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Bud Zeller's Blog

By Bud Zeller | Broker in Placerville, CA

Five issues for housing in 2012

1) Confidence and jobs: Housing is more affordable than it has been in decades, but many would-be buyers are worried about buying today if prices are going to be lower tomorrow.  Still, others don’t want to buy a house until they have more evidence that they’re not going to get laid off or see their hours cut back.

 

 

2) Foreclosures: Banks and other mortgage investors own around 440,000 foreclosed properties, but there’s another 3.4 million loans in foreclosure or serious delinquency, according to estimates by Barclays Capital.  Because banks are faster to cut prices to unload inventory than are traditional sellers, home values can fall further as the share of distressed sales rises.

 

 

3) Rents: If low mortgage rates aren’t enough to give urgency to would-be buyers, rent hikes could accelerate buyers’ decisions to take the plunge.

 

 

4) Mortgage credit and rates: It’s still hard for many buyers to get approved for a mortgage because banks are demanding lots of documentation of borrowers’ incomes.

 

 

5) Regulation: Many analysts don’t expect Congress to make major changes to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during the election year, but several major regulatory changes could significantly reshape the future of the lending landscape in 2012.


Full story at: http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2012/01/05/five-issues-for-housing-in-2012/

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