It’s with great pleasure that we announce we were invited to assist in another sale at one of our favorite neighborhoods, Shevlin Reserve in Bend, Oregon. These twelve modern townhomes have almost become a collectors’ item, and we feel as if we have a hand as their curator. Stunning architecture at every turn. Like many, this one sold quickly.
Across the nation, year-over-year home appreciation is slowing. That’s good news for a number of reasons we’ll get to in a bit. It’s important to remember that what we are saying is that appreciation is slowing. Prices are still going up across the board, but the speed at which they are increasing is finally slowing up a bit.
This is good news for a lot of buyers that have become frustrated as prices have rapidly been increasing while they are shopping. Many buyers have looked back at homes they thought were overpriced at the beginning of their search, and wish they had jumped on the opportunity when it existed. Now the penalty for waiting might be a bit more palatable, and take the pressure off of the buyers in the market.
The good news for sellers is the slowing of price appreciation might finally allow some to downsize without feeling like they’re walking away from their best investment. Many sellers we talk to are planning for a move, but hate to sell their current property while the value of their property was increasing so rapidly.
Sometimes the past is hard to forget. The real estate market in this county has been through some incredible highs and lows over the last 10 years and it has been difficult for even some professionals to wrap their head around. For most people, a home purchase is the single largest investment they’ll even make, and making a mistake with that investment has repercussions far into the future. There are a large number of folks in the Central Oregon market that were party to a short sale or foreclosure over the last several years. And even for those that kept their homes, the tough times we went through meant that their credit scores may have suffered. One of the biggest misconceptions about the current mortgage market is that it is difficult to get a loan.
As the graph shows, the availability of mortgage credit is much higher than in the recent past and it continues to increase. Banks are in the business of loaning money, and as the economy continues to improve they are rapidly focusing on making mortgage loans in this market.
Both Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are working to update their loan guidelines to make more money available for mortgage loans in the secondary market. They are also expanding the kinds of loans that can be made.
At the last Mortgage Bankers Association conference just last month, Mel Watt, the director of the FHFA, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, said this:
“To increase access to creditworthy but lower-wealth borrowers, FHFA is also working with the enterprises (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) to develop sensible and responsible guidelines for mortgages with loan-to-value ratios between 95 and 97 percent.”
The important thing to remember is at the same time as more mortgages are available, many experts are expecting mortgage rates to continue to increase. Many people look at increasing mortgage rates as just an added expense. What they don’t often think about is that mortgage rate has an incredible impact on the final price of the house you can afford. This is why we are encouraging many of our clients to make their next move now. If you’re thinking about cashing in on some of the equity you’ve made over the last few years, moving up, or going to stay put for several years in your next house, it makes sense to get it done now. Increasing interest rates can not only cost you more money, they can damper the market for selling your home.
Talking to a loan officer or mortgage broker is a painless process, but still few clients know how much they can afford before walking into our office. For a variety of reasons, we feel that finding a mortgage professional you trust is an important second step in any real estate move. Let us know that you would like a recommendation on a mortgage professional and we can provide you with some choices.
Prices continue to go up in Bend, but there are still deals to find if you know how. One of them is this westside townhouse in Awbrey Glen. Over two thousand square feet and an HOA to take care of maintenance. This home is in the Copperstone neighborhood which is outside the gates of Awbrey Glen, but still part of the golf community. With easy access to Mt Washington Dr and walking distance to OSU Cascades campus, this home has tremendous amenities for only $380,000. The interior is a list of upgraded features including radiant heat flooring, slab granite, and a large stone fireplace. For more photos, check out http://kerry.gotobend.com/property/61-201406344-2681-Northwest-Havre-Ct-Bend-OR-97701
People across the country are beginning to think about what their life will look like next year. It happens every Fall. We ponder whether we should relocate to a different part of the country to find better year round weather or perhaps move across the state for better job opportunities. Homeowners in this situation must consider whether they should sell their house now or wait. If you are one of these potential sellers, here are five important reasons to do it now versus the dead of winter.
1. Demand is Strong
Foot traffic refers to the number of people out actually physically looking at home right now. The latest foot traffic numbers show that there are more prospective purchasers currently looking at homes than at any other time in the last twelve months which includes the latest spring buyers’ market. These buyers are ready, willing and able to buy…and are in the market right now!
As we get later into the year, many people have other things (weather, holidays, etc.) that distract them from searching for a home. Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.
2. There Is Less Competition Now
Housing supply is still under the historical number of 6 months’ supply. This means that, in many markets, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in that market. This is good news for home prices. However, additional inventory is about to come to market.
There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move as they were unable to sell over the last few years because of a negative equity situation. Homeowners are now seeing a return to positive equity as real estate values have increased over the last two years. Many of these homes will be coming to the market in the near future.
Also, new construction of single-family homes is again beginning to increase. A recent study by Harris Poll revealed that 41% of buyers would prefer to buy a new home while only 21% prefer an existing home (38% had no preference).
The choices buyers have will continue to increase over the next few months. Don’t wait until all this other inventory of homes comes to market before you sell.
3. The Process Will Be Quicker
One of the biggest challenges of the 2014 housing market has been the length of time it takes from contract to closing. Banks are requiring more and more paperwork before approving a mortgage. Any delay in the process is always prolonged during the winter holiday season. Getting your house sold and closed before those delays begin will lend itself to a smoother transaction.
4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move-Up
If you are moving up to a larger, more expensive home, consider doing it now. Prices are projected to appreciate by over 19% from now to 2018. If you are moving to a higher priced home, it will wind-up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait. You can also lock-in your 30 year housing expense with an interest rate in the low 4’s right now. Rates are projected to be over 5% by this time next year.
5. It’s Time to Move On with Your Life
Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?
Only you know the answers to the questions above. You have the power to take back control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps, the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.
That is what is truly important.
This property has it all. Close to town, acreage, irrigation, shop, barn, fenced and cross-fenced. So much room to enjoy all of your Central Oregon pursuits. To see more photos, click on http://michele.gotobend.com/property/61-201407977-3315-Northeast-17th-St-Redmond-OR-97756