Home Shopping: Should you buy new?

Last year housing permits hit their highest level since 2008, according to the Census Bureau, and new-home sales grew 20% from the prior year.

“Builders are more optimistic than they have been for several years,” says Patrick Newport, an economist at IHS Global Insight.

An untouched abode offers advantages, of course, such as a sleek modern layout and few repairs. Buying an existing home, however, may allow you to seal the deal faster and can offer better short-term price appreciation.

Head-to-head comparisons can help you decide which choice better fits your priorities.  To see the full article and compare which is better for you, click here.

Foreclosure Sales fall in Dallas area, nation

By: Steve Brown

Researchers at CoreLogic said Tuesday that during the 12-month period ending in March, 10,361 Dallas area homes were sold by lenders at foreclosure auction.

That’s down about 10 percent from the previous 12 month period.

In March 1.3 percent of Dallas-area homes with a loan were in foreclosure – less than half the national rate of 2.8 percent.

About 1.1 million U.S. homes were in foreclosure, CoreLogic found.

“In March, completed foreclosures were down 52 percent from the peak in 2010 and almost all of the top 100 major metropolitan areas have declining foreclosure rates,”  Dr. Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic, said in the report.  “The foreclosure rate nationally is down 23 percent relative to a year ago, signaling continued reduction in the stock of distressed assets.”

Financial Reasons to Buy a Home NOW! (Part I)

March 28, 2013

The KCM Crew

Part I – Prices Are Rising at an Accelerated Rate

prices upThe price of a home is the major consideration when deciding whether or not it makes financial sense to purchase a house. Experts are not only projecting that house values will increase in 2013. They are also more optimistic in the level of appreciation they are projecting as the market begins to heat up. Here are some examples:

The Home Price Expectation Survey

The latest survey of a nationwide panel of 118 economists, real estate experts and investment and market strategists reveals they project home values to end 2013 up an average of 4.6% according to the first quarter. This is after they had projected a 3.1% increase just three months ago.

Bank of America

In a report titled, Someone Say House Party?, Bank of America analysts revised their projections upward:

“Home prices continue to show momentum amid shrinking inventory and record high affordability, prompting us to revise up our original forecast of 4.7% for home prices this year. We now expect national home prices, as defined by the S&P Case Shiller home price index, to increase 8% this year.”

Capital Economics

According to a report in DSNews, Capital Economics also upgraded their prediction:

“Strong demand and tight inventory have brought existing home sales back to ‘normal’ levels, and further gains are possible, according to the latest market report from Capital Economics. Additionally, market conditions may prompt lenders to “loosen the purse strings slightly” and lend a little more freely.

These conditions, combined with broader economic indicators, lead Capital Economics to revise its previous forecast of a 5% price gain this year up to 8%.”

Morgan Stanley

In an article from HousingWire, Morgan Stanley joined the party:

“Strong momentum in home prices as well as housing activity gave Morgan Stanley analysts enough confidence to upgrade their home price appreciation projections to roughly 7% (from 5%) for 2013, according to its latest global securitized credit report…

“The momentum in most metrics of housing activity is running well ahead of the pace we had expected,” said James Egan, Jose Cambronero and Vishwanath Tirupattur, analysts for Morgan Stanley.”

Not only are prices projected to appreciate. Experts are actually revising their projections upward as demand maintains its momentum.


Learning from the Low-ball Offer

Is a low-ball offer a good chance to see things with fresh eyes?

The low-ball offer is hardly uncommon, especially with the number of all-cash “let’s make a deal” buyers who feel that a “bad news economy” gives them purchasing leverage in any market. Some buyers today are in denial that the market has changed and is moving more towards a seller’s market. Obviously the listing agent has an obligation to present all offers to their seller. And yes, the seller might be insulted at first, but a low-ball offer is a good time to reflect on the listing, your buyer, and possibly see things with fresh eyes.

Here are a handful of things to consider:

1. What’s the seller’s position? Facing foreclosure? Facing other personal or professional deadlines, like job relocation?

2. Are there any cosmetic or physical reasons the listing might be encouraging low-ball offers? Is this a wake-up call?

3. How close is the offer to a likely appraisal? Will the appraisal strengthen or weaken your negotiating position?

4. Is the buyer legitimately open to negotiation, or is this a “see if it sticks” pitch? Are they serious buyers?

5. Are there recent comparables which suggest this “low-ball” isn’t as low as it seems? How confident are you of the pricing?

6. Finally (and most importantly): Is this low-ball offer a great opportunity to have that difficult conversation regarding any/all the above issues?

Dallas-Fort Worth home sales jumped 29 percent in October

Did you see the news in today’s Dallas Morning News. Home sales have jumped 29 percent in October. I don’t see it slowing down, either! With interest rates continuing to be at the lowest rates in history buyers are buying. There still is NOT enough inventory on the market.  A lot of buyers are mistaken that it is still a buyer’s market, but they find out real fast they can’t be as picky if they really need to move. We are seeing more and more homes getting multiple offers.  See more info in this article from the DMN.

Dallas-Fort Worth home sales jumped 29 percent in October


STEVE BROWN The Dallas Morning NewsReal Estate Editor stevebrown@dallasnews.com

Published: 08 November 2012 08:23 PM

North Texas home sales soared by 29 percent in October as buyers rushed to take advantage of low financing costs. Last month saw the biggest year-over-year increase in pre-owned single-family home sales in the area in more than three years, according to data released Thursday by the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

“The market has continued to strengthen through the fall,” said David Brown, who heads the Dallas office of housing analyst Metrostudy Inc. “With interest rates at historical lows, demand for both new and existing homes has remained strong. “It looks like sales will remain strong through the end of the year, with pending sales up 20 percent from a year ago.”

Along with the jump in sales, median home prices were 9 percent higher than in October 2011.  Counting last month’s big gains, home sales in North Texas have been rising for 16 straight months. “The strong increase in home sales this year suggests consumers are feeling more comfortable,” said D’Ann Petersen, an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

“Thanks in part to very low interest rates, buying a home now makes sense to many North Texans who might have been waiting for a sure sign of market recovery,” she said. “Rapidly rising apartment rents this year are also likely driving some of the growth in the pre-owned home market.”

Through the first 10 months of 2012, real estate agents have sold 17 percent more homes through their multiple listing service than in the same period of 2011, according to the Real Estate Center and the North Texas Real Estate Information Systems.

Huge spikes

Some North Texas residential districts saw huge spikes in home sales in October. Sales were up 79 percent from a year ago in North Dallas, 71 percent in northeast Dallas and 59 percent higher in Far North Dallas and Coppell. With the bump in home purchases, the supply of homes on the market continues to decline. Home sales listings for North Texas were 18 percent lower in October than a year earlier. There’s currently only a 4.1-month supply of houses on the market in the more than 24-county area including in the survey.

“The limited supply of available homes and improved sales are likely to lead to above normal home price appreciation through the end of the year and into 2013,” Brown said. “The recovery in the housing market is continuing to gain momentum.” Thursday’s monthly home sales data was just the latest in a string of upbeat reports about the Dallas-Fort Worth housing market. On Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors said that D-FW’s third-quarter home prices were up 8.8 percent — the largest such increase in more than a decade in the quarterly report.

Foreclosure filings

Home foreclosure filings in the area have dropped by about 10 percent this year to the lowest level in more than a decade, according to numbers from Addison-based Foreclosure Listing Service. Real estate agents are reporting big increases in business this year.