Hello friend, today I am bringing you a real estate market update.
National Market Update
Private residential construction spending rose again in December to an annual rate of $810.3 billion, 1.1% above November. The residential sector was the big gainer, as overall spending was up only 0.2% for the month.
The best news? For 2021, $774.9 billion was spent on residential construction, a whopping 23.2% above 2020. Yes, some new builds are rentals, but this level of activity should help relieve the tight inventory of for-sale homes.
Freddie Mac: “The economy lost some momentum…leaving mortgage rates… relatively flat for the third consecutive week.” But “going into the spring and summer, mortgage rates are expected to resume their upward trajectory.”
Local Market Update
Property values continue to rise. Interest rates have inched up, created some urgency among active and warm buyers. Homes under $500k, if not overpriced or in need of major repairs, go active in less than one week. Sellers are becoming wary of out of state buyers and are scared of the “investor” buyer. Letters to homeowners are the new currency. And homes are going $15k – $25k over asking price if under $600k. Can you still get the home of your dreams? The answer is yes: with the right offer and real estate agent!
Review of Last Week
O.K. WITH RATE HIKES… Even though a way-better-than-expected January jobs report greatly increased Fed rate hike expectations, investors remained calm and sent the three major stock indexes north for the week.
The surprising 467,000 new nonfarm payrolls, a boost in hourly earnings, and labor force participation at a pandemic high leaves the Fed free to aggressively raise rates to rein in the highest inflation in decades.
Beyond the job gains, the economy seems strong enough to handle higher rates, as most corporate earnings keep besting expectations, and ISM manufacturing and services indexes stay firmly in expansion territory.
The week ended with the Dow UP 1.0%, to 35,090; the S&P 500 UP 1.5%, to 4,501; and the Nasdaq UP 2.4%, to 14,098.
The good jobs report was bad news for bonds, which slid overall, the UMBS 3.0% down .80, to $101.42. The national average 30-year fixed mortgage rate remained unchanged in Freddie Mac's Primary Mortgage Market Survey. Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.
DID YOU KNOW… In Q4 2021, 41.9% of homeowners with a mortgage were equity-rich, meaning the home’s estimated market value was at least twice the amount of the mortgage balance. A year ago, just 30.2% were in this position.
This Week's Forecast
INFLATION UP, CONSUMER SENTIMENT DOWN… It's now a familiar story–inflation keeps climbing and consumer sentiment keeps sinking. Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation should continue up at an unabated pace in January, while February's preliminary University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment index is expected to post another historically low read.
Federal Reserve Watch
Forecasting Federal Reserve policy changes in coming months. The Fed Funds futures market now expects a quarter percent hike at each of the next three FOMC meetings. That would still keep the rate to a maximum of just 1.00%. Note: In the lower chart a 100.0% probability of change is a 100.0% probability the rate will rise.
So what does this mean for you?
I have two words for you, “buy now!”
We are so happy you found our little corner of the interwebs. We look forward to y'all reaching out to us. We love to answer questions and welcome them. Recently we created some local maps, and you can download those by clicking the image/link above. Below, you will find an index of some very helpful information to assist you in learning more about the Houston suburbs. If you are relocating to our neck of the woods, we hope you reach out to us, because we would love to help you by being your local realtor and friend. Thoughtfully written for you. Hugs, Jo.
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If you are looking to relocate to the Houston Area, we would love to meet you, and hear your story. Below you will find all of my contact information, as well as some homes for sale in the area. We truly look forward to hearing from you! P.S. Don't forget to check out our YouTube Channel!
If you are overwhelmed..
Now if you are feeling overwhelmed on where you should plant your roots, I would love to talk to you. You can schedule a call with me by click this link: http://byjoandco.com/call or just send us an email: [email protected]. There are some amazing communities all over the Houston suburbs. In this post, https://search.byjoandco.com/blog/best-neighborhoods-in-houston/, I deep dive into all the different suburbs/neighborhoods that you might want to consider, and why. There are many resources here, so please reach out if you are curious what to look at next! Thank you for trusting us.
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