This Week in Real Estate: Sept. 8, 2015

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This Week in Real Estate ended with increased speculation as to what the Feds will do with rates when they meet in two weeks. Following Friday’s August jobs report, that was hyped as an influencing factor to raise or not raise rates, resulted in just the opposite effect. The data was tame and did little to influence either side of the argument. Below are a few of the highlights from the first week in September that influence our business:

* CoreLogic Reports National Home Prices Rose by 6.9% Year Over Year in July 2015. On Tuesday CoreLogic released its July 2015 Home Price Index (HPI) which shows that home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased by 6.9 percent in July 2015 compared with July 2014. Ten states have experienced increased growth in the last year that matched or surpassed the nation as a whole; those states are: Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Nevada, New York, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas and Washington. Including distressed sales, the five states with the highest home price appreciation were: Colorado (+10.4%), Washington (+9.9%), Nevada (+9.1%), Hawaii (+8.9%) and Oregon (+8.8%). Excluding distressed sales, the five states with the highest home price appreciation were: Colorado (+10.1%), Washington (+9.5%), Nevada (+9.1%), Oregon (+9.1%) and New York (+9.0%). Full Story… http://www.corelogic.com/about-us/news/corelogic-reports-national-home-prices-rose-by-6.9-percent-year-over-year-in-july-2015.aspx

* Mortgage Credit Availability Increases in August. Mortgage credit availability increased in August according to the Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI), a report from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). The MCAI increased 0.5 percent to 126.1 in August. A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of loosening credit. Of the four component indices, the Jumbo MCAI saw the greatest loosening (up to 0.7 percent over the month) followed by Conventional MCAI (up 0.5 percent), the Government MCAI (up 0.4 percent), and the Conforming MCAI (up 0.3 percent). “Mortgage credit availability increased in August and has increased in eight of the last nine months,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Chief Economist. Full Story… https://www.mba.org/2015-press-releases/sept/mortgage-credit-availability-increases-in-august

* U.S. Construction Spending Hits a New Postrecession High. U.S. construction spending rose to the highest level in more than seven years in July. Total construction spending climbed 0.7% from the prior month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.083 trillion, the Commerce Department said Tuesday, the highest level since May 2008. Private building led the way, with both residential and nonresidential construction hitting new post recession highs. “The overall impression from the past few months is that the construction sector overall is the strongest part of the economy, with spending up at a remarkable 26% annualized rate in the three months to July,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics. Full Story… http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2015/09/01/u-s-construction-spending-hits-new-postrecession-high-2/

* Mortgage Rates at Recent Lows After Jobs Data. Mortgage rates fell to their lowest levels in more than a week on Friday, following the release of August’s official employment figures. While the headline job creation was weaker than expected, several components of the report offset the weakness. Previous months were revised to show better job creation, the unemployment rate fell to 5.1, and wages grew slightly faster than expected. Full story… http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/consumer_rates/509440.aspx

Have a productive week!

Jason

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