market conditions: Ending 2012 With a Bang - 12/11/12 08:30 AM
Stan McLaughlin is optimistic that the housing market in his part of Oklahoma is taking the same steps toward a recovery that are being seen in other parts of the country. While his numbers haven’t been overwhelming, his “2012 is better than 2011, which was better than 2010.” “We’re definitely having a better year this year than last year as far as overall sales,” said McLaughlin, who works in Norman and Oklahoma City. “Much of that was from a strong start that didn’t flatten out that much as the year progressed.” McLaughlin has learned to appreciate the slight uptick in his … (0 comments)

market conditions: Short Sales Grow Business for Phoenix Agent - 09/19/12 04:31 PM
Numbers are an important part of real estate, with prices, closings, commissions, fees, interest rates and the like adding up to potential angst. Sometimes we put so much pressure on ourselves to reach certain goals that we lose track of our main mission. So why not disregard the numbers and do what you do best? You might be surprised how quickly your transactions pile up without the added
Kathleen Bliss Porter, an agent in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area, decided about four years ago to start concentrating on short sales as her primary way of doing business. Part of that was reality because … (0 comments)

market conditions: Buyer Strategies in Tightening Markets - 09/10/12 10:56 AM

Tight inventory is putting the squeeze on homebuyers who are jumping into the market after finally seeing positive signs of a housing recovery. Talk about your good news, bad news situation. That means it’s time for the talk. You know, the one where you have to be blunt with clients who will be competing with a host of other buyers, including cash-wielding investors.

“The poor buyer’s agents, which I mostly am, have to be super aggressive,” said Jackie Cartwright, a Realtor in the Las Vegas area. “They have to coach their clients from the start about what to … (0 comments)

market conditions: July’s New Home Construction Building a Good Foundation - 07/31/12 08:23 AM

A foundation is being built for the housing recovery as 2012 makes the turn toward the backstretch of a year many see as the start of something good, or at least a lot better than the previous five or six years. That foundation, appropriately enough, is coming from homebuilder confidence. A report from the National Association of Home Builders in July showed the largest one-month gain since September 2002 in the newly built single-family home market. Gains were shown in homebuilder confidence over rising sales conditions, prospects for future sales and traffic of prospective buyers.

“This is greater … (0 comments)

market conditions: Navigating the Latest Market Trend - 07/25/12 10:59 AM
If a Realtor was sent to the blackboard by a math teacher these days, he or she might write this equation: More buyers + fewer houses = help!
National surveys and HouseHunt’s second-quarter market conditions report show an increase in housing activity and a decrease in inventory in parts of the country. Working through foreclosures and short sales, however, remain a sticking point to more upward movement. While national reports show the nation’s shadow inventory shrinking by about 30 percent since early 2010, HouseHunt agents in parts of Georgia, California, Arizona, Minnesota, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, Texas and Florida say foreclosures … (1 comments)

market conditions: Survey Says... - 07/09/12 02:25 PM

Pictured right: Emerson Hall at Harvard University When it came to colleges, Harvard wasn’t on my list. It had something to do with brains and finances and the like. But I am smart enough to know that when the Ivy League school publishes something or has its name attached to a report it’s worthy of a look.
The school’s State of the Nation housing report for 2012 caught my eye, and it’s got some interesting reflections and projections regarding our business. And since it is 42 pages long, here’s a Cliffs Notes version of some highlights:
After several false starts, there … (2 comments)

market conditions: Appraisal Criticism Mounting - 06/11/12 09:14 AM

Appraisal changes instituted because of the financial crisis were intended to eliminate pressure on appraisers that occasionally led to inflated valuations during the housing boom. So much for that theory because critics are now saying that the changes resulted in conservative valuations and the increased use of appraisers with little knowledge of local market conditions. Other things appraisers have been taking heat for recently are that home values aren’t matching a listing or contract’s price and valuations are unfairly weighing distressed properties into the equation.
The best thing you can do as an agent is get educated on the … (3 comments)

market conditions: Ready or Not, Bidding is Back - 05/29/12 08:54 AM

Signs point to the housing market heating up enough this summer where buyers might get caught in a bidding war on a house they’re looking at. Yes, the phrase “seller’s market” is creeping back into the real estate vocabulary so if you haven’t dealt with multiple offers for a while it’s a good idea to dust off your skills again.
The National Association of Realtors lists Seattle, Phoenix, Washington, D.C., and Southern California’s Orange County as places where tight housing inventories are leading to “multiple biddings and escalating price conditions.” A survey of HouseHunt agents echoes that and also includes … (2 comments)

market conditions: Steer Your Career into Victory Lane - 05/11/12 09:09 AM

Career paths can go in many directions and the up and often down housing market of the past few years has likely caused your head to spin. But there are signs that things are picking up, so the horizon looks bright in some parts of the country. Regardless of where you work, which direction your career heads is up to you. So if you’ve come to a fork in the road and know that changes must be made in the way you do business, that’s a good start. Here are some things to keep in mind on your journey:
It’s … (0 comments)

market conditions: Short Sales Overtaking Foreclosures as Way to Move Inventory - 05/02/12 09:14 AM
Real estate agents might want to take a longer look at short sales because of a surge in popularity. But be quick about it because recent data from Lender Processing Services shows that the number of short sales reported early this year exceeded the number of foreclosures for the first time, which means that buyers, sellers, agents and lenders are warming to the transactions, whether out of necessity or resignation. Figures from Lender Processing Services reveal that short sales accounted for nearly 24 percent of home purchases in January, with foreclosures accounting for 19.7 percent of sales in the same period. … (1 comments)

market conditions: Affordability Index Another Positive Factor for Housing - 04/30/12 09:41 AM

If you work primarily with buyers, you’ve probably used historically low interest rates as one of the carrots to dangle in front of potential clients. Now there’s even more positive food for thought to offer in the form of a recent National Association of Realtors report showing housing affordability at its highest level since records started being kept in 1970.
NAR’s Housing Affordability Index rose to a record high 206.1 early this year, based on the relationship between median home price, median family income and average mortgage interest rate. The higher the index, the greater the household purchasing power. And … (1 comments)

market conditions: Improving market conditions! Is it happening in your city? - 04/20/12 08:52 AM

Ah, spring is in the air. Time for a young Realtor’s fancy to turn to … improving market conditions! Is it happening in your city? Hopefully it is, because things apparently are booming and blooming in a number of areas, according to a HouseHunt agent survey.
Whether the uptick in numbers and attitudes from the first quarter of 2012 continues hinges on a variety of issues, but any sign of life has to be taken as a positive, right? Now if only the government can refrain from mucking things up.
Much of the upbeat attitude from HouseHunt’s report stems from tighter … (3 comments)

market conditions: Sellers Still Need to Have Realistic Expectations on Pricing - 04/18/12 10:34 AM
How are you educating your sellers? Are your sellers wanting to list at unrealistic prices due to online resources?
No matter what kind of market we’re in – and signs are pointing to a shift away from one heavily favoring buyers – it’s important to set the right price from the outset. As a real estate agent you know this, but good luck convincing a stubborn client who views the price-rising trend as an opportunity to ask for the moon.
Being swayed by such thinking is simply setting everyone up for a fall. And your seller needs to hear this … (2 comments)

market conditions: Things are Tightening Up Regarding Inventory, According to Agents - 04/09/12 09:09 AM
Normally the word “tight” has negative connotations. It could mean a tense atmosphere or a scarcity of money, among other things. It has mixed messages for real estate, however, as a tightening of inventory means things are shifting toward the other end of the pendulum in some spots. More offers on homes means prices could go up, but a limited supply of options could also be the calm before the storm when more bank-owned properties flood the market. Alvarez said investors and cash sales are driving up the market and that short sales account for approximately half of the activity. She … (1 comments)

market conditions: Lending Standards and Appraisals Remain Hot-Button Topics - 04/06/12 08:37 AM
There are signs that the housing market is getting back on track, but the gains are fragile and could become derailed by a number of issues. One reared its head in February, according to a Realtors Confidence survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors, which showed that nearly one-third of polled agents experienced a contract cancellation during the month. That’s up drastically from a year ago that had only 9 percent reporting cancellations.
What’s the deal? The escrows aren’t falling apart, according to the NAR, but more than triple the number of agents reported deal-busting problems compared with a year … (0 comments)

market conditions: 3Q 2010 Market Conditions Report from HouseHunt - 10/13/10 01:04 PM
Record Low Interest Rates and Buyer Tax Credits Lead to More Buyers than Sellers on the Market for the First Time in Years, New HouseHunt Survey Shows
Boosted by record low interest rates and homebuyer tax credits, the number of buyers in the market has pulled slightly ahead of the number of sellers in the United States’ housing market.
Forty-four percent of real estate agents polled by HouseHunt.com reported that there were more buyers than sellers in their local market, the largest figure recorded in nearly three years and up 10 percent from the second quarter of 2010.
The number of … (1 comments)

market conditions: Take The Unofficial 3Q 2010 Activerain Realtor Survey - 09/30/10 11:34 AM
HouseHunt.com is putting the finishing touches on our 3Q 2010 Market Conditions Survey press release, and I thought to myself, let's get some input from the activerain community as well! If you have a few moments and would like to share, I'd like to ask you a few questions about your local market to try and get a picture of where the real estate industry has been and where we're going.
Feel free to leave your answers and thoughts in the comments section.
 
1. Buyer/Seller Ratio
a. More Buyers
b. More Sellers
c. About Even
 
2 Average Time on … (3 comments)

market conditions: With Consistent Customer Flow, Slow and Steady wins the Real Estate Race - 09/14/10 06:07 PM
The person who makes a success of living is the one who see his goal steadily and aims for it unswervingly. That is dedication.
- Cecil B. DeMille (1881 - 1959)
HouseHunt recently heard from Sherry Rogan, of The Rogan Team, the HouseHunt.com exclusive member agents for Boise, Idaho. She shared with us the local market in Boise is slow and steady: prices are down compared to last year, transaction numbers are nothing to write home about, and the market is very competitive with agents all trying to gain a foothold over the other. 
Average results at best, right?
Not … (0 comments)

market conditions: 2nd Quarter 2010 Market Survey: Repeat Buyers & Investors With Cash Boost Home Sales, Prices in Many Markets - 07/08/10 05:56 PM
Hello everyone! I'm excited to share our latest press release containing some great data for the second quarter of 2010 as compiled in our most recent current market conditions survey. Hope you enjoy!
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Repeat Buyers & Investors With Cash Boosting Home Sales & Prices In Many Markets, New HouseHunt Survey Shows
For the first time in nearly three years, repeat buyers and investors have overtaken first-time buyers as sales leaders once again in the nation’s housing market. As a result, prices of bank-owned REOs and properties involved in short sales are being bid up by multiple offers and cash … (0 comments)