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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.”

 

NAR News: The New Truth-in-Lending Integrated Disclosure Act Replaces HUD-1 Settlement Statement

Finley Maxson, the Senior Counsel for the National Association of Realtors (NAR), explains the key new changes that will surely affect the world of real estate beginning August 1st, 2015.

Going forward, those real estate transactions that compel a buyer to secure a mortgage will be required to utilize the new disclosure forms created by the “CFPB” (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau). The National Association of Realtors has provided detailed information this topic on REALTOR.org, thereby allowing this post to highlight a video produced by NAR and to quickly encapsulate the many changes – thereby focusing on just how those changes might alter your next St. George real estate transaction.

NAR’s new Truth-in-Lending Act / RESPA Integrated Disclosures creates a whole new set of timing requirements and liabilities. Obligating lenders to be much more concise in their preparation of loan doc disclosures for today’s consumers.

Now held to a higher standard, the connection between the mortgagee and others involved in the transaction –like the closing agent and the mortgage broker – will be forever altered as the lender could be considered responsible if certain costs surpass the acceptance limitations set forth in the Truth-in-Lending Disclosures (TRID).

With the new TRID requiring a three-day waiting period prior to closing, many suspect these changes may create new lender delays.

Thanks to the Dodd-Frank Act enacted July 21, 2010, the US Congress required the establishment of the Truth-in-Lending Disclosures as a means of improving consumer protection and the disclosures made to potential borrowers. The TRID combines the familiar TILA (Truth In Lending Act) and RESPA (Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act) into two new forms: the Loan Estimate and the Closing Disclosure. These two new disclosures will be required in all transactions involving home loans beginning August 1st, 2015.

According to Realtor.com the two new mortgage disclosure forms will do the following:

  • Loan estimate. This form replaces both the early Truth in Lending statement and the good-faith estimate and provides a summary of loan terms as well as estimated loan and closing costs. Buyers must receive this three days after applying for a loan, so they can have time to shop around.
  • Closing disclosure. This form replaces both the final Truth in Lending statement and the HUD-1 settlement statement. It sums up the final costs for the loan and closing and explains how payments are to be made. Buyers must receive this three days before closing, so they have enough time to fully review it.

NAR News: The New Truth-in-Lending Integrated Disclosure Act Replaces HUD-1 Settlement Statement

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

NAR ‘s Head Economist Speaks: Market Stabilization, Pent-up Demand, Shrinking Inventory, and Vacation Home Sales

 

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released some interesting numbers regarding the pending sales for March 2014. According to NAR’s chief economist, Lawrence Yun, the national market has witnessed an overall increase of 3.4%  – over the prior month of February 2014. Based on those numbers, Mr. Yun has pronounced that the market looks to be stabilizing – See Chart Below. Quick to point out that while the market has increased 3.4% over the last 30 days, the overall housing market is down approximately 7.9% from one year ago.

NAR Says Pending Sales Rise in March

NAR Says Pending Sales Rise in March

Highlighting the overall effect of our national buyers pent up demand to perform, Mr. Yun noted that the US real estate market has “turned the corner.” Although he continued with a somewhat obvious caveat, “but I’m not sure of the strength of the recovery.”

When further questioned over which segment of the US real estate market looked to be on track to making the fastest recovery, Mr. Yun was quick to point to the upper end of the market (of course), “Bolstered by a five-year run on the Bull [stock ] market,” those homes over $1 million or more – are making the fastest recovery.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 4.42.33 AM

And in keeping with the wealthy doing well… Vacation home purchases have also seen a steady increase over the past 24 months – enjoying an uptick of over 30% from 2012 to 2013.  While making significant gains over the past few years, the vacation sector still has a long way to go before reaching the heights of the 2005/2006 real estate market. Unfortunately, as seems to always be the case, the lower end of the market is continuing to lag behind.

Build baby build…

According to Mr. Yun, because of an overall lack of inventory throughout the US at the bottom end of the market, that sector has suffered the most. With a diminished US inventory of affordable housing being a primary concern, NAR’s chief economist noted that the data he was looking at showed that a significant upturn in new construction starts had already begun. And according to his logic, more homes…mean more buyers.

Housing Starts Down

Housing Starts Down

Go out make it a great Thursday…

Learning is a gift… Even when pain is your teacher” ~ Maya Watson