Top News Of The Week

– CoreLogic Reports Home Prices Up, Growth Still Slowing
– Inventory Shortage May Continue to Hold Back Sales
– Housing Starts Bounce Back in January
– Mortgage Rate Retreat Will Help This Spring
– Million Dollar Homes in Dallas Move Fast
– Feds Say They Are Not Denying Mortgages to DACA Dreamers
– Builders Look to Fire-Resistant Homes
– Laundry Room is Must-Have Feature For Many Buyers
– Carson Promises Homebuilders Regulatory Relief
– Millennial Homeownership Growing, More To Come
– Millennials Surpass Trillion-Dollar Debt Mark
– Mom and Dad Are Becoming Renters More Frequently
– Bellevue Real Estate Set to Feel Amazon Effect
– Report: Coastal Real Estate Values Sinking Under Rising Seas
– Who’s Recovering From Recession And Who Isn’t
– Are You a Hoarder? Clues Reveal


CoreLogic Reports Home Prices Up, Growth Still Slowing
Home prices across America rose 4.4% year-over-year in January.

That, according to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index. CoreLogic principal economist Molly Boesel.

January was also the ninth consecutive month of slowing growth — and Boesel says that trend is forecast to continue through 2019.

Still, CoreLogic President and CEO Frank Martell says favorable economic conditions, quote, “could support a re-acceleration in home-price appreciation later this year.”

Inventory Shortage May Continue to Hold Back Sales
The ongoing shortage of homes on the market continues to dampen sales, says one real estate expert.

Dottie Herman is CEO of New York-based brokerage Douglas Elliman. She said on CNBC that sales may remain slow as long as the inventory is light.

Herman also says there are fewer bidding wars these days — except at the entry level.

Housing Starts Bounce Back in January
Total housing starts jumped 18.6% in January, according to government figures.

Single-family home starts led the way, rising 25% in January, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 926,000 units. Year-over-year, single-family starts are up 4.5%.

However, single-family permits were down 6.7% from a year ago.

Mortgage Rate Retreat Will Help This Spring
Lower mortgage rates should help boost the spring housing market.

So says REALTOR®.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale, who told Yahoo Finance that we’re just beginning to see the effect of moderating rates.

Hale also says the gap between sale prices and listing prices is still quite wide, suggesting that sellers are still rather ambitious when listing their homes — that, she says, is resulting in more price cuts recently.

Million Dollar Homes in Dallas Move Fast
High-end homes are selling like million-dollar hotcakes in Dallas.

A report by WFAA-TV finds a red-hot market for homes priced in seven figures.

REALTOR® Steve Habgood told the station this may be the hottest he’s ever seen the luxury market.

The TV station reports that in the last two years, over 3-thousand homes priced at over a million dollars have sold in the Dallas metro area.

Feds Say They Are Not Denying Mortgages to DACA Dreamers
The federal government says it is NOT denying mortgages to DACA recipients, the young “Dreamers” brought to this country illegally by their parents.

HousingWire reports that there has been a recent wave of online reports from lenders claiming the government has declared that DACA recipients are no longer eligible for mortgage approval.

The website says it has received confirmations from HUD, FHA, USDA and Fannie Mae that they are not denying mortgages to those covered by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

Builders Look to Fire-Resistant Homes
The growing risk of wildfires — and not just in the West — is pushing home builders to come up with ideas for making homes more fire-resistant.

Roy Wright is CEO of the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety. He spoke to CNBC.

And CNBC reports that experts say homes built with fireproof design and materials can, in some cases, actually cost less than more conventional designs.

Laundry Room is Must-Have Feature For Many Buyers
Americans love their laundry rooms.

According to a National Association of Home Builders’ report called “What Home Buyers Really Want,” 91% of buyers surveyed say they want a laundry room in their home.

In the NAHB survey, the laundry room outranked such other features as ENERGY STAR windows and appliances, hardwood floors, a patio, and walk-in pantries.

Carson Promises Homebuilders Regulatory Relief
One of the most common complaints of the nation’s home builders is the burden of government regulations, which they say add thousand of dollars to the cost of a new home.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson is promising relief. He spoke at the recent International Builders Show.

Carson praised the National Association of Home Builders, saying, quote, “Your work steadies the pulse of American prosperity.”

Millennial Homeownership Growing, More To Come
While many Millennials are still renters, they are eager to become homeowners — and are already showing signs that they are poised to dominate the market in a few years.

The deputy chief economist at First American is Odeta Kushi, herself a Millennial. She told Housing Wire the numbers are clear.

First American projects that Millennials will buy some 10 million homes in the next 10 years.

Millennials Surpass Trillion-Dollar Debt Mark
One of the highest hurdles in front of would-be Millennial homebuyers is student debt.

A new report from the New York Federal Reserve Consumer Credit Panel finds that today’s 19- to- 29-year-olds now have a collective one TRILLION dollars in debt.

That’s the highest debt exposure for young adults since late 2007, the report says.

Most of that debt, the report says, is student loans.

Mom and Dad Are Becoming Renters More Frequently
The fastest growing group of renters across America is not who you might expect.

According to the website RentCafe.com, it’s Mom and Dad.

Their research shows that renter households over age 60 grew by 43-percent over the last decade, faster than any other age group.

Overall, the website says, renter householders still tend to be younger, but the median age of renters has been slowly closing the gap.

Bellevue Real Estate Set to Feel Amazon Effect
Bellevue, Washington may be bracing for the Amazon effect.

Experts at Redfin predict that speculation about an Amazon expansion into the Seattle suburbs could touch off, quote, “a real estate frenzy.”

Amazon recently dropped plans to move 5-thousand jobs into a downtown Seattle skyscraper, making a move to the suburbs appear much more likely.

Local Redfin agents believe a growing Amazon presence could reignite interest from Millennial homebuyers with high incomes.

Report: Coastal Real Estate Values Sinking Under Rising Seas
While the debate over climate change continues, a new report finds that rising sea levels eroded the value of coastal real estate by nearly 16-billion dollars over as 12-year period.

Scientists with First Street Foundation and Columbia University say home values were hurt in 17 states from Maine to Mississippi between 2005 and 2017.

The cities with the biggest losses in property values were Ocean City, New Jersey, Miami Beach, and Hollywood, Florida.

Who’s Recovering From Recession And Who Isn’t
Home prices have rebounded from their lows during the Great Recession a decade ago.

But a new report points out that some markets have recovered a lot better than others.

The report from LendingTree finds that on average, median home values have risen by nearly 50-thousand dollars in the country’s 50 largest metro areas since 2009.

LendingTree says San Jose, San Francisco and Los Angeles home values have recovered the most since 2009.

But in Hartford, Chicago, Virginia Beach, and Baltimore median home prices have actually fallen in that same time.

Are You a Hoarder? Clues Reveal
Your attic may reveal something about you.

The host of the popular A&E series “Hoarders,” Dorothy Breininger, tells REALTOR®.com that your attic or self-storage unit, where you hide you stuff, could be a sign you’re on the edge of becoming a hoarder.

Other clues that you may be a hoarder-in-the-making, she says: if you keep things you no longer use, and never will. Or if visitors are barred from certain rooms in your home. Or if you can’t sit down and eat at your own dining room table.

May be time to clean house.

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