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NAR’s June Real Estate Trends

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) will publish its second-quarter update for America’s Metro home prices on Wednesday, August 7, 2019.

As such, this seemed like the perfect time to do a quick review of the U.S. real estate market for June 2019. According to NAR, National real estate statistics for the month of June indicate America’s realtors sold 5.27 million units. The Median price of those sold units was roughly $285,700. 

June Real Estate Trends

  • First-time homebuyers up 31% on a year-over-year basis
  • All cash buyers down 22% from 2018
  • Distressed real estate sales down 3% from 2018
  • June real estate sales down 2.2.2% from 2018
  • June median real estate sales price up 4.8% from 2018
  • June real estate listings hit 1.9 2 million nationally–up 4.3.3% from 2018
  • June Days on Market: 27
  • Lack of real estate inventory for mid-to-lower priced homes elevates asking price
  • Signed contracts in June up 1.6% from 2018

 Looking forward, NAR’s housing forecasts for 2019 projects approximately 5.3 million real estate transactions, slower price growth, and a 30-year fixed mortgage rate of approximately 4 percent.

 National Real Estate Sales by Price Range

  •  $100,000-$200,000 = 36%
  • $250,000-$500,000 = 39%
  • $500,000-$750,000 = 11%
  • $750,000-$1 million = 4%
  • $1 million plus = 3%

Unfortunately as the Dow sold off on August 5, 2019, NAR’s chief economist, Lawrence Yun posted a somewhat ominous tweet for the real estate industry.

 “Mortgage rates this week will reach fresh clothes, but for the wrong reasons. The prospect of a major trade war between the two largest economies in the world is hurting broad business prospects. Businesses spending on factory expansion and software purchases have already declined, and could be exacerbated further due to the latest trade war tensions. Economic recession is becoming a genuine possibility. If there is a job cutting recession, which often occurs with delayed flag after a stock market correction, the low interest rates will not help home sales nor home prices.” Yun concluded his tweet with “hope.”: Let’s hope the satisfactory trade deal can be reached so that the longest US economic expansion can continue along with solid job games and wage growth.”

 

National Association of REALTORS® Confidence Index: Monthly Survey

We’re ending this week with a little good news, the REALTORS® Confidence Index has been released by NAR (National Association of Realtors) and most Realtors concur, the national real estate market is getting better.

The Confidence Index is a critical barometer on the overall strength of the real estate market based on NAR’s monthly Realtor survey sent to over 50,000 real estate professionals. Realtors were queried about their expectations for residential real estate sales, prices and the market conditions in their specific region.

According to the National Association of Realtors, things are looking up for 2015. Despite Mother Nature pounding the Midwest and the eastern seaboard, this year’s heavy winter snow has had little negative affect on the overall consumer confidence index. Increasing across the board, the REALTORS® Confidence Index- improved for all property types during February 2015 compared to January 2014 and a year ago.

A confidence index above 50 signifies that the number of Realtors who answered NAR’s survey believe their markets are “strong” – outnumbering those who viewed them as “weak.”

The overall Realtor confidence index for a single-family residential unit increased to 63 – it was 58 in Jan. 2015 & 60 in Feb. 2014. The national conference index for townhomes/condominiums also got a shot in the arm, though it remains below 50.

According to NAR’s survey, REALTORS® also stated that the FHA’s (Federal Housing Administration) and the GSE’s (Fannie and Freddie) financing regulations made condominium financing challenging to obtain. While there is anecdotal evidence that credit issues (read: tightness) are starting to ease, REALTORS® also credited the market’s dramatic rebound to the steep reduction in the FHA monthly mortgage insurance premium, as well as the introduction of the 3% down payment for conventional mortgages.

National Association of REALTORS® Confidence Index: Just the facts!

  • Confidence about the outlook for the next six months improved in February across all property types.
  • The anticipated seasonal uptick in sales in the spring, the positive effect of low mortgage rates, and lower mortgage insurance premium payments underpinned the increased confidence.
  • REALTORS® reported a severe inventory shortage in most areas, especially for properties in the lower price range and for those that are move-in ready.
  • Although prices have been rising, many homeowners are still reluctant to list as they wait for prices to pick up further to build up more equity.
  • About 19 percent of mortgaged properties, mostly lower priced homes, have equity below 20 percent.

View NAR’s entire Confidence Index here

FHFA Examines Home Prices at Both Regional and MSA Levels

As part of my Saturday morning ritual, I like to start my day trolling the Internet for potentially useful information for my clients, in the hopes of helping those looking to relocate to the greater St. George, Utah, area. Helping them gain critical insight on their own local market.  On a monthly basis the National Association of Realtors puts out their Economists’ Outlook blog which goes around the country gathering pertinent MLS activity data for the sole purpose of drilling down on regional markets. Which more often than not finds itself subject to regional market conditions and variables.

While some may understand many of these abbreviations – I have to assume that some do not. So, as a quick roadmap the acronyms you’re about to bounce into in this rather brief but helpful article, I will provide a quick translation … from gibberish to English:

FHFA = Federal Housing Finance Agency

MSA = Metropolitan statistical area

NAR = National Association of Realtors

  • Earlier this week, we looked at the FHFA and Case-Shiller release focusing on national data trends.  Today, we’ll dig a bit deeper to look at more local data at the regional, state, and city or MSA level.
  • FHFA releases monthly data at the Census division level and quarterly state and metro area data.  Case-Shiller offers data on 20-cities monthly.  Both of these sources confirm the trend seen in NAR measures.
  • At the regional level: the most robust home price gains from a year ago were still in the West in spite of the fact that this region has seen the biggest drop in the growth rate.  NAR reported price change of 6.4% and 6.5% from a year earlier in both June and July in the West.  According to FHFA year over year prices in June 2014 rose 9.4 percent in the Pacific division which includes Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and California and 7.3 percent in the Mountain division which includes Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico.
  • While NAR data showed the smallest price growth from a year ago in the Northeast (0.6% for the year ending in June and 2.7% for the year ending in July), FHFA showed the smallest gains of 1.9 percent in the East South Central Census division which includes the states of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, and Kentucky.
  • State by state data showed that Western states top the list.  Nevada and California each saw house prices rise in the double-digits, 14.8 and 11.4 percent, respectively.  North Dakota is ranked 4th in a list that includes DC in the rankings at number 3.  At the other end, only Mississippi saw a loss in home prices from one year ago.  Connecticut and Alaska each saw home price gains of less than 1 percent.
  • Among cities, Case-Shiller reported the biggest year over year gains in Las Vegas and San Francisco.  Each had more than 12% year over year gains—high, but a marked slowdown.  Miami, Los Angeles, Detroit, and San Diego were next on the list, each showing year over year gains of more than 10 percent from a year ago.  The smallest gains in Case Shiller’s cities were Cleveland at 0.8 percent, Charlotte at 3.8 percent and New York at 4.3 percent.  However, the data provided evidence that the longer trend may be shifting. San Francisco had the smallest month to month price gain whereas New York had the largest.
  • For a more detailed, interactive look at home prices in more than 150 metro areas, see
  • NAR’s quarterly metro area median info graphic.

It’s been a busy night playing with the website, re-building it in anticipation that at some point in the near future, banks will be willing to lend at a slightly more helpful pace. Ultimately allowing those looking to relocate to southern Utah in making a seamless transition; closing escrow on their old place and new St. George home simultaneously.

Have a great Saturday,

Alex Yeager