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By Michael Alex | Agent in San Diego, CA

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Home Selling in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:56 AM  |  541 views  |  2 comments

    A survey of more than 2,000 Americans found that 33% of the 365 who were searching for a home have been on the hunt for more than a year and many were willing to make compromises on where they live or the type of home they would buy in order to close the deal, Century 21 Real Estate reported Wednesday.

    Currently, there are 2.16 million existing homes for sale, down 13.6% from 12 months earlier.

    With fewer homes for sale and more buyers coming onto the market, sellers are less willing to negotiate on price like they were during the housing bust. According to the survey, 42% of the people shopping for homes have placed offers in the past six months, yet only 11% of the bids were accepted.

    That has caused buyers to rethink their positions: 85% said they're willing to compromise to get deals done. Just over half said they would be flexible on the closing date; 31% said they would purchase a home "as-is;" and 29% would pony up more cash than they originally planned.

    The home shoppers said they are also willing to let go of some of the items on their "wish lists."

    More than half would give up on an in-ground pool; 49% would sacrifice a finished basement; 37% would compromise on either an updated kitchen or walk-in closets.

    A majority of buyers are also more willing to look beyond their preferred locations, willing to live farther away from work, from family or from restaurants and shopping.




    Posted Under: Market Conditions in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Home Selling in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:29 AM  |  539 views  |  No comments

    Asking prices continue to increase steadily nationwide in May, rising in 98 of the largest 100 metros, according to Trulia’s Price Monitor. Nationally, prices are up 9.5 percent year-over-year. Seasonally adjusted, prices increased 4 percent quarter-over-quarter and 1.1 percent month-over-month.

    Eight out of the 10 least affordable markets, with seven in California, are all showing double digit increases in asking prices, making home affordability even tougher for would-be buyers. Orange County, Oakland, and San Jose all had price increases of more than 20 percent, making these already expensive markets even less affordable. Prices are up 16.3 percent, on average, in these 10 least affordable housing markets.

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    Posted Under: Market Conditions in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Home Selling in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:24 AM  |  541 views  |  1 comment

    Americans’ confidence in their ability to buy and sell a home climbed sharply in May, likely due to reports of strong home price gains, according to results from Fannie Mae’s May 2013 National Housing Survey.

    The share of respondents who say now is a good time to sell a home reached a record high of 40 percent, compared with 30 percent in April and 16 percent one year ago. At the same time, the share of those who say it is a good time to buy a home moved up 5 percentage points from April to a survey high of 76 percent. Americans’ average 12-month home price change expectation also reached a survey high in May, climbing to 3.9 percent from 2.7 percent in April.

    Currently, 46 percent of Americans think it would be easy for them to get a mortgage today, retreating slightly from April’s survey high, while 50 percent believe it would be difficult to get a mortgage. Consumers have been asked since the survey’s inception in June 2010 for their perceived ease or difficulty in getting a mortgage, and the question was added in May 2013 as an indicator to the monthly data findings report to help determine whether rising mortgage rates affect their views.



    Posted Under: General Area in San Diego, Market Conditions in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:16 AM  |  482 views  |  No comments

    The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had improved in April, increased again in May and now stands at 76.2 (1985=100), up from 69 in April. The Present Situation Index increased to 66.7 from 61, and the Expectations Index improved to 82.4 from 74.3 last month.

    Consumers’ appraisal of present-day conditions improved in May, with those saying business conditions are “good” increasing to 18.8 percent from 17.5 percent, and those stating business conditions are “bad” decreasing to 26 percent from 27.6 percent. Consumers’ assessment of the labor market also was more positive. Those claiming jobs are “plentiful” increased to 10.8 percent from 9.7 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” edged down to 36.1 percent from 36.9 percent.

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    Posted Under: General Area in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Financing in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:09 AM  |  562 views  |  1 comment

    Realtor.com released its April data showing that the U.S. housing market is on its way to a broad-based recovery, an accelerated trend since March. The home-buying season shifted into high gear last month as inventory and home list prices on Realtor.com® increased 4.12 percent and 2.63 percent, month over month, respectively. As of April, homes are on the market nationwide approximately 81 days—a decrease of nearly 11 percent since April 2012—highlighting that while new homes are entering the market, they are not available for long.

    Despite the increase in inventory month over month, nationwide inventory declined on an annual basis in all but 11 of the 146 markets Realtor.com® monitors. Approximately 36 markets registered a decrease of listings by 20 percent or more, still highlighting near records lows of available homes.

    Approximately 37 markets experienced a decline in list price since last year, a figure that has been improving throughout the home-buying season. The number of markets throughout the nation experiencing a steady or slight decline in median list prices is decreasing throughout the home-buying season, another positive signal for the overall housing market recovery. In April, median list prices increased in 109 markets


  • high bids may not be enough. sellers are also seeking offers without mortgage contingencies.

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Home Selling in San Diego  |  June 15, 2013 12:04 AM  |  538 views  |  No comments

    In a housing market starved for inventory, buyers are stepping over one another to bid on desirable properties. But a high bid may not be enough — sellers are also seeking offers without mortgage contingencies.

    Usually included in a sales contract, a mortgage contingency gives buyers the option of backing out if they can’t obtain financing within a specified period. And if they do back out, they can take their down payment with them.

    But the combination of a competitive market and a difficult lending climate has made sellers in New York less amenable to such conditions. They want noncontingent or all-cash offers.

    “When you have a market that’s heating up,” said Marc Israel, the executive vice president of Kensington Vanguard National Land Services, a title insurer, “sellers feel emboldened to say to buyers, ‘I’m not going to give you this clause because I don’t want to take the risk that you can’t get your mortgage.’ ”

    The stance makes perfect sense from a seller’s viewpoint. When the market is hot, added Mr. Israel, a continuing education instructor for real estate lawyers, “the last thing sellers want to do is tie themselves up with a buyer for some extended period of time just to have the buyer cancel the contract.”

    For buyers, however, signing a contract without a mortgage contingency is risky. If their financing was delayed or denied, they could forfeit their down payment.

    Given the typical 10 percent down payment in New York, “you’re talking about a very significant amount of money at risk,” Mr. Israel noted.

    In such a competitive market, buyers who need financing may find themselves up against those able to pay in cash or put at least 50 percent down, said Peggy Aguayo, an executive vice president of Halstead Property. It is not uncommon for high bids to be passed up for slightly lower bids that are noncontingent or all cash.

    “A typical buyer with 25 or 30 percent to put down” Ms. Aguayo said, “if they don’t waive that contingency, the seller will go with someone else.”

    The problem can be discouraging. Some of her buyers have decided to pull out of the market altogether until inventory loosens up.

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  • 75 percent of Americans believe it’s time to buy a home

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in San Diego, Home Buying in San Diego, Investment Properties in San Diego  |  June 14, 2013 11:43 PM  |  550 views  |  1 comment

    Trulia Inc. recently released the results of its Real Estate Regrets survey, which reveals the most-common housing mistakes today’s home buyers and renters should avoid during spring house hunting season.

    According to the survey, buyers are feeling the pressure of rising home prices this spring: 75 percent of Americans say it’s better to buy a home now than a year from now. However, fewer than 1 in 3 Americans (32 percent) agree it would be better to sell now than a year from now. Patient sellers, along with little new construction, fewer foreclosures, and underwater borrowers, have pushed inventory to a 12-year low, creating a seller’s market. This year’s housing season will likely cause aggressive buyers to scramble in order to try to win tough bidding wars and overcome stiff competition–putting them at risk of making real estate mistakes they will regret.

    More than half of Americans who were involved in the process of choosing their current home (52 percent) have at least one regret about their current home or the process of choosing it. A common theme of the top regrets is Americans not investing enough in their home. Top regrets include choosing a home that’s too small, renters wishing they had bought instead of renting, homeowners regretting not remodeling more, and not being financially secure. When comparing homeowners to renters who were both involved in the process of choosing their current home, renters are more likely to have housing regrets – 56 percent versus 50 percent. Among different age groups who were involved in the process of choosing their current home, Millennial homeowners (age 18 to 34) are far more likely to have housing regrets than homeowners age 55 or older – 75 percent versus 36 percent.

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