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How is California’s Housing Market Doing?

April 20, 2017

Consider me your #1 resource for all things Real Estate! Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more. Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

 

 

 

 

 

San Diego 8th Hottest Market in March

April 13, 2017

 

Post by:  North San Diego County Association of REALTORS®

Spring has barely sprung, but it appears we’re already in the thick of a frenzied spring home buying season. Depending on who you’re listening to, San Diego County’s housing market seems to be off to a blooming start. Industry sources confirm the market is growing and getting stronger. Low inventory continues to be a significant problem, as well as high prices are keeping waves of buyers at bay. However, thanks to uncommonly low interest rates, mortgage payments have remained pretty reasonable even in the face of increasing purchase prices.

Among the latest housing market headlines:

— According to the University of San Diego Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate, the local economy is picking up steam and is expected to do better than what had previously been expected. The Center’s Index of Leading Economic Indicators is now forecasting employment growth at 30,000 new jobs in 2017, compared with a previous forecast of 25,000 jobs announced at the end of 2016. Analysts say the economy is growing because of improved local labor conditions, rising prices of local stocks and stronger measures of U.S. consumer confidence due to President Trump’s business-friendly policies.

— According to http://www.Realtor.com, the National Association of REALTORS® official website, San Diego was the 8th “hottest” real estate market in March with the typical home taking just 38 days to sell. California led the United States with six of the top 10 real estate markets. Nationwide a home is typically on the market for 69 days, eight days less than this time last year. It’s much less in California, however, with homes in booming Silicon Valley homes typically selling after just 25 days.

— According to the latest housing market report from the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.), the median number of days it took to sell a single-family home dropped from 37.4 days in January to 33.4 days in February and was down from 41.5 days in February 2016.

— According to CoreLogic, an Irvine-based real estate data and analytics information service, the median sales price of a home in San Diego County jumped by 8.1 percent in February, compared with the same month a year earlier, while the number of homes sold fell by 1.6 percent. The median price of a San Diego County home was $492,000 in February, up from $455,000 in February 2016. In Southern California, the median price of a home was $460,000 in February, up 1.1 percent from the month before and up 7 percent from the same period last year.

— Also according to C.A.R., existing single-family home sales totaled 400,500 in February on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, down 4.7 percent from January and up 4.9 percent from February 2016. February’s statewide median home price was $478,790, down 2.2 percent from January and up 7.6 percent from February 2016.

Also, closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California remained above the 400,000 benchmark for the 11th consecutive month and totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 400,500 units in February, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. The statewide sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2017 if sales maintained the February pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.

Finally, C.A.R. said the share of homes selling above asking price dipped from 31 percent a year ago to 30 percent in February. Conversely, the share of properties selling below asking price increased to 37 percent from 35 percent in February 2016. The remaining 34 percent sold at asking price, down from 35 percent in February 2016. The homes that sold above asking price, the premium paid over asking price edged up to 12 percent, up from 11 percent a year ago.

“While it’s encouraging to kick off the year with back-to-back yearly sales increases, moving forward, California’s housing market could lose steam in the long term as the Fed begins to adjust the federal funds rate,” said C.A.R. President Geoff McIntosh. “In the short term, however, the specter of higher interest rates may push buyers off the fence to purchase a home before mortgage rates move even higher.”

Consider me your #1 resource for all things Real Estate! Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more. Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

Real Estate on Opening Day

April 6, 2017

Consider me your #1 resource for all things Real Estate! Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more. Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

 

Borrowing Against 401(k) to Purchase a Home: Financial “Do”, or “Don’t”?

March 30, 2017

 

 

 

Many first time homebuyers are ready to take on the expense and responsibility of homeownership but lack the significant down payment that is generally required as part of a mortgage loan, or that is required in order to avoid the additional purchase of private mortgage insurance (or, PMI). While many prospective homeowners may not have a lot of cash in liquid savings, they do have alternate investment resources which inevitably leads down the train of thought in which the wonder, “what about tapping into our 401(k) or other retirement savings to use as a down payment and closing costs?” If this situation sounds all too familiar, and you are many years from your expected retirement age, ask yourself this question: Does it make sense financially to either withdraw, or borrow money from your 401(k) to help fund your home purchase?

Can you either withdraw or borrow money from a 401(k) account before you reach retirement age?

Yes; there are no laws or rules that prevent individuals from withdrawing money from their retirement accounts before they reach retirement age. That said, there may be some tax penalties associated with early withdrawals from retirement accounts that you’ll want to take into consideration before taking any money out of your retirement funds. 401(k) generally allow for the owner of the account to borrow money from the retirement account for the purchase of a home. These withdrawals are not subject to a tax penalty, but they are in the form of a loan, which must be repaid to your retirement account.

Things to consider before borrowing money from your 401(k)

Borrowing money from your 401(k) to purchase a home is often a pretty quick and pretty easy process; but does it make sense for you to tap into your retirement savings to purchase a home? In order to determine what makes the best financial sense for you and your family, you’ll want to weigh the pros and cons to borrowing money from a 401(k) to fund your home purchase.

— You will have to pay back the money you borrow. When you borrow from a 401(k) to purchase a home, you generally will have several years to repay the amount borrowed. You’ll want to make sure that you can swing this extra monthly payment in addition to your new mortgage. Additionally, if you leave your employer (the company sponsoring your 401(k)) before you repay your loan, you may have to repay the entire balance of the loan within just 60 days or be subject to a tax penalty. If you plan on changing careers and employers in the near future, this is definitely something you’ll want to keep in mind.

—You may impact your future retirement savings. If you are able to quickly repay the amount borrowed from your 401(k), you may not impact your savings significantly over the long term. But, any money you withdraw from your 401(k) won’t be growing towards your retirement savings.
Finally, if you are borrowing money from your 401(k) in order to avoid paying for private mortgage insurance or PMI, you’ll want to calculate what your monthly PMI payment would be and whether it makes more sense to just pay that until you reach the needed equity in your home to request PMI removal.

Article by: MDC Financial Service Group

 

Are you considering buying a home? I can meet with you and guide you through the process. Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

 

 

Inventory Balance

March 23, 2017

 

Questions:

  1. What exactly is “housing inventory” and how is it calculated?

  2. How do you know if it is a Buyer’s market, Seller’s market or neutral market?

When deciding to sell or buy a home it is important to discuss the marketplace with your Realtor to understand the current climate.

Currently the inventory in San Diego County is currently less than two months making it a Seller’s market HOWEVER, interest rates are still historically low giving Buyers good reason to purchase.

How to Compute Months of Inventory

  1. Find the total number of active listings on the market last month.
  2. Find the total number of sold transactions for the last month.
  3. Active listings divided by the number of sales = the number of months of inventory remaining.

Buyer’s Real Estate Markets

In these markets there are more homes available for sale (higher inventory) than buyers to purchase them.

In Buyer’s markets serious sellers are often more willing to negotiate. This means you may be able to buy a home for less than list price, and the seller might be willing to pay some of your closing costs and make more repairs.

Signs of a Buyer’s Market

  • More than six months of inventory is on the market.
  • Prices are reduced before going into escrow.
  • Sale prices are lower than listing prices.
  • Fewer buyers are purchasing, resulting in lower closed sale numbers.
  • Median sales prices are declining.
  • Days on the market are longer.

Seller’s Real Estate Markets

In these markets there are more buyers than available houses to buy.

In Seller’s markets serious buyers are often willing to pay more than list price, tighten or and/or waive contingencies. Properties usually receive multiple offers and don’t stay on the market very long.

Signs of a Seller’s Market

  • Less than six months of inventory is on the market.
  • Prices are not reduced before going into escrow.
  • Sale prices are higher than listing prices.
  • More buyers are purchasing, resulting in higher closed sale numbers.
  • Median sales prices are increasing.
  • Days on the market are shorter.

 

Neutral Real Estate Markets

These markets are balanced. Typically, interest rates are affordable and the number of buyers and sellers in the marketplace are equalized. The scales don’t tip in either direction.

Signs of a Neutral Market

  • Three to six months of inventory is on the market.
  • Sale prices are close to listing prices.
  • Sales numbers have stabilized.
  • Median sales prices are flattened.
  • Days on the market are 30-60 days.

Please contact me to discuss the current climate and how you can best use it to your advantage! Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 
 

 

Market @ A Glance: March 2017 Edition

March 15, 2017

Local Market Update - San Diego County - Real Estate
Here is the latest scoop on the local and state housing markets. For specific information on your neighborhood or a market analysis on your home please  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

 

 

 

 

What Lies Ahead in Real Estate in 2017?

March 15, 2017

 

 

 

What lies ahead in real estate in 2017?

Many clients have asked me what they should expect in the coming year(s). Real estate is a critical sector of the economy that affects buyers, sellers, renters, landlords and homeowners and there is always some uncertainty that occurs whenever a new administration comes into office.  Whether there will be a significant change to regulations and tax reform, and how those changes may effect the market, remains to be seen.

The hope is that there will be a stable real estate framework in which buyers and bellers can best operate. Most analysts nationally and locally are in agreement that despite the rumblings of the current administration, 2017 should remain a strong year for real estate and both buyers and sellers will find opportunities to fulfill their needs.

Here are some topics to keep an eye on:

Recovering Sales

Home sales in California are expected to increase 1.4 % up slightly from 2016 according to the California Association of Realtors (CAR).  In some regions, such as San Diego, factors such as low inventory and high demand and increases in interest rates may have a greater impact on sales.

Understanding Demographics

Millennials are expected to have a great impact on the market this year according to Realtor.com.  A little more than half of potential buyers are expected to be first-timers, with more than 60% of them being under 35 years old.

Construction Market

Although the health of the U.S. construction market is good we are still under historical norms.  Builders are constructing fewer homes in the lower priced categories where demand is strong and companies are facing higher land and permit costs along with regulatory restrictions.

Interest Rates

After years of super historically low rates we will likely see some increases on the horizon as the Fed makes adjustments and inflation fluctuates.  Still, for 2017 we should still be in the historically low category as seen by this rate chart showing 2000-2016 rates. For the first few months of 2017 rates have been in the low 4%.

 

 

Consider me your #1 resource for all things Real Estate! Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117. 

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