2017 was certainly an interesting year! We had more buyers, and looser mortgage guidelines, qualifying more people for a home loan. We still maintained incredibly low interest rates with noisy politics and uncertainty contributing a great deal to that. As supply and demand would have it, we saw an increase in demand for home ownership but a shortage of supply as low inventory was the only thing holding the housing market back from a sure explosion. That led to home values increasing and a shift from a buyers- market; to a sellers- market.
So here we are its 2018 and we are seeing incredible economic growth. The Dow Jones Industrial average is soaring to record levels, unemployment rates are at a 17-year low and job growth predictions are all leading to signs of a very healthy America in 2018; from an economic perspective.
So what does all of this mean to you? Well it’s always important to know what is going on in the real estate market because if you are a home owner, you should always know the current market value of your home. If you are considering selling, you of course want to know how much cash you can get out of your sale. And if you’re looking to own a home, you want to know what the interest rates are, what they are projecting to be and what the inventory situation looks like to make better, more informed decision.
It’s expected that historically low interest rates, still baffling to even the most seasoned analysts, will gradually rise to an average of 4.5% percent over the next 12 months. Inventory is expected to increase, but moderately; making 2018 thus far, a sellers- market.
“This will be the first of many years to come in which it’s all about the millennial first-time homebuyer,” said Mark Flemming, chief economist at First American Financial Corp, a title insurance company. “ Find ways to appeal to those buyers, and it’s likely to be a successful year.”
Millennials, first time home buyers and self-employed individuals finally have access to options they really didn’t have after the mortgage meltdown. Let’s face it, most rentals today aren’t as desirable and they are more expensive as sellers of nicer properties have opted to “cash out” and sell once the market recovered. What I have recommended to interested buyers in our community is define where you are at financially and what your credit score is; then learn what products exist today that will get you qualified. For my sellers or potential sellers, get a free market analysis and know the market value of your home; you might be pleasantly surprised.
Millennials are growing up and moving to the suburbs!
56% of young adults aged 25-39 say buying a home with plenty of space is important, according to a recent Zillow survey. Space is less important to older homebuyers, with just 42% of Generation-X respondents and 35% of Baby Boomers saying a large home was important in their home search.
Until recently, young adults were more interested in living near the high paying jobs and cultural amenities found in California’s urban centers. But this shift is perfectly sensible, as Millennials — also called Generation Y — are finally beginning to settle down and form families, which requires more space than allowed by the typical urban apartments and condominiums this generation is used to.
As more young adults enter the homebuying market, this trend is accelerating in California. This demographic had a rough start to homeownership. Many were just starting their careers when the 2008 recession and financial crisis hit. During the long recovery, Millennials saw their incomes stunted, unable to save up for down payments as previous generations had done. All the while, home prices and rents continued to accelerate as the recovery heated up.
In 2018, ten years out from the recession, this generation is finally making a showing in the housing market. But now that they’re ready to buy, they are faced with low inventory and high prices in California’s urban cores. They are finding that competition is less fierce, and space is more abundant, in the suburbs.
I’m always looking for ways to improve the lives of my friends & clients. So, with that in mind, I want to share with you my recent
experience at a seminar presented by Gayler Design Build for ADU’s. What is an ADU? An ADU or accessory dwelling unit is
a really simple and old Idea. You may have heard them called in-law units or pool houses. People are building ADU’s for many
reasons. With California’s growing housing prices and limited inventory, Bay Area homeowners are building ADU’s in their
backyard to rent out for extra income or to family members, such as their adult children or their aging parents. For
young couples who cannot afford buy in the bay area and don’t want to move out of state, this is a great option! Another popular
trend we are seeing is empty nesters renting out their large houses and moving into ADU’s. This may be an old concept, but
these units by Gayler are contemporary, spacious, and gorgeous! Each ADU is designed and built to compliment the main house
and backyard. If you are outgrowing your current home and need more space, or if you have more space than you currently need,
an ADU may be a great option for you! Visit Gayler Design Build at gaylerdesignbuild.com so you can see yourself
If you are interested in learning more or you have questions regarding financing for these little gems please give a call.
I would like to discuss homeowners insurance and how it can impact future buyers. Usually insurance is last on the list to be finalized. Well….It’s not quite as easy to obtain as it used to be. With California having its annual fire season, accompanied with copious amounts of rains from last winter I am seeing premiums skyrocket. In some cases, some insurance carriers won’t even write the polices. If you are a borrower with a high debt to income ratio, adding a higher premium could be detrimental.
Also, worth mentioning is FEMA is in the process of updating their flood maps. This is important because with the record rains, individuals that weren’t previously in a flood zone could find themselves paying more. The lesson is clear. Please take a careful look at your homeowners insurance before buying or selling a house. Make sure you have adequate coverage from a reputable broker. Call or email me for recommendations.
The future is here with Remote E-Closing. The days of being bombarded with reams of paper at the closing table are over. Previous e-closings required either some in-person contact or a notary to e-sign closing documents via a shared tablet.
Borrowers will FaceTime with a notary in order to complete the closing live. The process allows for all documents to be signed, including the promissory note and mortgage. Buyers will never have to leave their home or wet sign a single document for purchase or refinance loans.
This gives borrowers the ability to close a loan whenever they want, whether it’s at 11 a.m. or 9 p.m., this will have an incredible impact on the entire experience,”
The e-closing technology is currently available to brokers in four states: Illinois, Montana, Virginia and Washington. The expansion will continue into more states throughout this year. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the CFPB are all supporting these changes. So this is big news.