Homes Under Contract

BIG BUMP IN MASS. HOME SALES TO START 2016

 

BIG BUMP IN MASS. HOME SALES TO START 2016
With an assist from better weather than last year, homes sales in Massachusetts surged 25 percent in January as prices remained flat, according to data released Tuesday morning. The Warren Group reported the median sale price of a home in Massachusetts last month was $320,000. Condo sales were up 29 percent in January, with the median condo sale price down 3 percent to $290,875. The Massachusetts Association of Realtors reported Tuesday that January sales reached their highest level since 2004. Closed sales have been up in 12 of the last 19 months, according to the association, and median prices have been up in 17 of the last 19 months. At 14,291, the inventory of homes for sale in Massachusetts in January was down 20.4 percent compared to January 2015. "We remain in a unique time where, despite the lack of inventory of homes for sale, buyers have been successfully finding homes they want to live in and making offers that sellers are accepting," association president Annie Blatz, branch executive at Kinlin Grover Real Estate in Brewster, said in a statement. - Michael Norton/SHNS

Pending Home Sales Continue Recovery, Gradual Improvement Seen in 2011

Washington, DC, December 30, 2010 Pending home sales rose again in November, with the broad trend over the past five months indicating a gradual recovery into 2011, according to the National Association of REALTORS. The Pending Home Sales Index,* a forward-looking indicator, rose 3.5 percent to 92.2 based on contracts signed in November from a downwardly revised 89.1 in October. The index is 5.0 percent below a reading of 97.0 in November 2009. The data reflects contracts and not closings, which normally occur with a lag time of one or two months. Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said historically high housing affordability is boosting sales activity. In addition to exceptional affordability conditions, steady improvements in the economy are helping bring buyers into the market, he said. But further gains are needed to reach normal levels of sales activity. The PHSI in the Northeast increased 1.8 percent to 72.6 in November but is 6.2 percent below November 2009. In the Midwest the index declined 4.2 percent in November to 78.3 and is 7.7 percent below a year ago. Pending home sales in the South slipped 1.8 percent to an index of 91.4 and are 7.2 percent below November 2009. In the West the index jumped 18.2 percent to 123.3 and is 0.4 percent above a year ago. If we add 2 million jobs as expected in 2011, and mortgage rates rise only moderately, we should see existing-home sales rise to a higher, sustainable volume, Yun said. Credit remains tight, but if lenders return to more normal, safe underwriting standards for creditworthy buyers, there would be a bigger boost to the housing market and spillover benefits for the broader economy. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is forecast to rise gradually to 5.3 percent around the end of 2011; at the same time, unemployment should drop to 9.2 percent. For perspective, Yun said that the U.S. has added 27 million people over the past 10 years. However, the number of jobs is roughly the same as it was in 2000 when existing-home sales totaled 5.2 million, which appears to be a sustainable figure given the current level of employment, he explained. All the indicator trends are pointing to a gradual housing recovery, Yun said. Home price prospects will vary depending largely upon local job market conditions. The national median home price, however, is expected to remain stable even with a continuing flow of distressed properties coming onto the market, as long as there is a steady demand of financially healthy home buyers. Existing-home sales are projected to rise about 8 percent to 5.2 million in 2011 from 4.8 million in 2010, with an additional gain of 4 percent in 2012. The median existing-home price could rise 0.6 percent to $173,700 in 2011 from $172,700 in 2010, which was essentially unchanged from 2009. As we gradually work off the excess housing inventory, supply levels will eventually come more in-line with historic averages, and could allow home prices to rise modestly in the range of 2 to 3 percent in 2012, Yun said. New-home sales are estimated to rise 24 percent to 392,000 in 2011, but would remain well below historic averages, while housing starts are forecast to rise 21 percent to 716,000. Yun sees Gross Domestic Product growing 2.5 percent in 2011, and the Consumer Price Index rising 2.3 percent. The National Association of REALTORS, The Voice for Real Estate, is Americas largest trade association, representing 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. *The Pending Home Sales Index is a leading indicator for the housing sector, based on pending sales of existing homes. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed, though the sale usually is finalized within one or two months of signing. The index is based on a large national sample, typically representing about 20 percent of transactions for existing-home sales. In developing the model for the index, it was demonstrated that the level of monthly sales-contract activity parallels the level of closed existing-home sales in the following two months. There is a closer relationship between annual index changes (from the same month a year earlier) and year-ago changes in sales performance than with month-to-month comparisons. An index of 100 is equal to the average level of contract activity during 2001, which was the first year to be examined as well as the first of five consecutive record years for existing-home sales. NOTE: The next Pending Home Sales Index will be released January 27, and existing-home sales for December will be reported January 20; release times are 10:00 a.m. EST. Article Courtesy of National Association of REALTORS

HOME OWNERSHIP MATTERS

HOME

OWNERSHIP

MATTERS

TO PEOPLE...TO COMMUNITIES... TO AMERICA.

Studies show that home ownership has a significant positive impact on net worth, educational achievement, civic participation, health and overall quality of life. That's why, more than 100 years, REALTORS have helped people find their piece of the American Dream. Now, with some questioning whether home ownership is still good for America, it's more important than ever to stand up for home ownership...in your community and it the nation's capital. Find out more about why Home Ownership Matters, how the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS, is standing up for it, and how you can help spread the word, at REALTOR.org/homeownership.

WHY HOME OWNERSHIP MATTERS

TO PEOPLE...

  • Home owners are happier and healthier and enjoy a greater feeling of control over their lives.
  • Owning a home is one of the best ways to build long-term wealth. Historically, a home owner's net worth has ranged from 31 to 46 times that of a renter.
  • Home owners are free to redecorate, renovate, and modify their homes as they wish.
  • most home owners enjoy stable housing costs-a fixed-rate mortgage payment might not change for 15 to 30 years while rent typically increases 3% a year.
  • Home owners can typically deduct mortgage interest and property taxes on their federal individual income tax return.
TO COMMUNITIES...
  • People who own homes vote more, volunteer more and contribute more to their neighborhoods.
  • Home owners do not more as frequently as renters, providing more neighborhood stability. In turn this stability helps reduce crime and supports neighborhood upkeep.
  • Children of home owners do better in school, stay in school longer, are more likely to participate in organized activities and spend less time on front of the television.
TO AMERICA...
  • 67% of American households are owner-occupied. America is a nation of home owners.
  • Home owners pay 80 to 90% of federal individual income taxes, contributing to federal programs that benefit all Americans.
  • Every home purchased pumps $60,000 into the economy for furniture, home improvements and related items.
  • Housing accounts for more than 15% of the national Gross Domestic Product, a key driver of our natioinal economy.
  • For these reasons and more, home ownership is the American Dream!
--Courtesy of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS