Most Markets Still Favor Sellers, Especially Where Home Prices Are Lowest

Most housing markets still favor sellers despite increasing buyer-friendliness, especially in more affordable markets in the South and Midwest. Knock’s Buyer-Seller Market Index found that 71 of America’s 100 largest housing markets still remain seller’s markets. “Although the general consensus is the housing market is undergoing a much-needed reset, which is welcome news to many home shoppers who will have more choices and less competition for the foreseeable future, not all markets are seeing the same trends,” said Knock Co-Founder and CEO Sean Black.  “In reality, there’s a great housing divide taking place in the U.S., especially in the East and South, where despite a slowdown in sales and slower home price growth, many markets continue to favor sellers.” Fayetteville,…

Home Values Slip For Second Month Straight

The value of a typical American home dropped for the second straight month, down 0.3% from July to August in the largest monthly dip since 2011. Zillow’s latest market report found that affordability is directing market declines, with lower-priced homes staying hotly competitive while expensive markets see drastic declines. The U.S. typical home value is now $356,054. Areas that saw big gains during the pandemic are now susceptible to fast drops, losing their appreciation momentum from the Great Migration. Midwestern markets, which tend to be more affordable, remain hot, while Western markets are comparatively tanking. Volatile mortgage rates are impacting these areas as borrowers find it increasingly hard to even qualify for a loan, let alone house-hunt. “Substantial day-to-day and…

July Pending Home Sales Slip Slightly, Buoyed By Moderating Interest Rates

Following moderating mortgage rates, pending home sales slipped only slightly in July, down 1% from June. The National Association of Realtors’ Pending Home Sales Index posted a reading of 89.8 last month. A reading of 100 is equal to the level of contract activity in 2001. Pending sales were down 19.9% YOY, slipping from last month’s 20% YOY reading. It was the second consecutive month of decline and the eighth in the last nine months. “In terms of the current housing cycle, we may be at or close to the bottom in contract signings. This month’s very modest decline reflects the recent retreat in mortgage rates. Inventories are growing for homes in the upper price ranges, but limited supply at…

Competition For Low-Priced Homes Heats Up

In a reversal of a pandemic trend, competition for low-priced homes has surpassed that for mid- and high-priced homes, according to a new Zillow analysis. July saw inventory rise 11% month-over-month and  19.3% YOY in the most expensive third of the housing market, while the middle third also saw a 12.7% MOM and 17.3% YOY increase. Inventory grew by only 11.2% MOM and 10.4% YOY in the lowest-priced tier. A year ago, the inventory of the lowest-priced homes was growing twice as fast as expensive homes, and the upper tiers saw the strongest competition, the reverse of this month’s trend. “Buyers are stretched thin when it comes to affordability, and they are flocking to the lowest-priced homes on the market…

Zillow Partners With Once-Rival Opendoor

Zillow is partnering with once-rival Opendoor in a multi-year deal, the company announced in a press release. Home sellers using Zillow will be able to request an Opendoor offer to sell their home while on the platform. Customers will be able to use it by itself or package it with other Zillow services such as financing, closing, and agent selection. Zillow will get a referral fee when a customer accepts an offer from Opendoor. “Zillow is the most visited brand in online real estate. As we bring the housing super app to life, we’re empowering our millions of visitors to understand all their options and transact in the way that best meets their housing needs,” said Zillow Chief Operating Officer,…

Dr. Skylar Olsen Rejoins Zillow

Dr. Skylar Olsen has returned to Zillow as Chief Economist, the company announced. “I’m honored to return to Zillow as chief economist and help home buyers, sellers, and renters across the country better understand their options and how to best navigate what has become an increasingly trying housing market,” Dr. Olsen said. “I truly revel in the opportunity to provide the tools and information to help people make some of the biggest, most impactful decisions of their lives.” Dr. Olsen worked at Zillow from 2012 to 2020, with her most recent position being Senior Principal Economist. She lefts two years ago to found her consultancy, Reimagine Economics, and to serve as head of economics at digital mortgage startup Tomo. She…

Industry Leaders To Cover Travel Expenses For Employee Abortions

By KIMBERLEY HAAS At least four industry leaders will cover the travel expenses for employee abortions after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade on Friday. The New York Times named Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Zillow in a Tweet on Monday. There were 4,307 Retweets, 705 Quote Tweets, and over 17,300 Likes as of Tuesday morning. The media relations departments at Bank of America and JPMorgan put out press releases about their stress test results on Monday. Bank of America announced plans to increase its quarterly common stock dividend beginning in the third quarter of 2022. “Our responsible growth strategy over the last decade has put us in a strong position to support our clients…

Payments Surpass Cost-Burdened Threshold As Affordability Sinks To Lowest Point In 35 Years

Housing payments have surpassed the dreaded 30% cost-burdened threshold thanks to the 30-year fixed rate’s recent half-point jump. Black Knight reports that it now costs $2,103 to make the principal and interest (P&I) payment on an average-priced home with a 20% downpayment. That equates to 36.2% of the median household income and sinks affordability to its lowest level in more than 35 years. Payments as a percentage of income are now higher than the previous record of 34.1% in July 2006, and significantly up from the long-term average of 25.1%. The Department of Housing and Urban Development defines cost-burdened families as those “who pay more than 30% of their income for housing” and “may have difficulty affording necessities such as…

Affordability Hits 15-Year Low

Affordability is at a 15-year low, with mortgage payments up in 45 of the 50 largest U.S. metros, according to Zillow’s latest market report. Buying a typical U.S. home with interest rates of 5.78% would result in monthly payments of $2,127. That’s up 36% year to date, and 51% YOY. Those monthly payments would account for 28% of homeowners’ monthly income, inching closer to the 30% benchmark that means homeowners are cost-burdened. The report noted that since rates have risen above the April data it references, homeowners may already be at that 30% threshold. Rising interest rates and soaring home prices have pushed mortgages out of reach for many Americans, leading to diminishing demand that has economists worried that recession…

Opendoor Launches New Financing App

Opendoor has rolled out a new financing app in California that the company claims allows consumers to get pre-approved for a mortgage in under two minutes. The company announced the roll-out on its website, and the app went live Thursday, June 2. It is part of the company’s suit of products including Buy with Opendoor, Opendoor Backed Offers, and Opendoor Complete. “With this new financing app, Californians can better understand their loan options and the down payment they need to buy a home. They simply download the app and answer four short questions,” the release reads. “Our technology then identifies loan options that are available from over 1,000 programs based on the customer’s needs and criteria, such as the mortgage…