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Zeller's Blog

By Doug & Bud Zeller | Agent in Placerville, CA
  • Demand is Pushing Up Rents Again

    Posted Under: Rental Basics in Somerset, Rent vs Buy in Somerset, Rentals in Somerset  |  April 14, 2014 8:10 PM  |  644 views  |  No comments

    As apartment demand continues to rise, landlords are projected to increase their rents for the fifth consecutive year. A rise in apartment construction isn’t likely to offer relief to tenants anytime soon either, USA Today reports.

    Between 2000 and 2012, apartment rents have risen 6 percent while incomes among renters have fallen 13 percent in that time period, according to a report from Apartment List, a rental housing website that adjusts for inflation.

    "That's what we call the affordability gap," says John Kobs, Apartment List's chief executive. "I don't see that improving in the near future."

    The vacancy rate for apartments has dropped from 8 percent to 4.1 percent from 2009 to 2013, according to Reis, a commercial real estate data provider. Meanwhile, the average national effective rent has increased 12 percent to $1,083 from 2009 to 2013, according to Reis, which data reflects apartments in buildings with 40 or more units.

    During that same time period, the median price of an existing home has risen about 14 percent, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. Many renters – which surveys show want to buy a home – are unable to purchase a home due to tight credit conditions that are preventing them from obtaining financing.

    Source: “Growing Demand for Apartments Pushes up Rents,” The Associated Press (April 5, 2014)

  • Interest Rates Drop Slightly

    Posted Under: General Area in Somerset, Market Conditions in Somerset, Financing in Somerset  |  April 9, 2012 3:01 PM  |  525 views  |  No comments

    "Average weekly mortgage rates were little changed this week amid mixed signals on the health of the economy,” says Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

    Here’s a closer look at mortgage rates for the week ending April 5, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage market survey. 

    • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.98 percent, with an average 0.7 point, dropping slightly from last week’s 3.99 percent average. A year ago at this time, 30-year rates averaged 4.87 percent. 
    • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.21 percent, with an average 0.7 point, dropping from last week’s 3.23 percent average. Last year at this time, 15-year mortgages averaged 4.10 percent. 
    • 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.86 percent, with an average 0.8 point, falling from last week’s 2.90 percent average. Last year at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.72 percent. 

    Source: Freddie Mac

  • Deficit Reduction Commission Endorses Plan?

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Somerset, Financing in Somerset, Property Q&A in Somerset  |  December 3, 2010 4:25 PM  |  765 views  |  No comments

    President Obama's deficit commission voted 11-7 in support of its final report, which was released 12/01/10. However, the panel fell short of the super majority (14 out of 18 votes) needed to automatically send the recommendations to Congress.

    The purpose of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform's recommendations is to identify spending cuts and tax changes that would cut $4 trillion in debt over the next decade. A scaling back of the long-standing mortgage interest deduction (MID) for home owners was among the proposals.

    Specifically, the commission recommended turning the mortgage interest deduction into a tax credit, capping eligible mortgages at $500,000, and eliminating tax benefits for second homes and home equity loans.

    Real estate industry groups reacted with expected concern over how such changes could impact the already fragile housing industry. In a statement, National Association of REALTORS® President Ron Phipps said, “As the leading advocate for housing and home ownership issues, NAR firmly believes that the MID is vital to the stability of the American housing market and economy.”

    Changes to the MID could bring down home prices just when the housing market is beginning to seeing stability, Phipps said. NAR research estimates that home values could erode as much as 15 percent if the changes to the MID were put into law.

    "This would negatively impact home ownership for millions of Americans, including those who own their homes outright and have no mortgage," said Phipps.

    Erica Christoffer, REALTOR® Magazine

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