THE WOODLANDS, TX – Here is some great news for those watching the Real Estate and Mortgage Lending Market: Sales of new single-family homes jumped 35% from December to January. This put them at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 543,000, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). Their chief economist explained, “While the big jump may appear to conflict with other data…our Builder Application Survey estimate is consistent with reports of home builder sentiment that shows strength in the market for new homes.” In line with this, the MBA put mortgage applications for new home purchases up 27% over December, and as noted by Realtor.com, the number of homes available for purchase in February has shown an increase.
That is a great indication of relief for buyers, as we see the extremely low re-sale inventory that our market is currently experiencing. We are expecting hundreds, to thousands of new homes in our community to be available over the next year – and in addition to these new houses the rising prices of new and resale homes will bring more listings of each kind. This will soften the inventory to a more traditional level, and create less craze over fears that homeowners have about putting property on the market, to make a move up or down, because they may not find exactly what they’re looking for.
The latest predictions by Redfin and Zillow state that there will be an increase in the price of homes at a rate of 3% and 5% this year. In 2013 we saw jumps of 5% nationally and even increases in some hot locations (like The Woodlands) of more than 20%, to compare. The benefit of these gains were above historic norms for markets where there is health and balance. Zillow’s chief economist, Stan Humphries, predicts that in 2014, home value gains will slow appreciably due to higher prices, and interest rates as well as more supply due to new construction and fewer homeowners being stretched to afford their mortgages.