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Tag Archives: Home Values

May Inventory Surges; Lower Price Tier Still Struggling

The inventory of for-sale homes nationwide spiked in May, but the latest improvement isn't expected to do much for first-time homebuyers and other shoppers challenged by housing affordability concerns. According to Zillow, after dropping in 2012 and remaining low throughout 2013 and the start of 2014, the available stock of for-sale homes climbed 4.3 percent from April to May, marking the third straight month of gains.

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Economists Shrink Building Forecasts in Survey

In a survey of economists, the Wall Street Journal found optimism for housing starts through the rest of the year has dropped, thanks to a slow first half. To begin the year, the consensus view among economists participating in the survey was that housing starts would jump 20 percent this year, rising to 1.11 million units from a total of 924,900 in 2013. Now, that prediction is down to 1.05 million.

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Consumer Sentiment Drops with Wage Expectations

In contrast to a release earlier in the week showing an increase in consumer confidence, the University of Michigan's Index of Consumer Sentiment retreated in May as Americans expressed little hope for income growth. The index, released monthly by UMich and Thomson Reuters, fell back to 81.9 from April's final level of 84.1 and May 2013's 84.5.

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Housing Stock Down for Fourth Straight Month

According to Zillow, more than half of metros in the U.S. currently have fewer homes for sale than last year at this time. In many metros, the company found that inventory is tightest at the lower end of the market, a common price point often desirable by first-time homebuyers.

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Despite Declines, Negative Equity Picture Looks Grim

The company released Tuesday its Negative Equity Report for the first quarter, revealing an estimated 9.7 million homeowners continue to owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth. While the continuing downward trend in underwater rates is a welcome sign of improvement in the housing sector, the company notes that the "effective" negative equity rate remains elevated at more than one in three.

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First-Quarter Refinance Stats Point to Equity Build-Up

According to Freddie Mac's latest report, 39 percent of refinancers last quarter chose to shorten their term, up slightly over the prior quarter and the highest share since 1992. Meanwhile, the share of borrowers extracting home equity stayed relatively low. Together, the two stats suggest borrowers are seeking to strengthen their own equity positions as home values continue to rise, the company says.

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Six New Markets Rebound Fully in February

The number of markets around the nation that have seen home values recover fully rose by six in February, according to data from Homes.com. “February’s rebound progress illustrates how home prices in most markets across the country are appreciating, even in the depths of winter,” said Brock MacLean, EVP for Homes.com. “This is unusual given harsh weather conditions in most markets, but a positive sign as we enter peak season.”

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Home Values Up 5.7% in Q1

Zillow’s Q1 Real Estate Market Report, released Tuesday, shows that home values across the United States are up 5.7 percent (to a national median of $169,800) compared to Q1 2013. This marks the 21st consecutive month that prices, compared year-over-year, have gone up. Even more encouraging is that home values in 527 U.S. cities that saw declines of 10 percent or more during the recession are either at their peak or soon will be.

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Report: Nevada Housing Poised for Steady Improvement

It would appear that the Silver State is slowly making a comeback, according to a new report from Wells Fargo’s Economics Group. Overall, the group believes that Nevada's housing market is on the right track, fueled by rising employment, higher incomes, and a rapidly increasing population. However, inventories "will have to come down further before residential construction can really take off."

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As Markets Come to Boil, Analysts Dispel Bubble Fears

Pro Teck released its March Home Value Forecast, which ranks the hottest metro markets in the country. California claimed nine of the top 10 slots, while Florida claimed seven of the bottom 10 areas for home value appreciation. Though California has shown impressive gains in valuation recently—a trait that often makes California the subject of “new bubble” talk—Pro Teck CEO Tom O’Grady said he does not foresee trouble over the next five years.

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