One of the top stories in recent real estate headlines was the intensity and frequency of bidding wars. With so many buyers looking to purchase a home and so few of them available for sale, fiercely competitive bidding wars became the norm during the pandemic – and it drove home prices up. If you tried to buy a house over the past two years, you probably experienced this firsthand and may have been outbid on several homes along the way.
But here’s the news you’ve been waiting for: data shows clear signs bidding wars are easing this year.
According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the average number of offers on recently sold homes has declined considerably over the past few months (see graph below):
The graph shows homes were seeing a high of around five offers earlier this year. But the latest data shows that average was down to just shy of three offers per recently sold home. This shift is happening largely because rising mortgage rates moderated buyer demand and slowed home sales, resulting in a growing supply of homes on the market. Essentially, more choices for buyers.
What This Means for You
If you put your home search on pause because you were outbid last year or because you didn’t want to deal with the peak intensity of bidding wars, you can breathe a welcome sigh of relief. While it’s still a sellers’ market, an uptick in inventory gives you a window of opportunity to jump back in. You may still be competing with some buyers, but it likely won’t be anything like it was just a few short months ago.
If you put your plans on pause because of intense bidding wars in recent years, it may be time to kick off your home search. Today, bidding wars are easing and that may mean less competition for you as a buyer. If you’re serious about buying a home or making a move, let’s connect to get started today.
One of the biggest questions people are asking right now is: what’s happening with home prices? There are headlines about ongoing price appreciation, but at the same time, some sellers are reducing the price of their homes. That can feel confusing and makes it more difficult to get a clear picture.
Part of the challenge is that it can be hard to understand what experts are saying when the words they use sound similar. Let’s break down the differences among those terms to help clarify what’s actually happening today.
Appreciation is when home prices increase.
Depreciation is when home prices decrease.
Deceleration is when home prices continue to appreciate, but at a slower or more moderate pace.
Experts agree that, nationally, what we’re seeing today is deceleration. That means home prices are appreciating, just not at the record-breaking pace they have over the past year. In 2021, data from CoreLogic tells us home prices appreciated by an average of 15% nationwide. And earlier this year, that appreciation was upward of 20%. This year, experts forecast home prices will appreciate at a decelerated pace of around 10 to 11%, on average.
The graph below uses the latest data from CoreLogic to help tell the story of how home prices are decelerating, but not depreciating so far this year.
As the green bars show, home prices appreciated between 19-20% year-over-year from January to March. But over the last few months, the pace of that appreciation has decelerated to 18%. This means price growth is still climbing compared to last year but at a slower rate.
As the Monthly Mortgage Monitor from Black Knight explains:
“Annual home price growth dropped by nearly two percentage points . . . – the greatest single-month slowdown on record since at least the early 1970s. . . While June’s slowdown was record-breaking, home price growth would need to decelerate at this pace for six more months to drive annual appreciation back to 5%, a rate more in line with long-run averages.”
Basically, this means, while moderating, home prices are still far above the norm, and we’d have to see a lot more deceleration to even fall in line with more typical rates of home price growth. That’s still not home price depreciation.
The big takeaway is home prices haven’t fallen or depreciated nationwide, they’re just decelerating or moderating. While some unique and overheated markets may see declines, nationally, home prices are forecast to appreciate. And when we look at the country as a whole, none of the experts project home prices will net depreciate or fall. They’re all projecting ongoing appreciation.
If you have questions about what’s happening with home prices in our local area, let’s connect.
If you’re a homeowner or are planning to become one soon, you’re probably looking for clear information about today’s housing market. And if you’ve turned to the news or even just read headlines recently, you might feel like you’re left with more questions than answers. The best way to make sure you get what you need is to work with an expert.
Why You Want To Lean on a Trusted Professional
With any big milestone in life, it’s wise to seek advice from people who are experts in their field. While you likely want that advice to be perfect, perfect simply isn’t possible. But professionals have the knowledge and experience to be able to provide you with the best advice for your situation.
For example, let’s say you need an attorney, so you seek out an expert in the type of law required for your case. They won’t immediately tell you how the case is going to end or how the judge or jury will rule. But what a good attorney can do is discuss the most effective strategies based on their experience and help you put a plan together. They’ll even use their knowledge to work with you to adjust as new information becomes available.
Similarly, the job of a trusted real estate professional is to give you the best advice they can. Just like you can’t find a lawyer to give you perfect advice, you won’t find a real estate professional who can either. That’s because it’s impossible to know exactly what’s going to happen throughout your transaction. But an expert real estate advisor knows market trends and the ins and outs of the homebuying and selling processes.
They’ll use that knowledge to explain both the national headlines and what’s happening in your local area. That way, you have the best of both worlds and can feel confident in your decision to buy or sell. Freddie Macexplains why having an expert on your side is so essential:
“The success of your homebuying journey largely depends on the company you keep. . . . Be sure to select experienced, trusted professionals who will help you make informed decisions and avoid any pitfalls.”
With their expertise, a real estate advisor can anticipate what could happen next and work with you to put together a solid plan. Then, they’ll guide you through the process, helping you make decisions along the way. That’s the very definition of getting the best – not perfect – advice. And that’s the power of working with a real estate advisor.
To get expert advice when you buy or sell a home this year, let’s connect today.
If you’re thinking about buying a home, you likely have a lot of factors on your mind. You’re weighing your own needs against higher mortgage rates, today’s home prices, and more to try to decide if you want to jump into the market. While some buyers may wait things out, there’s a reason serious buyers are making moves right now, and that’s the growing number of homes for sale.
So far this year, housing inventory has been increasing and that’s making the prospect of finding your dream home less difficult. While there are always reasons you could delay making a big decision, there are also always reasons to consider moving forward. And having a growing number of options for your home search may be exactly what you needed to feel more confident in making a move.
What’s Causing Housing Inventory To Grow?
As new data comes out, we’re getting an updated picture of why housing supply is increasing so much this year. As Bill McBride, Author of Calculated Risk, explains:
“We are seeing a significant change in inventory, but no pickup in new listings. Most of the increase in inventory so far has been due to softer demand – likely because of higher mortgage rates.”
Basically, the inventory growth is primarily from homes staying on the market a bit longer (known as active listings). And that’s happening because higher mortgage rates and home prices have helped moderate the peak frenzy of buyer demand.
The graph below uses data from realtor.com to show how much active listings have risen over the past five months as a result (shown in green):
Why This Growth Is Good News for You
Regardless of the source, the increase in available housing supply is good for buyers. More housing supply actively for sale means you have more options as your search for your next home. A recent article from realtor.com explains just how significant the inventory growth has been and why it’s good news for your plans to buy:
“Nationally, the inventory of homes actively for sale on a typical day in July increased by30.7% over the past year, the largest increase in inventory in the data history and higher than last month’s growth rate of 18.7% which was itself record-breaking. This amounted to 176,000 more homes actively for sale on a typical day in July compared to the previous year and more choice for buyers who are still looking for a new home.”
The growth this year is certainly good news for you, especially if you’ve had trouble finding a home that meets your needs. If you start your search today, those additional options should make it less difficult to find a home than it would have been over the past two years.
If you’re ready to jump into the market and take advantage of the increasing supply of homes for sale, let’s connect today. The opportunity is knocking, will you answer?
Whether or not you owned a home in 2008, you likely remember the housing crash that took place back then. And news about an economic slowdown happening today may bring all those concerns back to the surface. While those feelings are understandable, data can help reassure you the situation today is nothing like it was in 2008.
One of the key reasons why the market won’t crash this time is the current undersupply of inventory. Housing supply comes from three key places:
Current homeowners putting their homes up for sale
Newly built homes coming onto the market
Distressed properties (short sales or foreclosures)
For the market to crash, you’d have to make a case for an oversupply of inventory headed to the market, and the numbers just don’t support that. So, here’s a deeper look at where inventory is coming from today to help prove why the housing market isn’t headed for a crash.
Current Homeowners Putting Their Homes Up for Sale
Even though housing supply is increasing this year, there’s still a limited number of existing homes available. The graph below helps illustrate this point. Based on the latest weekly data, inventory is up 27.8% compared to the same week last year (shown in blue). But compared to the same week in 2019 (shown in the larger red bar), it’s still down by 42.6%.
So, what does this mean? Inventory is still historically low. There simply aren’t enough homes on the market to cause prices to crash. There would need to be a flood of people getting ready to sell their houses in order to tip the scales toward a buyers’ market. And that level of activity simply isn’t there.
Newly Built Homes Coming onto the Market
There’s also a lot of talk about what’s happening with newly built homes today, and that may make you wonder if we’re overbuilding. But home builders are actually slowing down their production right now. Ali Wolf, Chief Economist at Zonda, notes:
“It has become a very competitive market for builders where they are trying to offload any standing inventory.”
To avoid repeating the overbuilding that happened leading up to the housing crisis, builders are reacting to higher mortgage rates and softening buyer demand by slowing down their work. It’s a sign they’re being intentional about not overbuilding homes like they did during the bubble.
And according to the latest data from the U.S. Census, at today’s current pace, we’re headed to build a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about 1.4 million homes this year. While this will add more inventory to the market, it’s not on pace to create an oversupply because builders today are more cautious than the last time when they built more homes than the market could absorb.
Distressed Properties (Short Sales or Foreclosures)
The last place inventory can come from is distressed properties, including short sales and foreclosures. Back in the housing crisis, there was a flood of foreclosures due to lending standards that allowed many people to secure a home loan they couldn’t truly afford. Today, lending standards are much tighter, resulting in more qualified buyers and far fewer foreclosures. The graph below uses data from ATTOM Data Solutions on properties with foreclosure filings to help paint the picture of how things have changed since the crash:
This graph shows how in the time around the housing crash there were over one million foreclosure filings per year. As lending standards tightened since then, the activity started to decline. And in 2020 and 2021, the forbearance program was a further aid to help prevent a repeat of the wave of foreclosures we saw back around 2008.
That program was a game changer, giving homeowners options for things like loan deferrals and modifications they didn’t have before. And data on the success of that program shows four out of every five homeowners coming out of forbearance are either paid in full or have worked out a repayment plan to avoid foreclosure. These are a few of the biggest reasons there won’t be a wave of foreclosures coming to the market.
Although housing supply is growing this year, the market certainly isn’t anywhere near the inventory levels that would cause prices to drop significantly. That’s why inventory tells us the housing market won’t crash.
Now that you’ve decided you’re ready to buy a home, it’s time to start your journey! The first step is finding a lender who can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage. Once you have your finances in order, you’ll need to find a realtor who can help you find the perfect home. With their help, you’ll be able to navigate the process of making an offer and closing on your new home. Soon enough, you’ll be the proud owner of your very own piece of the American dream!
The lender is the first step in buying a home . You will need to be pre-approved for a mortgage. Before you can start looking for a home, it’s important to get your finances in order. A lender will help you determine how much you can afford to spend on a new home.
A realtor is someone who specializes in helping people buy and sell homes. They will be able to help you find the perfect home within your budget. Once you’ve found a home you’re interested in, they will also help you navigate the process of making an offer and closing on the sale.
There are a few things to keep in mind when beginning your journey to homeownership. First, it’s important to be realistic about what you can afford. It’s also important to be patient and work with a qualified realtor who can help you find the perfect home. With their help, you’ll be on your way to owning your very own piece of the American dream!
If you’re ready to begin your homeownership journey, contact a lender and realtor today. They can help you get started on the path to homeownership!
Below are lenders I have worked with that have proven to care for their buyers and work hard, past the bumps and issues, and get to the closing table, meaning you’ll be in your new home as soon as possible.
The real estate market is changing, and fast. For two long years, we’ve been in a red-hot seller’s market, where home sellers got exactly what they wanted—high home prices, zero strings attached—and often much more.
If you’re considering looking for a home in this market, here’s a closer look at what to expect.
Old norm: Almost every market was red-hot
“Potential homebuyers need to understand that all real estate is local,” says Bill Gassett, founder of Maximum Real Estate Exposure in Hopkinton, MA. “The national news headlines don’t necessarily apply to every market around the country. In some areas, it has gone from an extreme seller’s market to one that is more balanced. Other areas of the country, however, have not changed as much.”
As for how to get a handle on what’s happening in your local market, it’s a good idea to check how much homes are selling for, and how quickly, in your neighborhood, which can be done on Realtor.com/local. You should also ask what your real estate agent is noticing, since this pro is intimately up to date on any new fluctuations in the market, and can help clients such as yourself navigate those changes as they search for a home.
Old norm: Home sellers had all the power
In the past, sellers were in the driver’s seat when it came to real estate negotiations. They could ask for what they wanted, get it and then some. But now, a combination of rising interest rates and inventory levels has led the market to even out so there’s more room for negotiation.
“If you’re looking to purchase a home, start by researching recent sales in the area,” says Jennifer Spinelli, founder and CEO of Watson Buys in Denver. “This will give you an idea of what similar homes have sold for and help you determine a fair offer price. You can then use this information as leverage in negotiations with the seller.”
And by “negotiations,” this goes beyond cold, hard cash, particularly in today’s cooling market.
“It’s important to remember that sellers are often motivated by factors other than just money,” Spinelli adds. “So if you’re able to offer a quick closing or flexible terms, you may be able to negotiate a lower purchase price.”
Old norm: Homes will practically sell overnight
The amount of homes on the market—and how long they linger there—can also affect the amount of room you have for negotiation. Typically, the longer a home sits without much interest, the more likely the sellers are to negotiate.
And today, inventory levels have risen by 30.7% over the past year, the largest increase in inventory in the data’s history. And while the average time on the market is still fast at 35 days, recent data shows that timeline lengthening.
From a practical budgeting standpoint, Chuck Vander Stelt, a real estate agent with Listing Leaders in Hobart, IN, says to consider factoring time on the market into your home search, especially if your budget is on the tighter end of the spectrum.
“If you are hunting for a deal, try searching for homes that have been on the market for at least two weeks,” he says. “More homes are staying on the market for a longer period of time. It is those homes where homebuyers will find the most opportunity to negotiate on the purchase price, contingencies, and possibly even getting a closing cost concession.”
Old norm: Mortgage rates were at record lows
Although interest rates are still at historic lows, they are on the rise.
“If you are taking on a mortgage, be prepared for higher costs,” says Danielle Hale, chief economist for Realtor.com®. “At the start of the year, rates were around 3% and by mid-June, they were hovering around 6% before the most recent rate hikes.”
She says buyers can prepare for fluctuations in interest rates by asking their lender to run multiple rate scenarios for them before they even start shopping for a home.
“Get pre-approved before you go shopping. But make sure you understand where rates are today and what that means for your budget, as well as what might happen if rates were to climb another half a percent or so,” she advises. “I like to call this ‘rate-proofing your budget.’ It ensures that you are prepared to adjust if mortgage rates change.”
If you’re thinking about selling your house, you may have heard about the housing market slowing down in recent months. While it’s still a sellers’ market, the peak frenzy the market saw over the past two years has cooled some. If you’re asking yourself if you’ve missed your chance to sell your house and make a move, the good news is you haven’t – motivated buyers are still out there. But you do need to price your house right for today’s market. Here’s why.
As Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), says:
“Homes priced right are selling very quickly, but homes priced too high are deterring prospective buyers.”
It’s true buyer demand has slowed over the past few months as higher mortgage rates made it more expensive to buy a home. The result is fewer bidding wars and less competition among buyers (see visual below):
But don’t forget – that’s compared to the severely overheated market we saw over the past two years. According to the latest Confidence Index from NAR:
“. . . 39% of homes sold above list price, down from 51% a month ago and 50% a year ago.”
While this is a slower pace than even one month ago, serious buyers are still actively in the market, and they’re buying homes that are priced right. In fact, the Confidence Index also notes the average home is selling in just 14 days.
If you’re aiming to sell your house, be sure you’re working with your agent to price it for today’s housing market. As buyer demand softens, it’s important to understand this isn’t the same market as last year. It’s not even the same market as just a few months ago. But it is still a sellers’ market.
If you’re ready to sell your house, seek the advice of a real estate professional. In some cases, you’ll need to adjust your expectations accordingly to meet the market where it is today. Selma Hepp, Interim Lead, Deputy Chief Economist at CoreLogic, explains what’s happening and what it means when you sell:
“Signs of a broader slowdown in the housing market are evident, . . . This is in line with our previous expectations and given the notable cooling of buyer demand due to higher mortgage rates. . . . Nevertheless, buyers still remain interested, which is keeping the market competitive — particularly for attractive homes that are properly priced.”
While the housing market has cooled from its overheated frenzy, it’s still a sellers’ market. Let’s connect so you understand what’s happening with buyer demand and home prices in our local area as you get ready to enter the market.
If you put off your home search at any point over the past two years, you may want to consider picking it back up based on today’s housing market conditions. Recent data shows the supply of homes for sale is increasing, giving buyers like you additional options.
But it’s important to keep in mind that while inventory is improving, it’s still a sellers’ market. And that means you need to be prepared as you set out on your home search. Here are three tips for buying the home of your dreams today.
1. Understand How Mortgage Rates Impact Your Homebuying Power
Mortgage rates have increased significantly this year, and over the past few weeks, they’ve been fluctuating quite a bit. It’s important to stay up to date on what’s happening with rates and understand how they can impact your purchasing power when you’re thinking of buying a home. The chart below can help.
Let’s say your budget allows for a monthly mortgage payment in the $2,100-$2,200 range. The green in the chart indicates a payment within or below that range, while the red is a payment that exceeds it.
As the chart shows, even a small change in mortgage rates can have a big impact on your monthly payments. If rates rise, you could exceed your budget unless you pursue a lower home loan amount. If rates fall, your purchasing power may increase, which could give you additional options for your search.
2. Be Open to Exploring Different Options During Your Search
The supply of homes for sale is improving, which gives you more homes to choose from. But historically, supply is still low. That means as you search for homes, if you still don’t find something that meets your needs, it may be worth expanding your search.
A recent article from the Washington Post highlights a few things buyers can consider today. It encourages opening yourself up to more areas. For example, if there’s a location you’ve previously ruled out (like a particular town, for example) it may be worth taking another look.
And if you’re able to, opening your search up to include other housing types, like newly built homes, condominiums, or townhomes can further increase your pool of options. Even as the inventory of homes for sale improves today, finding ways to cast a wider net during your search could help you find a hidden gem.
3. Work with a Local Real Estate Professional for Expert Guidance
Ultimately, you need to be prepared when you set out to buy a home. Jeff Ostrowski, Senior Mortgage Reporter for Bankrate, explains:
“Taking the leap to homeownership can provide a feeling of pride while boosting your long-term financial outlook, if you go in well-prepared and with your eyes open.”
No matter where you’re at in your homeownership journey, the best way to make sure you’re set up for success is to work with a real estate professional. If you’re just starting your search, a real estate professional can help you understand your local market and search for available homes. And when it’s time to make an offer, they’ll be an expert advisor and negotiator to help yours stand out above the rest.
Strategically planning your home search by understanding today’s mortgage rates, casting a wide net, and building a team of experts can be the keys to finding the home of your dreams. To make sure you have expert advice each step of the way, let’s connect.