News & Opinions
The latest news and insights from Hanley Wood’s outspoken experts and key thought-leaders throughout the residential and commercial design and construction industry.
Les Christie / CNN/Money / July 18, 2013
If history is any indication, the recent spike in mortgage rates is going to have little to no impact on home prices, according to a new report from Fannie Mae.
After looking at mortgage rates going back to 1990, Fannie Mae’s researchers came to the surprising conclusion that while rising rates were likely to hurt the number of home sales, they had virtually no impact on home prices.
“History suggests that interest rate increases at the level recently witnessed will not stop the current housing recovery,” the report said.
The study, which compared historic mortgage ratesRead More
Jed Kolko / Trulia / July 10, 2013
Rising mortgage rates are the top worry for people thinking of buying a home someday, and 56% of Americans say they would be discouraged from homeownership if rates reach 6%. But pay more attention to what consumers do than what they say.
After years of low-and-lower mortgage rates, the 30-year fixed rate shot up from a near-historic-low of 3.35% in early May to 4.46% in late June before settling back to 4.29% last week, according to Freddie Mac. The rate increase was sudden and steep, but not a surprise. Economists and forecasters have been waiting for rates to go up for two reasons: (1) the
John Caulfield / BUILDER / June 18, 2013
Builders in the top 50 U.S. markets close out 2012 with a flourish
Last year, the 50 largest metro markets ranked by new-home closings saw those closings increase 11.9 percent over the top 50 markets in 2011, to 218,571 units. That count represented 57.6 percent of all sales of new single-family homes and multifamily completions nationwide. And nearly three-fifths of the closings in those 50 markets—130,988—were transacted by their respective 10 largest builders. These Local Leaders generally grew at an even faster pace than their housing markets did, increasing their closings by anRead More
Dan Levy / Bloomberg Businessweek / May 30, 2013
Foreclosure (HOMFCLOS)-related U.S. home sales fell 22 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier as rising prices reduced the incentive to sell for owners who owe more than their properties are worth, RealtyTrac said.
A total of 190,121 homes in some stage of foreclosure or taken by banks were sold this year through March 31, down 18 percent from the previous three months, the data seller said today. Those deals, including short sales, or transactions in which lenders let homeowners sell for less than what they owe, accounted for 21 percent of first-quarter residential transactions,Read More
Frank Anton / BUILDER / May 29, 2013
One reason, among many, that this housing recovery has so far been tepid by historical standards is that potential home buyers often couldn’t find what they wanted because inventories of unsold new and existing homes were so low. In fact, for the last three years the supply of new and existing single family homes for sales has hovered around 4 months, well below the 7.2 month 30-year average (see chart).
Why were inventories so low? There were two reasons. One, as long as home prices were depressed, many existing homeowners chose to stay put. And, two, with sales depressed, many builders