Thursday, August 23, 2012

Less Inventory + New Guidelines = Brighter Housing Outlook

Real Estate inventory could not keep up with the demand for homes during the month of July. This is now the fifth month in a row we have seen a correlation between supply and demand that is favorable to a thriving real estate market. The National Association of Realtors reported that the national median home price is up 9.4% from a year ago at this time, which is the strongest gain since January 2006! Our local Tampa, Florida real estate market has seen gains even higher than the national average and boasts a 12.4% increase in median sale prices from a year over perspective. Sales of existing homes are also up 10.4 % from this time one year ago. Chief economist for the NAR said, “Mortgage rates have been at record lows this year while rents have been rising at faster rates. Combined, these factors are helping unleash a pent-up demand.” The demand stems from a 23.8% decrease in listing inventory from a year ago and looks like it will continue to fall.

Not only are homes being sold at higher prices with every sale, but other major factors are influencing the real estate market. New guidelines set forth by the Federal Housing Finance Agency regarding the short sale process are warmly welcomed by many buyers, sellers, and realtors. The new guidelines call for a more streamlined paperwork process and offer up to $6,000 to second-lien holders. The FHFA will require little or no documentation from borrowers who are delinquent on multiple loan payments, suffered a financial hardship, or have low credit scores. For those who are still current on mortgage payments, servicers will have more flexibility to process short sales for homeowners dealing with hardships. The numbers of foreclosures will diminish once this goes into effect on November 1, 2012. This is supposed to have a positive effect on the value of communities that are suffering from homes being appraised at lower values.

Keeping homes occupied and avoiding the foreclosure process will undoubtedly raise the quality of communities and all around real estate market, especially in the Tampa, Florida market. This boost will contribute to an already up swinging number of short sales that make up the real estate transactions in Florida. 8.8% of all home sales were the product of short sales, which is up from 6.5 percent in 2010.

SI Real Estate offers highly personalized, multilingual, full-spectrum real estate purchase and sales services. We are a boutique for sophisticated investors, select owners or renters who may be upgrading locally, or those making traditional relocations. We also provide turnkey landlord and tenant management. Blending comprehensive insight into the Tampa Bay area with international perspectives for a worldwide clientele, we like to think that “SI Real Estate is Global Real Estate in Every Way!”