real estate news: 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)

real estate news: Buyer Confidence Rising Along With Housing Demand and Rent Prices - 06/09/13 11:33 PM
Things in the real estate world are moving up, up, up! Not only have home values continued to increase across the nation, but buyer confidence and housing demand has also gotten a boost in recent months. Not surprisingly, the lack of available real estate inventory has pushed home prices (and rent prices) to levels not seen in quite some time. These changes have all contributed to a rapidly shifting real estate landscape in which buyers are scrambling for homes, landlords are experiencing a rental boom and more and more Americans are feeling good about entering the market. 
According to the April … (0 comments)

real estate news: 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)

real estate news: Increase in Home Prices Greatest Since 2006 - 09/21/12 03:00 AM
There is some good news from the folks at CoreLogic in regard to home prices. Figures from July revealed that national home prices increased 3.8 percent compared to July 2011. This is significant because it is the largest annual price gain since August 2006.
This was especially good news for these states, where the highest rates of appreciation were recorded:
AZ-up 16.6% ID-up 10% UT-up 9.3% SD-up 8.3% CO-up 7.3% While this is good news, troubled homeowners are not out of the woods yet. In AZ, the July home prices were still beneath the 2006 high by 42.8 percent, and values … (2 comments)

real estate news: Freddie Mac's Planned Changes to HARP - Many More Homeowners Eligible - 08/23/12 12:46 AM

According to a recent article published by HousingWireDot.com, more homeowners may be eligible for the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) under Freddie Mac's new loan-to-value ratio requirements.
Freddie Mac plans to adjust the HARP guidelines so that borrowers with LTV ratios of 80% or under have the same entry requirements as loans with LTV scores of 80% or above. This change also applies to HARP 2.0, the latest version of the program designed to help borrowers with underwater mortgages.
Prior to the change, borrowers looking to refinance under HARP 2.0 or the Relief Refinance programs had to have LTV ratios of 80% … (0 comments)

real estate news: Single-family housing production on the rise - 08/13/12 04:22 AM
Production rates for single-family housing increased for the third consecutive month, according to data from HUD and the Census Bureau. In addition to an increase in single-family housing, the data also revealed an increase in pulled permits for both single- and multi-family construction in May.
The pace of new home construction hasn't been this good since December 2011, according to a recent press release by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Data from the HUD and Census Bureau revealed that the seasonally adjusted annual rate of single-family housing starts rose 3.2 percent to 516,000 units - an impressive leap considering … (0 comments)

real estate news: Americans Moving Towards Smaller Homes and Urban Environments - 04/22/12 11:45 PM
Recent reports are showing an interesting change in the real estate market. It seems that the homeowners of today are leaning toward smaller, urban-based homes, rather than the expansive suburban developments that boomed in the past.
According to a recent article posted on MSN.com's real estate blog, the Urban Land Institute provided evidence of a growing preference for smaller, more efficient living and presented this evidence at a recent Dallas conference. According to the article, "The new home buyer wants a smaller home in an urban area, as well as a shorter commute to work and smaller payments."
City life may not … (1 comments)

real estate news: Affordable Housing Conditions Show Improvement - 03/12/12 05:28 AM
According to recent data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), affordability conditions are improving, as housing markets across the country are beginning to make a comeback. 
This trend is thought to be bolstered by lower existing home prices as well as record low interest rates. According to a recent market trend publication distributed by the NAR, median prices for existing single-family homes lowered in 118 metro areas and as a result, reflected greater homes sales activity at lower price points. 
Sales of lower-priced homes showed a strong increase compared to one year ago, providing a good market environment for affordable … (0 comments)

real estate news: California Million Dollar Home Sales Increase for the First Time in Five Years - 02/23/12 01:27 AM

Despite the fact that California saw an overall drop in home sales last year, the number of homes that sold for $1 million or more increased for the first time since 2005.
According to the report conducted by DataQuick Information Systems, a real estate information service, the number of million-dollar home sales peaked in 2005, with 54,773 sales in California. Since then, the number continued to decline. That is, until last year's jump to 22,529 sales - showing a 21.0 percent increase from 18,621 sales in 2009.
What does this mean for the California real estate industry? Well, if you're … (0 comments)

 
Shaun Hamman (American Financial Resources)

Shaun Hamman

Parsippany, NJ

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