September 2016 News

Existing Homes Sales Report

According to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), stubbornly low inventory in many areas of the United States hampered sales of existing homes. In fact, sales slowed in July and fell year-over-year for the first time since November 2015. During July, the West was the only region to see a monthly increase in closings.  

Nationally, total existing-home sales (measuring completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops), dropped 3.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.39 million in July, down from June's 5.57 million. For only the second time in the last 21 months, sales now sit below (by 1.6 percent) a year ago (5.48 million).


Existing Home Sales By
Region NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, said the number of existing-home sales dipped in July after climbing throughout the last four months. “Realtors® are reporting diminished buyer traffic because of the scarce number of affordable homes on the market, and the lack of supply is stifling the efforts of many prospective buyers attempting to purchase while mortgage rates hover at historical lows” Yun said.

Key Data Takeaways

  • July's national median price for existing homes (all housing types) was $244,100, a gain of 5.3 percent over July 2015 ($231,800). July’s price increase makes 53 straight months of year-over-year gains.
     
  • July's total housing inventory moved slightly higher (0.9 percent) to 2.13 million existing homes available, but is still 5.8 percent below a year ago (2.26 million) and has fallen year-over-year for 14 consecutive months.
     
  • The share of first-time buyers nationally was 32 percent in July, below last month (33 percent) but higher than 28 percent a year ago.
     
  • Based on data from Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage fell from 3.57 percent in June to 3.44 percent in July. Mortgage rates have now declined for five months in a row and in July were the lowest since January 2013 (3.41 percent).

What's Your Credit Score?

Credit Score image from Credit.comYour credit score is a composite snapshot of your credit history. A high credit score takes time to cultivate, and is not likely to raise much in a short period of time. Generally speaking, you want to make sure you pay your bills on time, keep outstanding debt levels to a reasonable amount for each account, and avoid closing accounts you've successfully paid-off and managed. Don't lose hope if you have less than perfect credit, there are still good loan programs out there for responsible borrowers.

We have a list of preferred local lenders who can help you find the best financing programs for your specific needs. Contact us and take advantage of today's low interest rates!

Here are some great resources to learn more about credit scores, and to get a free credit score and report:

Warranties for Older Homes

New homes come with warranties to protect the buyer in case of the unexpected. But what about existing homes? Fortunately, there are a number of companies today who offer warranties for existing homes. Sellers can now offer their buyers a level of assurance that was previously reserved for new construction, and buyers can buy with confidence!

If you are in the market to buy or sell, ask us about the advantages of a home warranty. You might be surprised at how much protection is offered at a very reasonable price.

 

 

 

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