Homebuilder Permits Fall 19 Percent

Homebuilder permits fell 19% to 1,594 in October from September 2016 according to a new report issued by CohnReznick.
The number of 2016 approvals through October was also down 17% from the first 10 months of 2015.
Other Stats
+ The report found that 47.4% of October’s permits were for multifamily projects.
+ Contributing factors for the decline were “limited inventory due to stagnant pricing,” and longer permitting reviews slowing approvals.
+ Since July 2015, monthly changes in permits have alternated between gains and declines, the report said, with nine months up and seven months down.
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89 Percent Of Millennials Used A Realtor® In 2016

Good news for the National Association of REALTORS® 2016. According to the Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends report – 89 percent of Millennials — used a real estate professional in their home search in 2016. This is going to call for ‘new skills’ to distinguish their own personal value proposition.
1. Define Specialties & Deliverables.
The ability to prove a knowledge of the market that resonates with them will be critical. According the the article on Realtor.com, “Millennials recognize that they need an advocate with experiential knowledge, skills, and resources to guide them through a complex and unique process.”
This means having the right data that would not be available just by searching the Internet.
2. Points of Personal Connection.
Knowledge and passion for service make for a powerful combination. When buying a property, location is the critical aspect, but when serving Millennials it is about connectivity. And connectivity comes in a number of different varieties::
1. Technology – being tech-savvy is a must.
2. Background knowledge of the personal preferences of the buyers.
3. Ability to bring a broad network of experts together quickly to solve problems and answer questions.

Connecting With Millenials

There is a huge population of millennials waiting on the sidelines, thinking that they can’t become homeowners in 2017 due to student debt and the high price of real estate. But with the right planning and strategy, there are ways without risking a financial collision.
Have the Facts
As with anything new, concerns, dangers and the lack of accurate information represent barriers to entry for many millennials. The education of millennials in the areas of real estate will require your becoming familiar with their obstacles, issues and styles in communication.
Real estate is still one of the opportunities to generate wealth that millennials have; and they need to know this.
According to some sources, by age 35, between 40 and 50% of college graduates own homes, regardless of whether they took on debt to attend school. The statistics are not as good for those without a college degree, which puts that group in the 30% range.
Currently, according to the U.S. Census, fewer than 40% of Americans under 35 own a home, compared with more than 60% of Americans overall. Historically speaking: The average age of first-time home buyer in the 1970s was 29 or 30, according to Zillow. In 2015, the average age of first-time home buyer, according to Zillow, is roughly 32.
Proximity to a job can often make it difficult to initially save for that down payment when high rents squeeze millennials’ ability to put money aside.
Good job markets often put home prices out of reach.
The first approach in ‘reaching millennials’ is to have answers and examples in hand.
Parents can be helpful, especially in the early stages of becoming a homeowner, by providing a portion of the down payment. Purchasing a home does not always require a 20% down payment. The knowledge of the real estate agent or loan officer can become very valuable in terms of creating a working strategy.
Adopt a Style of Communication
Millennials have certain communication preferences: some like texts, others like email and still others prefer the personal touch of a phone call. It’s up to you to discover which is appropriate and how often they need or want updates. As in most cases, the stage of the purchase journey will often dictate which is best or most appropriate.

CoreLogic Reports Foreclosures Fall Again

CoreLogic reported that for the month of October 2016, only 30,000 U.S. home foreclosures were completed, which is down 3.6% from September 2016 and down 24.9% from a total of 40,000 in October 2015. Home values posted an annual 5.8% rise through September in the CoreLogic Home Price Index.
CoreLogic also reports that the current foreclosure inventory totals only 0.8% of all homes with a mortgage in the United States, which is down 0.4 points compared with October 2015.
The number of U.S. homes currently in some stage of foreclosure has fallen 31.5% from October of 2015. The total number of homes in some stage of foreclosure for October 2016 were approximately 328,000; this compares with 479,000 which were reported in October 2015.
States with the Highest Foreclosure Percentages
New Jersey (2.8%)
New York (2.7%)
Hawaii (1.7%)
Maine (1.7%)
D.C. (1.6%)
States with the Lowest Foreclosure Percentages
Arizona (0.3%)
Colorado (0.3%)
Michigan (0.3%)
Minnesota (0.3%)
Utah (0.3%)
States with the highest number of completed foreclosures in the past 12 months:
Florida (51,000)
Michigan (29,000)
Texas (26,000)
Ohio (23,000)
Georgia (20,000)

National Association Of Home Builders Sentiment Surges

The National Association of Home Builders’ Housing Market Index rose by 7 points to hit 70, which is the highest level since 2005.
According to a number of reports, economists had forecast an unchanged reading of 63; levels higher than 50 signal confidence. In addition, mortgage rates have also hit a two-year high.
As the home builder confidence soared in December they attribute it to a “post-election bounce,” the group said in a statement. “Builders are hopeful that President-elect Trump will follow through on his pledge to cut burdensome regulations that are harming small businesses and housing affordability.”
Two other parts of the index’s sub-gauges gained in December:
The measure of current conditions grew by seven points to 76
Expectations for the upcoming six months increased by nine points to 78.
Both of these indexes came in at the highest levels since 2005.
Prospective Buyer Traffic
The traffic of prospective buyers rose six points to a reading of 53, with any level over 50 being a sign of improvement. What is noteworthy is that December’s reading was the first time the traffic index cracked the neutral 50 line since the bubble’s peak more than a decade ago.
According to the survey respondents, customers who turned out after the election believed the economy will improve. Concomitantly, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.16% in the week ending December 15th, as reported by Freddie Mac.
The National Association of Home Builders have seen regulatory costs surging 29% in the past 5 years.
The Sentiment Index has averaged a reading of 61 in 2016. The last time that happened, in 2002, builders were breaking ground on an average 1.7 million homes.

First-Time Buyers Make Up 35 Percent Of Home Buyers

The National Association of Realtors published their 2016 Profile of Homebuyers and Sellers
For most home buyers, the purchase of real estate is one of the largest financial transactions they will make. Buyers purchase a home not only for the desire to own a home of their own, but also because of changes in jobs, family situations, and the need for a smaller or larger living area. This annual survey conducted by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® of recent home buyers and sellers provides insight into detailed information about their experiences with this important transaction. Here are highlights from the latest report.
■ At 31%, the primary reason for purchasing a home was the desire to own a home of their own.
■ First-time buyers made up 35% of all home buyers, an increase over last year’s near all-time low of 32 percent.
■ 88% of buyers recently purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker.
■ 88% of buyers would use their agent again or recommend their agent to others.
■ 8% of recent home sales were FSBO sales again this year. For the second year, this is the lowest share recorded since this report started in 1981.
In 2016, the share of first-time home buyers was 35%, a three-point increase over last year’s 32%. This figure gravitates back towards the historical norm at 40% of the market. The median household income of buyers increased again this year, likely due to a nationwide increase in home prices caused by a lack of housing inventory. Married and unmarried couples have double the buying power of single home buyers, and may be better able to meet the price increases of this housing market. Tightened inventory is affecting the home search process of buyers. Due to suppressed inventory levels in many areas of the country, buyers are typically purchasing more expensive homes as prices increase. The number of weeks a buyer is searching for a home remained at 10 weeks. Buyers continue to report the most difficult task for them in the home buying process is simply finding the right home to purchase. Tenure in the home has returned to a peak of 10 years again this year. Historically, tenure in the home has been six to seven years. Sellers may now have the equity and buyer demand to sell their home after stalling or delaying their home sale but may be facing reduced affordability to buy a new home.
This content comes from Realtor.com.

CoreLogic 2017 Domestic Outlook

CoreLogic 2017 Outlook for U.S. Housing and Mortgage Markets
Economic growth will be a primary factor affecting the housing market in 2017. The latest projections show a consensus that the economy will grow between 2 and 2¼ percent next year. With this as a backdrop, here are five features to look for in next year’s housing market.
First, mortgage rates will be higher, with fixed-rates averaging just over 4 percent for 2017, about one-half percentage point higher than in 2016 for both single-family and multifamily loans.
Second, vacancy rates will likely remain relatively low in the rental market and decline in the homeowner market. The low level of single-family building means that for-sale inventories will remain lean in many markets.
Third, home appreciation in most markets with rent growth also continuing but at a slower pace. In the coming year, we expect the CoreLogic Home Price Index for the U.S. to rise about 5 percent, although some neighborhoods will have double-digit growth and some will experience declines.
Fourth, expect is a drop in refinance originations in 2017.
Fifth, we expect the new loans made to continue to have relatively low credit risk.

Fortune Magazine 5 Holiday Tips Ways To Network

Fortune Magazine 5 Non-Traditional Ways to Network Around the Holidays
It’s the most wonderful time of the year to make business connections.
The holiday season may not be the best time to go on a diet or launch a major company-wide project, but it’s a surprisingly great time to network.
The season tends to get people socializing and spreading good cheer, making it the perfect opportunity for making new connections and deepening business relationships.
Here are five ways you can make the most of the holiday season.
1. Take it out of the office…
Link to article: http://fortune.com/2016/12/19/5-non-traditional-ways-to-network-around-t…

The Best Times To Post On Social Media

According to Forbes, these are the best times for social media posting:.
# Avoid times before 8 a.m. and after 8 p.m.
# The best times are 1–3 p.m. when activity, engagement, and happiness tend to be highest – particularly on Thursday and Fridays. Engagement and activity tends to peak on Friday afternoon. (For brands, Fridays generate 17 percent of all likes and 15 percent of all comments, and 15 percent of shares, according to TruConversion’s research.)
# Avoid times after 8 p.m. on any day.
# The best time for retweets is after 3 p.m., and the best overall time is 5 p.m.
# For businesses posting to consumers, the best times to tweet are on the weekends and on Wednesdays.
# Avoid new posts from 5–6 p.m.
# The best times are noon to 3 p.m. Activity and viewer engagement is shown to rise Thursday and continue through Sunday.
# The best times for activity and engagement are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, demonstrating that LinkedIn is more of a workday activity.

More Millennials Living With Parents

It is a fact, according to Trulia: more young adults are still living with their parents.
The information provided points out nearly 40% of the 18-to-34-year-old demographic lived with a parent or other family member in 2015. This represents the highest percentage since 1940, as the Great Depression ended.
Facts Affecting The Millennials
+ Unemployment rates are improving, but not at levels prior to the Great Recession.
+ Wages are still significantly lower than they were a decade ago.
+ Debt accumulated from student loans is still high.
+ Many Millennials will be buying homes later than prior geneation.

CoreLogic US Home Prices Hit New High

CoreLogic reported that October 2016 U.S. home prices hit a new high. The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which measures all nine U.S. census divisions, was also up 5.6% in October from 2015.
The 20-City Composite Home Price Index S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller also climbed higher by 5.1% in October from 2015. The 20-City Composite Home Price Index is still 7.1% below the July 2006 peak price.

Prices rose the most in Seattle by 10.7%, in Portland by 10.3% but in New York City, prices rose by only 1.7% from 2015 levels.

Home affordability has fallen by 20%-30% since 2012.
The affordability index is based on median incomes, housing prices and mortgage rates.

By most measures, home prices have reached levels only seen during the time preceding the crash back in 2008.
Home sales and prices have benefited from strong demand, which is further supported by very tight supply and still very affordable mortgage rates.

Another reason for the continuing trend in real estate is consumer confidence. The U.S. Consumer Confidence Index surged to 113.7, which is its highest level in 15 years according to the Conference Board.


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