25% of Homes with a Mortgage are Now Equity Rich!

Rising home prices have been in the news a lot lately and much of the focus has been on whether home prices are accelerating too quickly, as well as how sustainable the growth in prices really is. One of the often-overlooked benefits of rising prices, however, is the impact that they have on a homeowner’s equity position.

Home equity is defined as the difference between the home’s fair market value and the outstanding balance of all liens (loans) on the property. While homeowners pay down their mortgages, the amount of equity they have in their homes climbs each time the value of their homes go up!

According to the latest Equity Report from ATTOM Data Solutions, “13.9 million U.S. properties in Q2 2018 were equity rich — where the combined estimated balance of loans secured by the property was 50 percent or less of the property’s estimated market value — representing 24.9% of all U.S. properties with a mortgage.”

This means that nearly a quarter of Americans who have a mortgage would be able to sell their homes and have a significant down payment toward their next home. Many who sell could also use their new-found equity to pay off high-interest credit cards or help children with tuition costs.

The map below shows the percentage of properties with a mortgage in each state that were equity rich in Q2 2018.

Top 9 Home Design Trends to Watch in 2018

Top 9 Home Design Trends to Watch in 2018

We frequently get questions from clients who are taking on decorating and remodeling projects and want to ensure their dollars are invested wisely.

Which looks will last for years to come, and which ones will feel dated quickly? What colors and styles are most popular among buyers in our area? How can I add the most value to my home?

So we’ve rounded up some of the hottest trends in home design to help guide you through the process. Whether you’ve planned a simple refresh or a full-scale renovation, making smart and informed design choices will help you maximize your return on investment … and minimize the chance of “remodeler’s remorse” down the road.

Read More

Real Estate 2018: What to Expect

Real Estate 2018: What to Expect

Get ready for another strong year in the 2018 housing market! U.S. home values and sales volume will continue to rise in 2018. Find out how you can maximize your Real Estate selling or buying this coming year.

Read More

The Impact Of Tight Inventory On The Housing Market

The housing crisis is finally in the rear-view mirror as the real estate market moves down the road to a complete recovery. Home values are up, home sales are up, and distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) have fallen to their lowest points in years. It seems that the market will continue to strengthen in 2018.

However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory. While buyer demand looks like it will remain strong throughout the winter, supply is not keeping up.

Here are the thoughts of a few industry experts on the subject:

National Association of Realtors

“Total housing inventory at the end of November dropped 7.2 percent to 1.67 million existing homes available for sale, and is now 9.7 percent lower than a year ago (1.85 million) and has fallen year-over-year for 30 consecutive months. Unsold inventory is at a 3.4-month supply at the current sales pace, which is down from 4.0 months a year ago.”

Joseph Kirchner, Senior Economist for Realtor.com

“The increases in single-family permits and starts show that builders are planning and starting new construction projects, that’s a good thing because it will help to relievethe shortage of homes on the market.”

Sam Khater, Deputy Chief Economist at CoreLogic

Inventory is tighter than it appears. It’s much lower for entry-level buyers.”

Bottom Line

If you are thinking of selling, now may be the time. Demand for your house will be strong at a time when there is very little competition. That could lead to a quick sale for a really good price.

 

DOWNLOAD A FREE GUIDE to Selling Your Home This Winter

27 New Year’s Resolutions for Homeowners

27 New Year’s Resolutions for Homeowners

Personal resolutions can be motivating, exciting or just plain silly. This year I will…lose weight, run a marathon, go to Paris, break the hot-dog-eating record. As a homeowner, resolutions can also be empowering. Some are mission-critical for a solid financial year, others maybe fall in the wish list. Need ideas? This list should get you (and your real estate clients) started:

Read More

How to Seal Windows for Winter & Save BIG on Energy Bills

How to Seal Windows for Winter & Save BIG on Energy Bills

The federal Energy Information Administration estimates that up to 30%of the average home’s heat loss literally goes out windows and doors.

Luckily, though, this drain on your warm air and wallet is easy to fix if you know how to seal windows—and this project is quite easy even for the least handy of homeowners to do themselves. Read on for the steps to take!

Read More