home buying: Home Prices Rise, Communities Hold Lotteries for High Demand Homes - 07/08/13 06:00 AM
As the demand for housing in the U.S. continues to rise, home prices have risen with it. According to a recent report from Standard and Poor's/Case-Shiller, the end of February marked a significant increase in home prices across the nation. The statistics showed a 9.3 increase in the index's year-over-year analysis - the largest home price increase since 2006.
For more than six years now, home prices have been recovering. However, the current figures indicate that the increase isn't just due to improved market conditions and economic recovery, but also because of an unusual imbalance in supply and demand. With the … (0 comments)

home buying: Reluctant "Move Up Buyers" May Slow Housing Recovery - 09/24/12 10:54 PM
Considering the current record low interest rates and high affordability of real estate due to lower home values, the housing market should be booming. Instead, NAR recently reported that the inventory of for sale homes is down 24% from July 2011. Many real estate pros feel that this drop is due to the stalemate position of move-up buyers. The move-up buyers are those who bought homes with plans of "moving up", and now find themselves in a negative equity situation. Many that fall into that category also fall between the cracks when it comes to finding help from either a mortgage … (22 comments)

home buying: Home Buying A Better Deal Than Renting In 75% of Markets Surveyed - 08/31/12 06:09 AM
To buy or not to buy? That is the question. At least, that's the question for many Americans considering home ownership.
According to a recent evaluation by Zillow.com, buying a home is a better deal in almost every major U.S. housing market. In more than 75 percent of the 200 metros surveyed, homeowners would reach a "breakeven point" (where owning the home would be more financially beneficial than renting) in three years or less.
This analysis was the first of its kind by Zillow, in which all home ownership costs, including down payments, closing costs, mortgage payments, property taxes, utilities and maintenance costs, … (0 comments)

home buying: Mortgage Applications Slow While Home Sales Rise - 08/22/12 04:54 AM
Slight increases in mortgage rates in recent weeks have led to a drop in refinancing activity. The Mortgage Bankers Association reported in its weekly survey that for the week ending August 17th, 2012 mortgage applications were down 7.4 percent when compared to the previous week. The decrease is largely due to fewer homeowners refinancing existing mortgage loans.
Purchase mortgage activity was less affected by the small rise in interest rates, and the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index (which measures the volume of loan applications) dropped only 0.9 percent from the week before, compared to an 8 percent drop in the Refinance Index.

Shaun Hamman (American Financial Resources)

Shaun Hamman

Parsippany, NJ

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