US House Prices Increase 12.2% Year Over Year

House prices continued their climb in February across the nation and in every region, according to the latest House Price Index released Tuesday by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. The Index found: House prices rose 0.9 percent for the month.From February 2020 to February 2021, prices skyrocketed 12.2 percent.For the nine census divisions, seasonally adjusted monthly house price changes for the month ranged from a 0.3 percent increase in the Middle Atlantic division to a 1.6 percent increase in the Mountain division.  The 12-month changes ranged from 10.5 percent increase in the West North Central division to 15.4 percent increase in the Mountain division. “Annual house price growth acheived a new record high in February,” said Dr. Lynn Fisher, FHFA’s Deputy…

Pending Home Sales Tumble In February

Pending home sales dropped by 10.6 percent in February, with every region of the nation showing significant declines due largely to low inventory, according to a National Association of Realtors report released Wednesday. Not only did sales drop month over month for the second straight month, they dropped 0.5 percent from a year ago as well – breaking a streak of eight months with year-over-year gains. The Northeast Pending Home Sales Index fell 9.2 percent to 92.3 in February, a 3.9 percent drop from a year ago. The Midwest index dropped 9.5 percent to 102.4 last month, down 6.1 percent from February 2020. Pending home sales in the South dropped 13 percent to 133.2 in February, up 2.9 percent from…

Rising Rates Mean Less Home For The Money

What do rising interest rates mean for homebuyers? A whole lot, it turns out. A new report released by Redfin on Monday found that homebuyers lose $23,250 in spending power with a mortgage rate of 3.25 percent versus a 2.75 percent rate, where they were sitting earlier this year. For example, a homebuyer can afford a $506,000 home for $2,500 per month at a 3.25 percent interest rate – down from the $529,250 they could afford on the same budget with a 2.75 percent rate. To put it another way, the monthly payment on a $506,000 home would rise $110 with the higher mortgage rate, from $2,390 to $2,500. “If the $1.9 trillion economic stimulus package that’s set to provide…

US Homes Flying Off The Shelf

More than half of homes that went on the market in the United States earlier this month had an offer within the first two weeks, according to a new report released by Redfin. The report found that 55 percent of houses locked in an offer within two weeks for the week ending January 24. Over the last month, 43 percent of homes had an offer in two weeks – well above the 35 percent rate last year at this time. “Buyers are incredibly hungry for listings, but unfortunately there isn’t much to choose from, and that scarcity is making buyers all the more frenzied,” said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather said. “As a result, the majority of the homes that hit…

Report: Rent Savings Mean Down Payment Options

There may be an upside for the young adults who were forced to move back home with their parents during the pandemic: Homeownership may be within reach sooner than they think. A new report released Thursday by realtor.com found that saving the one-bedroom median rent of $1,533 means that it would take 11 months to save $17,000 – enough for a 5 percent down payment on a $340,000 home, the median-priced home in the United States. “Although many members of the millennial and Gen Z generations were forced to move home because they lost their jobs in 2020, others chose to forgo their rental because they had the opportunity to work remotely and preferred to wait out the pandemic with…

House Prices Surge 11% In One Year

The official results are in, and house prices continue to soar. The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Home Price Index released Tuesday showed prices were up 1 percent in November for the month – and a whopping 11 percent from November 2019 to November 2020. “House prices have risen by at least one percent for six consecutive months,” said Dr. Lynn Fisher, FHFA’s Deputy Director of the Division of Research and Statistics. “The acceleration has been slowing but annual gains now outpace the prior housing boom. Current conditions can be explained by fundamentals, including low rates and tight housing supply, which have been intensified by the pandemic.” For the nine census divisions, seasonally adjusted monthly house price changes from October 2020…

Home Values Grow “With An Exclamation Point”

Fueled by record-low interest rates and scarce inventory, home value growth surged in December by 3.2 percent over the previous quarter – the largest increase in at least a quarter century, according to a new report released by Zillow. Typical home values in the U.S. climbed to $266,104 in December, up 8.4 percent from a year earlier – the highest annual increase since January 2014.  “The housing market ended 2020 with an exclamation point, as home values rose sharply near the end of the year at their fastest quarterly rate on record,” said Jeff Tucker, senior economist at Zillow. “Sales are taking place at a rapid clip as momentum gathering in the market since June is still pushing forward at…

Stay-At-Home Workers Ready To Move

Would you move somewhere else if you were allowed to work remotely on a permanent basis? A survey released Tuesday by Redfin found that two-thirds of US homebuyers and sellers would consider moving (or already have) to a new city if they could work at home on a full-time basis. The survey of 1,400 people who bought or sold a home within the last year or plan to buy or sell a home in the next year found: 34 percent of buyers/sellers have already moved to a different city or area.33 percent would like to move to a different city or area.30 percent of respondents said they have already moved less than 50 miles away from their former home.23 percent…

Home Construction Jobs Withstand Pandemic

Home building employment withstood the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the National Association of Home Builders reported Monday. From May through December, 472,500 residential construction jobs were created – more than offsetting the 456,800 such jobs that were lost in March and April due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Residential construction jobs surged by 22,700 in December. Comparatively, non-residential construction recovered just 61 percent of the jobs that were lost in March and April. Residential construction employment now stands at 3.0 million in December, including 848,000 builders and 2.1 million residential specialty trade contractors, NAHB reported.  The six-month moving average of job gains for residential construction was 27,000 a month. Over the last 12 months, home builders and remodelers added 57,200 jobs on a…

“Million-Dollar Cities” Surge In 2020

The number of “million-dollar cities” surged significantly last year as home values climbed amid the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a report released Monday by Zillow. There are now 312 cities where the typical home value is at least $1 million, with 45 added to the list in 2020, the Zillow analysis found. Overall, the typical value of a home in the United States is $263,000. “In 2020 home values soared nationwide because of incredible demand across all price tiers, which we expect to continue well into 2021,” Zillow senior economist Chris Glynn said. “Despite the label, there are homes available in these communities for less than $1 million, but buyers must be realistic about their wish list and act quickly…