This Week in Real Estate: March 7, 2016


Appraisal volume and consumer spending is on the rise This Week in Real Estate, which bodes well for a strong spring selling season. Below are a few highlights from the first week of March that influence our business:

* Winter’s Top 5 Hottest Single-Family Housing Markets. Where will the hottest markets be as we move into the busy spring home buying season? Ten-X, formerly, released its report on the top single-family housing markets this winter, which ranks the nation’s 50 largest housing markets according to current and forecasted housing fundamentals. According to the list, these markets had the best combination of rising home prices, favorable affordability and strong housing demand, combined with strong economic and demographic conditions that point to future demand. “The U.S. housing market recovery continues to be supported by underlying economic fundamentals, particularly the improved labor market,” said Ten-X Chief Economist Peter Muoio. The top 5 hottest single-family housing markets: 1. Seattle, Washington, 2. Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 3. Orlando, Florida, 4. Portland, Oregon, and 5. Las Vegas, Nevada.
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* Consumer Spending Has Biggest Increase in Eight Months. Consumers ramped up their spending in January at the fastest pace in eight months as incomes also continued to grow at a strong pace in a sign economic growth is improving after slowing at the end of last year. Incomes rose in January for the 10th-straight month and the 0.5 percent increase was the best since June. Consumer spending accounts for about two-thirds of U.S. economic activity and the increase in January bodes well for a pick-up in economic growth in the first quarter of the year.
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* Appraisal Volume Rises as Spring Home Buying Season Starts Early. Appraisal volume jumped 8.4% for the week of February 21, marking the fifth consecutive week of increases, as the spring homebuying season draws closer, a la mode, an appraisal software company that tracks appraisal volume throughout the country. Appraisal volume is an indicator of market strength and has some advantages over mortgage applications. Fallout is less for appraisals since they are ordered later in the mortgage process after credit worthiness determined and there are few multiple-orders.
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* Home Flipping on the Rise in 75 Percent of Markets. Home flipping shot up in 2015, with 179,778 U.S. single-family homes and condos flipped, 5.5 percent of all single-family home and condo sales during the year, according to RealtyTrac. The 5.5 percent share of U.S. home flips in 2015 was up from a 5.3 percent share in 2014, marking the first annual increase in the share of homes flipped following four consecutive years of decreases. The share of homes flipped in 2015 increased from the previous year in 83 of 110 U.S. metropolitan statistical areas nationwide analyzed for the report (75 percent). “Homes flipped in 2015 were on average purchased at a 26 percent discount below estimated market value and re-sold by the flipper at a 5 percent premium above estimated market value.”
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Have a productive week!



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