Breaking News – We Have Confirmed Sustained Momentum in Real Estate! – by Paul Langrock – Realtor Extraordinaire!

Locally and Nationally – The News in a Nutshell:
Arrow - man puching up

We now have confirmed sustained momentum in Florida; closed sales in the 3rd Quarter increased 7.6% year over year and average sales prices were up 4.0%. The Federal Reserve reports, “The economy improved broadly in late October and November, with job growth, consumer spending and business investment all picking up and retailers optimistic about the holiday season.” The Bureau of Labor Statistics released data that U.S. payroll employment surpassed even the most optimistic forecasts increasing to 321,000 in November (the highest rate in two years), following an upwardly revised gain of 243,000 in October. Unemployment stayed south of six at 5.8%. Mortgage rates are still low and this week actually dipped under 4%! (See bullet points below).

Locally, Florida real estate has lagged behind the rest of the country but that is changing. Our once low housing inventory is continuing to rise, trending closer to normal and finally shedding the once ubiquitous distressed sales. During the drawn-out aftermath of the Great Recession foreclosures and short sales reached nearly 80% of transactions with the balance traditional sales. While a low inventory can actually be good for sellers since low demand can still pressure prices upward (as has happened here) but it’s good only to a point. For with each house price up-tick fewer buyers qualify for the same house, depressing demand, causing prices to soften, until a balance is reached. Overall, however, we are in a much better place. Mortgage rates are historically low, and while predictions are they’ll increase next year,  expectations are they will only approach 5% and then 6% in 2016 ; still reasonable and resembling a stable, healthy market.
Yes…we indeed have confirmed sustained momentum.
Mortgage rates for the week ending Dec. 4:
30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.89 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 3.97 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 4.46 percent.
15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.10 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 3.17 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.47 percent.
5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.94 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 3.01 percent average. Last year at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.99 percent.
1-year ARMs: averaged 2.41 percent, with an average 0.4 point, dropping from last week’s 2.44 percent average. A year ago, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.59 percent.
Source: Freddie Mac