Scottsdale Real Estate Buying & Selling Trends and Tips

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Nov. 8, 2018

Why Has Housing Supply Increased as Sales Have Slowed Down?

Why Has Housing Supply Increased as Sales Have Slowed Down?

 

According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the inventory of homes for sale this year compared to last year has increased for the last four months, all while sales of existing homes have slowed compared to last year’s numbers.

For over three years leading up to this point, the exact opposite was true; Inventory dropped as sales soared.

NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun shed some light on what could be contributing to this shift,

“This is the lowest existing home sales level since November 2015. A decade’s high mortgage rates are preventing consumers from making quick decisions on home purchases. All the while, affordable home listings remain low, continuing to spur underperforming sales activity across the country.”

Let’s take a deeper look:

Interest Rates

Since January, 30-year fixed mortgage interest rates have increased nearly a full percentage point (from 3.95% to 4.9%). Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the National Association of Realtors, and the Mortgage Bankers Association are all in agreement that rates will continue to increase to about 5.2% over the next 12 months.

“The rise in [mortgage] rates paired with this very strong price appreciation absolutely is slowing housing,” said Fannie Mae’s Chief Economist Doug Duncan.

Even though rates are higher than they’ve been in a decade, they still remain below the average for the 1970s, 80s, 90s, and 2000s!

Mismatch of Inventory

Elizabeth Mendenhall, President of NAR, said it best, “Despite small month over month increases, the share of first-time buyers in the market continues to underwhelm because there are simply not enough listings in their price range.”

Prices of starter and trade-up homes have appreciated faster than their higher-priced counterparts. Over the last 5 years, the lowest-priced homes have appreciated by 47% while the highest-priced homes have appreciated by only 24%.

According to the Institute of Luxury Home Market’s Luxury Market Report, the $1M-and-up price range is now experiencing a buyer’s market. This means that supply (inventory) has finally caught up with demand and buyers are in the driver’s seat when it comes to negotiations. Additionally, many listings in this price range have experienced price cuts in order to entice buyers to put in offers.

Natural Disasters

Although not fully to blame for the national shortage in sales and inventory, natural disasters like Hurricane Florence, Hurricane Michael, and the wildfires on the West Coast have certainly had an impact.

Bottom Line

Additional inventory coming to market could help normalize the housing market and allow incomes to catch up to home prices. For more information about sales and inventory in our area, let’s get together so we can help you make the best decision for you and your family.

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Nov. 1, 2018

Are You Spending TOO Much on Rent?

Are You Spending TOO Much on Rent?

Chances are if you are renting you are spending too much of your income on your monthly housing expense. There is a long-standing ‘rule’ that a household should not pay more than 28% of their income on their rent or mortgage payment. This percentage allows the household to save money for the future while comfortably covering other expenses.

According to new data released from ApartmentList.com49.5 million renters in the United States were cost-burdened in 2017, meaning they spent more than 30% of their monthly incomes on rent. This accounts for nearly half of all renter households in the country and is up 3.1 million from 2007.

When a household is cost-burdened by their monthly housing expense, they are not as easily able to save money for the future. This is a big factor for many renters who dream of owning their own homes someday.

But there is hope for those who are able to save at least a 3% down payment! The percentage of income needed in the US to buy a home is significantly less than renting at 17.1%!

The chart below compares the historic percentage of income needed to rent and buy from 1985-2000 to the first quarter of 2018. As you can see, the cost of renting has climbed above historic numbers while the cost of buying dropped over the same period of time.

Are You Spending TOO Much on Rent? | MyKCM

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many renters who is spending too much of their monthly income on rent, consider saving money by getting a roommate, moving into a less expensive apartment, or even moving in with family. These are all ways to save for a down payment so that you can put your housing costs to work for you!

Posted in Buyers
March 20, 2018

Have You Regained Positive Equity in Your Home?

Regained Positive EquityCoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that 675,000 US homeowners regained positive equity in their homes in 2017. This is great news for the country, as 95.1% of all mortgaged properties are now in a positive equity situation. 92.8% of Arizona homeowners have regained equity in their homes.

U.S homeowners with mortgages (roughly 63% of all the properties) have seen their equity increase by a total of $908.4 billion since the fourth quarter 2016, an increase of 12.2%, year over year.”

Price Appreciation = Good News for Homeowners

Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s Chief Economist, explains:

Home-price growth has been the primary driver of home-equity wealth creation. The CoreLogic Home Price Index grew 6.2 percent during 2017. The largest calendar-year increase since 2013. Likewise, the average growth in home equity was more than $15,000 during 2017, the most in four years.”

He also believes this is a great sign for the market in 2018, saying:

“Because wealth gains spur additional consumer purchases, the rise in home-equity wealth during 2017 should add more than $50 billion to U.S. consumption spending over the next two to three years.”  

This is great news for homeowners! But, do they realize that their equity position has changed?

A study by Fannie Mae suggests that many homeowners are not aware that they have regained equity in their homes as their investment has increased in value. For example, their study showed that 23% of Americans still believe their home is in a negative equity position when, in actuality, CoreLogic’s report shows that only 4.9% of homes are in that position (down from 6.3% in Q4 2016).

Homeowners Regained Positive Equity

The study also revealed that only 37% of Americans believe that they have “significant equity” (greater than 20%) when in actuality, 83% do! This means that 46% of Americans with a mortgage fail to realize the opportune situation they are in. With a sizeable equity position, many homeowners could easily move into a house (either larger or smaller) that better meets their current needs. Fannie Mae spoke out on this issue in their report:

“Homeowners who underestimate their homes’ values not only underestimate their home equity, they also likely underestimate 1) how large a down payment they could make with their home equity, 2) their chances of qualifying for mortgages, and, therefore, 3) their opportunities for selling their current homes and for buying different homes.”

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many Americans who is unsure of how much equity you have built in your home, don’t let that be the reason you fail to move on to your dream home in 2018! Let’s get together to evaluate your situation!

Posted in Sellers
Feb. 20, 2018

Home Prices Continue to Rise

Real Estate expert's reporting agree that Home Prices Continue to Rise Due to Low Inventory. According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, prices appreciated by 6.9% year-over-year from December 2016 to December 2017 on a national level. This marks the fifth month in a row with at least a 6.9% increase. Dr. Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist for CoreLogic, gave insight into the reason behind the large appreciation,

“The number of homes for sale has remained very low. Job growth lowered the unemployment rate to 4.1 percent by year’s end, the lowest level in 17 years. Rising income and consumer confidence has increased the number of prospective homebuyers. The net result of rising demand and limited for-sale inventory is a continued appreciation in home prices.”

Home Prices Continue to Rise

This is great news for homeowners who have gained nearly $15,000 in equity (on average) in their homes over the last year! Those homeowners who had been on the fence as to whether or not to sell will be pleasantly surprised to find out that they now have an even larger profit to help cover a down payment on their dream homes. As we near the traditionally busy spring buyers season, there is still hope for buyers as mortgage rates remain low compared to recent decades. The report also predicted that home price appreciation will slow slightly, rising by 4.3% by this time next year.

Bottom Line: Home Prices Continue to Rise 

If you are looking to enter the housing market, as either a buyer or a seller, let’s get together to go over exactly what’s going on in our neighborhood and discuss your options!

Find Your Home Value Instantly!


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 17 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that! ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

 

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Feb. 20, 2018

Get the Most Money On the Sale of Your Home

There are 2 tried and true ways to Guarantee you will Get the Most Money From Your Home. Every homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive the maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible.

Get the Most Money From Your Home Sale

1. Price it a LITTLE LOW 

This may seem counterintuitive, but let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their homes a little OVER market value will leave them with room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house (see chart below). Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. By doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price but will instead have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the house. Realtor.com gives this advice:

“Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense they’re getting a deal, they’re likely to bid up a property that’s slightly underpriced, especially in areas with low inventory.”

2. Use a Real Estate Professional

This, too, may seem counterintuitive. The seller may think they would make more money if they didn’t have to pay a real estate commission. With this being said, studies have shown that homes typically sell for more money when handled by a real estate professional. A study by Collateral Analytics, reveals that FSBOs don’t actually save any money, and in some cases may be costing themselves more, by not listing with an agent. In the study, they analyzed home sales in a variety of markets in 2016 and the first half of 2017. The data showed that:

“FSBOs tend to sell for lower prices than comparable home sales, and in many cases below the average differential represented by the prevailing commission rate.”

The results of the study showed that the differential in selling prices for FSBOs when compared to MLS sales of similar properties is about 5.5%. Sales in 2017 suggest the average price was near 6% lower for FSBO sales of similar properties.

Bottom Line

Price your house at or slightly below the current market value and hire a professional. This will guarantee that you maximize the price you get for your house.


Find Your Home Value Instantly!


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 17 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that! ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

Posted in Sellers
Feb. 1, 2018

Bidding Wars Continue

Bidding WarsThe Phoenix housing market is still low on inventory causing the plentiful supply of buyers to continue to have bidding wars hoping to have their offer beat out competitors for same house.

Bidding Wars

Just like with any product or service, the law of supply and demand impacts home prices. Any time that there is less supply than the market demands, prices increase.
In many areas of the country, the supply of homes for sale in the starter and trade-up home markets is so low that bidding wars have ensued, and the busy spring-buying season is just around the corner. CoreLogic recently conducted an analysis on national home prices at the time of sale for their January 2018 MarketPulse Report and found that a third of homes sold for at least list price.
“The share selling above list price was almost three times the trough in January 2008 and represented more than one-fifth of total sales.”
Many markets in the western part of the country and around major cities are experiencing higher shares of homes selling above list price.
“San Francisco had the largest share of homes—76 percent—that sold for at least the list price, and Seattle and Los Angeles followed with 63 and 51 percent, respectively. Miami had the lowest share—16 percent—of homes selling at or above the list price.”
Increased demand during the spring and summer months, the traditionally busier seasons for real estate, will no doubt influence how many homes continue to sell over list price. This should not be seen by sellers as permission to overprice their homes, though. Buyers are becoming more and more educated, especially those who have been searching for their dream homes for a while now while waiting for new inventory to come to market. Realtor.com gives this advice:
“Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense they’re getting a deal, they’re likely to bid up a property that’s slightly underpriced, especially in areas with low inventory.”

Bottom Line: Bidding Wars

The Phoenix housing market is still low on inventory causing the plentiful supply of buyers to continue to have bidding wars hoping to have their offer beat out competitors for same house. Without a large wave of new listings coming to market, buyers will continue competing with each other for the homes that are available. If you are thinking of selling your home, now may be the time to do so before more competition comes this spring. Let’s get together to determine the demand for your house in our area.

What to Consider When Buying a Home.


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

“John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 25 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that!” ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Jan. 30, 2018

What's Holding Back Buyers from Purchasing a Home?

Buyers are HesitantThere are 2 major myths that are holding back buyers from purchasing a home. Urban Institute recently released a report entitled, “Barriers to Accessing Homeownership,” which revealed that eighty percent of consumers either are unaware of how much lenders require for a down payment or believe all lenders require a down payment above 5 percent.”

What's Holding Back Buyers from Purchasing a Home?

#1: “I Need a 20% Down Payment”

Buyers often overestimate the down payment funds needed to qualify for a home loan. According to the same report:

Consumers are often unaware of the option to take out low-down-payment mortgages. Only 19% of consumers believe lenders would make loans with a down payment of 5% or less… While 15% believe lenders require a 20% down payment, and 30% believe lenders expect a 20% down payment.”

These numbers do not differ much between non-owners and homeowners; 39% of non-owners believe they need more than 20% for a down payment and 30% of homeowners believe they need more than 20% for a down payment. While many believe that they need at least 20% down to buy their dream home, they do not realize that programs are available that allow them to put down as little as 3%. Many renters may actually be able to enter the housing market sooner than they ever imagined with programs that have emerged allowing less cash out of pocket.

#2: “I Need a 780 FICO® Score or Higher to Buy”

Similar to the down payment, many either don’t know or are misinformed about what FICO® score is necessary to qualify. Many Americans believe a ‘good’ credit score is 780 or higher. To help debunk this myth, let’s take a look at Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insight Report, which focuses on recently closed (approved) loans. As you can see in the chart above, 53.5% of approved mortgages had a credit score of 600-749.

Bottom Line

Whether buying your first home or moving up to your dream home, knowing your options will make the mortgage process easier. Your dream home may already be within your reach.


What to Consider When Buying a Home.


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

“John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 25 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that!” ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

Posted in Buyers
Jan. 24, 2018

Gap Narrows Between Homeowners & Appraisers

homeowners & AppraisersIn today’s housing market, where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values are increasing rapidly resulting in the gap narrowing between Homeowners & Appraisers. Many experts are projecting that home values could appreciate by another 4% or more over the next twelve months. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal. When prices are surging, it is difficult for appraisers to find adequate, comparable sales (similar houses in the neighborhood that recently closed) to defend the selling price when performing the appraisal for the bank. Every month in their Home Price Perception Index (HPPI), Quicken Loans measures the disparity between what a homeowner who is seeking to refinance their home believes their house is worth and what an appraiser’s evaluation of that same home is. In the latest release, the disparity was the narrowest it has been in over two years, as the gap between appraisers and homeowners was only -0.5%. This is important for homeowners to note as even a .5% difference in appraisal can mean thousands of dollars that a buyer or seller would have to come up with at closing (depending on the price of the home)

Gap Narrows Between Homeowners & Appraisers

Bill Banfield, Executive VP of Capital Markets at Quicken Loans urges homeowners to find out how their local markets have been impacted by supply and demand:
“Appraisers and real estate professionals evaluate their local housing markets daily. Homeowners, on the other hand, may only think about their housing market when they see ‘for sale’ signs hit front yards in the spring or when they think about accessing their equity.” “With several years of growth, owners may have more equity than they realize. Many consumers use the tax season at the beginning of the year to reevaluate their entire financial life. It also provides a good opportunity for them to consider how best to take advantage of their equity while mortgage interest rates and borrowing costs are still near record lows.”

Bottom Line

Every house on the market must be sold twice; once to a prospective buyer and then to the bank (through the bank’s appraisal). With escalating prices, the second sale might be even more difficult than the first. If you are planning on entering the housing market this year, let’s get together to discuss this and any other obstacles that may arise.

Find Your Home Value Instantly!


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 17 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that! ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

Posted in Market Updates, Sellers
Jan. 18, 2018

How Will New Tax Code Impact Home Values?

Homeowners and Buyers all have an invested interest in how the New Tax Code will impact home values. Every month, CoreLogic releases its Home Price Insights Report. In that report, they forecast where they believe residential real estate prices will be in twelve months. Below is a map, broken down by state, reflecting how home values are forecasted to change by the end of 2018 using data from the most recent report. As we can see, CoreLogic projects an increase in home values in 49 of 50 states, and Washington, DC (there was insufficient data for HI). Nationwide, they see home prices increasing by 4.2%.

How might the new tax code impact these numbers?

Recently, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) conducted their own analysis to determine the impact the new tax code may have on home values. NAR’s analysis:

“…estimated how home prices will change in the upcoming year for each state, considering the impact of the new tax law and the momentum of jobs and housing inventory.”

Here is a map based on NAR’s analysis:

Bottom Line:New Tax Code

According to NAR, the new tax code will have an impact on home values across the country. However, the effect will be much less significant than what some originally thought.  


What to Consider When Buying a Home.

Find Your Home Value Instantly!


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

“John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 25 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that!” ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

 

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Jan. 17, 2018

61% of First-Time Buyers Down Payments Less than 6%

According to the National Association of Realtors’ latest Realtors Confidence Index, 61% of first-time buyers purchased their homes with down payments below 6% from October 2016 through November 2017.

61% of First-Time Buyers Down Payments Less than 6%

Many potential homebuyers believe that a 20% down payment is necessary to buy a home and have disqualified themselves without even trying. The median down payment for all buyers in 2017 was just 10% and that percentage drops to 6% for first-time buyers. Zillow Senior Economist Aaron Terrazas’ recent comments shed light on why buyer demand has remained strong,
“Looking into 2018, rent is expected to continue gaining. More widespread rent growth could mean home buying demands stay high, as renters who can afford it move away from the unpredictability of rising rents toward the relative stability of a monthly mortgage payment instead.”
It’s no surprise that with rents rising, more and more first-time buyers are taking advantage of low-down-payment mortgage options to secure their monthly housing costs and finally attain their dream homes.

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many first-time buyers who is not sure if you would qualify for a low-down payment mortgage, let’s get together and set you on your path to homeownership!

What to Consider When Buying a Home.


Who You Choose Makes a Difference When Buying or Selling a Home 5 Star Zillow Premier Agent Review:

“John Sposato and his team are absolutely amazing! Extremely responsive. John was very aware of our needs and likes so our pool of homes to look at all really had the chance to be “The One”. John has been our realtor from when we purchased our original home back in 1999. He negotiated a great buy then and has gotten us our ask price on one sale, which was the highest per square foot purchase in the area at the time, and darn near asking price on our last sale, before this purchase. As he has been for 25 years, John and his team, is who I will be looking to for any future purchases myself and who i will be referring out when asked. Thank you again to John and his team! Your the best! Those thinking of real estate in the Phoenix Market would be wise to give John and his team a call. You will not be disappointed! I assure you that!” ~ Ty Wilcox

Check Out More Zillow Reviews for Arizona Home Group!

Posted in Buyers