Great News for Ada County!

Things are looking good for Ada County:

  • Residential property values took a noticeable 12 percent leap last year, following a 4 year run of steady declines.
  • New home constructions also rose tremendously; climbing over 75 percent from 2011 to 2012!
  • Currently the average home value in Ada County is $153,900; an 11.6 percent rise from 2012.
  • Residential property values are also going up – 15 percent in Kuna & Star and around 4 percent in Garden City, not to mention much growth seen in Meridian and the Benches

Is Boise’s Housing Market Heating up this Year?

(image courtesy of Build Idaho)

This month Boise Real Estate Weekly reported the following housing stats:

    • April 2013 sales increased by 27% compared to March 2013. (The strongest April over March sales increase since 2001)
    • Year-to-Date sales in 2013 are 2,109; up 3.8% over YTD 2012 sales of 2,033.
    • At the end of April, we had 21% more sales pending than at the end of April 2012. (The highest reported in 4 years).
    • Home prices are up 19% from last year, and up 35% in New Construction.
    • Some are saying that spring of 2013 was the best the Boise real estate market has seen in 7 years.

Our housing market is heating up this year but remains strong and us continuing to stabilize!


A New Record Low for Fixed-Rate Mortgages

It’s the fifth week in a row that fixed rate mortgages have declined, setting a new record low of 2.65 percent!

The following is Freddie Mac’s national average mortgage rate report for this week:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.35 percent, with an average 0.7 point, just shy of its 3.31 percent record set during the week of Nov. 21, 2012. A year ago at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.84 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: sank to an all-time record low of 2.56 percent, with an average 0.7 point, dropping from last week’s previous record of 2.61 percent. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.07 percent.
  • 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.56 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 2.58 percent average. Last year at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.85 percent.
  • 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.56 percent, with an average 0.3 point, dropping from last week’s 2.62 percent average. A year ago at this time, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.70 percent.

Is it a Seller’s Market in the Treasure Valley?

For home seller’s in the Treasure Valley, March was a fruitful month! The home sale dollar volume in Ada County during that month was greater than January and February put together!

For new single family homes the greatest median price in Treasure Valley was recorded at $393,356 located in the East Boise real estate market. Canyon County’s greatest median was $219,900 in South Nampa.

Other news includes the continued flood of new contructions and a relatively restricted supply of home inventories.


How Tight are Lending Standards?

We all know how difficult it has been the last few years for even the “credit-worthy” homebuyers to meet a home loan approval. Underwriting standards have been strict and tight. Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernake, has commented on the constricting grip of mortgage standards and said it “has gone too far.”

Ellie Mae has come out and said that “the credit box may be expanding”. Hopefully translation of this means improvements made in advancement in releasing some of those tight credit standards.

Statistics from Ellie Mae revealed:

  • Drop in the FICO scores for approved loans; in 2012 the average was 767 and this past February  it averaged 761 for all conventional loans.
  • Loan approvals increased slightly from 55 percent in January to 56.8 in Febuary.

Idaho ranked 3rd Largest Year-over-Year Home Pricing Increase in January!

January marked the 11th consecutive month-over-month climb in existing home sales. The national housing price index reported close to a 10 percent year-over-year increase.
The President and CEO of CoreLogic, Anand Nallathambi, remarked “Home prices continued to gather steam across a broad swath of the country in January, continuing the positive trend we saw during most of 2012. Many states across the western US and along the East Coast saw average price gains of more than 6 percent, which is likely to boost home sale activity into the first half of 2013.”
Idaho saw the 3rd biggest year-over-year increase in home prices, rising 14.9 percent in January!


Is it a Seller’s Market?

It’s a seller’s market once again for a majority of the Nation. Real estate inventories are so depleted that “Buyers and agents are literally waiting for the next house” according to the President of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in the Bay Area, Rick Turley.

January marked an eight-year low for existing home inventory; it was recorded at a 4.2 month supply by the National Association of Realtors. The market would be more well adjusted at a 6 month supply. This would draw in more sellers trying to meet the new demand from renters and investors, according to John Burns, CEO and real estate consultant.

That adjustment, however, may not be felt for a number of years. USA Today commented “Many home owners can’t afford to sell because they don’t have enough equity to put into buying another house – or would have to write a check to sell. The supply of distressed houses for sale is thinning as the foreclosure crisis recedes, especially in some states. Home building, while improving, is still at low levels. And, after years of holding on, few home owners want to sell when prices are just coming off the bottom, realtors say.”


Will the Real Estate Market Heat up this Spring?

As the unemployment rates climbed slightly in January to 7.9 percent, economists are also hopeful that the real estate market will continue to grow this Spring.

With a more robust the housing market comes improved job markets, as more real agents, loan processors, home builders, appliance manufacturers and so many more are needed. According to the consulting firm CEO John Challenger. Challenger went on to say that this frees them up to “relocate to areas where jobs are going unfilled due to lack of labor supply. This could further accelerate the recovery by getting longtime job seekers back on the payroll.”

The Chief Economist for The Economic Outlook Group in Princeton, NJ, Bernard Baumohi, remarked, “The all-important housing market has come back to life. New and existing home sales, starts and permits, along with homebuilder confidence have all rebounded.”


Where are Mortgage Trends Heading?

Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist, Frank Nothaft, reported that mortgage rates are persistent in trending “upwards this week amid a growing economy led in part by the recovering housing market.”

The well-liked 30-year fixed-rate mortgage spiked over the 3.5 percent norm.

According to Freddie Mac the national mortgage rate averages for this past week are as follows:

    • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.53 percent, with an average 0.7 point, rising from last week’s 3.42 percent average. A year ago at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.87 percent. The all-time low for 30-year rates was recently set on Nov. 21, 2012, averaging 3.31 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 2.81 percent, with an average 0.7 point, rising from last week’s 2.71 percent average. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.14 percent.
  • 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.70 percent, with an average 0.6 point, rising from last week’s 2.67 percent average. Last year at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.80 percent.
  • 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.59 percent, with an average 0.5 point, rising from last week’s 2.57 percent average. A year ago, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.76 percent.

Why is Now a Fantastic time to Sell your Home?

These winter months may be the perfect time to list your home according to some real estate experts. There reasoning is as follows:

1. Mortgage rates remain at historic lows

2. Home values are climbing upwards though out the U.S.; over 11 percent above last years rates

3. Even though prices are going, they still remain under 2007 high. Buying is still less expensive than renting.

4. Distressed home sale – although more and more sparse – are still available, along with their reduction in price.

5. about 80 percent of homes in America don’t include children, and as such buyers are not necessarily restricted to the school cycle, and can move at other times of the year.

6. The Executive Vice President for Atlantic & Pacific Real Estate, Wendy Forsythe, remarked that “Many people who ran into tough economic times several years ago are looking at real estate ownership. Enough time has passed so that many of these individuals have rebuilt credit, built up their savings and now qualify for FHA, VA and conventional financing.”