Houston Realtors Ban “Master” From Home Listings

Houston homes will no longer have master bedrooms or master bathrooms. Instead, the Houston Association of Realtors will use the phrases “primary bedroom” and “primary bathrooms,” the Houston Chronicle reported. The change comes after some realtors said the word “master” has a stigma associated with it. The Chronicle reported that HAR agreed to change the phrases on its Multiple Listing Service and its website on June 15. “This topic is currently being debated across the real estate industry, and the national standards organization for MLSs will be considering a similar change that could make ‘primary’ the new standard nationally,” HAR said in a statement shared with the Chronicle. Don’t expect the changes to go nationwide just yet. The National Association…

Google To Ban Housing Ads Targeted To ZIP Codes

As the nation grapples with issues on racial equity, Google has announced that it will no longer allow realtors to target ads for housing based on ZIP code – in addition to several other changes. The change, announced on Google’s blog, is designed to “improve access to housing, employment and credit opportunities.” “This policy will prohibit impacted employment, housing, and credit advertisers from targeting or excluding ads based on gender, age, parental status, marital status, or ZIP Code, in addition to our longstanding policies prohibiting personalization based on sensitive categories like race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, national origin or disability,” said Scott Spencer, Google’s vice president of product management, ads privacy and safety. Spencer said Google will provide more information…

Another Report Points To Housing Rebound

More listings. Higher prices. Realtor.com’s Weekly Housing Trends Report released Thursday finds that the latest housing data points to a rebound for the housing market as buyers and sellers begin to return to the market after the economic shutdowns in reaction to the coronavirus pandemic. “Weekly data shows we have taken the first step in the process of returning to healthy housing conditions: getting buyers and sellers off the sidelines,” said Javier Vivas, director of economic research for realtor.com. “The improvement in new listings this week is a sign the market is on its way to recovery, but the deficit in total inventory will be a drag on sales. Many buyers are ready and itching to get back on the market,…

Home Sales, Listings Plummet In April

The coronavirus pandemic slammed the brakes on a once-roaring housing market. A new report released Monday by Redfin found that sales and listings experienced historic declines from a year ago – with home sales dropping 22.5 percent in April from a year ago, while the number of homes newly listed for sale plunged 42.4 percent. “The supply of homes for sale declined even more dramatically than homebuyer demand in April,” Redfin lead economist Taylor Marr said. “While home sales fell the most in more expensive markets, in more affordable areas prices continued to increase. Even during the depths of the slowdown last month, the market was still faster and more competitive than it was a year earlier.” The report also found:…

Survey: Online Home Searches Revving Up

As states across the country slowly begin to reopen for business, realtor.com released a survey Monday that may suggest that homebuyers are ready to jumpstart shopping for a new house in the coming weeks and months. The survey found increased activity on realtor.com, with listing visits, saves and shares “all up significantly since the first wave of shelter-in-place orders took effect on March 16.” “Data suggests that home shoppers who had paused their search are now picking it back up, and the spring homebuying season won’t be lost, but merely pushed into the summer months,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist, realtor.com®. “Tools such as virtual tours and livestream open houses are enabling consumers to safely continue their home search while maintaining social distancing…

Sellers Slowly Returning To Housing Market

A pair of housing reports released Thursday show mortgage applications and new home listings are down amid the coronavirus pandemic, though sellers are slowly beginning to return to the market. Mortgage applications for new home purchases dropped 12 percent in April from a year ago and 25 percent from March, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Builder Application Survey. A realtor.com survey found that for the week ending May 9 there were 29 percent fewer new listings than a year ago, but that decline is significantly lower than the declines of nearly 40 percent in previous weeks. “New home purchase applications severely weakened in April, which coincided with the peak of the social distancing efforts and restrictions on non-essential activities…

New Home Listings Dry Up In April

What spring selling season? Newly listed homes dropped 44.1 percent in April, according to realtor.com’s Monthly Housing Trends Report released Tuesday. That amounts to a loss of 189,000 listings compared to April 2019. “The good momentum we saw at the start of the year has helped to somewhat insulate the housing market from the coronavirus’ negative impact on buyer and seller confidence across the U.S. Although we saw sharp drops in new listings, an increase in the time it takes to sell a home and a flattening of prices in April, May is likely to see some of these metrics worsen,” realtor.com® Chief Economist Danielle Hale said. The report also found: The Northeast saw the greatest decline in new listings at 59.4…

Mortgage Roundup (4/21/21) – New Listings, Predictions & Credit

Good morning! Today is Tuesday, April 21. President Trump says he will suspend immigration into the U.S. to protect jobs amid coronavirus fallout. Georgia will reopen gyms, hair salons, and bowling alleys this week. North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, is reportedly in grave danger after surgery.  And in mortgage and housing news … NEW LISTINGS: The number of new houses going on the market is plummeting as the coronavirus pandemic wears on, according to an analysis released by Redfin. FORBEARANCE SPIKE: The number of loans in forbearance continues to rise as borrowers cope with economic hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic. CALABRIA WRONG: Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mark Calabria said on April 1 he expected 300,000 Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans – or 1…

Number Of Houses Being Listed Tumbles

The number of new houses going on the market is plummeting as the coronavirus pandemic wears on, according to an analysis released Monday by Redfin. The analysis found that there were fewer homes for sale in March than at any time since January 2012, when Redfin started tracking the data. New listings in March dropped 10.8 percent compared to March 2019. “Real estate activities nearly ground to a halt in some parts of the country by the end of March, disrupted by shelter in place laws,” Redfin lead economist Taylor Marr said. “Right now, sellers need to decide if they’ll list their home for sale among all the economic uncertainty.”  Redfin also found: By the last week of March, new…