What’s going on in the Real Estate Market?
Forward looking market indicators suggest we may be seeing a strong spring home-buying season. Data on pending home sales from the California Association of Realtors shows a 23 percent increase in activity between December and January. Pending home sales are forward-looking indicators of future home sales activity, offering solid information on future changes in the direction of the market. A sale is listed as pending after a seller has accepted a sales contract on a property. The majority of pending home sales usually become closed sales transactions one to two months later.
I hear the market is getting better, is this true?
Yes, there has been a significant pent-up demand for homes. Following the recession, household formation in California fell dramatically. The latest estimate shows that some 575,000 fewer households were formed in California between 2008 and 2012 due to economic hardship.
If the household formation trends continued at the pace seen before the recession, California would have not only that many new households, but 60 percent of those households would be homeowners. That means we are missing about 345,000 new homeowners in California. With improving economic conditions and solid employment growth across the state, pend-up demand for homes is evident in the pending sales index for January that California Association of Realtors recently released.
There are obstacles, however, that potential buyers may be facing. For one, Inventory of homes listed for sale is still at historical lows. Despite an increase in inventory in January by 12.1 percent from December of 2013 and by 6.7 percent from a year ago, the supply of homes in the lower price segment of the market continues to fall, while the inventory of homes priced at million dollars and higher went up.
The low inventory environment, however, may be good news for sellers. Potential sellers who have been contemplating of putting their home up for sale may want to take advantage of the low inventory of homes available for sale and list their homes sooner rather than later.
Buying or Selling a Mission Viejo home?
As a experienced Mission Viejo Realtor, Calvin Mackey assist you in every step of the process. I negotiate all of the terms on your behalf and ensure that all of your expectations are met. For more detailed information about buying or selling your home contact Calvin Mackey.
So why do you need a Realtor when you can either search for properties online yourself or check your homes value on sites like Zillow? I get this question often and use to get offended by it, not anymore. The reality is that technology in the real estate industry has advanced rapidly, leading consumers to believe that they can perform the job duties of a licensed Realtor. But little do they know that a whole lot more goes into it than just looking up properties online. The medical field has advanced and offered sites like webMD but if I seriously thought something was wrong that would be the last place I would go to for solid, up to date advice. Save yourself the time and liability! Calvin Mackey with Trademark Realty has an in depth understanding of the Orange County Real Estate market with over 10 years in the real estate business. Check out some additional reasons below why working with a Realtor is always in your best interest.
Thinking about Selling your Orange County home?
As a experienced Mission Viejo Realtor, Calvin Mackey assist you in every step of the process. I negotiate all of the terms on your behalf and ensure that all of your expectations are met. For more detailed information about selling your home contact Calvin Mackey.
California Association of Realtors Press release: January 17, 2014
California home sales decline in December as rates move higher and distressed market continues to shrink!
LOS ANGELES (Jan. 17) – California home sales fell for the fifth straight month in December as the distressed market plays a dwindling role in the state’s housing market. Sales for the year were down 5.9 percent from 2012 as tight housing inventory and higher home prices squeezed out would-be buyers, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) reported.
“We typically see an uptick in distressed sales at the end of the year as lenders try to move these properties off their books,” said C.A.R. President Kevin Brown. “However, the supply of foreclosures and short sales is the lowest it’s been since well before the financial crisis, greatly constraining the number of these transactions. In addition, housing prices are improving across the board, even reaching pre-2007 levels in parts of the Bay Area. Higher prices and rising rates as the Fed slowly tapers are additional factors in the sales slowdown evidenced in the December numbers.”
Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 361,890 units in December, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. Sales in December were down 6.7 percent from a revised 387,860 in November and down 18.6 percent from a revised 444,770 in December 2012. The statewide sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2013 if sales maintained the December pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.
For 2013 as a whole, a preliminary 413,870 single-family homes closed escrow in California, down 5.9 percent from a revised 2012 figure of 439,790.
Home prices reversed a three-month decline and climbed in December. The statewide median price of an existing, single-family detached home rose 3.7 percent from November’s median price of $422,210 to $438,040 in December. December’s price was 19.7 percent higher than the revised $365,840 recorded in December 2012, marking a year and a half of double-digit annual gains and the first time in 15 months that the annual increase was below 20 percent. The median sales price is the point at which half of homes sold for more and half sold for less; it is influenced by the types of homes selling as well as a general change in values.
“While the month-to-month price gain was higher than normal, home prices have been stabilizing in the second half of 2013, which is positive news for buyers who have been putting their home search on hold until prices leveled off,” said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. “California’s housing market experienced strong price growth throughout the year, with the median price surging 27.5 percent for the year as a whole from $319,300 in 2012 to $407,180 in 2013. But again, the increase in the median price can be partly attributed to the increase in sales of higher-priced properties, where tight inventory was less of a factor.”
Other key facts of C.A.R.’s December 2013 resale housing report include:
• The available supply of existing, single-family detached homes for sale dropped in December to 3 months, down from November’s Unsold Inventory Index of 3.6 months. The index was 2.6 months in December 2012. The index indicates the number of months needed to sell the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate. A six- to seven-month supply is considered typical in a normal market.
• The median number of days it took to sell a single-family home also increased to 40.2 days in December, up from 36.7 days in November and from 38.1 days in December 2012.
• Mortgage rates rose in December, with the 30-year, fixed-mortgage interest rate averaging 4.46 percent, up from 4.26 percent in November and up from 3.35 percent in December 2012, according to Freddie Mac. Adjustable-mortgage interest rates in December averaged 2.56 percent, down from 2.61 in November but up from 2.54 percent in December 2012.
Looking to buy or sell a home in the South Orange County area? Call me today to see how you can take advantage of the orange county real estate market. Calvin Mackey Realtor® 714-713-6381
**All information is from the California Association of REALTORS® for informational purposes only.
If you are looking to list your Mission Viejo home for sale then it safe to say that you are hoping for as quick a sale as possible. When selling your home in Mission Viejo, don’t be fooled by the market! Although inventory may currently be low and the average time on the market is less than 60 days there are things you can failed to due that may counter act these positive factors for homeowners looking to sell their home. Set yourself up for success by following these important tips when listing your Mission Viejo home for sale.
Selling Tip#1: The first impression is the only one that counts
Well that old saying that you only get one chance to make a first impression rings true when selling your home. The first impression buyers have of your home is the main thing on their mind when they’re thinking about purchasing it. Chances are buyers have already formed an opinion of your home before they have even walked through the front door. Making sure your homes exterior is well maintained, shrubs are trimmed and the lawn is mowed. Entryways are key points as well, eliminate all the clutter and personal items while making it as inviting and welcoming as possible. You want buyers to be intrigued and curious about what’s around the next corner. Make sure you nail your first impression!
Selling Tip #2: Don’t over do it with UPGRADES
Small and easy repairs are always welcomed when listing your home for sale but complete renovations, not quite! The return on your investment just doesn’t pencil out when you are talking large improvements. Stick to the upgrades that will pay off the most. There are both big and small upgrades that can be done and produce quite a return on the investment. Fresh coats of paint, upgraded fixtures and door handles along with cabinet hardware are just a few little items that can be done. Remember to stick with a basic generic style that will attract the widest audience.
Selling Tip#3: Pricing it to SELL not just to show
This is probably the most difficult discussion I have with homeowners. The key is to sell your home not just show it to potential buyers. Studies show that the most critical time for homes on the market is the first couple of weeks that they are listed. If you home is not properly priced you miss out on the majority of the traffic during the most important time. You need to be willing to embrace what the market tells you about your home. Determine the value of the home based on recent market data and then cut 10-15% off that price. Once this is done at the initial point of listing you will be overwhelmed by the activity and interest. This by far is one of the more important keys in selling your home today.
Selling Tip #4: The kitchen comes first
Everyone thinks they are selling there house but in all actuality they are not, they are selling their kitchen, bathrooms and master bedroom. Out of all these rooms the kitchen comes first! This should be the first room considered when thinking about remodeling as it will return up to 85-90% of your investment. Granite counters may end up costing you a few thousand dollars but watch out if you DON’T have them as buyers will look to deduct up to 3 times the amount for homes without them. Stainless steel appliances draw the most attention and tend to cause home buyers to think “quality/high end”. Treat your kitchen like a safe because it holds the majority of the value in your home.
Selling Tip #5: Keep your home clean
This sounds simple but I don’t just mean clean by your standards I mean “show clean”. Your home should be ready to be shown to any potential buyers at all times, that means the outside as well. Now I know what most moms are thinking, “How am I suppose to keep my home show clean when I have a life to live”? The answer is to get rid of the stuff you don’t need that prevents you from keeping your home in “show clean” condition. Showing request come in at all times of the day and me as your Realtor can not control when someone wants to come and take a look. If they are met by baby gates, messy high chairs and dog hair when they first walk in then chances are it will be a quick look around and they’re outta there. Take the extra 5-10 mins everyday to make sure your home is in show ready condition, it will increase your chances of selling your home in less time.
Selling Tip#6: Brighten it up
Studies have shown that the majority of home buyers are looking for well lit homes that provide as much natural light as possible. This is probably the second most important things buyers look at the moment they walk through the front door. If you can take down the curtains and let as much natural light in the home as possible. Trim the trees or bushes that may be blocking any light into the home through a window. If you don’t have much natural light available make sure to have high wattage bulbs and plenty of light sources to provide them with a clear view.
Selling Tip#7: Find the right Realtor
I can’t stress enough how having the right agent on your side makes and saves you thousands of dollars. Talk to a few different agents and only hire the one you not only feel is the most capable of selling your home for top dollar but the agent you know you can trust. Anyone real estate agent can sell a house but it takes a specific type of agent to do it right while at the same time treating you like the valuable client that you are. Try to find a Realtor that embraces technology as they will utilize more tools to get your home sold in less time and for more money.
Another year, another set of new or revised laws. There are 100s of new or revised laws this year for California, several of which impact the real estate community. Below we have listed just a few that might interest you. Happy New Year and make this year the best yet!
Upgraded plumbing when remodeling:
Beginning on January 1st 2014, alterations or improvements made to a single family home that is more that 20 years of age will cause the 2009 California law that requires the installation of water saving shower heads, faucets and toilets to be installed. Water agencies sponsored the bill to meet the California state goal of limiting water use by up to 20% by 2025. According to Steve Gorman who works in the building department in Sacramento, “It wouldn’t necessarily apply to an improvement such as a new roof”. But he did admit to the laws vagueness and suggested that it may lead to different cities interpreting the law in different ways. This one is a tricky one so be sure to check with the building codes within your local city.
Senate bill 407: Plumbing fixtures
Teen driving and texting:
This one should bring a smile to the face of parents who have teenagers. Although I think its a good idea for everyone including senior citizens. We’ve all given in to the temptation of using our phone JUST at the stoplight, which then turns into just glancing at it while driving and next thing you know your eyes are off the road and on the screen of your smartphone. This bill prohibits drivers under 18 years of age from operating an electronic wireless communications device, even if it is equipped with a hands-free device. This is a great idea as many statistics have shown that car accidents within the US are more common among younger drivers.
Sentate bill 194: Teen texting while driving
Broken meter tickets eliminated:
This law should go over well in cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles. This bill prohibits, until January 1, 2017, a city or county from citing vehicles for parking at an inoperable parking meter or parking payment center for up to the posted time limit. The law protects against any meter failure including power or phone service interruptions to newer, multi-space kiosks. The State Legislature will likely review this subject again in the next few years as the law expires in 2017.
Bill AB 61: Parking meters and payment centers