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June
1

 

The last two years caught many of us off guard—and not just because of the pandemic. They also ushered in the hottest housing market on record, with home prices rising nationally by nearly 19% in 2021, driven primarily by low mortgage rates and a major supply shortage.1

 But while some had hoped 2022 would bring a return to normalcy, the U.S. real estate market continues to boom, despite rising interest rates and decreasing affordability.

 So what's driving this persistent demand? And is there an end in sight?

Here are three factors impacting the real estate market right now. Find out how they could affect you if you're a current homeowner or plan to buy or sell a home this year.

 MORTGAGE RATES ARE RISING FASTER THAN EXPECTED

 Over the past couple of years, homebuyers have faced intense competition for new homes—in part due to historically low mortgage rates that were a result of the Federal Reserve's efforts to keep the economy afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 However, in response to a concerning level of inflation, the Fed is now reversing those efforts by raising the federal funds rate. And as a result, mortgage rates are rising, as well. Few experts predicted, though, that mortgage rates would go up as quickly as they have.

 In January 2022, the Mortgage Bankers Association projected that rates would reach 4% by the end of this year.2 By mid-April, however, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate had already hit 5%, up from around 3% just one year prior.3 On a $400,000 mortgage, that 2% difference could translate into an additional $461 per monthly payment.

 Since then, mortgage rates have continued on an upward trend. So what impact are these rising rates having on demand? While many buyers had hoped for a cooling effect, experts warn that may not be the case.

 Ali Wolf, chief economist at housing market research firm Zanda, told Fortune magazine, "Rising mortgage rates are having a counterintuitive effect on the housing market. Home shoppers are actually sprung into action in an attempt to buy a home before mortgage rates rise any higher."4

 Since inventory remains low, the resulting "race" has kept the homebuying market highly competitive–at least for now.

 What does it mean for you?

 While current 30-year fixed mortgage rates represent an increase over previous months, they remain well below the historical average of 8%.5 As inflation across the economy continues, the Fed is likely to raise rates further this year. Buyers should act fast to secure a good mortgage rate. We'd be happy to refer you to a lender who can help.

 For sellers, speed is also of the essence. The pool of potential buyers may shrink as mortgages become more expensive. And if you plan to finance your next home, you'll want to act quickly to secure a favorable rate for yourself. Contact us today to discuss your options.

 HOME PRICES KEEP CLIMBING

 History shows that higher interest rates don't necessarily translate to lower home prices. In fact, home prices rose 5% between 1980 and 1982, a period of significantly higher mortgage rates and inflation.5

 Forecasters expect that home prices will continue to go up throughout 2022, though likely at a slower pace than the 18.8% increase of the last 12 months.4 Bank of America predicts that prices will be up approximately 10% by the end of this year, while Fannie Mae estimates 11.2%.6,7

 In addition to limited supply and a race to beat rising mortgage rates, home values are also climbing because of positive economic indicators, like low unemployment.8 Plus, rents are soaring–up 17% from a year ago–which is prompting more first-time homebuyers to enter the market.9 Add to that the continued popularity of remote work, and it's easy to see why property prices continue to surge.

 However, it's not all bad news for prospective homebuyers. Economists expect that as mortgage rates rise, the rate of appreciation will continue to taper, though the effect may be gradual.

 "Eventually mortgage rates will slow down home prices," according to Ken Johnson, an economist at Florida Atlantic University interviewed by Marketwatch.10 "We should not see rapid upticks in prices as mortgage rates rise." Forecasters agree—Fannie Mae expects price increases to slow to 4.2% in 2023.7

 What does it mean for you?

 While the pace of appreciation is likely to decrease next year, home prices show no signs of going down. However, current labor shortages are leading to higher salaries and better job opportunities for many workers. You may find that your income growth outpaces home prices, making homeownership more affordable for you in the future.

 For homeowners, the outlook's even brighter. You could find yourself sitting on a nice pile of equity. Contact us for a free home value assessment to find out.

 INVENTORY REMAINS EXTREMELY LOW

 As noted, one of the largest hurdles to homeownership is a lack of inventory. According to a February 2022 report by Realtor.com, there's an expanding gap between household formation and home construction, which has resulted in a nationwide shortage of 5.8 million housing units.11

 The origins of this shortage date back to the 2008 housing crisis, during which crashing home values led contractors to stop building new properties—a trend that has not been fully reversed.12

 That decline in home construction also resulted in a decrease in the number of home building professionals, a trend that was exacerbated by job losses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, many builders are limited by their ability to find qualified labor.

 Another major challenge is a staggering increase in the cost of materials. Pandemic-related supply chain shortages have been a significant driver, with home building material costs rising on average 20% on a year-over-year basis. The price of framing lumber alone has tripled since August 2021.13

 These trends add tens of thousands of dollars to the cost of a typical home. Factors like a lack of buildable land in many areas, restrictive zoning, and a shortage of developers are also contributing to the issue.14

 Most homebuying experts agree that the lack of inventory is the primary factor driving rising housing prices and unprecedented competition for homes. With available housing units near four-decade lows, the end of the current housing boom is not yet in sight.15

 What does it mean for you?

 Prospective buyers should be prepared to compete for a home, since low inventory can lead to multiple offers. You may also need to expand your search parameters. If you're ready to look, we're ready to help.

 For sellers, the picture is rosier. In this strong market, your home may be worth more than you realize. Contact us to find out how much your home could sell for in today's market.

 WE'RE HERE TO GUIDE YOU

 While national real estate trends can provide a "big picture" outlook, real estate is local. And as local market experts, we can guide you through the ins and outs of our market and the local issues that are likely to drive home values in your particular neighborhood.

 If you're considering buying or selling a home, contact one of our Montague Miller & Co real estate professionals to schedule a free consultation. We can help you assess your options and make the most of this unique real estate landscape.

Sources:

  1. Marketwatch - https://www.marketwatch.com/picks/home-price-appreciation-will-normalize-what-5-economists-and-real-estate-pros-predict-will-happen-to-home-prices-in-2022-01646940841
  2. Bankrate -
    https://www.bankrate.com/mortgages/mortgage-rate-forecast
  3. CNBC -
    https://www.cnbc.com/2022/04/16/heres-how-much-the-same-mortgage-costs-now-compared-to-last-year.html
  4. Fortune -
    https://fortune.com/2022/03/23/housing-market-interest-rate-economic-shock/
  5. National Association of Realtors -
    https://www.nar.realtor/blogs/economists-outlook/instant-reaction-mortgage-rates-april-07-2022
  6. Fortune -
    https://fortune.com/2022/03/16/home-prices-2022-2023-bank-of-america-forecast-mortgage-rates/
  7. Fortune -
    https://fortune.com/2022/03/07/what-home-prices-will-look-like-2023-fannie-mae/
  8. Fortune -
    https://fortune.com/2022/03/17/home-prices-drop-housing-markets-california-michigan-massachusetts-corelogic/
  9. CNN -
    https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/23/success/us-national-rent-february/index.html
  10. MarketWatch -
    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/home-prices-increase-at-one-of-the-fastest-rates-on-record-but-higher-mortgage-rates-should-slow-future-growth-11648559497
  11. com -
    https://www.realtor.com/research/us-housing-supply-gap-expands/
  12. NPR -
    https://www.npr.org/2022/03/29/1089174630/housing-shortage-new-home-construction-supply-chain
  13. Investopedia -
    https://www.investopedia.com/housing-market-dips-in-early-march-2022-5222449
  14. NPR -
    https://www.npr.org/2022/03/29/1089174630/housing-shortage-new-home-construction-supply-chain
  15. Fortune -
    https://fortune.com/2022/03/14/housing-market-key-metric-inventory-zillow-bad-for-buyers/

May
23

Some Highlights

What does the rest of the year hold for the Houseing Market? Here's what experts have to say about what lies ahead.

Home Prices are projected to rise and so are mortgage rates.  Experts are also forecasting another strong year for home sales as people move to meet their changing needs. 

Connect with a Montague Miller & Co local real estate professional so you can make your best move this year.

Resources: Keeping Current Matters, CoreLogic, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, NAR, Calculated Risk, MBA

March
9

Key Factors That Impact Affordability Today | MyKCM

You can't read an article about residential real estate without the author mentioning the affordability challenges that today's buyers face. There's no doubt homes are less affordable today than they were over the last two years, but that doesn't mean homes are now unaffordable.

There are three measures used to establish home affordability: home prices, mortgage rates, and wages. Let's look closely at each of these components.

1. Home Prices

The most recent Home Price Insights report by CoreLogic shows home values have increased by 19.1% from last January to this January. That was one reason affordability declined over the past year.

2. Mortgage Rates

While the current global uncertainty makes it difficult to project mortgage rates, we do know current rates are almost one full percentage point higher than they were last year. According to Freddie Mac, the average monthly rate for last February was 2.81%. This February it was 3.76%. That increase in the mortgage rate also contributes to homes being less affordable than they were last year.

3. Wages

The one big, positive component in the affordability equation is an increase in American wages. In a recent article by RealtyTrac, Peter Miller addresses that point:

"Prices are up, but what about wages? ADP reports that job holder incomes increased 5.9% last year but rose 8.0% for those who switched employers. In effect, some of the higher cost to buy a home has been offset by more cash income."

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) also recently released information that looks at income and affordability. The NAR data provides a comparison of the current median family income versus the qualifying income for a median-priced home in each region of the country. Here's a graph of their findings:

Key Factors That Impact Affordability Today | MyKCM

As the graph shows, the median family income (shown in blue on the graph) is greater than the qualifying income needed to buy a median-priced home (shown in green on the graph) in all four regions of the country. While those figures may vary in certain locations within each region, it's important to note that, in most of the country, homes are still affordable.

So, when you think about affordability, remember that the picture includes more than just home prices and mortgage rates. When prices rise and rates rise, it does impact affordability, and experts project both of those things will climb in the months ahead. That's why it's less affordable to buy a home than it was over the past two years when prices and rates were lower than they are today. But wages need to be factored into affordability as well. Because wages have been rising, they're a big reason that, while less affordable, homes are not unaffordable today.

Bottom Line

To find out more about affordability in our local area, let's discuss where home prices are locally, what's happening with mortgage rates, and get you in contact with a lender so you can make an informed financial decision. Remember, while less affordable, homes are not unaffordable, which still gives you an opportunity to buy today.

March
9

Highlights

  • Today's housing market is the direct result of low supply and high buyer demand. Here's what that means for you and your plans to buy or sell.
  • For buyers, expect competition, be ready to move fast, and be prepared to submit your strongest offer. For sellers,  know your house will be the center of attention  and that it'll likely sell quickly and get multiple offers.
  • If you're ready to move, let's connect to talk about our local area and how you can take advantage of today's unprecedented housing market.

Resources by Keeping Current Matters, NAR

March
3

The annual inflation rate in the United States is currently around 7.5%—the highest it has been since 1982.1 It doesn't matter if you're a cashier, lawyer, plumber, or retiree; if you spend U.S. dollars, inflation impacts you.

Economists expect the effects of inflation, like a higher cost of goods, to continue.2 Luckily, an investment in real estate can ease some of the financial strain.

Here's what you need to know about inflation, how it impacts you, and how an investment in real estate can help.

WHAT IS INFLATION AND HOW DOES IT IMPACT ME?

Inflation is a decline in the value of money. When the rate of inflation rises, prices for goods and services go up. Therefore, a dollar buys you a little bit less with every passing day. 

The consumer price index, or CPI, is a standard measure of inflation. Based on the latest CPI data, prices increased 7.5% from January 2021 to January 2022.1 A little bit of inflation is considered healthy for the economy, but 7.5% in a single year is high.

How does inflation affect your life? Here are a few of the negative impacts:

  • Decreased Purchasing Power We touched on this already, but as prices rise, your dollar won't stretch as far as it used to. That means you'll be able to purchase fewer goods and services with a limited budget.
  • Increased Borrowing Costs In an effort to curb inflation, the Federal Reserve is expected to raise the federal funds rate. Therefore, consumers are likely to pay a higher interest rate on new mortgages, car loans, and variable-rate credit cards.3
  • Lower Standard of Living  Wage growth tends to lag behind price increases. According to Moody Analytics, when adjusted for inflation, average weekly earnings in January were down 3.1% from a year earlier.4 As such, life is becoming less affordable for everyone. Inflation can force those on a fixed income, like retirees, to make lifestyle changes and prioritize essentials.
  • Eroded Savings  If you store all your savings in a bank account, inflation is even more damaging. As of February 2022, the national average interest rate for a savings account is 0.06%, not nearly enough to keep up with inflation. And economists don't expect that rate to go much higher.3

One of the best ways to mitigate these effects is to find a place to invest your money other than the bank. Even though interest rates are expected to rise, they're unlikely to get high enough to beat inflation. If you hoard cash, the value of your money will decrease every year and more rapidly in years with elevated inflation.

REAL ESTATE: A PROVEN HEDGE AGAINST INFLATION

So where is a good place to invest your money to protect (hedge) against the impacts of inflation? There are several investment vehicles that financial advisors traditionally recommend, including:

  • Stocks Some people invest in stocks as their primary inflation hedge. However, the stock market can become volatile during inflationary times, as we've seen in recent months.5
  • Commodities  Commodities are tangible assets, like oil, livestock, and minerals. The theory is that the price of commodities should climb alongside inflation. But the classic choice–gold–hasn't risen consistently during periods of inflation since the 1970s, according to data from Morningstar Direct.6
  • Inflation-Indexed Bonds Treasury inflation-protected securities, or TIPS, are U.S. government-issued bonds that are indexed to the inflation rate. Bonds are considered low risk, but the returns they offer are generally low, as well.7
  • Real Estate  Real estate prices across the board tend to rise along with inflation and often rise faster than inflation.8 That's one of the reasons demand for real estate is soaring right now.9

We believe real estate is the best hedge against inflation. Owning real estate does more than protect your wealth—it can actually make you money. For example, home prices rose nearly 17% from 2020 to 2021, 10% ahead of the 7% inflation that occurred in the same timeframe.10

Plus, certain types of real estate investments can help you generate a stream of passive income. In the past year, property owners didn't just avoid the erosion of purchasing power caused by inflation; they got ahead.

TYPES OF REAL ESTATE INVESTMENTS

Though there are myriad ways to invest in real estate, there are three basic investment types that we recommend for beginner and intermediate investors. Remember that we can help you determine which options are best for your financial goals and budget.

Primary Residence

If you own your home, you're already ahead. The advantages of homeownership become even more apparent in inflationary times. As inflation raises prices throughout the economy, the value of your home is likely to go up concurrently. At the same time, you've locked in a set mortgage payment for the next 30 years, so you'll be immune to rising rental costs.

If you don't already own your primary residence, homeownership is a worthwhile goal to pursue.

Though the task of saving enough for a down payment may seem daunting, there are several strategies that can make homeownership easier to achieve. If you're not sure how to get started with the home buying process, contact us. Our team can help you find the strategy and property that fits your needs and budget.

Whether you already own a primary residence or are still renting, now is a good time to also start thinking about an investment property. The types of investment properties you'll buy as a solo investor generally fall into two categories: long-term rentals and short-term rentals.

Long-Term (Traditional) Rentals

A long-term or traditional rental is a dwelling that's leased out for an extended period. An example of this is a single-family home where a tenant signs a one-year lease and brings all their own furniture.

Long-term rentals are a form of housing. For most tenants, the rental serves as their primary residence, which means it's a necessary expense. This unique quality of long-term rentals can help to provide stable returns in uncertain times, especially when we have high inflation.

To invest in a long-term rental, you'll need to budget for maintenance, repairs, property taxes, and insurance. You'll also need to have a plan for managing the property. But a well-chosen investment property should pay for itself through rental income, and you'll benefit from appreciation as the property rises in value.

We can help you find an ideal long-term rental property to suit your budget and investment goals. Reach out to talk about your needs and our local market opportunities. 

Short-Term (Vacation) Rentals

Short-term or vacation rentals function more like hotels in that they offer temporary accommodations. A short-term rental is defined as a residential dwelling that is rented for 30 days or less. The furniture and other amenities are provided by the property owner, and today many short-term rentals are listed on websites like Airbnb and Vrbo.

A short-term rental can potentially earn you a higher return than a long-term rental, but this comes at the cost of daily, hands-on management. With a short-term rental, you're not just entering the real estate business; you're entering the hospitality business, too.

Done right, short-term rentals can be both a hedge against inflation and a profitable source of income. As a bonus, when the home isn't being rented you have an affordable vacation spot for yourself and your family!

Contact us today if you're interested in exploring options in either the long-term or short-term rental market. Mortgage rates are expected to rise, so you'll want to act fast to maximize your investment return.

 

WE'RE INVESTED IN HELPING YOU

Inflation is a fact of life in the U.S. economy. Luckily, you can prepare for inflation with a carefully managed investment portfolio that includes real estate. Owning a primary residence or investing in a short-term or long-term rental will help you both mitigate the effects of inflation and grow your net worth, which makes it a strategic move in our current financial environment.

If you're ready to invest in real estate to build wealth and protect yourself from rising inflation, contact us. Our team of real estate professionals at Montague Miller & Co, Realtors, can help you find a primary residence or investment property that meets your financial goals. 

The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only.  It is not intended to be financial advice. Consult the appropriate professionals for advice regarding your individual needs.

Sources:

  1. Bloomberg -
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-02-10/u-s-inflation-charges-higher-with-larger-than-forecast-gain
  2. CNN -
    https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/01/economy/inflation-prices-2022-preview/index.html
  3. CNBC -
    https://www.cnbc.com/2022/01/26/the-fed-sets-the-stage-for-a-rate-hike-heres-what-that-means-for-you.html
  4. Reuters -
    https://www.reuters.com/business/us-consumer-prices-rise-strongly-january-weekly-jobless-claims-fall-2022-02-10/
  5. NBC News -
    https://www.nbcnews.com/business/markets/market-slide-dow-falls-700-points-sp-enters-correction-territory-rcna13304
  6. CNBC -
    https://www.cnbc.com/2021/12/20/gold-is-losing-its-status-as-an-inflation-hedge-two-traders-warn.html
  7. Morningstar -
    https://www.morningstar.com/articles/1079158/why-are-inflation-protected-bond-funds-losing-money
  8. The Washington Post -
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/01/04/heres-how-inflation-could-affect-your-next-real-estate-move/
  9. Bloomberg -
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-01-24/is-real-estate-a-good-investment-hedge-against-inflation-what-the-experts-say
  10. CNN -
    https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/20/homes/us-nar-home-sales-december-and-2021/index.html
January
1

Last year was one for the real estate history books. The pandemic helped usher in a buying frenzy that caused home prices to soar nationwide by a record 19.9% between August 2020 and August 2021.1

However, there were signs in the fourth quarter that the red-hot housing market was beginning to simmer down. In the month of October, only 60.3% of sales involved a bidding war—down from a high of 74.5% in April.2 While this trend could be attributed to seasonality, it could also be a signal that the real estate run-up may have passed its peak.

 So what's ahead for the U.S. housing market in 2022? Here's where industry experts predict the market is headed in the coming year.

Mortgage Rates Will Creep Up

Most economists expect to see mortgage rates gradually rise this year after hitting record lows in late 2020 and early 2021.3

Freddie Mac forecasts the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will average 3.5% in 2022, up from around 3% in 2021.4

The Mortgage Bankers Association predicts that rates will tick up to 4% by the end of the year. "Mortgage lenders and borrowers should expect rising mortgage rates over the next year, as stronger economic growth pushes Treasury yields higher," said Mike Fratantoni, chief economist for the Mortgage Bankers Association at their 2001 Annual Convention & Expo in October.5

However, it's important to keep in mind that even a 4% mortgage rate is low when compared to historical standards. According to industry trade blog The Mortgage Reports, "Between 1971 and December 2020, 30-year mortgage rates averaged 7.89%."6

What does it mean for you? Low mortgage rates can reduce your monthly payment and make homeownership more affordable. Fortunately, there's still time to lock in a historically-low rate. Whether you're hoping to purchase a new home or refinance an existing mortgage, act soon before rates go up any further. We'd be happy to connect you with a trusted lending professional in our network.

The Market Will Become More Balanced

In 2021, we experienced one of the most competitive real estate markets ever. Fears about the virus and a shift to remote work triggered a huge uptick in demand. At the same time, many existing homeowners delayed their plans to sell, and supply and labor shortages hindered new construction.

This led to an extreme market imbalance that benefitted sellers and frustrated buyers. According to George Ratiu, director of economic research at Realtor.com, "Prices and sellers reached for the moon [last] year. It looks like we are now about to move back to earth."7

Data from Realtor.com released in November showed that listing price reductions had more than doubled since February 2021. And the average days on market (an indicator of how long it takes a home to sell) has been slowly creeping up since June.7

What's causing this change in market dynamics? The real estate market typically slows down in the fall and winter. But economists also suspect a fundamental shift in supply and demand.

At the National Association of Realtors' annual conference last November, the group's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, told attendees that he expects increased supply to come from an uptick in new construction—which is already underway—and an end to the mortgage forbearance program. "With more housing inventory to hit the market, the intense multiple offers will start to ease," he said.8

Demand is also predicted to wane slightly in the coming year. Rising mortgage rates and record-high prices have made homeownership unaffordable for a growing number of Americans. And in a recent Reuters poll, nearly 80% of property analysts said they expect housing affordability to worsen over the next several years.9

What does it mean for you? If you struggled to buy a home last year, there may be some relief on the horizon. Increased supply and softening demand could make it easier to finally secure the home of your dreams. If you're a seller, it's still a great time to cash out your big equity gains! And with more inventory on the market, you'll have an easier time finding your next home. Reach out for a free consultation so we can discuss your specific needs and goals.

Home Prices Likely To Keep Climbing, But At A Slower Pace

Nationally, home prices rose an estimated 16.8% in 2021.8 But the average rate of appreciation is expected to slow down in 2022.

Danielle Hale, chief economist at Realtor.com, told Yahoo! News, "Home asking prices have decelerated in the second half of 2021, with median listing price growth slipping from a peak of 17.2% in April to just 8.6% in October."10

But experts disagree about how much more property values can continue to climb this year. Goldman Sachs predicts that home prices will rise by 13.5%, while Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are forecasting a 7.9% and 7% rate of appreciation, respectively.2

However, not all analysts are as bullish. The National Association of Realtors predicts a 2.8% rate of appreciation for existing homes and 4.4% for new homes, while the Mortgage Bankers Association expects the average home price to decrease by 2.5% by the end of the year.10,2

According to Hale, "With prices near all-time highs and mortgage rates expected to rise, we expect this slowdown in prices to continue."10

What does it mean for you? If you're a buyer who has been waiting on the sidelines for home prices to drop, you may be out of luck. Even if home prices dip slightly (and most economists expect them to rise) any savings are likely to be offset by higher mortgage rates. The good news is that decreased competition means more choice and less likelihood of a bidding war. We can help you get the most for your money in today's market.

Rents Will Continue To Rise

Along with home, gasoline, and used vehicle prices, rent prices rose dramatically last year. According to CoreLogic, in September, rents for single-family homes were up 10.2% nationally year over year.11 And economists at Realtor.com expect them to climb another 7.1% in 2022.12

"Homes are expensive now...but for most people, the comparison that is most important is how that cost of homeownership is going to compare to the cost of renting," Zillow Senior Economist Jeff Tucker told CNBC in November.13

Tucker also pointed out that rent is less predictable than a mortgage—and more likely to go up along with inflation.13

Real assets, like real estate, are often used as a hedge against inflation. That's because property values typically rise with inflation.14 And when a homeowner takes out a mortgage, they lock in a set housing payment for the next 30 years.

In contrast, renters are at the mercy of the market—and they don't gain any of the benefits of homeownership, like tax deductions, equity, or appreciation.

George Ratiu of Realtor.com told CNBC that he advises buyers to consider their budget and time frame. If they plan to stay in the home for at least three to five years, he believes it often makes sense to buy.13

Fortunately, it's shaping up to be a better year for buyers. "I think 2022 has the promise of providing less competition, a lot more homes to choose from, and, as a result, a lot more approachable prices," Ratiu said.13

What does it mean for you? Both property and rent prices are expected to continue rising. But when you purchase a home with a fixed-rate mortgage, you can rest assured knowing that your monthly mortgage payment will never go up. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer or a real estate investor, we can help you make the most of today's real estate market.

 We're Here To Guide You

While national real estate numbers and predictions can provide a "big picture" outlook for the year, real estate is local. And as local market experts, we can guide you through the ins and outs of our market and the local issues that are likely to drive home values in your particular neighborhood.

If you're considering buying or selling a home in 2022, contact us now to schedule a free consultation. We'll work with you to develop an action plan to meet your real estate goals this year.

Sources:

1. Fortune -
https://fortune.com/2021/11/04/us-home-prices-real-estate-forecast-2022-outlook/

2. Fortune -
https://fortune.com/2021/11/29/housing-market-real-estate-predictions-2022-forecast/

3. Freddie Mac -
http://www.freddiemac.com/pmms/pmms30.html

4. Freddie Mac - https://freddiemac.gcs-web.com/news-releases/news-release-details/freddie-mac-strong-housing-market-will-continue-even-rates-and

5. Mortgage Bankers Association -
https://www.mba.org/2021-press-releases/october/mba-annual-forecast-purchase-originations-to-increase-9-percent-to-record-173-trillion-in-2022

6. The Mortgage Reports -
https://themortgagereports.com/61853/30-year-mortgage-rates-chart

7. Realtor.com -
https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/has-housing-market-peaked/

8. National Association of Realtors -
https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/nars-yun-says-housing-market-doing-well-may-normalize-in-2022

9. Reuters -
https://www.reuters.com/world/us/rise-us-house-prices-halve-next-year-affordability-worsen-2021-12-07/

10. Yahoo! News -
https://www.yahoo.com/now/where-home-prices-headed-2022-130012748.html

11. CNBC -
https://www.cnbc.com/2021/11/16/inflation-rent-for-single-family-homes-surged-10percent-in-september.html

12. Realtor.com -
https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/what-to-expect-in-2022-housing-market/

13. CNBC -
https://www.cnbc.com/2021/11/23/rising-inflation-hot-housing-market-what-you-need-to-know-about-buying-a-home.html
14. Money -
https://money.com/inflation-2021-stocks-bitcoin-gold-reits-commodities/

December
18

2022 Housing Market Forecast [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights

Sources: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, MBA, NAR, Pulsenomics, Zelman, Keeping Current Matters

July
29

As we move into the second half of the year, one thing is clear: the current real estate market is one for the record books. The exact mix of conditions we have today creates opportunities for both buyers and sellers. Here's a look at four key components that are shaping this unprecedented market.

A Shortage of Homes for Sale

Earlier this year, the number of homes available for sale fell to an all-time low. In recent months, however, inventory levels are starting to trend up. The latest Monthly Housing Market Trends Report from realtor.com says:

"In June, newly listed homes grew by 5.5% on a year-over-year basis, and by 10.9% on a month-over-month basis. Typically, fewer newly listed homes appear on the market in the month of June compared to May. This year, growth in new listings is continuing later into the summer season, a welcome sign for a tight housing market."

This is good news for buyers who crave more options. But even though we're experiencing small gains in the number of available homes for sale, inventory remains a challenge in most states. That's why it's still a sellers' market, giving homeowners immense leverage when they decide to make a move.

Buyer Competition and Bidding Wars

Today's ongoing low supply, coupled with high demand, creates a market characterized by high buyer competition and bidding wars. Buyers are going above and beyond to make sure their offer stands out from the crowd by offering over the asking price, all cash, or waiving some contingencies. The number of offers on the average house for sale broke records this year – and that's great news for sellers.

The latest Confidence Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) says the average home for sale receives five offers. (see graph below)

Today's Real Estate Market Explained Through 4 Key Trends | MyKCM

For buyers, the best way to put a compelling offer together is by working with a local real estate professional. That agent can act as your trusted advisor on what terms are best for you and what's most appealing to the seller.

Home Price Appreciation

The competition among buyers is driving prices up. Over the past year, we've seen home price appreciation rise across the country. According to the most recent Home Price Index (HPI) from CoreLogic, national home prices increased 15.4% year-over-year in May:

"The May 2021 HPI gain was up from the May 2020 gain of 4.2% and was the highest year-over-year gain since November 2005. Low mortgage rates and low for-sale inventory drove the increase in home prices."

Rising home values are a big part of why real estate remains one of the top sought-after investments for Americans. For potential sellers, it also means it's a great time to list your house to maximize the return on your investment.

A Rise in Home Values and Equity

The equity in a home doesn't just grow when a homeowner pays their mortgage – it also grows as the home's value appreciates. Thanks to the jump in price appreciation, homeowners across the country are seeing record-breaking gains in home equity. CoreLogic recently reported:

"…homeowners with mortgages (which account for roughly 62% of all properties) have seen their equity increase by 19.6% year over year, representing a collective equity gain of over $1.9 trillion, and an average gain of $33,400 per borrower, since the first quarter of 2020."

That's a major perk for households to leverage. Homeowners can use that equity to accomplish major life goals or move into their dream homes.

If you're thinking about buying or selling, there's no time like the present. Our Montague Miller & Co real estate professionals are prepared to answer your questions. Let's connect to talk about how you can take advantage of the conditions we're seeing today to meet your homeownership goals. 

Research provided by Keeping Current Matters and Core Logic

The information contained, and the opinions expressed, in this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice. Nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. 

March
25

Right now, the housing market is full of outstanding opportunities for both buyers and sellers. Whether you're thinking of buying your first home, moving up to a bigger one, or selling so you can downsize this spring, there are perks today that are powering big moves for people across the country. Here are the top two to keep on the radar this season.

The Biggest Perk for Buyers: Low Mortgage Rates

 Today's most compelling buyer incentive is low mortgage interest rates. The 30-year fixed-rate is now averaging just over 3%. While that's slightly higher than the record-lows from 2020 and earlier this year, it's still way lower than historic norms, making purchasing a home an ongoing perk for hopeful buyers (See graph below):

This is a huge advantage for buyers and helps to make owning a home attainable for more households – and there's good reason to strive for homeownership. The latest Homeowner Equity Report from CoreLogic shows how homeowners saw major gains in their net worth last year, all thanks to owning a home. Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogic, explains: 

"Positive factors like record-low interest rates and a booming housing market encouraged many families to enter homeownership. This growing bank of personal wealth that homeownership affords was noticed by many but in particular for first-time buyers who want a piece of the cake. As a result, we may see more of those currently renting start to enter the market in the near future."

Low mortgage rates are a plus for buyers right now, but experts forecast we'll see them continue to rise as the year goes on. If you're ready to purchase a home, it's wise to get started on the process soon so you can secure today's comparatively low rate.

The Biggest Perk for Sellers: Low Inventory

Today, there are simply not enough houses on the market for the number of buyers looking to purchase them, and it's creating a serious sellers' market. According to Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com:

"Total active inventory continues to decline, dropping 50 percent. With buyers active in the market and sellers still slow to put homes up for sale, homes are selling quickly and the total number actively available for sale at any point in time continues to decline." (See map below):

The lack of houses for sale continues to challenge the market, and with low mortgage rates fueling buyer demand, homes are hard for buyers to find today. According to the latest Realtors Confidence Index Survey by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the average house is now receiving 4.1 offers and is on the market for only 20 days.

Buyers are clearly eager to purchase, and because of the shortage of inventory available, they're often entering bidding wars. This is one of the factors keeping home prices strong and giving sellers leverage in the negotiation process.

Homeowners who are in a position to sell shouldn't wait to make their move. There's a light at the end of the tunnel for today's inventory shortage, so listing this spring will get your house on the market when conditions are most favorable. With low inventory and high buyer demand, homeowners can potentially earn a greater profit on their houses and sell them quickly in the fast-paced spring market.

Bottom Line

Whether you're thinking about buying or selling a home, there are major perks available in today's housing market. Let's connect today to discuss how these favorable conditions play to your advantage in our local area.

First published by Keeping Current Matters 3/25/21

September
22

Earlier this year, realtor.com announced the release of the Housing Recovery Index, a weekly guide showing how the pandemic has impacted the residential real estate market. The index leverages a weighted average of four key components of the housing industry by tracking each of the following:

  1. Housing Demand – Growth in online search activity
  2. Home Price – Growth in asking prices
  3. Housing Supply – Growth of new listings
  4. Pace of Sales – Difference in time-on-market

The index compares the current status "to the January 2020 market trend, as a baseline for pre-COVID market growth. The overall index is set to 100 in this baseline period. The higher a market's index value, the higher its recovery and vice versa."

The graph below charts the index by showing how the real estate market started out strong in early 2020, and then dropped dramatically at the beginning of March when the pandemic paused the economy. It also shows the strength of the recovery since the beginning of May.

The Surging Real Estate Market Continues to Climb | Keeping Current Matters

Today, the index stands at its highest point all year, including the time prior to the economic shutdown.

The Momentum Is Still Building

Though there is some evidence that the overall economic recovery may be slowing, the housing market is still gaining momentum. Zillow tracks the number of homes that are put into contract on a weekly basis. Their latest report confirms that buyer demand is continuing to dramatically outpace this same time last year, and the percent increase over last year is growing.

.The Surging Real Estate Market Continues to Climb | Keeping Current Matters

Clearly, the housing market is not only outperforming the grim forecasts from earlier this year, but it is also eclipsing the actual success of last year.

Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogic, explains it best:

"On an aggregated level, the housing economy remains rock solid despite the shock and awe of the pandemic."

In summary...

Whether you're considering buying or selling, staying on top of the real estate market over the coming months will be essential to your success.

 

 

September
16

When shelter-in-place orders brought the economy to a screeching halt earlier this year, many believed the residential housing market would follow suit. Countless analysts predicted buyer demand would disappear and home values would depreciate for the first time in almost a decade. That, however, didn't happen. It appears the opposite is taking place.

After the bottom fell out of the real estate market immediately following the shutdown, it has come roaring back – and seems to still be gaining steam. Here's a look at two recent reports – one from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and one from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) – showing this growing strength.

Builder Confidence Hits All-Time High

Last week, it was reported that applications for new home purchases with home builders were 39% higher than in July of 2019. That has builder confidence soaring.

Each month, NAHB releases its Housing Market Index, a survey of NAHB members who rate market conditions for the sale of new homes at the present time and over the next six months, as well as prospective buyer traffic for new homes.

This month, they reported that builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes increased to the highest reading in the 35-year history of the series. NAHB Chairman, Chuck Fowke, explained:

"The demand for new single-family homes continues to be strong, as low interest rates and a focus on the importance of housing has stoked buyer traffic to all-time highs…Housing has clearly been a bright spot during the pandemic and the sharp rebound in builder confidence over the summer has led NAHB to upgrade its forecast for single-family starts, which are now projected to show only a slight decline for 2020."

The number of newly constructed homes being built will be almost at the same level as last year, even though the economic shutdown crushed home building earlier in the year.

Existing Homes Are Also Selling Like Hotcakes

Last Friday, NAR released its Existing Home Sales Report. The report revealed that month-over-month sales increased by 24.7%, setting another record for the category. The Wall Street Journal  reported that the increase crushed expert forecasts:

"Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expected a 14.2% monthly increase in sales of previously-owned homes, which make up most of the housing market."

Home sales increased by 8.7% year-over-year.

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for NAR, explained how the resale market is just as hot as the new construction market:

"The housing market is well past the recovery phase and is now booming with higher home sales compared to the pre-pandemic days. With the sizable shift in remote work, current homeowners are looking for larger homes and this will lead to a secondary level of demand even into 2021."

In addition, the Housing Market Recovery Index, which is released monthly by realtor.com, also showed the market is recovering nicely. The latest index reading was 104.8, which means the housing market is doing better than it was in January and February of this year. As a reference, the highest point in the index was a 106.5 in early March, just prior to the health crisis setting in.

In Summary

Both the newly constructed and existing home sale markets are posting numbers greater than a year ago. Real estate is back. If you're thinking of buying or selling, now may be the time to contact an agent for expert counsel.

Research provided by Keeping Current Matters

September
16

Homebuying has been on the rise over the past few months, with record-breaking sales powering through the market in June and July. Buyers are actively purchasing homes, and the momentum is continuing into the fall. It is, however, becoming harder for buyers to find homes to purchase. If you've been thinking about selling your house, the coming weeks might just be the timing you've been waiting for.

According to the Pending Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR):

"Pending home sales in July achieved another month of positive contract activity, marking three consecutive months of growth.

The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI), a forward-looking indicator of home sales based on contract signings, rose 5.9% to 122.1 in July. Year-over-year, contract signings rose 15.5%. An index of 100 is equal to the level of contract activity in 2001."

This means that for the past several months, buyers have signed an increasing number of contracts to purchase homes – well above where the market was at this time last year. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR notes:

"We are witnessing a true V-shaped sales recovery as homebuyers continue their strong return to the housing market…Home sellers are seeing their homes go under contract in record time, with nine new contracts for every 10 new listings."

Below is a graph that shows the impressive recovery of homes sales compared to previous years. The deep blue v marks the slowdown from this spring that turned into an exponential jump in sales that followed through the summer, skyrocketing above years past:Homebuyer Demand Is Far Above Last Year's Pace | Keeping Current Matters

What Does This Mean for Sellers?

If you were thinking about putting your house on the market in the spring, but decided to wait due to the health crisis, it may be time to make your move. Buyers are in the market right now. With so few homes available to purchase, homeowners today are experiencing more bidding wars, creating an optimal time to sell.

Is This Trend Going to Continue?

As CNBC notes, there are no signs of slowing buyer demand this fall:

"The usual summer slowdown in the housing market is not happening this year. Buyers continue to show strong demand, spurred by the new stay-at-home world of the coronavirus and by record low mortgage rates."

Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com, concurred: 

"In a typical year in the housing market, buyer interest begins to wane before seller interest causing the usual seasonal slowdown as we move into the fall. Due to a delayed spring season and low mortgage rates, we could see buyer interest extend longer than usual into the typically quieter fall. Whether this means more home sales will depend on whether sellers participate or decide to stay on the sidelines."

As Hale mentioned, homeowners who are willing to sell their houses right now will play a big role in whether the trend continues. The market needs more homes to satisfy ongoing buyer demand. Maybe it's time to leverage your equity and move up while eager home shoppers are ready to purchase a house just like yours.

Bottom Line

If your current home doesn't meet your family's changing needs, contact a local Montague Miller & Co real estate professional to help you sell your house and make the move you've been waiting for all year.

Research provided by Keeping Current Matters

April
30

 

Why the Housing Market Is a Powerful Economic Driver | MyKCM

With businesses starting to slowly open back up again in some parts of the country, it's important to understand how housing can have a major impact on the recovery of the U.S. economy. As we've mentioned before, buying a home is a driving financial force in this process. Today, many analysts believe one of the first things we'll be able to safely bring back is the home building sector, creating more jobs and impacting local neighborhoods in a big way. According to Robert Dietz in The Eye on Housing

 "The pace of new home sales will post significant declines during the second quarter due to the impacts of higher unemployment and shutdown effects of much of the U.S. economy, including elements of the real estate sector in certain markets. However, given the momentum housing construction held at the start of 2020, the housing industry will help lead the economy in the eventual recovery."

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) notes the impact new construction can have on the job market:

"Building 1,000 average single-family homes creates 2,900 full-time jobs and generates $110.96 million in taxes and fees for all levels of government to support police, firefighters and schools, according to NAHB's National Impact of Home Building and Remodeling report."

These employment opportunities, along with the home purchase, drive the economy in a major way. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently shared a report that notes the full economic impact of home sales. This report summarizes:

"The total economic impact of real estate related industries on the state economy, as well as the expenditures that result from a single home sale, including aspects like home construction costs, real estate brokerage, mortgage lending and title insurance."

Here's the breakdown of how the average home sale boosts the economy:Why the Housing Market Is a Powerful Economic Driver | MyKCMAs noted above in the circle on the right, the impact is almost double when you purchase new construction, given the sheer number of workers it requires to design, build, equip, and finalize the sale of the home. The NAHB paints a clear picture of these roles:

"The NAHB model shows that job creation through housing is broad-based. Building new homes and apartments generates jobs in industries that produce lumber, concrete, lighting fixtures, heating equipment and other products that go into a home remodeling project. Other jobs are generated in the process of transporting, storing and selling these products.
Additional jobs are generated for professionals such as architects, engineers, real estate agents, lawyers and accountants who provide services to home builders, home buyers and remodelers."

 

The same NAR report also breaks down the average economic impact by state:Why the Housing Market Is a Powerful Economic Driver | MyKCMOn an emotional level, what's most important for today's consumers to feel confident about is the safety component that goes into the process. Mitigating the risk of essential personnel at this moment in time is more crucial than ever as we all aim to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Fortunately, the NAHB has put immense effort into a plan that prioritizes the health and safety of home builders and contractors:

"This is why NAHB and construction industry partners have developed a Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Plan specifically tailored to construction job sites. The plan is customizable and covers areas that include manager and worker responsibilities, job site protective measures, cleaning and disinfecting, responding to exposure incidents, and OSHA record-keeping requirements."

_______

Buying a home is a substantial economic driver today, and when new construction picks back up again, it will be an even stronger recovery force throughout the country. If you're in a position to buy a home this year, you can have a significant impact on your local neighborhoods and safely make the move you've been waiting for. 

first pubished in Keeping Current Matters

April
7

Some Highlights

  • Expert insights are painting a bright future for housing when the economy bounces back – and it will.
  • We may be facing challenging economic times today, but the housing market is poised to help the economy recover, not drag it down.
  • Connect with your trusted real estate advisor today, to make sure you're informed and ready when it's time to make your move.

Previously published by Keeping Current Matters, April 7, 2020

August
5

The Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® 2nd Quarter Home Sales Report, a custom report prepared by Virginia REALTORS®, is available. In addition to providing housing metrics, this report provides you with an in-depth look into local, state, and national economic conditions including unemployment rate comparisons, job change by industry, monthly permits for new residential construction, and more! It's a great way to understand the real estate market in a holistic way. 

Report Takeaways:

Economic Conditions 

• Job growth has slowed in the Charlottesville area; however, the region's Educational Services sector continues to boom. An extremely low unemployment rate suggests that local businesses are having a hard time finding qualified workers in the region. 

• New residential construction activity remains steady with little evidence of acceleration to meet pent-up demand. 

• Interest rates are even lower now than they were at the beginning of the year, and there is no indication of significant increases in the months to come. 

Housing Market Conditions 

• Sales activity continues to be down slightly from last year in the overall CAAR region, and remained essentially flat in Albemarle County. 

• After declining at the start of the year, the median sales price trended up in the 2nd quarter, rising $13,650 compared to a year ago. The fastest price growth is occurring in the City of Charlottesville, with prices up nearly $27,000 from this time last year. 

• Homes continue to stay on the market longer on average. The average days on market in the 2nd quarter rose 3 days from last year to 54 days. 

View the entire detailed CAAR 2019 2nd Quarter Home Sales Report here. 

First publised by The Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®

January
9

 

IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wed., Jan. 9 th, 2019

Home Buying Slows for Fourth Quarter, Year-End Receives High Marks, & Lack of Inventory Continues to be a Challenge

Greater Charlottesville Area 2018 Fourth Quarter & Year-End Highlights:

• Home sales decreased 3.2% (841) compared to Q4 2017 (869), while year-end indicated a 5.7% gain.

• The median sales price remained steady at $300,000 compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a 4.6% growth.

• The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 63, 8-days lower than in Q4 2017, while year-end showed a 13.8% drop (9-days fewer).

• New listings declined 7.4% (764) compared to Q4 2017 (825), as year-end marked a 1.5% increase.

• Pending sales weakened 4.9% (704) compared to Q4 2017 (740), while year-end showed a 3.5% gain.

• Inventory of homes for sale dropped 10.5% (891) compared to Q4 2017 (995).

National Outlook While the 2017 housing market was marked by renewed optimism fueled by stock market strength, higher wages and a competitive environment for home sales, 2018 delivered a more seasoned prudence toward residential real estate. Home buyers, now steeped in several years of rising prices and low inventory, became more selective in their purchase choices as housing affordability achieved a ten-year low.

Albemarle County:  Home sales decreased 13.5% (371) compared to Q4 2017 (429), while year-end indicated a 4.2% gain. Median sales price decreased 3.4% ($396,064) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a slight growth (1.1%). The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 57, 13-days lower than in Q4 2017, while yearend showed a 12.1% drop (7-days fewer).

City of Charlottesville:  Home sales decreased 5.1% (112) compared to Q4 2017 (118), while year-end indicated a 7.0% gain. Median sales price increased 9.9% ($344,500) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a 11.0% growth. The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 43, 5-days lower than in Q4 2017, while year-end showed a 13.9% drop (5-days fewer).

Fluvanna County: Home sales decreased 10.2% (106) compared to Q4 2017 (118), while year-end indicated a minimal decline (.2%). Median sales price increased 4.9% ($225,500) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a 4.0% growth. The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 62, 2-days lower than in Q4 2017, while year-end showed a 15.7% drop (11-days fewer).

Greene County Home sales increased 25% (80) compared to Q4 2017 (64), while year-end indicated a 13.2% gain. Median sales price increased 6.7% ($253,493) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a slight growth (1.5%). The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 40, 18-days lower than in Q4 2017, while yearend showed a 22.7% drop (15-days fewer).

"When comparing the six localities at the end of the year, Greene County saw the largest increase for both new listings (20.4%) and pending sales (29.3%)," said CAAR 2019 President Tele Jenifer. "These figures could indicate that residents recognized an opportunity to use the low inventory to their advantage."

Louisa County Home sales increased 6.0% (89) compared to Q4 2017 (84), while year-end indicated a slight gain (1.8%). Median sales price increased 10.4% ($245,000) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end marked a 7.7% growth. The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 62, 9-days lower than in Q4 2017, while year-end showed a 5.8% drop (4-days fewer).

Nelson County Home sales increased 48.2% (83) compared to Q4 2017 (56), while year-end indicated a 23.4% gain. Median sales price increased 10.9% ($239,500) compared to Q4 2017, as year-end remained unchanged at $235,000. The median days on the market in the 4th Quarter was 145, 13-days lower than in Q4 2017, while year-end showed a 21.3% drop (36-days fewer).

"At year-end Nelson County saw the largest gain for closed sales (23.4%)," said CAAR 2019 President-Elect Tom Woolfolk. "One reason for this growth could be the median sales price – it remained unchanged compared to 2017 ($235,000)."

About CAAR The Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR) represents more than 1,300 real estate professionals in Charlottesville and Albemarle and the surrounding areas of Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, and Nelson counties. This 2018 Fourth Quarter & Year-End Market Report is produced by the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® using data from the CAAR MLS, pulled Sat., Jan. 5, 2019. For more information on this report or the real estate market, contact a REALTOR® today using MYCAAR.COM. NOTE: The term REALTOR® is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics.

 

July
12


Greater Charlottesville Area 2018 Second Quarter Highlights:

• Home sales climbed 7.5% (1,290) compared to Q2 2017 (1,200), led by an increase (23.6%) in attached homes. 

• Greater Charlottesville median sales price rose slightly to $314,500 (1.6%) compared to this time last year ($309,500).

• The median days on the market in the 2nd Quarter was 45, 10-days lower than in Q2 2017. 

• New listings increased 7.5% (1,691) compared to Q2 2017 (1,573), as pending sales also improved by 12.8% (1,238) compared to this time last year (1,098). 

• Inventory of homes for sale declined -8.6%, resulting in 4.0 months supply of inventory compared to 4.8 months supply in Q2 2017.



National Outlook 
Inventory continues to be lower in year-over-year comparisons, and home prices are predicted to rise than not, but sales and new listings are forecast to finish the summer on an upswing. The housing supply outlook in several markets is beginning to show an increase in new construction and builders are moving away from overstocked rental units to new developments for sale. 

Greater Charlottesville 
The median sales price increased 2.1 percent to $348,200 for detached homes and 6.5 percent to $256,741 for attached homes. Median days on market decreased 15.5 percent for detached homes and 29.8 percent for attached homes.

 "The Greater Charlottesville market continues to deliver strong numbers year-over-year for the second quarter," said CAAR President Arleen Yobs. "While the median sales price increased slightly compared to this time last year, we showed a significant growth in both closed sales and pending sales, which bodes well as we move into the third quarter."

"Buyers entering the market are reacting quickly to the limited inventory of homes for sale," said President-Elect Tele Jenifer. "That is evident considering five out of six localities showed a 12% drop or more in median days on the market." 

Albemarle County

The median sales price increased 0.8 percent to $450,000 for detached homes and 0.9 percent to $254,718 for attached homes. Median days on market decreased 12.7 percent for detached homes but remained flat for attached homes.

 

City of Charlottesville The median sales price increased 1.3 percent to $357,000 for detached homes and 10.6 percent to $276,500 for attached homes. Median days on market remained flat for detached homes but decreased 37.0 percent for attached homes.

Fluvanna County  

The median sales price increased 1.6 percent to $222,500 for

detached homes and 5.6 percent to $232,000 for attached homes. Median days on market decreased 19.3 percent for detached homes. Median days on market was at 8-days for attached homes. Greene County

The median sales price decreased 2.1 percent to $259,000 for detached homes but remained flat for attached homes. Median days on market increased 3.3 percent for detached homes and remained flat for attached homes. Louisa County The median sales price decreased 8.1 percent to $228,950 for detached homes but increased 4.7 percent to $335,000 for attached homes. Median days on market decreased 13.0 percent for detached homes but increased 290.9 percent (11-days in Q2 2017 vs. 43-days in Q2 2018) for attached homes.

Nelson County

The median sales price decreased 17.4 percent to $289,000 for detached homes but increased 77.6 percent to $196,250 for attached homes. Median days on market decreased 31.1 percent for detached homes and 61.5 percent for attached homes.

About CAAR The Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR) represents more than 1,300 real estate professionals in Charlottesville and Albemarle and the surrounding areas of Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, and Nelson counties. This 2018 Second Quarter Market Report is produced by the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® using data from the CAAR MLS, pulled Thurs., July 5, 2018. For more information on this report or the real estate market, contact a REALTOR® today using MYCAAR.COM.

NOTE: The term REALTOR® is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics.

This report was published by CAAR.com July 11, 2018

May
29

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have climbed from 3.95% in the first week of January up to 4.61% last week, which marks a 7-year high according to Freddie Mac. The current pace of acceleration has been fueled by many factors.

Sam Khater, Freddie Mac's Chief Economist, had this to say:

"Healthy consumer spending and higher commodity prices spooked bond markets and led to higher mortgage rates over the past week.

Not only are buyers facing higher borrowing costs, gas prices are currently at four-year highs just as we enter the important peak home sales season."

But what do gas prices have to do with interest rates?

Investopedia explains the relationship like this:

"The price of oil and inflation are often seen as being connected in a cause-and-effect relationship. As oil prices move up or down, inflation follows in the same direction."

You may have noticed that filling your gas tank has become substantially more expensive in recent months. The average national gas price has climbed nearly $0.50 from the beginning of the year, leading to the highest price for Memorial Day weekend since 2014.

As rates go up, your purchasing power goes down, but don't worry; rates are still well below the averages we've seen over the last four decades.

"Freddie Mac said this year's higher rates have not yet caused much of a ripple in the strong demand levels for buying a home seen in most markets, but inflationary pressures and the prospect of rates approaching 5 percent could begin to hit the psyche of some prospective buyers."

Buying sooner rather than later will help lock in a lower rate than waiting, as the experts believe rates will continue to climb. Even a small increase in interest rates can have a big impact on your monthly housing cost.

Bottom Line

If you are planning on buying a home this year, keep an eye on gas prices the next time you're at the pump. If you start to feel a big jump in price, know that rates are probably on their way up, too.

April
28

 

Greater Charlottesville Area 2018 First Quarter Highlights:

• Home sales climbed 13.7% (691) compared to Q1 2017 (608), led by an increase (28.3%) in attached homes.

• Greater Charlottesville median sales price rose to $309,145 (13.8%) compared to this time last year ($271,629).

• The median days on the market in the 1 st Quarter was 70, 11-days lower than in Q1 2017.

• Pending sales increased 8.8% (1,134) compared to this time last year (1,042), as new listings declined slightly (1.7%).

• Inventory of homes for sale declined -13.9%, resulting in 3.5 months supply of inventory compared to 4.3 months supply in Q1 2017.

National Outlook New residential real estate activity has been relatively slow in the first quarter of 2018, yet housing is proving its resiliency in a consistently improving economy. Some markets have had increases in signed contracts, but the vast majority of the nation continues to experience fewer closed sales and lower inventory compared to last year at this time. Despite there being fewer homes for sale, buyer demand has remained strong enough to keep prices on the rise, which should continue for the foreseeable future.

Greater Charlottesville Closed Sales increased 9.1 percent for Single-Family Detached homes and 28.3 percent for Single-Family Attached homes. Pending Sales increased 1.0 percent for Single-Family Detached homes and 35.1 percent for Single-Family Attached homes. Inventory decreased 13.3 percent for Single-Family Detached homes and 16.3 percent for Single-Family Attached homes.

"The Greater Charlottesville market continues to show higher median sales price, lower median days on the market, and extremely low supply of inventory," said CAAR President Arleen Yobs. "While many of these trends match what most of the country is seeing, our market's closed sales continue to show substantial growth year-over-year."

"The homes for sale in the Greater Charlottesville market are moving rapidly, which can have a direct impact on the sales price," said President-Elect Tele Jenifer. "Four out of six localities showed a higher median sales price compared to this time last year – most prominently in the City of Charlottesville (14.1%) and Fluvanna County (17.8%)."

See outlooks for Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson counties and read the complete report here.

Press release published April 17, 2018 by Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®

January
22

Forbes has published their ranking of the best states in which to do business, and Virginia landed near the top at #5 Best State to do Business. The Commonwealth's high ranking can be attributed to several factors, including Virginia's Gross State Product, which totaled $480 billion as of November 2017. The state's median household income is currently $65,015, and the cost of doing business is just 0.9% above the national average.

Additionally, Virginia's college attainment is an impressive 37%, and the job market has grown 1.4% over the last year. As Virginia REALTORS®'recent economic impact report revealed, Virginia's real estate industry is the state's second largest generator of direct economic activity.

The Old Dominion State has landed other top spots on recent Forbes lists, coming in at #2 in Regulatory Environment, and #8 in Quality of Life.

Source: Virginia Realtors Blog, Robin Jedlicka, 11/29/2017

January
9

Video Courtesy of The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce, Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®, NBC 29, UVA, Charlottesville-Albemarle Convention & Visitors Bureau

Rich with history and infused with energy, it's no wonder Charlottesville has been named the best place to live!*.

A melting pot of business, education, arts, and leisure pursuits, Charlottesville is truly a great place to call home! Charming for both its academic and recreational and leisure opportunities, including hiking, biking, canoeing, gold and other athletics, as well as theater and music, Charlottesville is consistently acclaimed by publications as one of the most livable cities in the country. Outstanding health care facilities, one of the best school systems in the Commonwealth, and an unspoiled countryside ensure a high quality of life.

Read more...  http://www.montaguemiller.com/about-charlottesville-va 

Agents in our Montague Miller & Co, REALTORS® offices are always excited to share why they agree the Charlottesville area is America's #1 community! Plan to visit soon and experience Charlottesville and the beautiful countryside of Albemarle and surrounding counties for yourself! Find an experienced agent who LIVES the area here:  http://www.montaguemiller.com/agent-roster.html

 

 

July
8

where is housing headed 2016 title graphicWith the overall economy just inching along, some experts are questioning whether the housing market can continue its momentum throughout the rest of the year. People are beginning to ask questions such as:

  • Will disappointing economic news adversely impact housing?
  • Is affordability a major concern in today's real estate market?
  • Are we approaching a new housing bubble?
  • Are mortgage standards too tight? Or have they loosened too much?

Freddie Mac, in their April Economic Outlook, addresses the disappointing economic news and what impact they think it will have on housing:

"Recent data darkened the growth outlook for the first quarter of 2016. However, despite the disappointing economic reports, we still forecast housing to maintain its momentum in 2016.

We've revised down our forecast for economic growth to reflect the recent data for the first quarter, but our outlook for the balance of the year remains modestly optimistic for the economy."

What about real estate?

Freddie Mac was much more optimistic about housing…

"We maintain our positive view on housing. In fact, the declines in long-term interest rates that accompanied much of the recent news should increase mortgage market activity."

They went on to conclude:

"We expect housing to be an engine of growth. Construction activity will pick up as we enter the spring and summer months, and rising home values will bolster consumers and help support renewed confidence in the remaining months of this year."

July
16

Looking to move to the Charlottesville or Central Virginia area? Thinking of selling or buying a new home in Albemarle, Amherst, Greene, Louisa, Culpeper, Orange, or Madison County?

Check out CAAR's Second Quarter 2014 Market Report. This is a great resource to get a snapshot of the area's current market with data from the CAAR MLS system.

Read the full report

Central VA 2nd Qtr Real Estate Market Report

Central VA 2nd Qtr Real Estate Market Repor

 

January
19

The year end report for the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORs has been published and we find a continued, slow improvement in the number of sales and the median prices for those homes sold.  The sales in our area increased by 2% with a new median sales price of $270,000.  It was also noted that the prices have returned to their highest level since 2007.

Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORs Market Report

Our area seems to be similar to others around the nation-the number of houses available to buy has declined.  With the spring market beginning it looks like a really good time to bring your house or land on the market.    Call us at Montague Miller & Company for a free competitive market analysis.

Report Details 2014

April
14

The  Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORs has released their Market Report for the  1st Quarter of 2015 and the numbers are as expected.The median sales price for the region has increased from $244,250 in 2014 to $256,750 for this quarter.  I hope you will read the entire report but here is a quick summary.  Condo sales increased by 40%-a number which surprised me.  Pending sales have increased 18% over the same time frame last year.  The number of sales closed remained almost identical but there are many more properties set to close this year.

 

July
22


June real estate market stats 2015 from CAAR

August
17

july 2015 montague miller real estate market report

 

September
22

Greater Charlottesville Market Report August 2015

 
November
5

3rd Quarter CAAR Real Estate Market Report

 
November
13

october 2015 CAAR real estate sales report

 
December
11

November 2015 Market Report

 
March
11

Montague Miller Real Estate Feb 2016 Graphic

 
April
19

 

infographic 1st quarter 2016 sales info greater charlottesville area