Housing Spotlight | Real Estate News
February 18, 2010

Housing Starts Rise 2.8%

Author: admin - Categories: Home Construction, Home Financing News, Housing Spotlight, New Home Starts, Real Estate News

Amid a trickle of economic reports like improved retail sales and declining credit card delinquency rates, most Wall Street analysts braced themselves for mixed real estate news, but the new home construction data released was welcomed. The AP announced Wednesday’s latest figures on the housing market and the good news spread quickly online.
According to the Department of Commerce, housing starts were up 2.8% in January to a seasonally adjusted 591,000 units, reversing a weather-related dip in December. The 21.1% year-over-year gain was the best monthly increase since April 2004.

Building permit applications dropped by 4.9% after two months of strong increases, but Burt White, chief investment officer for LPL Financial, said the disparity between the figures is likely a weather-related anomaly. Despite the volatility in housing data, the improvement points to a stronger economic backdrop. “It’s a good indication that Americans are beginning to reinvest again,” said White. “The biggest investment people make is in their homes.”

According to national FHA lenders, real estate financing continues to be supported by government loan programs like FHA, VA and Home Path, to name a few. Current mortgage interest rates remain at record levels with 30-year fixed rate mortgages still available below 5%. While the consumer won’t be at the fore of this recovery, housing starts did hit their highest level in six months–an indication that consumers are becoming more confident and comfortable with spending.

August 27, 2009

Has California Housing Recession Come to an End?

Author: admin - Categories: California Real Estate News, Housing Spotlight

Mortgage rates are at all time low levels and people in California are buying houses again…So what is the problem? To start, home foreclosure rates continue to break records and California loan modification filings are rising each month. Yale University economist Robert Shiller, co-author of the now closely monitored S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, and, to be sure, no friend of realtors, says the data suggests the housing market is on the mend. “The sense that something is changing is definitely in the air,” Shiller told Bloomberg News after the release of June’s housing data. “After three years of decline, we might be seeing a turnaround.” Shiller, along with economist Karl Case, developed the index, which tracks housing data in 20 U.S. metropolitan areas. In June, only two cities, Detroit, hard hit by auto lay-offs, and Las Vegas, slumping as consumers nix trips to the gambling capital, registered May-to-June price declines.

L.A., Miami, Phoenix Start to Rebound?

Meanwhile 18 cities registered May-to-June price increases. Just as telling: the hard hit metro-areas registered price gains: Los Angeles, up 1.1 %; Miami, up 0.5 %; Tampa, up 0.4 %; and Phoenix, up 1.1 %. Economists says that because the California, Florida, Arizona/Nevada regions sustained the largest and most extensive home price declines, they’ll probably snap-back first and telegraph the start of the broader U.S. housing sector recovery.

Also, nationally, U.S. home prices increased 2.9 % in Q2 compared to Q1 — the first quarterly gain in two years, according to Case-Shiller data. On a seasonally adjusted basis, prices rose 1.4 % in Q2 compared to Q1.

Another data point to support the housing recovery thesis? U.S. new home sales increased in three U.S. regions in July, according to U.S. Commerce Department data. Sales surged 32 % in the Northeast, jumped 16 % in the South, and rose 1 % in the West; they fell 7.6 % in the Midwest, a region that, again, is still coping with large structural changes stemming from the U.S. auto sector’s downsizing and restructuring.

A third metric supporting a housing rebound? Inventories of new homes fell to 271,000 in July, the Commerce Department said — a 35.4 % decline since July 2008. That’s a 7.5-month supply at the current sales rate, down from an 8.8-month supply in June. The 7.5-month supply is still above the normal three-to-five month supply, but economists and housing statisticians say the rate of inventory decline is just as important as inventory levels now. If inventories continue to drop by a 1-month supply each month, it won’t be long before home construction firms say ‘It’s time to start building some homes before our inventory gets too low and we lose sales because of lack of choice for customers.’

What’s driving the turnaround in home prices? Most economists say the federal government’s $8,000 income tax credit for first-time home buyers and comparatively low interest rates have played a role, but the large factor remains the market pricing mechanism. Home prices have dropped so much that, those home buyers with decent job security and good credit are calculating, given the slim chance of picking an absolute bottom for home prices, that now represents a decent time to purchase that home.

Housing Analysis: The $64,000 question – make that the $210,000 question, given the median price of a new U.S. home – is: should prospective home buyers purchase now?

Unless you’ve found your dream house or are otherwise forced to buy, I’d wait until late fall. Summer data typically distorts home sales to the upside, as many families move then, when school is out. The $8,000 tax credit, which applies to homes bought before November 1, also is aiding sales. In other words, prices could retrench. However, if home prices and sales continue to rise into the autumn season in your region of the U.S., that’s a sign that a housing bottom is forming, and a home purchase then would make sense, from a price standpoint.

April 13, 2009

Live Transfer Leads Better than Cold Calling Real Estate Lead Systems

Author: admin - Categories: Housing Spotlight, Real Estate Marketing, Real Estate News - Tags: , ,

Whether it’s live transfer leads or lead generation derived from the voice broadcasting campaign, sales agents are excited to get a live voice on the phone. Now you can quit cold calling leads from the yellow pages. For real estate investors and entrepreneurs who loathe the age-old practice of cold-calling and risky advertising, there is good news at last.  A new cost saving business plan:  pay-per-month lead generation by Wehavehomeleads.com.  It takes the frustration out of trying to find new business by delivering a stream of interested, ready-to-sell prospects to its clients.

For real estate investors and entrepreneurs who can’t stand the practice of cold calling and risky advertising, there is good news at last.  A new cost saving business plan:  pay-per-month lead generation by Wehavehomeleads.com.  It takes the frustration out of trying to find new business by delivering a stream of interested, ready-to-sell prospects to its clients.�

Wehavehomeleads.com is a welcome solution for entrepreneurs, real estate investors, realtors, and others who are tired of wasting time and money on unproven marketing strategies, says Art Smith, CEO of Wehavehomeleads.com. Now, rather than gambling with high risk advertising campaigns or unproductive cold calls, our clients can focus on closing sales and building their business.”  Upon signing up with Wehavehomeleads.com, clients receive a custom-built website which organizes and stores their leads.

The real estate marketing company then utilizes a variety of marketing strategies to get in contact with motivated sellers.  Home selling prospects are pre-qualified by a detailed questionnaire and customer service representative, and only leads fitting the clients target customer profile are delivered.  Sign up for related real estate news. 2010 is forecasted to see a significant market switch for selling and home-buying across the country.

January 19, 2009

Southern California Home Prices End Year 2008 down 35%

Author: admin - Categories: California Real Estate News, Housing Spotlight, Published Real Estate Articles, Real Estate News - Tags: , , ,

In a recent LA Times article written by Peter Y. Hong, Southern California home prices continued their decline at the end of 2008, closing the year at 2003 price levels, a real estate research firm reported today. The December median sales price for all Southern California homes fell to $278,000, a 35% drop from the same month a year prior, according to San Diego-based MDA DataQuick.

Recent foreclosure news suggests that short sales and re-defaults from unsuccessful loan modification plans, may be misleading the severity of the foreclosure crisis in Southern California.

Los Angeles County’s median sales price of $320,000 was down 32% from December 2007, while Orange County’s median price fell 30% to $397,000. San Diego’s median price dropped 30% from December 2007, to $300,000. Ventura County’s $338,000 median December sales price was down 36% from the prior year. Reduced sales prices drove the number of Southern California homes sold in December up by 51% over the previous year. “It does look like the spigot is being opened a little bit, at least for low-cost home purchases,” said John Walsh, MDA DataQuick president. The typical monthly mortgage loan payment that California homebuyers committed themselves to paying was $1,239 last month, down from a revised $1,380 for the previous month, and down from a revised $2,060 for December year ago. Read the complete LA Times article.

January 16, 2009

Falling Home Prices Hitting Hard

Author: admin - Categories: California Real Estate News, Housing Spotlight, Real Estate News - Tags: , , , , , ,

Foreclosures are closely tied to home prices – they tend to rise as prices fall. And nationally, home prices have fallen more than 21% from their peak, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price index. In many areas, the decline has been much worse. In Los Angeles, San Francisco and Miami prices are down 30% or more. They’ve fallen more than 40% in Phoenix and nearly that much in Las Vegas. Loan modifications are helping thousands of borrowers avoid foreclosure, but the home that are lost to foreclosure are sold at such a discount the effects in the housing markets are astounding.

Declining prices put many homeowners “underwater” on their mortgage loans, owing more than their homes are worth, which makes them more likely to default. And adding a flood of bank-owned homes to already slow markets further outstrips demand and dampens prices, creating a spiral of lower prices and higher foreclosures. As a result, more homeowners who fall behind on their mortgage payments end up losing their homes, according to Jay Brinkman, the chief economist for the Mortgage Bankers Association. Foreclosure news seems to arise daily as foreclosure rates rose 81% in 2008.

In California and Florida 80% of the homeowners who miss a loan payment end up in foreclosure, according to the MBA. That’s a much, higher percentage than in the past. “The number of mortgages 30 days past due are still below what they were during the 2001 recession,” said Brinkman. But the proportion of those loans that went into foreclosure was much lower, he added – about 10%. “Delinquency itself has become a much clearer predictor of foreclosure,” said Sharga. If home prices keep plunging, the foreclosure scourge will likely continue. And S&P’s chief economist, David Wyss, expects home prices to continue to decline, bottoming in early 2010 roughly 33% below their 2006 peak.

January 13, 2009

Predicting the Bottom of the Real Estate Market

Author: admin - Categories: California Real Estate News, Housing Spotlight, Jason Cardiff, Published Real Estate Articles, Real Estate News - Tags:

Suze Orman discuss on when do you know if the Real Estate has reached the bottom. When has the housing market reached the bottom? In most cases, when the prices begin to go back up, then you have reached the bottom.

Watch this video to learn more about the real estate market reaching the low point.

According to KMG president Jason Cardiff, “Timing the real estate market is very difficult.” Cardiff continued, “Like the stock market, predicting the bottom can be a great way to make money quickly, but even most experts are unable to call the bottom.” Sign up now and have the latest real-estate news delivered to you as it is reported.

December 22, 2008

Will Credit and Mortgage Markets Rebound in 2009?

Author: admin - Categories: California Real Estate News, Housing Spotlight, Real Estate News - Tags: , , , , ,

Real estate news continues to dominate main stream media because of the housing sales slumps, foreclosure crisis and historic mortgage rate cuts. The Existing Home Sales release will be released soon from the National Association of Realtors and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Commerce Department will also release a report with new home sales data.  These three reports should help the experts measure the strength of the housing sector and home loan credit demand, however, neither consider to be of high importance. Both of the reports are expected to show a decline in sales.

In a recent article, Kelly Media Group President, Jason Cardiff said, “2009 may see the housing sectors and mortgage refinance markets rebound after all.” Cardiff continued, “The Federal Reserve showed their commitment with record low rate cuts to fight deflation and many believe the President Elect, Barrack Obama will be aggressive in an effort to stem the foreclosure mess.” HUD continues to release new FHA loan products that offer solutions for mortgage refinancing with Hope for Homeowners and FHA Secure. FHA continues promoting rehabilitation and home remodeling to foreclosed home-buyers with the 203k rehab loans. FHA actually insures rehabilitation mortgages for owner-occupants and non-profit housing providers who finance the rehabilitation of an existing property or the purchase and rehabilitation of a property.