Blog Archives for May, 2012
May 23, 2012
Buying a home may never get any cheaper than this. Several housing experts are predicting that this year will be the last chance for bargain hunters to cash in on the best deals of the weak housing market. With home prices down 34% nationally since 2006 and home loan rates at historic lows, homes have never been more affordable -- but it won't stay this way for much longer. Stuart Hoffman, chief economist for PNC Financial Services, said he expects home prices to flatten out by the third quarter and start climbing by next year.
May 25, 2012
The Markets. Fixed rates on home loans again hit record lows in the past week. Freddie Mac announced that for the week ending May 17, 30-year fixed rates fell from 3.83% to 3.79%. The average for 15 year loans decreased slightly to 3.04%. Adjustable rates rose, with the average for one-year adjustables rising to 2.78% and five-year adjustables increasing to 2.83%. A year ago 30-year fixed rates were at 4.61%. Attributed to Frank Nothaft, Vice President and Chief Economist, Freddie Mac, "The European debt crisis overshadowed improving economic indicators for the U.S. and allowed Treasury bond yields and fixed rates on home loans to ease for another week. For instance, industrial production rose 1.1 percent in April -- the largest gain since December 2010 -- and consumer sentiment in May rose to its highest reading since January 2008, according to the University of Michigan. There was also good news in the home construction industry. Housing starts rose to an annualized rate of 717,000 homes in April, well above the market consensus forecast, and construction on one-family homes increased to its strongest pace in three months. Moreover, homebuilder confidence in May reached its highest reading since January 2008." Rates indicated do not include fees and points and are provided for evidence of trends only. They should not be used for comparison purposes.
May 28, 2012
Adecline in the number of foreclosures and continued job growth. In addition, homebuyers will have better access to home loans as they get their finances in order and improve their credit scores. Some economists, like Trulia's Jed Kolko, expect home prices to pick up even more quickly. Trulia's data shows that the national average for asking prices already increased 1.4% in the first quarter of 2012, compared with the last three months of 2011. One major factor that will drive the trend is the cooling of the foreclosure crisis. Stan Humphries, chief economist for Zillow, said that the percentage of residential loans 90 days or more late, a good predictor of future foreclosures, is "falling fast." That percentage dropped 15% year-over-year to 3.1% through the end of 2011, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. And the decline is accelerating: More than 70% of the decline came in the last three months of the year