Market Watch – August vs. July 2011 and August 2011 vs. 2010

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As we cross into the second half of the current year, I’m proud to announce a number of fantastic achievements we’ve accomplished here at Amanda Howard Real Estate – and pledge our commitment to continue working for you, to better ourselves and maintain our standing in the market as within the top 1% of Realtors in the country (voted by the Wall Street Journal).  We are grateful to have been nominated as Small Business of the Year, Leadership Executive of the Year and the Better Business Bureau’s Torch Awards.

Focusing on our current marketplace, I thought mid-year was a good spot to shed some light on how we are doing as compared to the previous year and also month-to-month.  There are some interesting factors to keep in mind that affect how the numbers look on paper and what with what perspective, so hopefully this piece will help to clarify any questions you may have regarding how we are doing in the real estate market these days.

To follow along on some of the figures I am reporting, click on this link and you will see graphs and charts depicting market performance in detail.

The Long and Short of It

Basically there is a lot of uncertainty nowadays.  But not necessarily for the reasons you may think.  Where there are some reports talking of this being the most unprecedented real estate hangover since the real estate bubble inflated and then burst, on the flip side, however, the media is brimming with stories about this being the BEST time to buy, buy, buy!  What is a consumer to think?  Naturally we can expect anger and frustration from people who are not sure exactly what is going on and have no idea what the reality of the situation is.

The Market Crashes and Soars At the Same Time?

Among the seemingly conflicting reports, one common one is about the current historically low interest rates and that the market is continuously crashing.  At the same time, you also hear stuff about the market jumping “19% up in sales, stunning economists!”

What’s the true picture here?  The truth is that given the very low home prices we are experiencing because of the down market, coupled with low, low interest rates – we are indeed seeing a spiked interest from investors.  In fact, twenty five percent of August sales were reported as sales made to investors.

Add to this heightened real estate investment activity the fact that one third of all sales are known distressed properties within the past two months alone, and it is apparent that investors are on the prowl, seizing the opportunities that are out there during this soft market.  As a result, investors are absorbing a significant number of properties while looking to hedge against higher inflation.

How The Numbers Are Stacking Up

We saw a sizable increase in existing home sales from last year versus this year and also the previous month (July) to the current reporting month (August).  There was an 18.6% hike in home sales in 2011 vs. 2010, which spiked the interest of market analysts.   The reason for this appears to be what I call the “tax-credit hangover”, following the 2010 summertime deadline for the Home Buyer Tax Credit.

As we move into the cooler months of the year, it will be expected to see a downward trend in these same numbers, which is typical of this time of year.  Keep in mind that another factor that affects our market statistics is the number of distressed properties among those properties that are sold.

A Tip:  Be Selective When Selecting a Bank

One thing is certain – when you are choosing a lender, remember that all lenders are not created equal.  These days especially, mortgage lenders are operating under very strained guidelines and the result that shows up to you, the buyer, is that you should find one who you can trust and one that has a rapport with others in the industry that you trust.  Get in touch with us and we will happily put you in contact with our list of preferred lenders; those who have a proven track record to work within the realm of their maximum ability and who you know you can trust to be honest and straightforward about your situation, no matter what it may be.  We look forward to hearing from you!

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