Every winter, families across the country decide if this will be the year that they sell their current houses and move into their dream homes.
Mortgage rates hovered around 4% for all of 2017 which forced many buyers off the fence and into the market, resulting in incredibly strong demand RIGHT NOW!
At the same time, however, inventory levels of homes for sale have dropped dramatically as compared to this time last year.
Trulia reported that “in Q4 2017, U.S. home inventory decreased by 10.5%. That is the biggest drop we’ve seen since Q2 2013.”
Here is a chart showing the decrease in inventory levels by category:
The largest drop in inventory was in the starter home category which saw a 19% dip in listings.
Demand for your home is very strong right now while your competition (other homes for sale) is at a historically low level. If you are thinking of selling in 2018, now may be the perfect time.
Whether you are a renter who is searching for your dream home or a homeowner who feels like your only option is to renovate, you have at least one thing in common: feeling stuck in place.
According to data from the National Association of Realtors’ Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, the average amount of time that a family stays in their home remained at 10 years in 2017. This mark ties the highest marks set in 2014 and 2016. Back in 1985, when data was first collected on this subject, homeowners stayed in their homes for an average of only 5 years.
There are many reasons why homeowners have decided to stay and not to sell. A recent Wall Street Journal article had this to say,
“Americans aren’t moving in part because inventory levels have fallen near multidecade lows and home prices have risen to records. Many homeowners are choosing to stay and renovate, in turn making it more difficult for renters to enter the market.”
Sam Khater, Deputy Chief Economist for CoreLogic, equated the lack of inventory to “not having enough oil in your car and your gears slowly [coming] to a grind.”
Historically, a normal market (in which prices increase at the rate of inflation) requires a 6-7 month supply of inventory. There hasn’t been that much supply since August of 2012! Over the course of the last 12 months, inventory has hovered between a 3.5 to 4.4-month supply, meaning that prices have increased and buyers are still out in force!
Challenges in the new-home construction ...
Each year, most homeowners wait until the spring to sell their houses because they believe that they can get a better deal during the normal spring buyer’s market. However, recently released data suggests that a seller’s best deal may be available right now. The concept of ‘supply & demand’ reveals that the best price for an item will be realized when the supply of that item is low and the demand for that item is high. Let’s see how this applies to the current residential real estate market.
It is no secret that the supply of homes for sale has been far below the number needed for over a year. A normal market requires six months of housing inventory to meet the demand. The latest report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed that there is currently only a 4.2-month supply.
Supply is currently very low!!
A report that was just released tells us that demand is very strong. The most recent Foot Traffic Report (which sheds light on the number of buyers out looking at homes) disclosed that there are more buyers right now than at any other time in the last twelve months. This includes more buyers looking at homes right now than at any time during last year’s spring market.
Demand is currently very high!!
Waiting until the spring to list your house for sale made sense in the past....
A recent article from a reputable news source was titled: Here's why some homeowners still can't sell. In the opening bullets of the article, the author claimed, “Negative equity is one of the main reasons why there are so few homes for sale.” The article then goes on to soften that stance but we want to bring better clarity to the equity situation.
A recent report from CoreLogic (which was quoted in the article) revealed that over 80% of all homes now have “significant equity,” which means the home has over 20% equity. That level of equity allows the homeowner to sell their home if they so desire. (There was no reference to significant equity in the article.)
If eight out of ten homeowners now have significant equity in their homes, it is hard to make the claim that lack of equity is “one of the main reasons why there are so few homes for sale.”
Here is a map showing the percentage of homes in each state which currently have significant equity:
If you are one of many homeowners who is debating selling your home and are wondering how much equity you have accumulated, let’s get together to determine if now is the time to list.
Every homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible.
1. Price it a LITTLE LOW
This may seem counterintuitive. However, let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their home a little OVER market value will leave them room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house (see chart below).
Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. By doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price, but will instead have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the house.
Realtor.com gives this advice:
“Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense they’re getting a deal, they’re likely to bid up a property that’s slightly underpriced, especially in areas with low inventory.”
2. Use a Real Estate Professional
This, too, may seem counterintuitive. The seller may think they would make more money if they didn’t have to pay a real estate commission. With this being said, studies have...
Recently released data from Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey revealed that rising home prices were the catalyst behind an eight-point jump in the net percentage of respondents who say now is a good time to sell. The index is now 21 points higher than it was this time last year.
Overall, 62% of Americans surveyed said that now is a good time to sell (up from 58%), while 26% of respondents said that now is not a good time to sell (down from 30%). The net score is the difference between the two percentages, or 36%.
According to CoreLogic, home prices are now up 6.7% over last year and 78.8% of homeowners with a mortgage in the US now have significant equity (defined as 20% or more).
As home prices have increased, more and more homeowners have realized that now is a good time to sell their homes in order to take advantage of the extra equity they now have.
At the same time, however, rising prices have had the exact opposite impact on the good-time-to-buy scale as many buyers are nervous that they will not be able to afford a home; the net score dropped 5 points to 18%.
Doug Duncan, Vice President & Chief Economist at Fannie Mae, had this to say,
“In the early stages of the economic expansion, home selling sentiment trailed home buying sentiment by a significant margin. The reverse is true today.
The net good time to sell share is now double the net good time to buy share, with record high percentages of consumers citing home prices as the primary reason for both perceptions. Such a sizable gap...
Here is a copy of one of my most recent short sale approval letters from Bank of America. As a rLas Vegas eal estate professional representing a seller on a short sale property, it’s very important to understand the level of focus and organization it takes to close one of these deals. There are numerous elements that need to come together by the time the property records.
Short sale properties frequently have multiple mortgage loans attached to the home, each requires approval from the lender’s short sale negotiator and ultimately the security investor. On this particular deal I was able to utilize several back office contacts of mine in order to escalate the underwriting process and clear many of the required closing conditions. I currently hold the official CDPE designation. As a Certified Distressed Property Expert in Las Vegas, I’ve had extensive training and experience with lots of short sales here in Southern Nevada.
The short sale approval letter represents one of the final steps to closing the deal, it will also contain key information regarding the deficiency of the mortgage loan and how it will be handled. After lots of hard work, I was able to have the full loan deficiency waived for my client. The 5th bullet point on this letter advises us of a $90,502.15 debt forgiveness!