Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Home Sales Ease, Conditions Mixed

Existing-home sales declined slightly in February, with modest gains in the Northeast and Midwest offset by softer sales in the South and West, NAR says. Sales slipped 0.6 percent nationally to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.02 million units in February from 5.05 million in January, but are 7 percent higher than the 4.69 million-unit pace in February 2009.  “Some closings were simply postponed by winter storms,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist.  “Although sales have been higher than year-ago levels for eight straight months and home prices are much more stable compared to the past few years, the housing recovery is fragile at the moment.”  Housing inventories at the end of February rose 9.5 percent to 3.59 million existing homes for sale, which represents an 8.6-month supply at the current sales pace, up from a 7.8-month supply in January.  Unsold inventory is 5.5 percent below a year ago.  “The key test for a durable recovery comes in the next few months as the tax credit deadline approaches,” Yun said.  The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $165,100 in February, 1.8 percent below February 2009.  Distressed homes, generally sold at discount, accounted for 35 percent of sales.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Fixer-Upper Financing

203k Program Provides Buyers with Renovation Funds
"The word ‘as-is' can indeed be one scary phrase.  Especially when buying a home in today's market where foreclosures and short sales that need fix-up work are plentiful.  But a little-known Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan program that's been around since 1978 can help take the sting out of ‘as-is.'  Only 219 borrowers took advantage of the FHA's 203k program in 2009.  Continued arrow"

Friday, March 12, 2010

February 2010 Market Report for Albuquerque and Rio Rancho areas

Monthly Highlights

• February saw 380 single-family detached home sales, up 10.79 percent from February 2009 and up 8.88 percent from the previous month.

• Pending sales for single-family detached homes are up 46.98 percent from the previous year and increased 5.27 percent from the previous month.

• Market activity in the Rio Rancho areas shows significant improvements when compared to February 2009, with a 37.35 percent increase in detached home sales and a 104.11 percent increase in the number of Pending sales.

PDF File Read the full February 2010 Market Report

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Commercial Market Improvement Will Come Slowly

NAR Chief Economist, Dr Lawrence Yun, predicts high vacancy rates and ubiquitous commercial rent concessions.  Slight employment improvements will help absorption rates for office/warehouse space, and SIOR's (Society of Industrial and Office Realtors) recent survey confirms the forecast of easing in this sector.  More than half the members of SIOR® expect an improvement in Q2 2010.  Rents are down for Office, Industrial, Retail and Multifamily, but not by as much as in Q4 2009, and the trends are improving slightly.  To read the February Commercial Forecast and table on specifics of four commercial sectors, click here.

Home Sales Down But Higher Than a Year Ago

Existing home sales fell in January but are above year-ago levels and prices show signs of stability, NAR says.  Existing single family, townhome, condominium and co-op sales dropped 7.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.05 million units in January from a revised 5.44 million in December.  Compared to January 2009, sales were 11.5 percent higher.  "Most of the completed deals in January were based on contracts in November and December, "says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.  "People who got into the market after the home buyer tax credit was extended in November have only recently started to offer contracts, so it will take a couple of months to close those sales.  Still, the latest monthly sales decline is not encouraging, and it raises concern about the strength of the recovery... Read more.