Monday, January 28, 2008

Buyers Are Still Buying Homes!

To hear the national media tell it, homebuyers are fools to buy right now. Home prices have dropped 5 percent since October 2006. Our economic problems aren't over, so home prices are bound to drop further. Why would anyone catch that falling knife? But there are some markets out there that are making monkeys out of housing bears.

According to the National Association of Realtors, home prices are higher in 93 out of 150 metro areas.
Which markets are sizzling? Charlotte, North Carolina, San Francisco; Albuquerque; and Green Bay, Wis., among others.
But don't take NAR's word for it.
Forbes Magazine has noticed the red glow from those cities and others. The magazine just named 10 cities where home prices are going through the roof, including
Forbes: 2007 Best U.S. Housing Markets:
Salt Lake City, 246,700, up 14.1%
Charlotte, S.C., $220,000, up 11%
San Jose, Ca., $852,500, up 9.4%
San Francisco, Ca., $825,400, up 8.6%
Raleigh, N.C., $229,500, up 7.5%
Austin, Tx $188,200, up 7.2%
Pittsburgh, Pa., $127,700, up 6.1%
Seattle, Wa., $394,700, up 6%
San Antonio, Tx, $154,700, up 5.7%
Portland, Or., $299,700, up 5.2%

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

House Hunting Tips for Buyers

Get to know the inventory of homes available in your target area. Some of these listings will never work for you, either because they aren't large enough or because they have defects you might not be able to live with, like a lot of stairs to the front door. You can drop these listings from your radar.
Find an agent who specializes locally and who will keep you well informed on local market conditions. Ask your agent to sign you up for a listing alert program that will send you information directly from the multiple listing service when new listings come on the market or when the status of a listing changes.
Of particular interest are listings that are back on the market, and ones that have had a price reduction. If a house that's back on the market is one you were interested in, find out why the deal fell apart. In the past, it was commonly assumed that if a transaction failed it was due to inspection-related issues, not financing. Today, we're seeing more transactions fall apart because the buyers were unable to secure financing. A seller who just lost a deal because the buyer couldn't perform could be receptive to a reasonable offer from a better-qualified buyer.
Don't assume there's something wrong with the house if it's back on the market, or if it has been unsold and on the market for a long time. In a changing market, it's often difficult to select a list price that will bring about a speedy sale. Keep an open mind about listings that have had price reductions. These could have been mispriced to begin with. If the sellers are motivated, they will reduce the price until it is in line with the market.
Some unsold listings haven't moved because they need too much work. In today's market, the most salable listings are those that are in move-in condition. Properties that need work should be priced to account for the work that will need to be done.

2008 Presents Opportunities for Homebuyers

The New Year started with promise for homebuyers as falling rates combined with lower prices to boost housing affordability. The average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) in the Southwest, which includes Texas and Oklahoma, fell to 6.06 percent in early January from a December average of 6.10 percent. At the same time last year, the 30-year FRM averaged 6.18 percent. Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) slipped to an average 5.76 percent from a December average of 5.81 percent. A year ago, the 5-year hybrid ARM averaged 6.02 percent. One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 5.44 percent in early January, down from a December average of 5.50 percent, and almost even with the average 5.42 percent one year ago.
"The latest home sales data came with a few light notes," said Freddie Mac Chief Economist John Nothaft. "While new home sales fell in November to the slowest pace since April 1995, existing home sales rose," Nothaft said. Rising existing home sales may be a sign that the market is stabilizing, according to National Association of Realtor's Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "Mortgage interest rates are near historic lows and the most current data shows decelerating price declines, along with a modest reduction in the number of homes on the market," Yun said. In other words, 2008 is starting with good opportunities for buyers to get into homes.

Wyatt Poindexter
Keller Williams Realty

Oklahoma City January Listing Of The Month

12801 Plum Hollow Drive in Val Verde
Enter this 2007 remodeled home and experience a new standard of luxury living. This Gil Wright home has every amenity imaginable for the home owner who wants the very best. Precisely an entertainer’s dream, this home is set to please the largest of parties. The use of stone and brick combine to create a home of unparalleled beauty. Situated on approximately 1.5 acres of prime real estate, the new owner will find 5 bedrooms, 4.5 Baths, 5 living areas, a gourmet kitchen, 4 fireplaces, custom pool, flagstone patio/deck and spa with fountain, a grand foyer, holiday closet, photography room, and a oversized three car garage that is sure to please all in a home that has approximately 5,300 square feet. Whether your looking for a grand home to entertain or the ease of comfortable and quiet family living this home truly offers it all. View this home's professional photos and virtual tours at:

Wyatt Poindexter
Keller Williams Realty
5629 N. Classen Drive
Oklahoma City, OK 7311

January 22, 2008 Market Update

Mortgage and Treasury bond prices are rallying this morning in response the The Fed's surprise move to lower the Fed Funds rate by 3/4 of a point. This is the largest single rate cut since 1984. With the next Fed meeting just over a week away on January 30, today's action was a very unusual move, indicating the severity of the conditions in financial markets. In addition to today's cut, investors are also expecting another half point cut in the Fed Funds rate at next week's meeting. The Dow was down as much as 464 points earlier this morning, before bouncing back and recovering more than half of the losses. No economic data will be released today.

Wyatt Poindexter
Keller Williams Realty Oklahoma
(405) 417-5466