The most recent Pending Homes Sales Index from the National Association of Realtorsrevealed a slight bump in contracts with an increase of 1.6% in December. This news comes as existing home sales are also forecasted to be on pace for 5.54 million in 2017, a 1.7% increase over 2016, which was the best year for sales in a decade.
The Pending Home Sales Index is a leading indicator for the housing sector, based on pending sales of existing homes. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed.
According to NAR’s Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun,
“Pending sales bounded last month as enough buyers fended off rising mortgage rates and alarmingly low inventory levels to sign a contract.”
Buyers are searching for existing homes, but supply is not keeping up with their demand!
Yun went on to explain,
“The main storyline in the early months of 2017 will be if supply can meaningfully increase to keep price growth at a moderate enough level for households to absorb higher borrowing cost. Sales will struggle to build on last year’s strong pace if inventory conditions don’t improve.” (emphasis added)
Buyers are out in force right now! If you are considering selling your home this year, the early months of 2017 will be your best option. Let’s get together to discuss how you can capitalize on current market conditions.
Every three years, the Federal Reserve conducts a Survey of Consumer Finances in which they collect data across all economic and social groups. The latest survey, which includes data from 2010-2013, reports that a homeowner’s net worth is 36 times greater than that of a renter ($194,500 vs. $5,400).
In a Forbes article, the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts that by the end of 2016, the net worth gap will widen even further to 45 times greater.
The graph below demonstrates the results of the last two Federal Reserve studies and Yun’s prediction:
As we’ve said before, simply put, homeownership is a form of ‘forced savings.’ Every time you pay your mortgage, you are contributing to your net worth. Every time you pay your rent, you are contributing to your landlord’s net worth.
The latest National Housing Pulse Survey from NAR reveals that 85% of consumers believe that purchasing a home is a good financial decision. Yun comments:
“Though there will always be discussion about whether to buy or rent, or whether the stock market offers a bigger return than real estate, the reality is that homeowners steadily build wealth. The simplest math shouldn’t be overlooked.”
If you are interested in finding out if you could put your housing cost to work for you by purchasing a home, meet with a real estate professional in your area who can guide you through the process.