Nationally: Contract Signings Post First Gains Since June

Nationally: Contract Signings Post First Gains Since June
National Association of REALTORS® | December 27, 2017

Pending home sales eked out a small increase in November on both a monthly and annualized basis. The increase was enough to make it the highest gain in contract signings since June as well, the National Association of REALTORS® reported Wednesday.

But will it last? Existing-home sales and price growth are expected to slow heading in 2018 due to the impact from altered tax benefits of homeownership affecting some high-cost areas, according to NAR.

NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index—a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings—inched up 0.2 percent month over month. NAR’s index reached a reading of 109.5 in November and is at its highest reading since June (110). The index is 0.8 percent higher than a year ago.

“The housing market is closing the year on a stronger note than earlier this summer, backed by solid job creation and an economy that has kicked into a higher gear,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “However, new buyers coming into the market are finding out quickly that their options are limited and competition is robust. REALTORS® say many would-be buyers from earlier this year, stifled by tight supply and higher prices, are still trying to buy a home.”

Existing-home sales are up 5.8 percent—more than double wage growth. Inventories remain tight at a 3.4-month supply of homes on the market, which is the lowest since NAR began tracking in 1999.

“The strengthening economy, and expectation that more millennials will want to buy, serve as promising signs for solid homebuying demand next year, while also putting additional pressure on inventory levels and affordability,” Yun says. “Sales do have room for growth in most areas, but nationally, overall activity could be slightly negative. Markets with high home prices and property taxes will likely feel some impact from the reduced tax benefits of owning a home.”

Yun forecasts that existing-home sales will finish 2017 at around 5.54 million, which is an increase of 1.7 percent from 2016 (5.45 million). The national median existing-home price for 2017 is expected to increase to around 6 percent.

Yun projects that in 2018, existing-home sales will see little change, declining just 0.4 percent to 5.52 million. He also forecasts that price growth will moderate to around 2 percent.

November PHS Infographic

Source: National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 122717

NAR: Homes Selling Faster Than Ever

NAR: Homes Selling Faster Than Ever
National Association of REALTORS®   article by Daily Real Estate News | December 22, 2017

The time homes spent on the market hit an all-time low in 2017 at just three weeks, the National Association of REALTORS® reports. A low inventory of homes for sale mixed with strong buyer demand has helped to keep market times low from 2014 to 2017.

During the height of the housing boom from 2001 to 2005, homes sold within a month of being listed. But as the housing market began to slow in 2006, the median time jumped to six weeks, and then to 10 weeks by 2009.

Tight inventories and a lack of construction of homes has helped to keep homes selling faster in recent years, NAR notes.

NARgraphic

Source: “Drop in Time on Market to Sell a Home,” National Association of REALTORS® Economists’ Outlook blog (Dec. 21, 2017); REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 122217

Nationally: Existing-Home Sales Gains Strongest in Decade

Nationally: Existing-Home Sales Gains Strongest in Decade
National Association of REALTORS®   article by Daily Real Estate News | December 20, 2017

For the third consecutive month, existing-home sales were on the rise, with all major regions of the country except the West posting a “significant hike in sales activity” last month, the National Association of REALTORS® reported Wednesday.

dec16_DN_EHSInfographicTotal existing-home sales—which includes completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops—increased 5.6 percent in November to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.81 million. Sales are now 3.8 percent higher than a year ago and are at the strongest pace since December 2006.

“Faster economic growth in recent quarters, the booming stock market, and continuous job gains are fueling substantial demand for buying a home as 2017 comes to an end,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “As evidenced by a subdued level of first-time buyers and increased share of cash buyers, move-up buyers with considerable down payments and those with cash made up a bulk of sales activity last month. The odds of closing on a home are much better at the upper end of the market, where inventory conditions continue to be markedly better.”

Here’s a closer look at November’s numbers:

Home prices: The median existing-home price for all housing types in November was $248,000, increasing 5.8 percent from a year ago.

Supply: Total housing inventory at the end of November dropped 7.2 percent to 1.67 million existing homes available for sale. Inventories are now 9.7 percent lower than a year ago. Unsold inventory is at a 3.4-month supply at the current sales pace. “The anticipated rise in mortgage rates next year could further cut into affordability if these staggeringly low supply levels persist,” Yun says. “Price appreciation is too fast in a lot of markets right now. The increase in home builder optimism must translate to significantly more new construction in 2018 to help ease these acute inventory shortages.”

Cash purchases: All-cash sales comprised 22 percent of transactions in November, up from 21 percent a year ago. That makes up the highest share of all-cash sales since May. Individual investors are the biggest source of cash sales. They purchased 14 percent of homes in November, unchanged from a year ago. “The elevated presence of investors paying in cash continues to add a layer of frustration to the supply and affordability headwinds aspiring first-time buyers are experiencing,” Yun says. “The healthy labor market and higher wage gains are expected to further strengthen buyer demand from young adults next year. Their prospects for becoming homeowners will only improve if more lower-priced and smaller-sized homes come onto the market.”

First-time home buyers: This group accounted for 29 percent of sales in November, down from 32 percent a year ago.

Days on market: Properties remained on the market for an average of 40 days in November, down from 43 days a year ago. Forty-four percent of homes sold in November were on the market for less than a month.

Distressed properties: Foreclosures and short sales made up 4 percent of sales, down from 6 percent a year ago. Broken out, 3 percent of sales in November were foreclosures while 1 percent were short sales.

Source: National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 122017

Nationally: Home Sales Are Rising Despite Supply Woes

Nationally: Home Sales Are Rising Despite Supply Woes
National Association of REALTORS® article by Daily Real Estate News | November 21, 2017

October EHS InfographicExisting-home sales in October rose to the strongest pace since earlier this summer, the National Association of REALTORS® reported Tuesday.

Total existing-home sales—which comprise completed transactions of single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops—rose 2 percent month over month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.48 million. Sales are now at the strongest pace since June’s 5.51 million.

However, sales remain 0.9 percent below a year ago, NAR reports. Continual supply shortages have led to fewer closings on an annual basis for the second consecutive month.

“Job growth in most of the country continues to carry on at a robust level and is starting to slowly push up wages, which is in turn giving households added assurance that now is a good time to buy a home,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “While the housing market gained a little more momentum last month, sales are still below year-ago levels because low inventory is limiting choices for prospective buyers and keeping price growth elevated.”

Lower sales are still evident in parts of Texas and Florida from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Yun notes. He predicts that sales will rebound to their pre-storm levels by the end of the year “as demand for buying in these areas was very strong before the storms.”

October Snapshot

Here’s a closer look at existing-home sales in October, according to NAR’s report:

Home prices: The median existing-home price for all housing types in October was $247,000, up 5.5 percent from a year ago.

Inventory: Total housing inventory at the end of October dropped 3.2 percent to 1.80 million existing homes available for sale. Inventory is now 10.4 percent lower than a year ago. Unsold inventory is at a 3.9-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 4.4 months a year ago.

All-cash sales: All-cash transactions comprised 20 percent of sales in October, down from 22 percent a year ago. Individual investors make up the biggest bulk of cash sales. They accounted for 13 percent of sales in October, unchanged from a year ago.

Distressed sales: Foreclosures and short sales accounted for 4 percent of sales in October, down from 5 percent a year ago. Broken out, foreclosures comprised 3 percent of sales and short sales made up 1 percent.

Days on the market: Forty-seven percent of homes sold in October were on the market for less than a month. Properties, on average, stayed on the market for 34 days in October, down from 41 days a year ago.

“Listings—especially those in the affordable price range—continue to go under contract typically a week faster than a year ago, and even quicker in many areas where healthy job markets are driving sustained demand for buying,” Yun says. “With the seasonal decline in inventory beginning to occur in most markets, prospective buyers will likely continue to see competitive conditions through the winter.”

Source: National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 112117


Kenneth Bargers, REALTOR® License 318311 ♦ Pilkerton Realtors License 257352
(615) 512-9836 cellular ♦ (615) 371-2474 office
kb@bargers-solutions.com emailkb@kennethbargers.realtor email
www.bargers-solutions..com webkennethbargers.com blog
2 Cadillac Drive, Brentwood, Tennessee 37027 address

Nationally: Meager Sales Rebound Underscores Tough Market

Nationally: Meager Sales Rebound Underscores Tough Market
National Association of REALTORS® article by Daily Real Estate News | October 20, 2017

House 1028Following three consecutive months of declines, existing-home sales ticked up in September from the previous month—but ongoing inventory shortages, coupled with recent hurricanes, muted any annual gains, the National Association of REALTORS® reported Friday.

Total existing-home sales, which include single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops, increased 0.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.39 million in September, 1.5 percent below a year ago. September also marks the second slowest month for sales in more than a year, behind August, NAR notes.

September EHS Infographic #1“Home sales in recent months remain at their lowest level of the year and are unable to break through, despite considerable buyer interest in most parts of the country,” says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “REALTORS® this fall continue to say the primary impediments stifling sales growth are the same as they have been all year: not enough listings—especially at the lower end of the market—and fast-rising prices that are straining budgets of prospective buyers.”

Sales activity likely would have been stronger if not for Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which struck Texas and South Florida in late August and early September, Yun says, adding that both areas saw “temporary but notable declines.”

5 Stats to Gauge the Market
Key indicators from NAR’s September existing-home sales report:

Home prices: The median existing-home price for all housing types was $245,100, up 4.2 percent from a year ago. “A continuation of last month’s alleviating price growth, which was the slowest since last December, would improve affordability conditions and be good news for the would-be buyers who have been held back by higher prices this year,” Yun says.

Days on the market: Forty-eight percent of homes sold were on the market for less than a month. Properties typically stayed on the market for 34 days, down from 39 days a year ago.

All-cash sales: These transactions comprised 20 percent of sales, down from 21 percent a year ago. Individual investors accounted for the biggest bulk of cash sales; they purchased 15 percent of homes, which was the same level as a year ago.

Distressed sales: Foreclosures and short sales accounted for 4 percent of sales, unchanged from a year ago. Broken out, 3 percent of sales were foreclosures, and 1 percent were short sales.

Inventory: Housing inventory at the end of the month increased 1.6 percent to 1.9 million existing homes available for sale, but it still remains 6.4 percent lower than a year ago. Unsold inventory is at a 4.2-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 4.5 months a year ago.

Source: National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 102017


Kenneth Bargers, REALTOR® License 318311 ♦ Pilkerton Realtors License 257352
(615) 512-9836 cellular ♦ (615) 371-2474 office
kb@bargers-solutions.com emailkb@kennethbargers.realtor email
www.bargers-solutions..com webkennethbargers.com blog
2 Cadillac Drive, Brentwood, Tennessee 37027 address

Nationally: Housing Shortages Constrain Existing-Home Sales

Nationally: Housing Shortages Constrain Existing-Home Sales
National Association of REALTORS®    article by Daily Real Estate News | September 20, 2017

For the fourth time in five months, existing-home sales dropped as a shortage of homes for sale continues to plague the housing market. Strained supply levels of homes are making it that sales are unable “to break out,” according to the National Association of REALTORS®’ latest housing report, released Wednesday.

Existing-home sales did see an increase in the Northeast and Midwest in August but were outpaced by sales declines in the South and West, according to NAR’s report.

August EHS Infographic #1Total existing-home sales—which include completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops—eased 1.7 percent in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.35 million. Last month’s sales are at the lowest levels in nearly a year.

Nevertheless, demand among potential buyers remains high. However, not enough homeowners are selling, says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.

“Steady employment gains, slowly rising incomes, and lower mortgage rates generated sustained buyer interest all summer long, but unfortunately, not more home sales,” Yun says. “What’s ailing the housing market and continues to weigh on overall sales is the inadequate levels of available inventory and the upward pressure it’s putting on prices in several parts of the country.”

The South saw a decline in closings last month that was largely attributed to the after-effects from Hurricane Harvey in the Houston area. Home sales likely will be impacted for the rest of the year in Houston and in the most severely affected areas in Florida after Hurricane Irma. “Nearly all of the lost activity will likely show up in 2018,” Yun says.

The following are some key housing indicators from NAR’s latest report:

  • Home prices: The median existing-home price for all housing types in August was $253,500, up 5.6 percent from a year ago.
  • Inventory: Total housing inventory at the end of August dropped 2.1 percent to 1.88 million existing homes available for sale, and is now 6.5 percent lower than a year ago. Unsold inventory is at a 4.2-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 4.5 months a year ago.
  • Days on the market: Fifty-one percent of homes sold in August were on the market for less than a month. Properties typically stayed on the market for 30 days in August, down from 36 days a year ago.
  • All-cash sales: All-cash transactions comprised 20 percent of transactions in August, down from 22 percent a year ago. Individual investors account for the biggest bulk of cash sales. Investors purchased 15 percent of homes in August, up from 12 percent a year ago.
  • Distressed sales: Foreclosures and short sales accounted for 4 percent of sales in August, slipping from 5 percent a year ago. Broken out, 3 percent of sales in August were foreclosures, and 1 percent were short sales.

Source: National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online; Daily Real Estate News 092017

New Home Inventory at 20-Year Low

New Home Inventory at 20-Year Low
National Association of Home Builders    article by Daily Real Estate News | August 17, 2017

House 1016Builders failed to ramp up inventories last month, despite increasing demand from home buyers and calls from the real estate industry. New-home construction dropped 4.8 percent in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.16 million units, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Commerce Development reported Wednesday.

Single-family production fell 0.5 percent month over month in July to an adjusted annual rate of 856,000. The July reading does follow a strong, upwardly revised June reading, the National Association of Home Builders notes. Single-family starts are 8.6 percent higher than a year ago.

Multifamily starts, meanwhile, plunged 15.3 percent last month to 299,000 units.

“New-home production numbers this month are in line with our forecast for a slow and steady recovery of the housing market,” says Robert Dietz, NAHB’s chief economist. “We saw multifamily production peak in 2015, and this sector should continue to level off as demand remains solid.”

Overall, inventories of homes for sale are at a 20-year low, according to realtor.com® data. Economists have been calling for new-home construction to help make up the shortfall in the market.

“The housing shortage in America will intensify if new construction remains as lackluster as it was in July,” Lawrence Yun, the National Association of REALTORS®’ chief economist, said in a statement. “The softening multifamily housing starts brought down the overall new housing unit additions to the second lowest monthly activity this year. Moreover, the latest 15 percent drop in multifamily housing starts and 0.5 percent drop in single-family starts will hold back economic growth potential. Because of this shortage, expect rents and home prices to rise by at least twice as fast as the broad consumer price index.”

Regionally, combined single-family and multifamily housing production increased only in the South in July, inching up 0.6 percent month over month. Housing starts posted a 15.7 percent month-over-month drop in the Northeast, a 15.2 percent drop in the Midwest and fell by 1.6 percent in the West.

Housing permits, a gauge of future construction, dropped 4.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.22 million units. Single-family permits mostly held steady at 811,000 units while multifamily permits dropped 11.2 percent to 412,000.

Source: National Association of Home Builders and National Association of REALTORS®; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 081717

Kenneth Bargers REALTOR® License 318311  |  Pilkerton Realtors License 257352
(615) 512-9836 cellular  •  (615) 915-5901 facsimile  •  kb@bargers-solutions.com email
bargers-solutions.com web  •  kennethbargers.com blog  •  Search Properties
(615) 371-2474 office  •  (615) 371-2475 facsimile  •  2 Cadillac Drive, Brentwood TN 37027 address
The greatest compliment you can give is a referral!