of the recovery will be characterized by strengthening activity among owner-occupants and mortgage-dependent buyers, as well as a much more moderate pace of house price inflation. ...

the rest of the story ...


Obama’s 2014 Big Lie: Income Inequality
PA Pundits - International
January 2, 2014

As the liberal disaster called Obamacare unfolds, President Barack Obama is already embarked on his next Big Lie: income inequality. ...

the rest of the story ...


S&P/Case-Shiller: Home prices still increasing despite slight cooling off
Shiller records seventeenth consecutive monthly annual basis increase

Housing Wire
December 31, 2013

Both the 10-city and 20-city composite home price indices posted year-over-year gains of 13.6%, soaring to their highest gain since February 2006 and hitting the seventeenth consecutive month of annual increases. ...

the rest of the story ...


Top Four Housing Issues To Watch in 2014
LinkedIn
December 31, 2013

So what are some of the things we should look at to see which way the housing market will go in the next year? Here are four basic areas of focus that I will look at: ...

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Sterne Agee: Housing demand will rise in 2014 on wider credit, improving economy
Housing Wire
December 31, 2013

Homebuilder analysts at Sterne Agee are optimistic about 2014, saying wider credit availability and an overall growing economy will drive housing demand upward. ...

the rest of the story ...


Rising Flood Insurance Rates Sinking Sales in Florida
Realtor Magazine
December 31, 2013

A big hike in flood insurance rates has forced home buyers to recede from the market in some areas, drastically hampering home sales, according to reports.

"The market dried up — it died," says Shirley Davis, a home owner in St. Petersburg, Fla., who has been trying to sell her $175,000 ranch-style home. The now-nearly-$4,000 in annual premiums for flood insurance on her property has caused buyers to flee. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Climb by Most in Seven Years
Bloomberg
December 31, 2013

Home prices in 20 U.S. cities rose in October from a year ago by the most in more than seven years, signaling the real-estate rebound will keep bolstering household wealth in 2014. ...

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Does the Garage Interior Matter to Home Buyers?
The New York Times
December 31, 2013

Q. Does it matter how the interior of my garage looks when it’s time to sell?

A. Although you normally may not give it a second thought, the appearance of your garage matters when your home is on the market. ...

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Contradictory housing data makes 2014 a bit of a maze for forecasters
Housing Wire
December 31, 2013

What can we make of the seeming incongruity of indicators in the housing market as 2013 comes to a close?

Mortgage applications recently hit a 13-year low. Existing home sales fell for the third consecutive month – and for the first time on a year-over-year basis in quite some time. Pending home sales also fell for the third consecutive month. But homebuilder sentiment rose significantly, we saw an enormous spike in housing starts, and existing home prices continue to creep up, although more slowly than they rose earlier in the year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Trulia Economist Sees 2014 as 'Year of the Repeat Homebuyer'
DSNews
December 30, 2013

As prices continue rising in the new year—albeit at a slower pace—investors will begin to ease back from the purchase market, but repeat homebuyers will be there to pick up the slack, according to Trulia’s predictions for the housing market in 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


Low-End Home Prices More Useful in Predicting Big-Picture
Mortgage News Daily
December 30, 2013

In the most recent issue of CoreLogic's MarketPulse on-line magazine Sam Khater suggests that low-end home prices can be useful in predicting the future direction of all home prices. ...

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Underwater homeowners could face extra tax burden in 2014
The Washington Post
December 25, 2013

Struggling homeowners could be hit with an unexpected tax bill in the new year.

A law that spared people who owe more than their homes are worth from being saddled with extra taxes when their banks provide mortgage relief is expiring next week. Congress hasn't extended it. ...

the rest of the story ...


Incoming FHFA director's big changes
CNBC
December 23, 2013 - mel watt hasn't been sworn in yet to head the FHFA the agency that governs fannie and freddie but he's announcing big changes ...

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House prices in another bubble?
CNBC
December 23, 2013 - Market Hanson thinks we are in a housing bubble. ...

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November new home sales down 2.1%
CNBC
December 23, 2013 - Rick Santelli and Diana Olick put this month's housing number in perspective. ...

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What’s on Tap for Real Estate in 2014: Relocation
Owning the Fence
December 23, 2013

There are plenty of places where you can find predictions about the real estate market in 2014. I don’t have a crystal ball, so I don’t make predictions. But I will tell you that there are several facts that point to a trend of increasing relocation in 2014. ...

the rest of the story ...


LPS: US loan delinquency rate edges up 2.63%
HousingWire
December 23, 2013

The U.S. loan delinquency rate edged up a bit in November, but has been on the decline for most of the year, with delinquencies down more than 10% year-to-date, Lender Processing Services (LPS) said. ...

the rest of the story ...


Economist Details 2013 Housing Trends
DSnews
December 23, 2013

According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR), there were a few surprises in the housing market this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


FBR: 2014 good for housing, not so much for economic growth
HousingWire
December 23, 2013

The coming year will see the continued slow-but-steady recovery in housing and housing-related industries, minimal interest rate movements, less than stellar economic growth, and an improving purchase market. ...

the rest of the story ...


5 Reasons It's Better to Own Than Rent
The Motley Fool
December 23, 2013

I recently wrote an article that explained in detail why thinking of your home as an investment is simply faulty logic. So, by the title of this post, it may seem that I'm contradicting myself. Not so. While I don't advocate considering "investment value" when purchasing a home, there are still plenty of valid reasons to own instead of rent, ...

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Record rebound in home equity gives owners new options
Los Angeles Times
December 22, 2013

The biggest story in American real estate in 2013 hasn't gotten the attention it deserves, so let's shout this out: Homeowners' net equity holdings soared $2.2 trillion from the third quarter of 2012 to the third quarter of this year, according to new data collected by the Federal Reserve. ...

the rest of the story ...


Sales of bank-owned homes surge
CNBC Realty Check
December 20, 2013

The steep jump in home prices this year is benefiting the big banks, pushing them to sell their repossessed properties at a faster pace. ...

the rest of the story ...


How Will Housing Recovery Fare In 2014?
Yahoo! Finance
December 20, 2013

After capping the year with double-digit gains in home prices and sales, the housing market is expected to stay on the recovery path in 2014.

An economic growth spurt and brighter jobs picture will likely drive strong building demand. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage rates to rise, but not because of tapering (yet)
Realty Check
December 19, 2013

The Federal Reserve's announcement Wednesday that it would reduce its bond-buying by $10 billion a month was seen generally as a moderate start to the highly anticipated taper. As such, mortgage rates, which follow bond yields, did not rise dramatically, as some had predicted. ...

the rest of the story ...


Robust housing data point to strengthening economy
Reuters
December 18, 2013

U.S. housing starts surged to their highest level in nearly six years in November, a sign of strength in the housing market that could ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing affordability shrinking
CNBC
December 13, 2013 - Rates today are about level with where they were yesterday, despite the better than expected jobs number, and there's a reason for that. Take a look if you will. The bottom line, we knew this was coming. We got some good economic news last week, which pushed rates slightly higher and then another surge this week with the ADP jobs report, so the bond markets were in a defensive position today. ...

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Big revision to 2014 housing outlook
CNBC
December 13, 2013 - It's a big revision to the down side. Noted analyst Ivy Zelman who just last spring said we're in housing nirvana is now saying that while sales of newly built homes will rebound in 2014, they will not rebound nearly as high as she originally expected. ...

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All America Survey: Housing trends
CNBC
December 13, 2013 - We told you last hour that expectations for holiday spending are down and down quite sharply in our survey, about 9%. Then when we look inside the survey about people's expectations for key economic indicators, they're actually up pretty decently. ...

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Vital Signs: Housing Is No Longer the Piggy Bank It Used to Be
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
December 9, 2013

Home prices have been increasing for over a year, which is improving the finances of many homeowners. Fewer are underwater and according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve, net home equity—real estate holdings less mortgages outstanding) stood at 50.8% of household real estate value in the third quarter, up from 38.4% in 2009.

But as a share of net worth, housing isn't the windfall it was during the boom. ...

the rest of the story ...


Markets Approach Normalcy as Foreclosure Crisis Enters 'Ninth Inning'
DSnews
December 11, 2013

The national foreclosure crisis is reaching its end as many markets work their way toward normalcy, according to the latest U.S. Foreclosure Market Report from RealtyTrac. As major evidence of this trend, RealtyTrac reports foreclosure starts reached a 95-month low in November. ...

the rest of the story ...


Real estate: Look for value in 2014
CNNMoney
December 9, 2013

The good news for housing is that price gains next year are expected to be only about half as strong as in 2013, when sellers stayed on the sidelines. Yes, that's good news. "For a sustainable recovery you want to see more balance between buyers and sellers," says David Stiff, chief economist at CoreLogic Case-Shiller ...

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Fannie, Freddie to Raise Loan Fees
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
December 9, 2013

Mortgage-finance giants Fannie Mae will boost certain fees that they charge lenders, the latest in a series of increases that could raise home-loan borrowing costs for U.S. homeowners. ...

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Skyrocketing rents hit 'crisis' levels
CNBC Realty Check
December 9, 2013

Since the housing crisis began in 2008, approximately 4.6 million homes were lost to foreclosure, according to CoreLogic. The vast majority of those homeowners became renters. Even as housing recovered, credit tightened, pushing even more potential buyers out of homeownership and into rentals, ...

the rest of the story ...


New mortgage rules may mean less choice
CNNMOney
December 6, 2013

New rules launching early next year designed to make mortgages safer may result in less choice for borrowers.

The problem: small banks may drop out of the business because of the cost of tougher regulations. ...

the rest of the story ...


Sacramento, CA – Traffic Depressed in November, Prices Fall for First Time in Nearly Two Years
Credit Suisse
December 6, 2013

Credit Suisse released its Realtor Survey for November. Among the conclusions were that "Home prices were lower in November, as our home price index came in at 38, down from 46 in October, marking the first price decline since December 2011." ...

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Properties Reported Staying on the Market Longer in October
National Association of Realtors
December 5, 2013

Properties are staying on the market longer, based on the days on market information reported by REALTORS® in the October REALTOR® Confidence Index Survey. The median days on the market was 54 days (50 days in September), up from its lowest point of 37 days in June 2013. ...

the rest of the story ...


Freddie Mac: Rates rise amid strong jobs report
30-year, FRM hits 4.46%
HousingWire December 5, 2013

Mortgage rates climbed higher amid better-than-expected reports on private job growth and new home sales, according to the latest Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey. ...

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Nearly Half of States Within Reach of Peak Home Prices
Realtor Magazine December 4, 2013

Twenty-three states are within 10 percent of their 2006 home price peaks, CoreLogic reports in its latest Home Price Index Report reflecting October data. California remains about 21% below its peak home prices. ...

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HIGH-END FORECLOSURES UP 61 PERCENT YEAR-TO-DATE IN 2013
Realty Trac December 3, 2013

Overall U.S. foreclosure activity is down 23 percent year-to-date through October 2013, but foreclosure activity on properties in the $5 million-plus value range is up 61 percent from the same time period in 2012. ...

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Mortgage rates probably aren't going to fall
CNBC
December 3, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick says deciding when to lock in a mortgage rate is always a gamble, but at this point a drop appears unlikely. ...

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Look Sharp: Professional Listing Photos Sell For More Money
Redfin Research Center December 3, 2013

From Instagram to Pinterest to Snapchat, digital photos have become their own mode of online and mobile communication. With 92 percent of home buyers using the Internet as part of their home search, listing photos are a critical factor in the selling price of your home, how quickly it sells, and whether it sells at all. ...

the rest of the story ...


Zillow CEO: Housing grew too far, too fast
CNBC
December 3, 2013 - Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff said "We had come too far, too fast. We were seeing unsustainably high rates of appreciation, and that is moderating. We're still seeing it in some places. Las Vegas is still up 33% year over year, but nationwide, it is moderating. Nationwide, we're expecting 3% of rate of appreciation, ...

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Are Cash Sales Creating a Dangerous Mirage?
DSnews
December 2, 2013

Home prices and home sales have been rising over the past few years, pointing to a recovery in the housing market, but RealtyTrac warns that what we are seeing may not be a true recovery but instead a mirage created by investors—a dangerous mirage that could lead to trouble in the years to come. ...

the rest of the story ...


Four Macro Trends – How to Play Them
Credit Suisse
November 29, 2013

Credit Suisse global equities strategist Andrew Garthwaite lays out four macro trends investors should keep a close eye on over the next six months, as well as seven concrete investing ideas. ...

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Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates unwind last week’s progress
HousingWire
November 27, 2013

Mortgage rates climbed marginally higher heading into the holiday season, canceling out much of last week’s drop, Freddie Mac announced in its latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey. ...

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Key U.S. housing markets challenged by lack of multifamily builds
HousingWire
November 27, 2013

Apartment markets across the United States remain tight, with vacancy rates hovering at lower levels and new build activity staying relatively subdued, housing data shows. ...

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Cash investors pushing home prices
CNBC
November 26, 2013 - Shiller really pointed squarely at institutional investors as the reason behind that lack of trust in all these housing numbers. He was talking about the big jump in home prices and saying that it was really being juiced by investors and then he went on it to say that you can't trust that investors who say ...

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Robert Shiller on housing: Don't trust momentum
CNBC
November 26, 2013 - A striking surge in home prices this fall was not enough to convince one of the nation's top housing economists that the recovery is on solid ground.

"We can't trust momentum in the housing market anymore," Nobel Prize-winning economist Robert Shiller said on CNBC's "Squawk Box." ...

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The US housing market in charts: Case-Shiller and home permits
Reuters
November 26, 2013

US home prices rose 0.7% in September and are up 13.3% over the same period last year, according to new data from the S&P Case-Shiller index. The index, which measures single-family home prices in twenty metro areas, showed the highest year-over-year gain since February 2006, Reuters reports.

Reuters breaks down the gains by metro area. Las Vegas leads the way with a remarkable 29% jump over last year: ...

the rest of the story ...


Insight: A new wave of U.S. mortgage trouble threatens
Reuters
November 26, 2013

U.S. borrowers are increasingly missing payments on home equity lines of credit they took out during the housing bubble, a trend that could deal another blow to the country's biggest banks.

The loans are a problem now because an increasing number are hitting their 10-year anniversary, at which point borrowers usually must start paying down the principal on the loans as well as the interest they had been paying all along. ...

the rest of the story ...


New wave of mortgage troubles?
CNBC
November 26, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick reports a new wave of problems could be approaching the mortgage industry. U.S. borrowers are increasingly missing payments on home equity lines of credit they took out during the housing bubble, and that could be another hit for the banks. ...

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U.S. housing permits breach 1 million mark
Reuters
November 26, 2013

Permits for future U.S. home construction rose to their highest level in nearly 5-1/2 years in October, suggesting the housing market recovery remained intact despite recent signs of slowing down. ...

the rest of the story ...


Chinese buying up California housing
CNBC Realty Check
November 25, 2013 - At a brand new housing development in Irvine, Calif., some of America's largest home builders are back at work after a crippling housing crash. Lennar, Pulte, K Hovnanian, Ryland to name a few. It's a rebirth for U.S. construction, but the customers are largely Chinese. ...

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October Pending Home Sales Down Again, but Expected to Level Out
National Association of Realtors
November 25, 2013 - Although conditions were mixed across the country, pending home sales continued to move lower in October, marking the fifth consecutive monthly decline, according to the National Association of Realtors®. ...

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REALTOR® Confidence Wanes as Challenges Persist
Realtor Magazine
November 25, 2013

A survey of real estate practitioners shows a slowdown in market activity, but some practitioners view it as a “welcome brake” on the rapid home price growth that’s occurred when there’s been only modest growth in consumer incomes and jobs, according to the latest REALTORS® Confidence Index for October. ...

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Weak October Sales Have Home Builders Fretting About Spring
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
November 22, 2013

A monthly survey of builders across the U.S. by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, a housing research and advisory firm, has found that respondents’ sales of new homes declined by 8% in October from the September level and by 6% from a year earlier. ...

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With Tight Inventory, Prices Only Going Up From Here
Realtor Magazine
November 21, 2013

A low number of homes for sale is pushing home prices up to double-digit gains year-over-year, the National Association of REALTORS® reports in its latest existing-homes report.

"Low inventory is holding back sales while at the same time pushing up home prices in most of the country," says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. "More new-home construction is needed to help relieve the inventory pressure and moderate price gains." ...

the rest of the story ...


Home rental boom over?
CNBC
November 20, 2013 - Tom Flexner, Citi Group global head of real estate, weighs in on private equity's involvement with single family rental homes. ...

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Watch out! Worrisome housing signs appear in West
CNBC Realty Check
November 20, 2013 - They say all real estate is local, but the West has more recently been an indicator of what is to come for the rest of the nation. It was the first region to crash in the mid-2000's and the first to show signs of recovery toward the end of the last decade. Now the tides have turned again. ...

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Report: Big Shift in US Housing Market in 2014
World Property Channel
November 20, 2013

Next year will mark the end of the refinance boom and the start of a market dominated by purchase money lending, the first purchase-dominated market in 14 years, according to Freddie Mac. ...

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Survey: Tight Inventory Tops Winter Home Buyers’ Challenges
realtor.com
November 20, 2013

Home buyers unable to find a home earlier this year are taking to the market this winter despite the colder weather and limited inventory, according to realtor.com’s Winter Home Buyer Report. ...

the rest of the story ...


Existing home sales drop to lowest level since June
Reuters
November 20, 2013

U.S. home resales fell in October to their lowest since June due to an inventory shortage and high property prices that have dampened buying power.

The National Association of Realtors said on Wednesday that sales of previously owned homes fell 3.2 percent last month to an annual rate of 5.12 million units. Economists polled by Reuters had expected sales to drop to a 5.13 million unit pace in October. ...

the rest of the story ...


Pension Predicament
CNBC
November 19, 2013 - Senior correspondent Scott Cohn on how pension shortfalls have dealt a blow to America's cities.

While certainly not an imminent threat to our economy or the housing market, this is going to have a major impact on everyone at some point in the future. ...

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November 2013 U.S. Economic & Housing Market Outlook

Freddie Mac
November 19, 2013

As we look forward to 2014, we see reasons to be optimistic about the economy. Led by a resurgent housing sector, 2014 should shape up to be better than 2013, with consensus forecasts placing economic growth in the 2.5 to 3.0 percent range, ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Buying Season Isn't Over

realtor.com
November 19, 2013

The U.S. housing market is in a completely different position than this time last year, with solid price increases, steady inventory and strong demand continuing well into the fall season, according to realtor.com’s National Housing Trend Report for October 2013. ...

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Housing recovery' stumbling block: Weak household formation

Chicago Tribune
November 15, 2013

What happens to real estate prices if new households don't form?

Let's start at the top. In a normal year, roughly 1.1 million new households form. There are many reasons households form. Some are recent college graduates who move out on their own. Sometimes families split up, forming two households out of one. There are immigrants who move to this country who, after a period of time perhaps living with relatives, move out to their own home, sometimes ...

the rest of the story ...


Foreclosure starts fall 42%: Hope Now
Fewer loan mods, short sales recorded as market improves
HousingWire
November 15, 2013

The number of distressed borrowers receiving loan modifications and short sales declined in the third quarter as foreclosure starts continued to fall, suggesting a new equilibrium has been reached in the housing market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Midwest Farmland Values: Past Peak Season?
Regional Fed Banks Report Declining or Slowing Growth in Prices
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
November 15, 2013

A multiyear run-up in the value of farmland in the U.S. Midwest may be running out of steam.

Average cropland prices declined in parts of the Farm Belt in the third quarter from the previous quarter while rising at a low rate in other areas, according to separate reports this past week by regional Federal Reserve banks in Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City. ...

the rest of the story ...


Shopping for a home? Have your financial ducks in a row
CNBC Realty Check
November 14, 2013 - Houses may be more expensive than they were a year ago, but they are selling faster. Residences listed on real estate marketplace Zillow sold in September spent just 86 days on the site—a full 30 days faster than a year earlier. ...

Housing video









Bid Wars Wane in U.S. Housing Markets on Supply Rise
BloombergBusinessweek
November 14, 2013

Mike Imgarten witnessed a frenzy of demand and a dearth of inventory during a two-month house hunt in Sacramento, California. Fearing he would pay too much after a surge in prices, he said he took a break from searching in June.

Sales in Sacramento now are off by more than 25 percent from a year ago and, while inventory remains tight, the supply of homes on the market has almost doubled, according to Erin Stumpf, Imgarten’s real estate agent. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Depot pops on earnings
CNBC Halftime Report
November 13, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick discusses the surge in home building and Home Depot's earnings beat.

The increase is spurred in large part by increased spending on home remodeling projects. The number of home improvement projects under $10,000 is dropping while the number of projects over $10,000 is increasing. That may be because investors doing cosmetic improvements on flip houses are moving out of the market and real owner occupants are moving back in with the return of home equity and consumer confidence. ...

Housing video









Land, Homebuilders Back in Sharp Demand by Investors
CoStar Group
November 13, 2013

Investors see a lot of runway in front of homebuilders as they prepare for the takeoff of the residential markets recovery.

As home price appreciation has climbed over the last 12 months after the bottom fell out of the business in 2006 and ’07, many homebuilders have been expanding their land and lot holdings in the past year -- in some cases by as much as 50%. ...

the rest of the story ...


Three Factors That Could Shape the Fate of Housing Overhaul
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
November 12, 2013

At last month’s annual mortgage-industry trade show, most political and industry analysts agreed that there aren't great odds that Congress will pass a bill addressing the future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before 2014, let alone 2016.

But several developments unfolding right now could make the next five or six months among the more consequential periods for housing-finance policy since the companies were taken over by the government five years ago. Here are three reasons why: ...

the rest of the story ...


MBA: Mortgage lending loosens up a bit
HousingWire
November 12, 2013

Mortgage credit availability started to expand in October even though underwriting standards remained high against historic standards, the Mortgage Bankers Association concluded in its Mortgage Credit Availability Index. ...

the rest of the story ...


Health of housing in America
CNBC Realty Check
November 12, 2013 - DR Horton results were mixed right along expectations but there were some warning signs as well. Take a look. Earnings per share came in at 40 cents. Revenues up 39%. Gross margins beat and analysts like that. On orders of just 14% in dollar volume, but down 2% in actual houses sold. That's because the builder is focusing more on the move up price home, the entry level arena is very, very quiet. ...

Housing video









D.R. Horton: If Spring Sales Lag, Big Discounts on Tap
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
November 12, 2013

If you’re in the market for a newly built home and you gamble on waiting until early next year, you might benefit from aggressive discounts offered by the biggest home builders. ...

the rest of the story ...


More refinancing homeowners choose shorter loan terms
Majority still opt into fixed-rate mortgages: Freddie Mac
HousingWire
November 12, 2013

Of all the borrowers refinancing Freddie Mac-linked loans in the third quarter, 37% moved into shorter loan terms, up 5% from the previous quarter and the highest level recorded since 1992, the housing enterprise claims in a report. ...

the rest of the story ...


NAR Chief Economist Reveals 2014 Predictions
DSnews
November 11, 2013

Speaking at the 2013 Realtors Conference & Expo Friday, National Association of Realtors (NAR) chief economist Lawrence Yun predicted steadiness in existing-home sales over the next year as prices continue to ascend. ...

the rest of the story ...


Lenders Incur Visible Risk from Hidden Borrower Debt
DSnews
November 11, 2013

Over the past few years, lenders and underwriters revamped their standards to reduce risk, but Equifax says there’s one challenge many lenders still have difficulty combating—undisclosed debt. ...

the rest of the story ...


Smart housing is all about "energy harvesting"
CNBC
November 11, 2013 - Jens-Michael Janssen , project developer at Hochtief and Jurgen Klein, senior project manager at Patrizia, discuss their respective smart house projects in Hamburg, Germany. ...

Housing video









Delinquency and Foreclosure Rates Continue to Plummet
Mortgage Bankers Association
November 7, 2013

The delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties decreased to a seasonally adjusted rate of 6.41 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the third quarter of 2013, the lowest level since the second quarter of 2008. ...

the rest of the story ...


Latest Fannie Mae payment to Treasury nearly evens out
HousingWire
November 7, 2013

Fannie Mae’s third-quarter net income continued to lift higher and hit $8.7 billion, compared to $1.8 billion for the third quarter 2012, marking its seventh consecutive quarterly profit.

By December 2013, Fannie will have paid an aggregate of approximately $114 billion in dividends to Treasury. It received $116 billion from taxpayers. ...

the rest of the story ...


Report: Housing Bubble Fears May Not Be Unfounded
DSnews
November 6, 2013

Fitch Ratings Wednesday stated unabashedly a fear that has been whispered across the industry for the past several months—a looming bubble in some markets.
National home prices are 17 percent overvalued, and current levels of price appreciation in some areas of the country are unsustainable, according to Fitch. ...

the rest of the story ...


The keywords being used to sell homes
What luxury real-estate listings say about America’s changing tastes
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
November 6, 2013

They’ve got wine cellars and they aren't afraid to show 'em. Sellers who downplayed their homes’ luxury extras in the midst of the Great Recession — lest a whiff of Wall Street malfeasance offend potential buyers — are reversing that strategy, promoting their wine cellars, private elevators, and more. ...

the rest of the story ...


One in Four Home Sellers Forced to Lower their Asking Price in September
REDFIN
November 6, 2013

It’s a little early for annual look-backs, but 2013 will probably be recognized as the year of the buying frenzy... until it wasn't. ...

the rest of the story ...


Low Inventories Conceal Hidden Vacancies, Threat Looms Nonetheless
DSnews
November 6, 2013

While headlines continue to portray a housing market with rising prices and tight inventory, the Census Bureau released its Housing Vacancies and Homeownership report this week.

Government data reveal a dark cloud looming behind the bright headlines. ...

the rest of the story ...


Low Household Formation Clouds Housing Recovery
The Street
November 5, 2013

The pace of household formation is alarmingly low, casting a shadow on the housing recovery story.

According to the latest data from the Census Bureau, only 380,000 households were created over the past four quarters through September. That is far below the normal average of 1.1 million households. ...

the rest of the story ...


How Men, Women Differ on Home Buying
Realtor Magazine
November 5, 2013

Men are from Mars, women are from Venus — and that couldn't be more true when it comes to home buying. According to Prudential Real Estate's third-quarter Consumer Outlook Survey, men and women are quite different when it comes to what they value most about home ownership and the process of buying and selling. ...

the rest of the story ...


The housing stat you need to watch
CNBC Realty Check
November 5, 2013 - Home ownership is now at the lowest rate in 13 years, and it isn't moving much, despite the recovery in home prices. More disturbing, however, is the dramatic drop in household formation. ...

Housing video









Analysts Say Double-Digit Appreciation Will Come to an End by 2014
DSnews
November 5, 2013

National home prices were up 10.1 percent year-over-year in the second quarter, but price appreciation is expected to fall out of the double-digits, reaching 5.4 percent by the beginning of next year, according to the CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Indexes. ...

the rest of the story ...


Highlights From the 2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers
National Association of Realtors
November 4, 2013

For most home buyers, the purchase of real estate is one of the largest financial transactions they will make. Buyers purchase a home not only for the desire to own a home of their own, but also because of changes in jobs, family situations, and the need for a smaller or larger living area. ...

the rest of the story ...


Report: Singles and First-Timers Squeezed Out
National Association of Realtors
November 4, 2013

The latest research on home buyers from the National Association of REALTORS® shows the effects of tight mortgage lending standards on the market. The association says that these conditions are keeping qualified buyers, especially singles and first-time buyers, from reaching their dreams. ...

the rest of the story ...


What Does Fannie Mae's New LTV Threshold Accomplish?
DSnews
November 1, 2013

As of November 1, Fannie Mae is no longer purchasing loans without minimum down payments of at least 5 percent. Industry experts with the Urban Institute’s Housing Finance Policy Center argue this move is arbitrary and likely to provide little benefit to the GSE or to taxpayers. ...

the rest of the story ...


Americans Prefer to Live in Mixed-Use, Walkable Communities
National Association of Realtors
November 1, 2013
NAR 2013 Community Preference Survey:

According to the National Association of REALTORS® 2013 Community Preference Survey, 60 percent of respondents favor a neighborhood with a mix of houses, stores, and other businesses that are within walking distance, rather than neighborhoods requiring driving between home, work, and recreation. Respondents indicated that while the size of a home or yard does matter, most are willing to compromise size for a preferred neighborhood and less commuting. ...

the rest of the story ...


Recovery Watch map
CNBC Realty Check
As the national housing recovery gains steam, CNBC is going local. Use this interactive map to track the latest numbers in some of the largest housing markets across the country.

As a home owner, home buyer or multi-market investor, you are just one click away from the latest moves in sales, prices and inventory. ...

the rest of the story ...


Pending Home Sales Slide in September
National Association of Realtors
October 29, 2013 - NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun talks about the sizable decline in pending home sales in September. He explains that the market is coming to a predicted pause due to lower housing affordability, which is caused by lack of inventory and rising prices. He also discusses the PATH Act, which would remove Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from home sales transactions without creating any good alternative to their involvement. ...

Housing video









Shiller: Home prices gain, but there's no bubble
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - Yale economics professor Robert Shiller says even though home prices are going up, they're still affordable and he sees no signs of a national bubble. ...

Housing video









The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is poised to have a tremendous effect on health care costs and on our economy. To that extent, it will have a direct impact on housing affordability. The next few videos will discuss the ACA. They start with the video of October 24th and work their way forward from there.

Obamacare: Sticker shock in individual market
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - The White House today in the briefing seemed to elaborate on the President's initial promise and put in more qualifiers. Basically what we found is in the individual market, the place where people buy their own insurance policies, it's only about 14 million americans. These are the folks who have been receiving all these cancellations notices. If you look back in the Obamacare regulations, it says in there they expect that 47% to 60% of the folks in that market will not be able to qualify for grandfathering, which means they wouldn't have been able to keep their plan if they wanted to. Which as you know was a cornerstone of the President's ability to sell this policy. ... What i'm saying -- the president was trying to sell the policy. There was a lot of scare mongering. One thing he did to reassure people was to say, everyone can keep their doctor everyone can keep the insurance they have, if they like it even if it's not as good as we're offering you under Obamacare. The problem is, it's just not true. ...

Housing video









Aetna CEO on why health plans are expensive
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini lists three reasons why new health care plans created to meet Obamacare minimum standards are more expensive than some older plans. ...

Housing video









Aetna CEO: Being careful with 2014 guidance
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - The medicare rates were cut rather dramatically this year. So, we need to find a way to bridge the gap between what it will cost seniors out of pocket and what we are able to cover under the medicare advantage program. Thirdly, we have to pass through -- aetna alone will pass through to its customers over $1 Billion worth of taxes and fees associated with affordable care act that need to go into pricing. So all those things cause a very unstable market. ... So, you've got premiums going up anywhere between 30% and 100%. You have taxes and fees that you've got to pass on to the consumer. You've got no choice. So, they're going to be eating and swallowing higher expenses there. ...

Housing video









Aetna CEO: Created plans to meet minimum ACA standards
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - The only people who can keep their plan indefinitely are people who in the individual and small group market were in that market before March 23, 2010, and over that period, from March 2010 till now, did not change their plans. ...

Housing video









Obamacare fact check
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - The obvious promise made repeatedly -- if you like your plan you can keep it. Millions of Americans who purchase individual plans are finding out that is not true. They're getting cancellation letters saying those plans don't meet the new Obama care standards. Lisa Myers also reports, the White House knew for years that this promise would not be true because when the regulations were finally written, the way they were written meant that many individual policies could not be "grandfathered in" as the president promised, ...

Housing video









Health care planning for retirees
CNBC
October 29, 2013 - financial planners are having to wear two hats. CNBC's sharon Epperson is here with more on that. ...

Housing video









Big investors buy up homes in key markets
USA TODAY
October 28, 2013
Experts disagree on how much investor buyers have to do with the home price recovery. But investors remain very active in key markets as they pull back in others. ...

the rest of the story ...


Report: Housing Inventory Fell in September
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
October 24, 2013
The number of homes listed for sale dropped slightly in September but a growing number of housing markets are witnessing higher levels of for-sale inventory compared with one year ago. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage rates fall to four-month lows
HousingWire
October 24, 2013
Fixed mortgage rates spiraled down this week amid market speculation that the Federal Reserve will continue to commit to its bond buying purchases this year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Impact of Obamacare on job creation
CNBC
October 24, 2013 - Obamacare affects job Creation. Job Creation affects the economy. The economy affects the housing market. ...

Housing video









Home loans become a little easier to get
USA TODAY
October 23, 2013
More people are getting home loans with lower credit scores and smaller down payments. ...

the rest of the story ...


"Missing Households" Plague Housing Recovery
Realtor Magazine
October 23, 2013
High unemployment among young adults is prompting a big loss in household formation that is critical for long-term housing demand, according to housing experts. ...

the rest of the story ...


3 Hurdles Home Sales are Facing Right Now
Realtor Magazine
October 22, 2013
Existing-home sales are hitting a snag because of several constraints that the housing market is grappling with, according to the National Association of REALTORS®' latest housing report. NAR officials note several challenges for the housing recovery: ...

the rest of the story ...


Single-Family Rentals Still on the Rise
Realtor magazine
October 22, 2013
Single-family rental homes are on the rise in communities nationwide in the aftermath of the housing meltdown. ...

the rest of the story ...


Will the Economic Recovery Shut Down?
Freddie mac
October 22, 2013 - Freddie Mac's Deputy Chief Economist, Len Kiefer, gives a video preview of the October 2013 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook ...

Housing video









Housing recovery to slow down , but not shut down
Freddie Mac
October 22, 2013
Freddie Mac released today its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for October showing that the federal government shutdown, debt ceiling issues, and the slowing economy -- including the severely depressed level of new home construction -- are slowing the housing recovery heading into the fourth quarter of the year. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mansion Flipping
CNBC Realty Check
October 18, 2013 - House flipping which is defined loosely as buying and selling the same home within six months, is actually down overall nationwide. But on the high end, it's up 34% from a year ago according to RealtyTrac. Why? Because on the high end you're seeing high demand and high returns ...

Housing video









Home price gains slowing as market recovers
USA TODAY
October 18, 2013
Experts say slowing gains in home values are a healthy sign for the housing market's continued recovery.

Home price gains are slowing after a strong bounce off the bottom, potentially marking a new phase for the housing recovery. ...

the rest of the story ...


Apartment Demand Soars, Rents Constrained
Realtor Magazine
October 17, 2013
Apartment vacancies fell by 10 basis points in the third quarter to 4.2 percent, according to a preliminary look of the ReisReports third-quarter market report for the apartment, office, and retail sectors. Asking rents increased by 0.9 percent in the third quarter. But the high demand won't automatically mean rent increases. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Moves Toward "Healthy Equilibrium"
Realtor Magazine
October 17, 2013
The housing market is finding its center again, showing signs of greater balance, according to realtor.com’s latest National Housing Trend Report. The analysis finds ...

the rest of the story ...


Home flippers back away as real estate turnover activity declines
HousingWire
October 16, 2013
Home flipping activity dipped 13% from the same period a year ago, with 32,993 single-family home flips recorded in the third quarter of 2013, RealtyTrac reported Thursday. ...

the rest of the story ...


Federal Efforts To Help Homeowners May Be Strangling Them
Forbes
October 15, 2013
Oddly enough, recent government efforts to cut struggling homeowners some slack may in fact be hurting many more than it is helping. Specifically, it is negatively impacting those who don’t yet own a home – those first-time homebuyers who would like to attain the American Dream – that of homeownership. ...

the rest of the story ...


Builder confidence down 2 points in October
CNBC
October 16, 2013 - Home builder sentiment slipped a larger than expected 2 points in October. CNBC's Diana Olick has the details. ...

Housing video









Fast Money traders not believers in the housing market
CNBC
October 14, 2013 - Fast Money traders discuss interest rates and the health of the housing market ...

Housing video









5 Things Homebuyers Should Know, but Don't
Daily Finance
October 13, 2013
A house is the biggest asset that the majority of Americans will ever own. But while most of us delude ourselves into thinking that ...

the rest of the story ...


Home Builders Boost Incentives, Upgrades as Sales Sag
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
October 13, 2013
Home builders have boosted cash incentives and upgrades to lure buyers, as sales flag in some markets due to rising prices and higher mortgage rates. ...

the rest of the story ...


Foreclosures Lowest Since Q2 2007 as Starts Plummet to 7-Year Low
DSnews
October 10, 2013
More than 1.2 million properties remain at risk

There were a total of 376,931 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings (default notices, scheduled auctions, and bank repossessions) in the third quarter of 2013, RealtyTrac reported Thursday.

The Q3 figure represents a 7 percent decline from the previous quarter and a 29 percent decline from the third quarter of 2012—the biggest annual decrease ...

the rest of the story ...


Bay Area Real Estate Firm Lets Buyers Try Out Homes
KPIX Channel 5
October 10, 2013 - YA Bay Area real estate firm is offering a revolutionary idea for people looking for a new home. Buyers who make an accepted offer can try out the home, to get a feel of the place. John Ramos reports. ...

Housing video









Wildfire threat takes over housing in western states
HousingWire
October 10, 2013
More than 1.2 million properties remain at risk

Recent wildfires illustrate just how dangerous and costly these disasters can be when homes sit directly in their path.

Thus, it’s critical to prepare for and mitigate these home hazards early on ...

the rest of the story ...


Special Report: U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes
Reuters
October 9, 2013
Robert and Julie Davidson fell hard for the gleaming new house at the Valencia Golf and Country Club in Naples, Florida. They loved the way the palm-fringed, Spanish-style home backed up to the fifth-hole fairway. And they were taken with the ...

the rest of the story ...


Why a high-interest loan may be advantageous to a house flipper
The Washington Post
October 9, 2013
Pierce, a real estate investor in Northern Virginia, writes an occasional column chronicling his experiences buying and selling houses in the Washington region.

I’ve been known to pay 12 to 16 percent interest to finance my flips.

Many people are shocked when they hear this and they inform me ...

the rest of the story ...


California housing market poised for future growth
HousingWire
October 8, 2013
The California housing market will continue to improve in 2014, with sales expected to shift toward primary homebuyers and both sales and home prices posting further gains. ...

the rest of the story ...


"End of suburbia" may nearly be upon us: Sam Zell
CNBC
October 8, 2013 - Young people shunning the suburbs in favor of the hustle and bustle of city life are leading the charge in the "reurbanization of America," real estate mogul Sam Zell told CNBC on Tuesday.

"You're drawing all the young people in America to these 24/7 cities. The last thing they want ...

Housing video









CFPB: Student loan debt hijacks the housing recovery
HousingWire
October 8, 2013
Nothing is hurting the housing recovery in such a nuanced way as student loan debt, according to Rohit Chopra, the student loan ombudsman for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. ...

the rest of the story ...


Why Real Estate Could Be the Next Hot Investment, Even Now
Aol Real Estate
October 8, 2013
Following the lackluster August outlook for U.S. housing starts, it would be appropriate to ask why investors should consider putting their money into new home construction. U.S. housing starts rose less than expected amid a ...

the rest of the story ...


The billionaire land grab
CNBC
October 7, 2013 - Wealthy investors are buying land. CNBC's Robert Frank reports the 100 landowners in America own 33 million acres ...

Housing video









Holding up the Mortgage Market
CNBC
October 7, 2013 - The biggest issue is lenders can't get the IRS to verify tax information on mortgage applications. Last week, the big lenders said they would do it without it. They're using words like temporary and short term, ...

Housing video









Govt shutdown shuts off some expensive mortgages
CNBC Realty Check
October 7, 2013
The second week of the government shutdown is giving consumers and lenders second thoughts about the housing market. Lenders last week were giving assurances that they would use "work-arounds" for tax documentation on mortgage applications, but now the future is not quite as clear. ...

the rest of the story ...


New Index Shows Housing Markets Back to Normal in 52 Metros
National Association of Home Builders
October 7, 2013
Housing markets in 52 out of the approximately 350 metro areas nationwide have now returned to or exceeded their pre-recessionary levels of activity, according to the newly minted National Association of Home Builders/First American Leading Markets Index (LMI), released today. The index’s nationwide score of .85 indicates that, ...

the rest of the story ...


Should I Rent My House If I Can't Sell It?
Keeping Current Matters
October 7, 2013
There has been a lot written about how buying a home is less expensive than renting one in most parts of the country. Rents are skyrocketing and homes are still at great prices. These two situations are also causing some sellers to consider renting their home instead of selling it. After all, a homeowner can get great rental income now and perhaps wait until house values increase even further before selling. ...

the rest of the story ...


Wells Fargo: Housing Recovery at a 'Turning Point'
Realtor Magazine
October 4, 2013
The housing recovery is at a “turning point,” say economists at Wells Fargo Securities, but it needs more jobs and income growth in order to pick up steam.

High unemployment remains a drag on the housing recovery, severely limiting the upside for housing demand nationwide, according to the latest WFS Housing Chartbook. For the housing recovery to gain more traction, “overall employment conditions need to improve further.” ...

the rest of the story ...


Are Investors Retreating From the Market?
Realtor magazine
October 4, 2013
Investors are starting to retreat from the single-family rental market, as the number of foreclosures dries up and projections for home appreciation expected to stay flat in 2014, CNBC reports.

"I think the investor market is largely past us," Doug Lebda, chief executive of Lending Tree, told CNBC. ...

the rest of the story ...


Pitfalls of Paying Off Your Mortgage Early
ABC news
October 4, 2013
Should you pay off your mortgage? As with so many financial issues, the answer is: It depends.

A couple recently came to me for financial advice – after drastically changing their entire financial situation. They had attended a financial workshop where they became convinced that any debt is undesirable. So they paid off their mortgage early by cashing in their six-figure 401(k) accounts. ...

the rest of the story ...


Homeowners with more equity want to improve their homes
HousingWire
October 4, 2013
Homeowners are watching their home equity levels rise, but tapping into this pool of home equity to finance remodeling projects remains difficult in today's lending environment.

While the hope was rising equity could support the issuance of home equity loans by banks and potentially increase the pool of borrowers eligible for refinancing, many institutions are gun shy about investing in new products and providing home equity lines of credit. ...

the rest of the story ...


HUD Announces New Short Sale Requirements
DSnews
October 3, 2013
Effective October 1, 2013, HUD has announced the following changes to their Federal Housing Administration (FHA) short sale requirements.

The borrowers must meet the following requirements: ...

the rest of the story ...


CoreLogic: Home Prices Up 12.4% for Year
Realtor Magazine
October 2, 2013
Home prices nationwide continue to rise, but the pace of price increases is showing signs of slowing, according to the latest housing report from CoreLogic, which includes distressed sales. ...

the rest of the story ...


U.S. apartment vacancy rate falls, rents rise
Reuters
October 1, 2013
In these metro areas, small real estate investors can expect to find great home deals and double-digit returns on their investment, according to RealtyTrac. ...

the rest of the story ...


Top 10 markets to buy a rental property
CNNMoney
September 30, 2013
The pipeline of distressed properties stands at 4.465M and mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures continue to plummet across the nation, with the U.S. loan delinquency rate hitting 6.20% in August, down 10% from last year and 3.31% from a month earlier, ...

the rest of the story ...


LPS: Mortgage delinquencies down 10%
HousingWire
September 26, 2013
The pipeline of distressed properties stands at 4.465M and mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures continue to plummet across the nation, with the U.S. loan delinquency rate hitting 6.20% in August, down 10% from last year and 3.31% from a month earlier, ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgage Fraud Down, But New Schemes Arise
Realtor Magazine
September 26, 2013
Mortgage fraud dropped 5.6 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier, with about 0.8 percent of mortgage applications, or 19,700, identified as having a high risk of fraud, CoreLogic reports.

But how fraudsters cheat on applications may be changing. CoreLogic found that ...

the rest of the story ...


Trulia: U.S. Housing Market Now 67% Back To Normal
Forbes
September 26, 2013
Trulia’s Chief Economist Jed Kolko reveals that latest findings from Trulia’s Housing Barometer. The recovery is now two-thirds of the way back to normal. Existing home sales have returned to their long-term normal level, while construction lags significantly. The recovery is not a straight line: it moves through different phases. ...

the rest of the story ...


Study: $50 More Per Square Foot for Homes Near Good Schools
Realtor Magazine
September 26, 2013
Home buyers are willing to pay a premium in order to live in a top-ranked school district, a new study finds. They're forking over an average of $50 more per square foot for homes near top-notch schools, according to Redfin. The brokerage used MLS databases ...

the rest of the story ...


Fixed mortgage rates fall to a nine-week low
HousingWire
September 26, 2013
Fixed mortgage rates fell to a nine-week low this past week, following the Federal Reserve's announcement that it will maintain its bond-buying program to keep homebuyer affordability elevated.

The 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage posted its lowest level since the week ending July 25. The 30-year, FRM came in at 4.32%, down from 4.50% last week, but up from 3.40% last year, Freddie Mac said in its Primary Mortgage Market Survey. ...

the rest of the story ...


Lennar CEO: Positive on housing next 3-5 years
CNBC - Mad Money
September 24, 2013 - Ever since interest rates sky rocketed over the summer everybody's been wondering what kind of damage it would do to the home building business. We know home building stocks were hurting but was it warranted based on what's happening to the underlying companies? Today we heard from two home builders who said it is more like hitting a speed bump than crashing into a retaining wall. ...

Housing video









Loans challenge big money's leasing model for U.S. rooftop solar
Fox Business
September 24, 2013
Falling prices and growing acceptance of home solar power is sparking a challenge to major financiers who have anchored the U.S. industry using leases, as smaller banks and other lenders rush to offer homeowners loans to buy systems. ...

the rest of the story ...


Haunted housing
CNBC
September 24, 2013 - Diana Olick: 6.99% Of all home sales are newly built homes. But historically, new homes make up between 20 and 25% of all sales. You can see how low we are now. And it's not like existing home sales are off the charts either. So, we can talk about these month to month moves but really sales are pretty flat and construction is running at about half of what it should be if you look at your demographics. We talk about pent up demand in housing and make no mistake, it is there. The trouble is, builders have to make up for five years of building pretty much nothing and they're not doing it fast enough. ...

Housing video









The big housing bubble
CNBC
September 24, 2013 - Rick Santelli - I'm starting to worry more about bubble and in some cities, it's looking bubbly now. This might be the beginning of a slowdown. It could be the beginning of a bubble, but I don't know. There's really a fundamental change in the housing market. ...

Housing video









Housing Recovery Seems Still on Track
The New York Times
September 24, 2013
The housing market, one of the main drivers of the economic recovery, continues to gain strength despite the drag of rising mortgage rates and other economic headwinds, but some analysts are worried that it may slow in the months ahead. ...

the rest of the story ...


Shiller's take on housing hot spots
CNBC
September 24, 2013 - Robert Shiller, S&P Case/Shiller Index, provides his take on the state of the housing recovery and where he is finding home prices jumping the most. ...

Housing video









Are we in a housing bubble? Not even close.
HousingWire
September 23, 2013
Soft home prices equal a healthier market

While some borrowers might pull out of the housing market at the sight of the the slowdown in home prices, market experts are cautioning consumers not to slam on the housing breaks just yet. ...

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Real estate's new frontier: Crowdfunding
CNBC - Realty Check
September 23, 2013

It's worked for films, political candidates and disaster relief, so why not real estate? Crowdfunding, the act of soliciting funds from the public, most recently via the Internet, is already a powerful tool, but, until today, was difficult to do in real estate.

Developers were restricted from marketing projects to the public. Real estate finance was largely limited to high net worth investors and private equity firms. ...

the rest of the story ...


Real estate crowd funding
CNBC
September 23, 2013 - Starting today, for the first time, private companies including hedge funds and private equity, can solicit investment funds from accredited investors or those with a net worth over $1 million. That will mean ads everywhere, even right here on CNBC. And for real estate, it could open up a new wild west for crowd funding development. ...

Housing video









Public transportation affects home values
Bankrate
September 20, 2013
Location is everything in real estate, but these days location doesn't just mean a good neighborhood. If you buy a home that's near public transportation, a new study says that purchase is more valuable than similar properties without good access to subway, bus and rail lines. ...

the rest of the story ...


August home sales, prices rise
National Association of Realtors
September 20, 2013 - NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun talks about the rise in home prices, inventory, sales pace, the rise in interest rates, and what these statistics mean for the housing market. ...

Housing video









Buying A Home Still Beats Renting By 35% In America's Biggest Cities
Forbes
September 20, 2013
Despite rising home prices and mortgage rates, it’s still cheaper to buy a home than to rent one in America’s largest cities. A new report from San Francisco, California based real estate site Trulia finds that, nationally, it’s 35% less expensive to own a home. Even in notoriously pricey, renter-heavy cities like San Francisco and New York, it remains 9% and 21% cheaper, respectively. ...

the rest of the story ...


Mortgages may be getting easier to obtain as lenders adjust their credit standards
The Washington Post
September 20, 2013
Might the end of the refinancing boom be stimulating slightly more favorable mortgage terms for home buyers? The latest comprehensive study of activity in the market suggests the answer may be yes. ...

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US Back from the Brink
CNBC
September 20, 2013 - Maria Bartiromo takes a look back at the 2008 financial crisis on its 5th anniversary with former FDIC Chair Sheila Bair. Do we have enough measures in place to prevent another collapse? Bair weighs in on minimizing risk in the markets and ending too big to fail. ...

Housing video









Taking Over a Seller’s Loan
The New York Times
September 19, 2013
Homeowners with a mortgage insured by the Federal Housing Administration or the Department of Veterans Affairs should consider using their loan terms as a marketing tool when it comes time to sell.

Mortgage loans from both government agencies include a little-known feature known as assumability. ...

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US suffering from "housing hangover?"
CNBC
September 19, 2013 - Shari Olefson, CEO of The Carnegie Group, said "Mortgage rates are going to affect how much home folks can buy, not necessarily whether or not they can buy a home altogether. And the alternative to buying is renting which, for many folks, is still a less attractive alternative.

What's going to have a bigger impact are the new rules which begin next year that address mortgages, new mortgage originations, because those will determine, for many folks, whether or not they can buy at all. " ...

Housing video









Consumers prioritize mortgages over other types of debt
HousingWire
September 19, 2013
Consumers in financial distress are increasingly placing more value on paying their mortgages first, a reversal of a trend that developed during the housing meltdown. ...

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More Home Owners Show Desire to Remodel
Realtor Magazine
September 18, 2013
Home remodeling is growing, as home owners once again look to enhance their homes. Building permits for improvements to existing homes rose in July 16 percent higher than year-ago levels, according to recently released remodeling data released by BuildFax. ...

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How the Fed's decision will impact housing
CNBC
September 18, 2013 - One of the key sectors to watch after the Fed's decision is real estate. We'll get a home builders opinion. Doug Yearly is the CEO of Toll Brothers. Do you expect the Fed to taper today?

I don't know. It's not something that we focus on tremendously. Obviously the decision will move our stock one way or the other because that's how wall street trades. What I do know is that no matter what the Fed says, it can't change demographics. ...

Housing video









Hidden single-family rental markets remain profitable for investors
HousingWire
September 18, 2013
There have been a number of reports out recently indicating that institutional investors are losing interest in real estate. However, a recent report from RentRange and RealtyTrac revealed that there are still a number of single-family rental markets that investors would benefit from checking into. ...

the rest of the story ...


Lenders Revive "Lock and Shop" Programs
Realtor Magazine
September 18, 2013
Some lenders are bringing back “lock and shop” programs to help home buyers lock in mortgage rates during their house hunt so they won’t need to fear rising rates.

Premier Nationwide Lending is the latest lender to announce it will now offer a “lock and shop” program. ...

the rest of the story ...


Can the mortgage market crash again?
CNBC Realty Check
September 17, 2013
During the height of the housing boom, in 2006 and 2007, one of the fundamental tenets of home mortgage lending flew out the window: the borrower's ability to repay the loan. A broad swath of lenders simply took it out of the equation, figuring that since home prices were rising so fast, borrowers could simply sell their way out of any trouble. ...

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Redfin Predicts Volatile Housing Market
DSnews
September 17, 2013
The housing market has lost some of its momentum recently according to a new study by the Redfin Research Center. Pent-up demand and low mortgage rates contributed to a robust real estate market since the beginning of the year, but higher prices and higher rates have diminished demand in recent months. ...

the rest of the story ...


Puzzling economic data challenges the housing recovery
HousingWire
September 17, 2013
Although economic activity in the second quarter surprised analysts, with the economy growing at a 2.5% annualized rate, this momentum could be subdued by several major headwinds ahead. ...

the rest of the story ...


Housing Crash: What's different now?
CNBC
September 17, 2013 - It's hard to believe it's been five years since the financial crisis. The housing market crashing right at the height of the crisis, and five years later, the question now, of course, is whether it can happen all over again. Diana Olick has that story for us ...

Housing video









Multifamily development picks up despite falling demand
HousingWire
September 16, 2013
Over the past few years, renter household formation has outpaced owner household growth, as many young homeowners are being sidelined by unemployment and student debt. ...

the rest of the story ...


Why America Needs to Reinvent Banking, Not Add Banking Regulation
Bank Innovation
September 16, 2013
With the passage yesterday of the five-year anniversary of Lehman Brothers’s failure on Sept. 15, 2008, invariably pundits have asked whether banking is better off today. That might be the wrong question, however.

While the banking industry overall is in better shape today than it was at the height of the credit crisis, the intervening years have been particularly good for the nation’s four largest banks: Bank of America Corp., Citigroup, Wells Fargo & Co. and JP Morgan Chase & Co. These banks today own more of the banking market than ever before, and that has unsettling implications for the U.S. economy. ...

the rest of the story ...


Obama Housing Scorecard: Housing faces long journey ahead
HousingWire
September 13, 2013
The U.S. housing market is far better off when compared to recessionary levels, but even with underwater borrowers gaining equity and home prices rising all the time, the market is not back to normal, ...

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August housing starts up 0.9%; building permits down 3.8%
CNBC
September 13, 2013 - CNBC's Rick Santelli breaks down the latest numbers on housing. ...

Housing video









The Price of Real-Estate Experience: $25,000
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
September 12, 2013
Can you put a price on experience? In real estate, you can. It is about $25,000 for the average house.

Veteran agents sell homes for an average of 12% more than their less experienced counterparts, says Bennie Waller, professor of finance and real estate ...

the rest of the story ...

Mickey Sullivan







Article courtesy of Mickey Sullivan at Evergreen Home Loans. Office: (530) 821-2211


Former FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair on U.S. Banks
Bloomberg TV
September 11, 2013 - Former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair talks about the 5th anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and the prospects of avoiding another failure of the U.S. financial industry. Bair, now a senior adviser to the Pew Charitable Trusts, talks with Trish Regan and Michael McKee on Bloomberg Television's "In the Loop." ...

Housing video









CoreLogic: 2.5 million homes float back into positive territory
HousingWire
September 10, 2013
Approximately 2.5 million more residential properties returned to a state of positive equity during the second quarter of 2013, according to the CoreLogic second- quarter home equity report. ...

the rest of the story ...


Yep, it's another housing bubble
CNBC
September 10, 2013
Four months ago something troubling happened in the housing market. The home price affordability index tracked by the National Association of Realtors slipped below it's long-term trend line, marking a possible beginning of a housing bubble. ...

the rest of the story ...


Is the housing bubble back?
CNBC
September 10, 2013 - Robert Shiller and Mark Hanson weigh in on the housing market with both expressing some doubts about it's sustainability. ...

Housing video









Housing affordability index drops below the 20 year trend line
CNBC
September 10, 2013 - John Carney says that the housing affordability index dropping below the 20 year trend line is worrisome but not necessarily an omen of prices dropping any time soon. "Remember, we reached that line in, the first time, in 2004, but we didn't see peak prices until 2006." ...

Housing video









10% of Home Owners Still Underwater
Realtor Magazine
September 9, 2013
As prices rise, more home owners are regaining equity. But some metros are still facing a disproportionate number of underwater home owners, those who owe more on their home than it is currently worth.

Nationwide, 10.6 percent—or 5.3 million—of all mortgage holders remain underwater. Still, that marks a big improvement from early 2011 when a third of all mortgage holders were underwater, according to data from Lender Processing Services. ...

the rest of the story ...


How to play the home builders space: Experts
Squawk on the Street
September 9, 2013 - In an environment of rising rates and taper talks, the home builders have had a pretty nice run. following results that did miss expectations. ...

Housing video









Report: Sellers Returning as Investors Pull Out
DSnews
September 9, 2013
Market indicators continue to point to an imminent slowdown in home price gains—further allaying fears of another housing bubble in the making, Capital Economic says.

In the firm’s latest edition of US Housing Market Analyst, property economist Paul Diggle notes investor activity has fallen off nearly one-fifth over the last four months, with investor sales dropping from 23 percent to 18 percent as the inventory of heavily discounted distressed homes declines. ...

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Consumers pull back the reins on housing confidence
HousingWire
September 9, 2013
Consumer attitudes are in line with a recent lull in housing activity, suggesting homebuyer sentiment is declining as interest rates rise and fears over QE3's demise shake the entire economy.

Why is confidence down? Fannie Mae attempts to answer this question in its latest housing survey, reporting that the Fed's plans to eventually taper asset purchases and rising mortgage rates are finally taking a toll on housing. ...

the rest of the story ...


Winding down Fannie & Freddie
CNBC
September 9, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick reports that five years after the government takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two are making money hand over fist as congress tries to figure out how to dismantle them. Diana spoke to Bruce Berkowitz, a big investor in the preferred shares. here is what he had to say about their fate. fanny and freddie have accomplished their mission. they did it. mission impossible accomplished. so now it is time for them to be resuscitated, rehabilitated, let the equity build up in the companies ...

Housing video









Analysis: Waning investor demand opens door for first-time U.S. home buyers
The Courant
September 6, 2013
Wall Street's billion-dollar bargain hunt for homes in depressed markets across the United States appears to have plateaued, potentially helping to cool the steep run-up in home prices and bring first-time buyers back into the market. ...

the rest of the story ...


Latest Housing Affordability Data
National Association of Realtors
September 6, 2013
At the national level, housing affordability is down due to higher prices and steady rising mortgage rates. What is affordability like in your market? ...

the rest of the story ...


How Big-Bank Bucks Tip the Scales of Justice
LinkedIn
September 6, 2013
Justice is supposed to be blind. But when it comes to applying it to big banks, the blindness seems to involve government officials’ failure to recognize how their inaction is reinforcing the cynical view that U.S. justice applies a double standard—a tough one for the hoi polloi and a more relaxed version for financial giants, their employees and those whose prosecution could cost them serious money.

Attorney General Eric Holder admitted as much in March when he responded to a question about why no big banks have been held accountable for wrongdoing related to the financial crisis. ...

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Mortgage rates volatility
MSNBC Realty Check
September 6, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick reports years ago, a 5% mortgage rate would have been fantastic, but it might be onerous today. As early as yesterday, we were headed in that direction. Sources saying that if we got a surprise to the upside on the jobs report that we would hit or cross that 5% mark. But as we know, the jobs report was not quite as stellar as expected. so rates have moved down a bit. ...

Housing video









More than 8 million homeowners are ‘resurfacing’
inmanNEWS
September 5, 2013
Portending relief for inventory-starved housing markets in the not-so-distant future, 8.3 million homeowners, or about 18 percent of homeowners with mortgages, will gain enough equity to sell their homes in the next 15 months without resorting to short sales, according to data aggregator RealtyTrac. ...

the rest of the story ...


Home prices push past rising rates, says report
CNBC
September 3, 2013
Despite rising interest rates, home prices continue to surge higher. The latest read shows values, including distressed properties, up 12.4 percent in July, year over year, according to a monthly CoreLogic report. That's higher than both May and June's annual increases. ...

the rest of the story ...


Higher Mortgage Rates Could Revitalize Smaller Home Sales
TheMotleyFool
September 2, 2013
It's a billion-dollar question: Following a 30-year bull run in bonds and falling interest rates, can the housing market survive a rising-rate environment? ...

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Real estate tips you can't afford to ignore
Fox & Friends
September 1, 2013 - Housing help from expert Shari Olefson ...

Housing video









Would I Rather Own A Home Or $50,000 Worth Of Bonds?
Forbes
August 31, 2013
I have seen a number of articles recently about the impact of rising mortgage rates on housing prices. Since January, the average interest rate on a 30 year loan has risen dramatically , from 3.41% to 4.37% on a 30 year mortgage, according to Freddie Mac. There have been a few articles suggesting the housing market recovery will be derailed by rising interest rates, which effectively increase the cost of buying a house. However, the chart below which compares mortgage interest rates versus prices, does not support the premise that an inverse relationship exists. ...

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All Eyes are on Mortgage Rates
Realtor Magazine
August 30, 2013
Mortgage rates reversed course this week and inched lower after hitting a two-year high last week, Freddie Mac reports in its weekly mortgage market survey.

Rates have been rising since May but have bounced around in recent weeks as speculation mounts that the Fed may soon end its bond-purchasing program, which helped keep rates at or near record lows. ...

the rest of the story ...


Report: Singles Make Up Quarter of All Buyers
Realtor Magazine
August 30, 2013
More Americans are opting to live alone, with single buyers making up a quarter of all home purchases last year, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. In the U.S., there are 33 million one-person households, and living solo is becoming an international trend, MSN Real Estate reports. ...

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RECOVERY WATCH MAP
CNBC Realty Check
August 29, 2013
As the national housing recovery gains steam, CNBC is going local. Use this interactive map to track the latest numbers in some of the largest housing markets across the country.

As a home owner, home buyer or multi-market investor, you are just one click away from the latest moves in sales, prices and inventory. ...

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Home values rise, but millions still drown in debt
CNBC Realty Check
August 29, 2013
More than three million U.S. borrowers have risen above water on their mortgages so far this year, thanks to swift home price appreciation, according to a new report from online real estate company Zillow.

The negative home equity rate fell in the second quarter of this year, the fifth straight quarterly drop, but it is still alarmingly high and continues to hamper the housing recovery. ...

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Home finance write-offs drop 20%
HousingWire
August 29, 2013
It seems that homeowners are facing less debt these days. The total balance of home finance write-offs year-to-date in July 2013 is $96.3 billion, a decrease of more than 22% from same time a year ago and the lowest since 2007, a report by Equifax revealed.

"Only two major consumer credit segments are currently growing: auto financing and student loans," said Equifax ...

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Housing recovery slows
CNBC
August 28, 2013 - Let's first recap the data. Pending home sales, which are signed contracts not closings, dropped 1.3% in July, a little worse than expected. Realtors blame rising mortgage rates. Higher rates are hitting higher cost areas more dramatically. ...

Housing video







Smart Home Services To Reach $10.9 Billion in 2017
Forbes
August 28, 2013
Just 10 years ago, if someone brought up the topic of home automation, chances are they were either a nerdy tinkerer who spent their weekends installing low-cost home automation kits from X-10, or they were someone with enough money to have a highly-customized home automation system from the likes of Crestron.

But not anymore ...

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U.S. housing recovery loses a step as pending home sales fall
Reuters
August 28, 2013
Contracts to purchase previously owned U.S. homes fell for the second straight month in July, a sign that rising mortgage rates are taking the steam out of America's housing market recovery.

The National Association of Realtors said on Wednesday its Pending Homes Sales Index, based on contracts signed last month, decreased 1.3 percent to 109.5. ...

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July pending home sales down 1.3%
Squawk on the Street
August 28, 2013 - CNBC's Diana Olick reports contracts to buy existing homes fell in July, as higher interest rates hit the housing market. And David Crowe, NAHB chief economist, and Jed Kolko, Trulia chief economist, provide insight on buying versus renting ...

Housing video









Realogy CEO: Don't think housing pricing reacting to interest rates
Mad Money
August 28, 2013 - What is the new normal in housing? In the wake of the massive run in interest rates albeit, off a low basis, all the housing and housing-related stocks have been viciously hammered. Worried the increase in mortgage rates will scare people away from housing, put a big crimp in the volume of home sales ...

Realogy CEO Richard Smith discusses the impact of rising interest rates on housing prices, and how the balance of power works between the top brokers and his company.
Housing video









Home prices still surging ... for now
CNNMoney
August 27, 2013
Home prices are still surging, but the pace of the gains has steadied as interest rates continue to rise.

Prices for homes in the nation's 20 largest cities in June rose 12.1% over the last year, according to a report Tuesday from S&P/Case-Shiller home price index. ...

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U.S. home prices rise in June at marginally slower pace: S&P
Reuters
August 27, 2013
U.S. single-family home prices rose in June though the pace of gains slowed slightly, a closely watched survey showed on Tuesday.

The S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas rose 0.9 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis, just shy of economists' forecast for a 1 percent increase. Prices rose 1 percent in May. ...

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Realogy CEO: Don't think housing pricing reacting to interest rates
CNBC - Fast Money
August 27, 2013 - The Case Shiller report shows evidence of a slowing in price appreciation, with Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae; and today's trending trades on Twitter, with the "Fast Money" traders. ...

Housing video









Real estate recovery vs. the Fed
Squawk Box
August 22, 2013 - Beth Ann Bovino, Standard & Poor's, discusses how the Fed's decision on interest rates is impacting home buyers. And a look a fixing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. ...
Housing video









Median Income Rises, but Is Still 6% Below Level at Start of Recession in ’07
The New York Times
August 21, 2013
Median household income has begun to recover over the last two years, but households still have not come close to regaining the purchasing power they had before the financial crisis began, a new study says.

The study, issued on Wednesday by two former Census Bureau officials, suggests why many people remain glum even though the economy is growing and unemployment has declined. ...

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FHA Trims Waiting Period for Borrowers Who Experienced Foreclosure
DSnews
August 19, 2013
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is allowing borrowers who went through a bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed-in-lieu, or short sale to reenter the market in as little as 12 months, according to a mortgage letter released Friday.

Borrowers who experienced a foreclosure must wait at least three years before getting a chance to get approved for an FHA loan, but with the new guideline, certain borrowers who lost their home as a result of an economic hardship may be considered even earlier. ...

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U.S. consumer confidence dips; housing starts miss forecasts
Reuters
August 16, 2013
U.S. consumer confidence ebbed in August and residential construction rose less than expected last month, potentially dimming hopes of an acceleration in economic activity in the second half of the year.

The data on Friday suggested that a recent spike in interest rates, in anticipation of the Federal Reserve tapering its massive bond purchases as early as next month, was starting to have an impact on households. ...

the rest of the story ...


Return of the upsellers?
Charlotte Observer
August 15, 2013
It’s called "upselling" – steering home mortgage applicants into higher-cost terms that increase the lender’s profits – and it was rampant during the housing boom years.

It worked like this: Rather than putting borrowers into loans at the lowest rates and fees for which they were qualified, loan officers convinced them to sign up for more expensive ones. Loan officers who squeezed more profit out of their applicants got extra pay. ...

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California home sales surge
HousingWire
August 15, 2013
A growing supply of properties in California caused a surge in new and resale homes and condos sold, with sales rising to a seven-year high in July, California-based research firm DataQuick posted. ...

An estimated 48,118 new and resale homes and condos sold in July, up 17.3% from 41,027 in June and an increase of 21.8% from 39,507 sales a year earlier, the firm noted.

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Housing to Continue Aiding Weak Economic Recovery
DSnews
August 15, 2013
Despite "lackluster" performance from the economic sector, the housing recovery will press on and stimulate overall growth, according to Freddie Mac’s most recent economic and housing outlook. ...

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Growing Pains as the Economic Recovery Turns Four
Freddie Mac
August 15, 2013 - Freddie Mac's Vice President and Chief Economist, Frank Nothaft, gives a video preview of the August 2013 U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook. In it, he predicts that the housing market will continue to contribute to economic growth ...
Housing video









Inventory Crunch Over? More Homes Are For Sale
Realtor Magazine
August 14, 2013
Inventory levels are on the rise nationwide, which could soon mean the severe inventory shortages plaguing many markets the last few months may soon be nearing an end, according to the latest report from realtor.com®. As home prices rise, more sellers may be testing the market, helping to increase the options for home buyers.

Realtor.com® reported that 1.96 million homes were listed for sale in June -- the highest number since last September. ...

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Boomerang kids: Nothing wrong with living at home
CNNMoney
August 13, 2013
Remember when kids couldn't wait to move out of their parents' house? Well those days are over.

In a survey of 2,000 Americans by Coldwell Banker, young adults ages 18 through 34 said they think it's perfectly acceptable to live with their folks for up to 5 years after college. ...

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Mortgage rate spike finally hits housing
CNBC
August 9, 2013
A sharp jump in mortgage rates from May to June are now beginning to weigh on the housing recovery. The two-month delay can be attributed to several factors—first and foremost that most potential home buyers lock in mortgage rates early, and sale closings can take up to two months to be finalized. ...

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Home builders to weather rising rates?
CNBC
August 9, 2013 - Mortgage applications to buy a newly built home actually jumped 14 percent in July, reports CNBC's Diana Olick. ...
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Applications for New Home Sales Increase in July 2013
Mortgage Bankers Association
August 9, 2013
MBA’s Builder Application Survey data for July 2013 shows that mortgage applications for new home purchases increased by 14 percent relative to the previous month. This change does not include any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns.

By product type, conventional loans composed 66.5 percent of loan applications, FHA loans composed 17.7 percent, RHS/USDA loans composed 1.3 percent and VA loans composed 14.5 percent. The average loan size of new homes increased from $283,111 in June to $288,382 in July. ...

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Did You Miss Your Chance to Make a Real-Estate Killing?
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
August 9, 2013
Only a year and a half ago, none other than Warren Buffett told CNBC he would invest in "a couple hundred thousand" single-family homes if it were practical.

But in that short period, the national housing market has gone from the cheapest it has been in a quarter-century to ...

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Court Rules Borrowers Can Fight Bank's Decision to Deny Modification
DSnews
August 9, 2013
Homeowners who are denied a modification under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) even after completing a trial period plan (TPP) have legal standing to sue their lender, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled Thursday. ...

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Commentary: Solving the Wrong Problem
DSnews
August 9, 2013
President Obama is trying to solve the wrong problem by calling, as he did in his speech in Phoenix, for the end of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as we know it.

The fact is ... Fannie and Freddie did not buy and securitize the worst of the junk mortgages generated ahead of the housing collapse. That honor goes to Citigroup, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers and other private investment banks, which eagerly swallowed the worst of mortgages that Countrywide, Ameriquest, and Washington Mutual foisted on would-be homebuyers. ...

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Mortgage Delinquencies, Foreclosures Continue to Drop
Mortgage Bankers Association
August 8, 2013
The delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties decreased to a seasonally adjusted rate of 6.96 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the second quarter of 2013, the lowest level since mid-2008. ...

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Improving Housing Market List Drops 11 Metros
Realtor Magazine
August 7, 2013
A housing index that tracks improving housing markets showed signs of cooling this month, following consistent climbs in recent months. The National Association of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index for August had 247 metros across 49 states and the District of Columbia reflected -- adding three newcomers but dropping 11 cities from its list. ...

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Buying a home is not for everyone: HUD Secretary
CNBC
August 6, 2013 - The dream of owning a home won't be possible for all Americans, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan said on Tuesday.

"Not everybody is going to be able to get a mortgage or buy a home. We need to recognize that as a country," he said on "Squawk Box," ahead of President Barack Obama's speech on housing finance reform in Phoenix. ...



Housing video








Is mortgage credit loosening?
CNBC
August 5, 2013 - A new study today finds as rates are rising people with lower credit scores are getting more loans. As mortgage rates rise, credit availability is easing and that is no coincidence. Mortgage lenders have seen a huge drop in applications and that means they have to be more aggressive about finding new business. ...



Housing video








Higher mortgage rates may mean easier credit
CNBC
August 5, 2013
As mortgage rates rise and refinancings fall dramatically, banks are in search of new business. That, in turn, has them easing lending standards for some borrowers, according to a new monthly survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association. Credit availability rose 2 percent in July and is up 3 percent from May, when interest rates began their climb, according to the MBA index. ...

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Rapid home price gains will slow
CNNMoney
August 1, 2013
Home prices have been seeing rapid gains in recent months, but don't expect that to continue.

While double digit gains have been common, home appreciation is projected to drop to 6.5% during the 12 months ending March 31, 2014, according to a report released Thursday. ...

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Real estate ‘bubble in the making’: Pro
CNBC Fast Money
July 30, 2013
The real estate market might be heading into troubled territory, Dani Babb of The Babb Group said Thursday.

"I think we have another bubble in the making," ...

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Single-Family Rental Firm's IPO to Test Market
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
July 30, 2013
Wall Street's latest foray into residential real estate—the business of buying foreclosed homes, renovating them and renting them out—will face a big test this week as bankers prepare to bring public the nation's second-largest single-family rental landlord. ...

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Investors Now a Concern
LinkedIn
July 29, 2013
During the downturn and early stages of recovery, we were huge proponents of investors taking advantage of over-corrected home prices to make great investments while also helping the housing market recover. Mission accomplished.

We are now concerned that investor momentum has swung too far in the other direction. ...

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Oh, REO! A Real Estate Rebound Story
American Banker
July 29, 2013
In January 2012, Carrington Holding Co. was so bullish on buying and renting out foreclosed single-family homes that it obtained $450 million in financing to fund a buying spree of vacant real-estate owned (REO) properties from banks and mortgage servicers. But less than 18 months later, ...

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More Renters Say They Want to Own, Survey Finds
Realtor Magazine
July 26, 2013
The majority of renters say home ownership is one of their highest priorities for their future, and more renters are saying they want to buy soon, according to the 2013 National Housing Pulse Survey, conducted by the National Association of REALTORS®. Renters are showing stronger desires for home ownership compared to recent years, according to the survey. ...

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More Home Owners are Calling Remodelers
Realtor Magazine
July 26, 2013
As home prices rise, remodelers are feeling optimistic about the home improvement market, the National Association of Home Builders reports.

The second quarter Remodeling Market Index (RMI) rose six points to 55. An RMI above 50 indicates that more remodelers are reporting higher market activity, according to NAHB. ...

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Borrowers in Obama housing program re-defaulting, watchdog says
CNNMoney
July 24, 2013
Borrowers who received help through the government's main foreclosure prevention program are re-defaulting on their mortgages at alarming rates, a federal watchdog said in a report released Wednesday. ...

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FHFA House Price Index Up 0.7 Percent in May
Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)
July 23, 2013
– U.S. house price appreciation continued in May 2013, rising 0.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the previous month, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) monthly House Price Index (HPI). ...

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June existing home sales miss
CNBC
July 22, 2013

existing home sales are down 1.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.08 million units in june. this is a miss. the expectations was for an increase of 1.2% to 5.26 million. we had a downward revision in may. the median existing home price, $214,200. that's up 13.5% from a year ago, but not all homes are up that much form the difference is the mix of home, homes on the lower end selling much less. sales of homes priced over half a million were up over 25%. why? distressed sales are at the lowest point now since the realtors began tracking them at the end of 2008, so distressed sales now making up just 15% of all home sales. ...

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Investors are moving out of housing. Here's why
CNBC - Realty Check
July 22, 2013
They swarmed the distressed housing market, buying thousands of foreclosed properties and pushing prices higher faster than anyone expected. Now investors are pulling back, dissuaded by the higher prices they themselves brought about. ...

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Why there’s no housing bubble...yet
MarketWatch
July 22, 2013
As home prices rise, so are concerns that a new housing-market bubble may be appearing, particularly in cities with double-digit annual growth rates.

Are there red flags in recent data? ...

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'Government Intervention' Drives Down Distressed Sales in California
DSnews
July 19, 2013
Distressed property sales have declined drastically in California over the last year, according to a recent report from PropertyRadar.

Government intervention is the main driving force behind the declines in distressed property sales, according to the report authored by Madeline Schnapp, ...

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Routes to a lower down payment
Charlotte Observer
July 18, 2013
It’s a crucial question for many first-time and moderate-income buyers in rebounding markets across the country: Where do we find the lowest down payment, lowest monthly cost loans? The answers are changing. ...

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Home builders resume land development in Sacramento region
The Sacramento Bee
July 18, 2013
Big yellow earthmovers with tires taller than a man rumbled across the parched grassland of west Roseville this week, readying the ground for a bumper crop of hundreds of new homes. ...

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10 Cities With the Highest Home Price Increases - Sacramento is #7
Wall Street Cheat Sheet
July 16, 2013
Housing prices have continually made headlines so far this year, as prices trend upwards and mortgage rates follow suit. While this has created speculation of a bubble, investors have been making money regardless, with San Francisco, Phoenix, and other cities experiencing over 30 percent increases in value over the last year. ...

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Big Home Builders Gobble Up Rivals Starved for Cash
The Wall Street Journal
July 15, 2013
The nation's biggest publicly traded home builders are on a buying spree, snapping up small privately held companies who made it through the housing slump but now are struggling to find financing.

Big builders are seeing their profits healthy and their homes selling at higher prices. For their smaller, privately owned competitors, times remain tough. ...

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CNBC's Delivering Alpha interview with John Paulson
CNBC
July 17, 2013 - At 6:00 minutes into the interview, the discussion turns to housing.

Carl Quintanilla: As someone who saw the cracks in U.S. real estate and mortgages, what's your view now?

John Paulson: We took a long-term view. Even in '06 and '07 when we looked at the housing market. We looked at housing trends over a 30-year and 50-year period and what we noticed is that housing is a cyclical area. There's periods of time when it goes up and periods of time when it goes down. Similar to the bible, seven years of feast, seven years of famine. We thought we were at a peak in 2006, and that's why we went short the housing market, and now we believe the housing market has bottomed so we wanted to go long real estate opportunities. The housing market is starting to recover, I think the latest data, it's up 12% in a year over year basis, and I think we're just at the beginning of the recovery. I would expect this recovery to continue for at least the next four, possibly seven years, so it's not too late to get involved. I still feel buying a home is the best investment any individual could make. Affordability is still at an all-time high. ...

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John Paulson, Who Killed It Shorting Subprime Housing, Says Owning A Home Now Is The 'Best Investment' An Individual Can Make
Business Insider
July 17, 2013
Closely-followed hedge fund manager John Paulson made a rare appearance to give the keynote lunchtime address at the CNBC/Institutional Investor conference.

This is Paulson's first TV appearance. He rarely does interviews. ...

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More homes coming to market
msn REAL ESTATE
July 12, 2013
Bidding wars aren't over, but the number of homes listed for sale is increasing, by quite a bit in some of the tightest markets.

According to the latest National Housing Trend Report by Realtor.com, the number of homes listed for sale grew 4.26% from May to June, with a total of 1.93 million listed for sale nationwide. ...

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Will China’s Slowdown Drag Us Down? Maybe Not
LinkedIn
July 12, 2013
There is a lot of concern these days that any economic slowdown in China could have an adverse effect on the already struggling global economy.

The world’s second largest economy is rightfully being used as an indicator of global economic health and demand. Currently, it looks as though its health is deteriorating. Exports from the Chinese economy to the global economy plunged 3.1% in June, with exports to the U.S. falling 5.4% and those to the Euro zone dropping 8.3%. ...

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Foreclosure mitigation programs continue to aid borrowers: Obama Scorecard
Housingwire
July 12, 2013
The Obama Administration’s foreclosure mitigation programs continue to benefit millions of homeowners as the housing market recovers.

With that being said, the government remains cautious about issues in mortgage servicing. Even though delinquencies are trending down, they remain high when compared to historic levels, the report noted. ...

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Hot Real Estate Market Causes Unexpected Glitch For Buyers, Sellers
CBS Boston
July 11, 2013
The real estate market in the Boston area has been crazy lately and that’s adding up to trouble for both buyers and sellers. ...

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Fed researcher: Underwater homes are not holding job seekers back
Housingwire
July 11, 2013
Researchers with the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland say underwater homeowners are no less likely to move for a new job than those with more equity in their properties.

In fact, underwater homeowners are more likely as a group to move away — losing money on their homes — when a job opportunity surfaces. ...

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We’re Not Done Buying Real Estate, Blackstone Says
CNBC
July 9, 2013
A lack of supply of new homes in the United States, combined with better fundamentals, has created an opportunistic environment for real estate investors, said Jonathan Gray, Blackstone's global head of real estate.

When asked if Blackstone, the largest owner of single-family homes in the U.S., is done buying them, Gray answered, "Not yet. ...

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Why home builders aren't rushing to meet demand
Phoenix Business Journal
July 9, 2013
The unwavering shortage of homes for sale across metro Phoenix may trigger a throbbing migraine for Realtors and their buyers, but there’s one group you won’t hear any complaints from: home builders. ...

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Mortgage Lending Standards Loosen Slightly in June
Mortgage Bankers Association
July 9, 2013
Mortgage lending standards loosened slightly in June, indicating that mortgage credit is more available, according to the Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI), a report from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) which analyzes data ...

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Chinese buyers flood U.S. housing market
CNNMoney
July 8, 2013
Chinese buyers accounted for 18% of the $68.2 billion that foreigners spent on homes during the 12 months ended March 31, according to the National Association of Realtors.

At a median price of $425,000, the Chinese are also buying more expensive homes than other foreign buyers, who spent a median of nearly $276,000 on U.S. homes. And nearly 70% of those pricey Chinese deals were made in all cash. ...

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Why Home-Price Gains Will Slow Amid Higher Mortgage Rates
The Wall Street Journal
July 8, 2013
Home prices moved up at a torrid pace during the first half of the year, but don’t expect them to keep pace during the second half. ...

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Another pitfall of student debt
Charlotte Observer
July 5, 2013
They’re not yet an endangered species, but their steadily diminishing presence has some real estate analysts worried: First-time buyers are missing in action in housing markets across the country. ...

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Report: Recent Price Gains Bound to Slow
DSnews
July 5, 2013
Low inventories driven by reluctant sellers, high levels of underwater homeowners, and meager rates of new construction have all played a role in driving home prices upward of late, Radar Logic explains in its RPX Monthly Housing Market Report for April. ...

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Home Price Surge Will Accelerate Next Month - CoreLogic
Mortgage News Daily
July 2, 2013
There is a remarkable degree of agreement among prevalent purveyors of Home Price Indices that prices this spring have risen higher and faster than in any period since early 2006. Joining the chorus today, ...

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Thousands of borrowers to get mortgage payments reduced
CNNMoney
July 1, 2013
Starting this week, hundreds of thousands of struggling borrowers could be in for a pleasant surprise: a quick and easy way to get their mortgage payments back on track -- and save considerable money. ...

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