The Votes Are In

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Real estate buyers made their voices heard last month and made a clear choice for…  higher-end properties!

One of the interesting dynamics of our current market is the significantly- increased activity in higher price ranges.

The combination of high equity and low-interest rates is clearly causing people to move up.  They are able to purchase the home that has the features they have always wanted whether it be size, finishes, or location.

The considerable equity growth that has occurred for homeowners over the last 7 years is allowing them to have sizable down payments on their ‘move up’ property plus today’s rates keep their monthly payments lower than expected.

Here are the numbers we researched which demonstrate this trend.

Compared to October of 2019, sales of properties priced over $750,000 last month were up:

  • 176% in Larimer County
  • 375% in Weld County
  • 96% in Metro Denver

Properties in the $550,000 to $750,000 range also saw a large jump:

  • 57% in Larimer County
  • 63% in Weld County
  • 83% in Metro Denver

This is a unique time in history for people to move up and own a home they have always dreamed about.

Posted on November 6, 2020 at 6:39 pm
Tammy Fisher | Category: Buying a Home, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Mortgage Rates | Tagged , ,

Why Is It so Important to Be Pre-Approved in the Homebuying Process?

Why Is It so Important to Be Pre-Approved in the Homebuying Process?

You may have heard that pre-approval is a great first step in the homebuying process. But why is it so important? When looking for a home, the temptation to fall in love with a house that’s outside your budget is very real. So, before you start shopping around, it’s helpful to know your price range, what you’re comfortable within a monthly mortgage payment, and ultimately how much money you can borrow for your loan. Pre-approval from a lender is the only way to do this.

According to a recent survey from realtor.com, many buyers are making the mistake of skipping the pre-approval step in the homebuying process:

“Of over 2,000 active home shoppers who plan to purchase a home in the next 12 months, only 52% obtained a pre-approval letter before beginning their home search, which means nearly half of home buyers are missing this crucial piece of paperwork.

This paperwork (the pre-approval letter) shows sellers you’re a qualified buyer, something that can really help you stand out from the crowd in the current ultra-competitive market.

How competitive is today’s market? Extremely – especially among buyers.

With limited inventory, there are many more buyers than sellers right now, and that’s fueling the competition. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homes are receiving an average of 2.9 offers for sellers to negotiate, so bidding wars are heating up.

Pre-approval shows homeowners you’re a serious buyer. It helps you stand out from the crowd if you get into a multiple-offer scenario, and these days, it’s likely. When a seller knows you’re qualified to buy the home, you’re in a better position to potentially win the bidding war and land the home of your dreams.

Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for realtor.com notes:

“For ‘a buyer in a competitive market, it’s typically essential to have pre-approval done in order to submit an offer, so getting it done before you even look at homes is a smart move that will enable a buyer to move fast to put an offer in on the right home.’”

In addition, today’s housing market is also changing from moment to moment. Interest rates are low, prices are going up, and lending institutions are regularly updating their standards. You’re going to need guidance to navigate these waters, so it’s important to have a team of professionals (a loan officer and a real estate agent) making sure you take the right steps along the way and can show your qualifications as a buyer at the time you find a home to purchase.

Bottom Line

In a competitive market with low inventory, a pre-approval letter is a game-changing piece of the homebuying process. If you’re ready to buy this year, reach out to a local real estate professional (who can also connect you with a trusted lender) before you start searching for a home.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/08/27/why-is-it-so-important-to-be-pre-approved-in-the-homebuying-process/

Posted on September 8, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Buying a Home, Housing Market, Mortgage Rates | Tagged , ,

Mondays with Matthew

Posted on July 15, 2020 at 12:30 pm
Tammy Fisher | Category: Ecomony, Housing Market, Real Estate Market | Tagged , ,

Rate Meaning

Mortgage interest rates have hit another record low this week.

 

Mortgage applications for purchases just hit an 11-year high.

 

Rates are at a level that many people could never have imagined.

 

Here’s something that is surprising to many people…

 

Rates are 1.5% lower than they were just two years ago.

 

Here’s what that means for buyers…

 

Pretend someone is looking at a $500,000 home and they will have a 20% down payment.

 

The difference in monthly payment is $320 between two years ago and today.

 

Obviously that is a significant amount of money.

 

Imagine what a person could do with $320 per month.

 

The fact that rates are at record lows is one of many reasons that the market is so strong right now and prices continue to appreciate at healthy levels.

At Windermere Real Estate we are taking Safer at Home and Social Distancing very seriously.  Our people are following our Safe Showings protocol, staying connected to their clients, and providing help wherever needed.

Posted on June 24, 2020 at 7:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Colorado, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Market | Tagged , , ,

On Sale

Money is on sale (again).

30-year mortgage rates now sit at 3.3%.

This is less than half of the long-term, 40-year average.

This is also almost a full percentage point lower than they were one year ago (which was still very low).

Let’s put this in real numbers.

A $300,000 loan at today’s rates has a $1,313 monthly principal and interest payment.

One year ago, that same loan would be $1,432 per month.

That’s a 8.3% difference in monthly payment.

The fact that money is on sale is one of many reasons that the housing market remains very strong right now.

At Windermere Real Estate we are taking Safer at Home and Social Distancing very seriously.  Our people are following our Safe Showings protocol, staying connected to their clients, and providing help wherever needed.

Posted on June 5, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Housing Market, investment, Northern Colorado Real Estate, Real Estate Market | Tagged , , , ,

Impact of the Coronavirus n the US Housing Market

Impact of the Coronavirus on the U.S. Housing Market

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has caused massive global uncertainty, including a U.S. stock market correction no one could have seen coming. While much of the news has been about the effect on various markets, let’s also acknowledge the true impact it continues to have on lives and families around the world.

With all this uncertainty, how do you make powerful and confident decisions in regard to your real estate plans?

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) anticipates:

“At the very least, the coronavirus could cause some people to put home sales on hold.”

While this is an understandable approach, it is important to balance that with how it may end up costing you in the long run. If you’re considering buying or selling a home, it is key to educate yourself so that you can take thoughtful and intentional next steps for your future.

For example, when there’s fear in the world, we see lower mortgage interest rates as investors flee stocks for the safety of U.S. bonds. This connection should be considered when making real estate decisions.

According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB):

“The Fed’s action was expected but perhaps not to this degree and timing. And the policy change was consistent with recent declines for interest rates in the bond market. These declines should push mortgage interest rates closer to a low 3% average for the 30-year fixed rate mortgage.”

This is exactly what we’re experiencing right now as mortgage interest rates hover at the lowest levels in the history of the housing market.

Bottom Line

The full impact of the Coronavirus is still not yet known. It is in times like these that working with an informed and educated real estate professional can make all the difference in the world.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/03/05/impact-of-the-coronavirus-on-the-u-s-housing-market/

Posted on March 16, 2020 at 7:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Mortgage Rates, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate Market | Tagged , , , ,

How Trusted Professionals Make Home Buying Easier to Understand

How Trusted Professionals Make Homebuying Easier to Understand

In the spring, many excited buyers get ready to enter the housing market. Others continue dreaming about the homes they’d like to buy. The truth is, many potential buyers continue to dream longer than they need to, simply because they’re confused about the homebuying process. Thankfully, working with a trusted real estate professional can help ease those concerns and make the process to homeownership much easier to understand.

A recent survey conducted by Ipson and Freddie Mac reveals the confidence level of Gen Z and Millennial buyers regarding the homebuying process. The graph below shows the breakdown of the top results, clearly indicating there’s a significant portion of younger buyers who are not yet confident with some of the steps in the homebuying process.How Trusted Professionals Make Homebuying Easier to Understand | Keeping Current MattersBetween the homebuying process and the mortgage process, there are 230 possible steps in the transaction. With trusted professionals on your side, you certainly don’t have to know them all to have a successful experience.

There are many reasons why these steps can change as you move through each one. Depending on your personal circumstances, the term or your mortgage, and the type of loan you use, the path you take may need to vary. That’s why guidance and support from the experts is key.

In addition to the process itself, respondents in the survey definitely expressed concerns about understanding the types of loans available. Here are just a few of the basic loans to consider. Be sure to speak with your lender about the specifics of what will work best for you:

  • FHA: Loans guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration for first-time buyers. They generally enable qualified borrowers to enter the housing market with a lower down payment.
  • Conventional: Loans that usually require a larger down payment. Repeat buyers usually use these types of loans since they have an established credit history as well as more money from the sale of their previous home (called equity) for a bigger down payment.
  • VA: Loans available for Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and their spouses. They are guaranteed by the Department of Veteran Affairs.
  • USDA: Loans for those living in rural and suburban areas. A qualified lender can issue a USDA home loan, and they are guaranteed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Interest rates also popped up as a common area of confusion among Gen Z and Millennial respondents in the survey. With today’s rates hovering at near historic lows, it’s a fantastic time for buyers to get more house for their money in the current market. Why? When mortgage rates are this low and wages are increasing as they are today, overall affordability increases, enabling home buyers to stretch their mortgage dollars further. It’s just another area where a trusted professional can help simplify the process and give guidance along the way.

Bottom Line

There are many possible steps in a real estate transaction, but they don’t have to be confusing. To understand your best course of action, reach out to a local real estate professional, ensuring you have a trusted advisor who will help you feel confident and informed at every turn.

Posted on February 25, 2020 at 7:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Home Buying, Home Ownership, Real Estate Agent | Tagged , , , , ,

Rate Forecast

Here is our interest rate Forecast for the next year.

Our Chief Economist, Matthew Gardner, predicts that rates for a 30-year fixed mortgage will stay between 3.8% and 3.9% for 2020.

He doesn’t see rates going above 4.0% until at least the first quarter of 2021.

This is obviously great news for buyers as their payments will stay much lower as compared to having a rate at the long-term average of 7.5%.

If you would like to see the slides from Matthew Gardner’s Forecast presentation, we would be happy to get those in your hands.  Just let us know if we can help!

Posted on January 25, 2020 at 12:59 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Home Buyers, Home Buying, New Buyers, Northern Colorado Real Estate | Tagged , , ,

The 2020 Real Estate Projections That May Surprise You

The 2020 Real Estate Projections That May Surprise You

This will be an interesting year for residential real estate. With a presidential election taking place this fall and talk of a possible recession occurring before the end of the year, predicting what will happen in the 2020 U.S. housing market can be challenging. As a result, taking a look at the combined projections from the most trusted entities in the industry when it comes to mortgage rateshome sales, and home prices is incredibly valuable – and they may surprise you.

Mortgage Rates

Projections from the experts at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac all forecast mortgage rates remaining stable throughout 2020:The 2020 Real Estate Projections That May Surprise You | Keeping Current Matters

Since rates have remained under 5% for the last decade, we may not fully realize the opportunity we have right now.

Here are the average mortgage interest rates over the last several decades:

  • 1970s: 8.86%
  • 1980s: 12.70%
  • 1990s: 8.12%
  • 2000s: 6.29%

Home Sales

Three of the four expert groups noted above also predict an increase in home sales in 2020, and the fourth sees the transaction number remaining stable:

The 2020 Real Estate Projections That May Surprise You | Keeping Current Matters

With mortgage rates remaining near all-time lows, demand should not be a challenge. The lack of available inventory, however, may moderate the increase in sales.

Home Prices

Below are the projections from six different expert entities that look closely at home values: CoreLogicFannie Mae, Ivy Zelman’s “Z Report”, the National Association of Realtors (NAR), Freddie Mac, and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).Each group has home values continuing to improve through 2020, with four of them seeing price appreciation increasing at a greater pace than it did in 2019.The 2020 Real Estate Projections That May Surprise You | Keeping Current Matters

Is a Recession Possible?

 

In early 2019, a large percentage of economists began predicting a recession may occur in 2020. In addition, a recent survey of potential home purchasers showed that over 50% agreed it would occur this year. The economy, however, remained strong in the fourth quarter, and that has caused many to rethink the possibility.

For example, Goldman Sachs, in their 2020 U.S. Outlook, explained:

“Markets sounded the recession alarm this year, and the average forecaster now sees a 33% chance of recession over the next year. In contrast, our new recession model suggests just a 20% probability. Despite the record age of the expansion, the usual late-cycle problems—inflationary overheating and financial imbalances—do not look threatening.”

Bottom Line

Mortgage rates are projected to remain under 4%, causing sales to increase in 2020. With growing demand and a limited supply of inventory, prices will continue to appreciate, while the threat of an impending recession seems to be softening. It looks like 2020 may be a solid year for the real estate market.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/01/02/the-2020-real-estate-projections-that-may-surprise-you/

Posted on January 22, 2020 at 7:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Real Estate Market | Tagged , , , , ,

Rate Bounce

Rates hit near-historic lows this week and are now at 3.49% for a 30-year mortgage.

There have only been two other times in history when rates have been this low- April 2013 and October 2016.

It’s interesting to see what happened soon after bottoming out these last two times.

In April of 2013 rates hit 3.41%. By August 2013 they had jumped to 4.40%.

Rates bottomed again in October 2016 at 3.42%. Just two months later in December 2016 they were 4.32%.

Each time the increase was nearly 1% within just a few months.

So, if history proves itself as a guide, we can’t expect these rates to last for long.

Posted on September 18, 2019 at 8:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged ,