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First-time homebuyers - new records of purchase loans

Reports note that nearly half, or 48.5 percent, of all GSE purchase loans in May 2018 were from first-time homebuyers. This is just slightly down from its highest level in recent history. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) saw an even larger share of first-time homebuyers, with 80 percent of its purchase loans coming from this group of buyers. Combined, first-time buyers made up 59.3 percent of purchase loans. Mortgage affordability has increased as well. As of June 2018, the share of median income needed for a mortgage with 20 percent down payment was 24 percent, and with 3.5 percent down payment, it was 28 percent. Home prices were also going up, though at a slower rate. The Urban Institute reports cites Black Knight data, reporting a home price increase of 6.1 percent year-over-year. Additionally, the report cites a home value increase from Zillow of 8.2 percent.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Home Decor Trends & Tips On How To Incorporate Them

This year is the year to not shy away from bold colors in home decor. Sherwin-Williams has unveiled its latest color forecast   Back to the seventies.  This home design is gorgeous and shows how you can mix different styles for a beautiful look.    Here are tips on home decor: Plants and Natural Accents House plants have come back in style with a force. Metallic Finishes Luxe metallic finishes are everywhere. Shimmer and shine are even showing up in unexpected places like wallpaper and carpeting. Add a bit of glam to any room with rose gold and copper accents. Geometry Geometric patterns — everything from simple motifs to bold and colorful patterns — add drama to any space.  Fringe Fashion trends often carry over into interior design, and fringe is one of those fads that’s hot right now. Add fringe to a lamp shade or chandelier or hang a boho macramé wall hanging with a fringed edge. Fringed accessories like pillows, throws, draperies and cushions are other easy updates. Color Color is one to the most powerful tools in your design arsenal. It can change or alter the mood of the space and bold colors are on the upswing. Bringing color into a room is more than just painting the walls. Create a calm bedroom with neutral walls, but add bedding and draperies in a color that speaks to you. Pillows and area rugs can also bring an instant splash of color to the living room.     
 

Relax - We have selling covered for you

The real estate market is hot and right now is a great time to list your home. Buyers are actively looking now that the summer is coming to the end and vacations are done. As the kids are getting back into school, parents are able to focus more on buying their next home.  Here are some tips to help you out and make your home POP to potential buyers!  🎆🎇Make Your Home POP!   ✅Tired of buyers missing your home? 🔎Communicate with your agent and make sure they are marketing your home on social media, blogs, open houses, and ad campaigns. Getting a good online presence is the first step to getting buyers through the front door.   🔎Another trick to online marketing is making sure you are selling a lifestyle more so than just a house. Help the potential buyer envision themselves raising a family in the home or living in that particular community.   ✅Wondering what you can do to get top dollar for your home? 🏡Always use professional photographs 🏡Trust you agent on fair market value and don’t list too high to start with 🏡Declutter and stage your home for the best impression to potential buyers 🏡Always keep your home in showing condition     ✅Why is now the best time to get your real estate photos done, even if you are not ready to list until fall?? 📸Right now is a great time to go ahead and get photos done for your home if you plan to sell in the fall. Your curb appeal will not be as inviting as it is right now with the vivid summer green grass, potted flower plants on the front porch and the amazing natural light coming into the home. Even if you have not decided on an agent just yet, go ahead and get the photos done now. Sometimes this cost is included with listing the property with an agent so if you do know who is going to be responsible for marketing your home, talk with them first prior to getting photos done.  
 

Have First-Time and Repeat Buyers Switched Places?

First-time homebuyers are still crushing the mortgage market when compared with repeat buyers, according to a recent report by the Urban Institute (UI). Despite facing inflated prices, stunted supply, tight credit, and rental costs that make saving for a down payment difficult, first-timers have commanded the mortgage market for the past 10 years, the report revealed and The Urban Institute doesn’t see that changing anytime soon. Giving a brief background, the report indicated that theFederal Housing Administration (FHA), which makes low down payment loans available to borrowers with subpar credit, has typically targeted the first-time buyer market, who make up around 80 percent of the FHA’s total originations. That percentage plunged to about 75 percent during the recession but has tiptoed back up to nearly 83 percent today, UI reports. By contrast, the GSEs’ share of first-time homebuyers historically tracked much lower than the FHA’s, totaling about 25 percent during the early 2000s. During the housing bubble, it jumped to around 40 percent. After receding slightly during the recession, the GSEs’ share of first-timers has maintained an upward trajectory since 2013. It sits at nearly 50 percent today, the report notes. When combining the FHA and GSEs, the total share of first-time homebuyers taking out purchase mortgages in 2017 amounted to 60 percent—around 20 percentage points higher than the 40 percent pre-crisis average. Why the flood of first-timers post-crisis? The reason is two-fold, according to UI: “Partly, it’s the better economy. But a big chunk of the increase is driven by the pullback of repeat buyers.” The report found that between 2001 and 2007, repeat homebuyers represented anywhere from 1.4 to 1.8 million home purchases per year, while first-timers accounted for between 900,000 and 1.3 million. The two cohorts have since switched. Last year, repeat buyers purchased just over a million homes, while first-time buyers snapped up to close 1.5 million. “Falling house prices during the recession prevented millions of homeowners from accumulating equity in their homes, equity they have typically used to trade up to bigger homes,” UI reported. Since prices have picked up and home equity is rising again, will repeat buying activity reclaim its historic levels? “Probably not,” the report said. Owners may have more equity today, but most of them also have very low mortgages they locked in during the recession—when rates routinely measured below 4 percent. If, for example, a homeowner with a 3.5 percent rate wanted to upgrade to a different home, they’d have to secure a new mortgage at today’s higher rate. “Many homebuyers will likely find it much more economical to simply stay in their existing homes,” the report said. “This will continue to dampen repeat buying volumes and continue the dominance of first-time homebuyers in the housing market.” But those first-timers will, quite literally, be paying for that preeminent status, it notes. “Since existing homeowners won’t release their starter homes into the market, and since we aren’t making up for that deficit through new construction, prices will likely keep going up for first-time homebuyers,” it reported.   SOURCE: DSN NEWS  About Author: Radhika Ojha Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her masters degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha, also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. She can be reached at Radhika.Ojha@DSNews.com
 

HUD Files Housing Discrimination Complaint Against Facebook

vs.    HUD Files Housing Discrimination Complaint Against Facebook   The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced on Friday that they were filing a formal complaint against Facebook for violating the Fair Housing Act by allowing landlords and home sellers to use its advertising platform to engage in housing discrimination. HUD claims Facebook enables advertisers to control which users receive housing-related ads based upon the recipient’s race, color, religion, sex, familial status, national origin, disability, and/or zip code. HUD alleges that Facebook then invites advertisers to express unlawful preferences by offering discriminatory options, allowing them to effectively limit housing options for these protected classes under the guise of "targeted advertising." You can read the full complaint right here.   This information was provided by DSN news and author information is listed below:  About Author: David Wharton David Wharton, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 15 years of experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@DSNews.com.
 

Millennial Homebuyers Go on a Shopping Spree

\   The homeownership rate for the second quarter of the year was “not statistically different” from the rate recorded the previous quarter or a year earlier, according to the Census Bureau, which released its quarterly homeownership and vacancy report on Thursday. The notable change in homeownership over the quarter occurred among millennials. “For the second quarter in a row, homeownership rates slipped for households 55 and up and gained for younger households, especially those under 35 who saw their rate reach 36.5 percent, its highest level in five years,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com in response to Thursday’s homeownership numbers.   The jump in millennial homeownership was also noted by Aaron Terrazas, Senior Economist at Zillow, who said that the millennial “home shopping spree” lead to a “bump in the overall homeownership rate in Q2.” He considered that the current millennial homeownership remains “well below pre-crisis and pre-bubble norms, but those same groups are currently experiencing some of the biggest gains.” This quarter’s 36.5 percent millennial homeownership rate compares to a rate of 34.1 percent a year ago. Those ages 35 to 44 are also more likely to own a home now than a year ago. The homeownership rate for this age cohort rose from 58.3 percent a year ago to 60 percent in the second quarter of this year. The overall homeownership rate for the second quarter was 64.3 percent, compared to 63.7 percent in the first quarter and 64.2 percent in the same quarter last year, according to the Census Bureau. The rate was highest among older households—78 percent for those 65 years and older. Homeownership was more common among non-Hispanic white households than among other races. The homeownership rate for non-Hispanic white households was 72.9 percent. For Asian, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander households, the rate was 58 percent, and for black households, the rate was 41.6 percent. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.5 percent in the second quarter, matching the rate of the previous quarter and the same quarter last year. The rental vacancy rate was 6.8 percent, down from 7.3 percent a year ago but not statistically different from last quarter’s 7 percent, according to the Census Bureau. Terrazas characterized rental household formation as “anemic for a fifth consecutive quarter,” which he said, “has contributed to softer rent growth nationwide. After a decade of “renters accounting for almost all new households nationwide,” Terrazas said “that decade-long dynamic began to shift” in mid-2016. However, “as interest rates rise and purchase affordability becomes more stretched over the next year, the pendulum could swing back toward more renter household formation,” he said. Overall, 87.7 percent of housing units in the United States were occupied as of the second quarter, while 12.3 percent were vacant, according to the Census Bureau. About 56.3 percent of housing units were occupied by owners, while 31.3 percent were occupied by renters. At 68.3 percent, the homeownership rate was highest in the Midwest. The South ranked second with a rate of 65.9 percent, and the Northeast and West followed with rates of 61.3 percent and 59.7 percent, respectively.     About Author: Krista Franks Brock Krista Franks Brock is a writer and editor who has covered the mortgage banking and default servicing industries since 2011. Previously, she served as managing editor of DS News and Southern Distinction, a regional lifestyle publication. Her work has appeared in a variety of print and online publications, including Consumers Digest, Dallas Style and Design, DS News and DSNews.com, MReport and theMReport.com. She holds degrees in journalism and art from the University of Georgia.
 

Home Sales Lag, Demand Grows

Despite a growing demand among homebuyers, the sales of existing homes lagged for the third straight month in June, according to the latest existing home sales data released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) on Monday. According to the report, total existing-home sales, decreased 0.6 percent to 5.38 million in June. On a year-over-year basis, existing home sales were down 2.2 percent over the same period a year ago, NAR said. The deceleration was led by declines in the South and West, which exceeded the sales gains in the Northeast and Midwest regions, the report indicated. While the report found that the median existing-home price for all housing types was $276,900, total housing inventory at the end of June climbed 4.3 percent to 1.95 million existing homes for sale—0.5 percent above the same period a year ago. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR, attributed the falling sales numbers to the severe housing shortage especially in this market segment, despite growing demand.“There continues to be a mismatch since the spring between the growing level of homebuyer demand in most of the country about the actual pace of home sales which are declining,” he said. The falling figures of existing home sales provide an opportunity for homebuilders constructing new homes, according to Tian Liu, Chief Economist at Genworth Mortgage Insurance. “The impact of inventory shortage is not just a challenge for potential buyers and real estate agents, but also for mortgage lenders, contractors, and suppliers in the home improvement industry,” he said. “On the positive side, we believe that it offers a tremendous opportunity for homebuilders by addressing the largely unmet demand for new homes.” According to NAR, unsold inventory was at a 4.3-month supply at the current sales pace, with properties staying on the market for an average of 26 days during the month. “What is for sale in most areas is going under contract very fast and in many cases, has multiple offers,” Yun said. This dynamic is keeping home price growth elevated, pricing out would-be buyers and ultimately slowing sales.”   About Author: Radhika Ojha Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. You can contact her at Radhika.Ojha@theMReport.com.  
 

A Strong Shift In Housing Demand

New home sales slipped 5.3 percent to 631,000 in June 2018, compared with the previous month. Yet they remained 2.4 percent above the same period last year, according to the latest data on the sales of new single-family houses released by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. According to the data, the median sales price of new houses sold in June was $302,100, whereas the average home sold for $363,300. The data also indicated a rise in the inventory of new homes. Around 301,000 new homes were available for sale at the end of June representing a supply of 5.7 months at the current sales rate. "Affordable homes have become severely depleted and any boost in inventory would provide some much-needed relief for weary first-time buyers," said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com.   About Author: Radhika Ojha Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her masters degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha, also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. She can be reached at Radhika.Ojha@DSNews.com.
 

Pepperidge Farm recalls Goldfish crackers due to potential Salmonella contamination

— The manufacturer of Goldfish crackers, Pepperidge Farm, has initiated a voluntary recall for four different varieties of Goldfish. “Pepperidge Farm has been notified by one of its ingredient suppliers that whey powder in a seasoning that is applied to four varieties of crackers has been the subject of a recall by the whey powder manufacturer due to the potential presence of Salmonella. Pepperidge Farm initiated an investigation and, out of an abundance of caution, is voluntarily recalling four varieties of Goldfish crackers. The products were distributed throughout the United States. No illnesses have been reported. No other Pepperidge Farm products in the U.S. are subject to this recall,” according to a company statement. Flavor Blasted® Xtra Cheddar Flavor Blasted® Sour Cream & Onion Goldfish® Baked with Whole Grain Xtra Cheddar Goldfish® Mix Xtra Cheddar + Pretzel
 

The Beach Boys to perform at the Wilson Center

This December, The Beach Boys are set to perform at the Wilson Center in downtown Wilmington.   WILMINGTON—The Beach Boys are bringing the 60s back to Wilmington. Both new and original members of the band will hit the Wilson Center’s Stage in this winter. The Beach Boys will perform on December 18. Tickets are currently on sale for Cape Fear Stage Members and will go on sale to the public on Friday, July 27. at 10 a.m. at capefearstage.com.  
 

While Home Sales Lag, Demand Grows

Despite a growing demand among homebuyers, the sales of existing homes lagged for the third straight month in June, according to the latest existing home sales data released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) on Monday. According to the report, total existing-home sales, decreased 0.6 percent to 5.38 million in June. On a year-over-year basis, existing home sales were down 2.2 percent over the same period a year ago, NAR said. The deceleration was led by declines in the South and West, which exceeded the sales gains in the Northeast and Midwest regions, the report indicated. While the report found that the median existing-home price for all housing types was $276,900, total housing inventory at the end of June climbed 4.3 percent to 1.95 million existing homes for sale—0.5 percent above the same period a year ago.   About Author: Radhika Ojha Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. You can contact her at Radhika.Ojha@theMReport.com
 

Before You Waive The Home Inspection...

When you're trying to make your offer as attractive as possible, skipping the inspection may seem like a good idea. Here's why it's not. If you’re buying a home in a competitive market and your offers keep getting beat out, you may be tempted to resort to desperate measures. In addition to offering more than the asking price or a quick closing, some buyers agree to waive inspections. This is never a good idea. The home may look OK to the naked eye, but it’s what’s beyond the surface, or items that you can’t identify as problematic, that cause the biggest issues. For example, the typical buyer won’t be able to spot asbestos, nor will they see evidence of termite infestation or a leak inside the HVAC system.
 

Buying Your First Home? Plan for These Hidden Costs

Buying You r First Home? Plan for These Hidden Costs Expect the unexpected For almost every person who buys a home, the spending doesn’t stop with the down payment. Homeowners insurance and closing costs, like appraisal and lender fees, are typically easy to plan for because they’re lumped into the home-buying process, but most costs beyond those vary. Consider the creature comforts Another cost is your own comfort. It’s easy to not think fully about what you’re expecting from your new home until after you move in. Plan ahead This starts with budgeting both before house hunting and throughout your search. Look at homes in your budget that need improvements, and then research how much those improvements could cost. Nothing is worse than buying a home thinking you can fix the yard for a few hundred dollars and then realizing it will cost thousan
 

Counteroffers | Negotiating In Real Estate

Negotiation power When reviewing a counteroffer, it’s important to have an experienced real estate agent who can capitalize on your advantages in a negotiation. Both sellers and buyers can take steps to put themselves in an advantageous position through planning and smart counteroffers. Knowledge is power in negotiations, so try to glean as much information about the seller or buyer as you can. Your agent will also seek information from the other agent on your behalf. Sometimes sellers use the pending sale of their home to finance another, meaning they have a truncated timeline and could be more eager to make a deal. Similarly, buyers who have terminated a lease may be desperate for a place to live and more willing to negotiate. If you’re selling a home with known issues, anticipate how these problems may put you at a disadvantage during negotiations. A leaky roof may not be discovered until after buyers order a home inspection. Depending on the cost, they may ask the seller to either fix the roof or deduct the cost of a new roof from the sale price. These types of issues put sellers at a distinct disadvantage because they have to either pay for repairs, lower the selling price, or reject the counteroffer and hope the next buyer doesn’t notice or care about repairs. This is why it’s worth the money (around $500) to pay for an inspection before listing a house. Preparation can save you headaches and money down the road. Responding to a counteroffer If you’ve received a counteroffer as a buyer or a seller, carefully review every aspect. Real estate agents, apart from yours, are under no obligation to ensure you read the full contract. So make sure you read everything carefully before you sign. With each individual counteroffer, consider every aspect of the sale, including old and new information. If you made an offer above the list price, there is always the possibility for an appraisal to come in low. If you are responding to a counteroffer before an appraisal or inspection, keep those at the forefront of your mind. Prepare yourself for future counteroffers once they are completed. Whether you’re selling or buying a home, establish a baseline for when you will walk away from a sale. As a buyer, you don’t want to spend so much on a home that you move in with no cash for improvements and repairs. And as a seller, you should know how much you want to make off the sale. With a measured and informed approach, counteroffers can be your friend. Communicate often with your agent to let them know what you want from the sale, and never be afraid to walk away if things go south.
 

What You Need to Know About Employer Relocation Packages

Before you start packing boxes, it’s important to know what your employer will and won’t offer in terms of relocation assistance, and how that could affect both your move and your pocketbook. Make no assumptions Approximately 70 percent of U.S. companies offer relocation incentives for employees or new hires. If a relocation package isn’t discussed with your offer, you’ll need to start the conversation yourself. Ask for what you want, including all the services and compensation you’ll need for your move.   Ask about  extras No two companies offer the same relocation packages. Some will cover just the basics, while others will transfer vehicles, provide cultural training, help pay closing costs or mortgage points buy down, or even provide employment assistance for an accompanying spouse or partner. If you’re a homeowner being asked to relocate, you’ll know you’ve hit the jackpot if your relocation package includes a Guaranteed Buy Out (GBO). With a GBO, the relocation company hires two independent appraisers prior to listing your home. If you’re unable to sell the property on your own within a certain time period, the company will buy your home for the average of the two appraisals. Doing it yourself If your company’s relocation package is of the barebones variety, you may want to explore your DIY alternatives. A DIY option is renting a moving truck. A large-capacity truck is easier to load and unload than a car, and allows you to accomplish the task with fewer trips back and forth. In addition to the cost of renting the truck, you’ll need to buy gas to get the vehicle from one place to another, and you may be required to purchase additional insurance. Self-service moving uses portable storage containers, and is a blend of DIY moving and professional moving.  Tax implications If your job requires you to relocate, your moving costs and the expense of traveling to your new location could be deductible if they meet certain IRS standards regarding distance and time worked after the move.  
 

What if a printer could solve the housing crisis?

What if a printer could solve the housing crisis? 3D printing could be the silver bullet. ICON, a construction technologies company, designed a 3D printer to produce homes. A single-story home, with a total footprint measuring 600 to 800 square feet, can be printed in underserved communities in less than 24 hours. The cost? Just $4,000.
 

Want to create wealth through homeownership? Build equity.

How to build your equity Here are six ways your home can create wealth for you. Some require time, money — or both. A lender can help you decide what works best for you. 1. Let your home appreciate Building equity through appreciation can take little time or a lot, depending on the market. With home prices going up like they have in recent years, appreciation has been a boon for many home owners. 2. Make a larger down payment You can do this but, as we’ve seen, waiting to save extra cash can go against your broader financial interests if you lose the chance to build equity through appreciation. Therefore, you must strike a balance among down payment, monthly budget and savings for other priorities. A good lender can provide rate and market insight to help you do this. 3. Use financial windfalls Take advantage of work bonuses, family gifts and inheritances to pay down your mortgage. If you do pay down in lump sums, see if your lender will recalculate (or “recast”) your payment based on the new, lower balance. 4. Make biweekly payments Make mortgage payments every two weeks instead of once a month. Over the course of a year, this will add up to 13 monthly payments instead of 12. You’ll build equity faster and shave five to six years off a 30-year mortgage. Just make sure your lender isn’t charging extra for processing semimonthly payments. 5. Cut your loan term in half Take out a 15-year mortgage instead of a 30-year mortgage, and you’ll build equity twice as fast. Two caveats here: You’ll have a significantly higher monthly payment and, because of that, you may have a tougher time qualifying. 6. Make home improvements New appliances or cosmetic features like paint are unlikely to increase value. Only big improvements like new kitchens, or additional bathrooms or other rooms will add meaningful value. Make sure the cost of such improvements will create the added value you’re looking for. How to use your equity You must borrow or sell your home to use your equity. The three most well-known ways to get to your equity through borrowing are a home equity line of credit (HELOC), home equity loan or cash-out refinance.  Rates are rising right now, so these borrowing options might cost more in the future. Talk to your lender to determine the best approach for you.
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