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      The Top Reasons People Are Moving This Year

       

       

      The Top Reasons People Are Moving This Year | MyKCM

      Today, Americans are moving for a variety of different reasons. The current health crisis has truly re-shaped our lifestyles and our needs. Spending extra time where we currently live is enabling many families to re-evaluate what homeownership means and what they find most important in a home.

      According to Zillow:

      “In 2020, homes went from the place people returned to after work, school, hitting the gym or vacationing, to the place where families do all of the above. For those who now spend the majority of their hours at home, there’s a growing wish list of what they’d change about their homes, if possible.” 

      With a new perspective on homeownership, here are some of the top reasons people are reconsidering where they live and making moves this year.

      1. Working from Home

      Remote work is becoming the new norm in 2020, and it’s continuing on longer than most initially expected. Many in the workforce today are discovering they don’t need to live close to the office anymore, and they can get more for their money if they move a little further outside the city limits. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR) notes:

      “With the sizable shift in remote work, current homeowners are looking for larger homes and this will lead to a secondary level of demand even into 2021.”

      If you’ve tried to convert your guest room or your dining room into a home office with minimal success, it may be time to find a larger home. The reality is, your current house may not be optimally designed for this kind of space, making remote work and continued productivity very challenging.

      2. Virtual Schooling

      With school about to restart this fall, many districts are beginning the new academic year online. Education Week is tracking the reopening plans of schools across the country, and as of August 21, 21 of the 25 largest school districts are choosing remote learning as their back-to-school instructional model, affecting over 4.5 million students.

      With a need for a dedicated learning space, it may be time to find a larger home to provide your children with the same kind of quiet room to focus on their schoolwork, just like you likely need for your office work.

      3. A Home Gym

      Staying healthy and active is a top priority for many Americans. With various levels of concern around the safety of returning to health clubs across the country, dreams of space for a home gym are growing stronger. The Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans explains:

      “For many in quarantine, a significant decrease in activity is more than a vanity issue – it’s a mental health issue.”

      Having room to maintain a healthy lifestyle at home – mentally and physically – may prompt you to consider a new place to live that includes space for at-home workouts.

      4. Outdoor Space

      Especially for those living in an apartment or a small townhouse, this is a new priority for many as well. Zillow also notes the benefits of being able to use yard space throughout the year:

      “People want more space in their next home, and one way to get it is by turning part of the backyard into a functional room, ‘an outdoor space for play as well as entertaining or cooking.’”

      You may, however, not have the extra square footage today to have these designated areas – indoor or out.

      Moving May Be Your Best Option

      If you’re clamoring for extra space to accommodate your family’s changing needs, making a move may be your best bet, especially while you can take advantage of today’s low mortgage rates. Low rates are making homes more affordable than they have been in years. According to Black Knight:

      “Buying power for those shopping for a home is up 10% year over year, with home buyers able to afford nearly $32,000 more home than they could have 1 year ago while keeping their monthly payment the same.”

      It’s a great time to get more home for your money, just when you need the extra space.

      Bottom Line

      People are moving for a variety of different reasons today, and many families’ needs have changed throughout the year. If you’ve been trying to decide if now is the time to buy a new home, let’s connect to discuss your needs.


       

      6 Reasons Why Selling Your House on Your Own Is a Mistake

      6 Reasons Why Selling Your House on Your Own Is a Mistake | MyKCM

      There are many benefits to working with a real estate professional when selling your house. During challenging times like the one we face today, it becomes even more important to have an expert help guide you through the process. If you’re considering selling on your own, known in the industry as a For Sale By Owner or FSBO, please consider the following:

      1. Your Safety Is a Priority

      During this pandemic, your family’s safety comes first. When you FSBO, it is incredibly difficult to control entry into your home. A real estate professional will have the proper protocols in place to protect not only your belongings, but your family’s health and well-being too. From regulating the number of people in your home at one time to ensuring proper sanitization during and after a showing, and even facilitating virtual tours for buyers, agents are equipped to follow the latest industry standards recommended by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) to help protect you and your family.

      2. A Powerful Online Strategy Is a Must to Attract a Buyer

      Recent studies have shown that, even before COVID-19, the first step 44% of all buyers took when looking for a home was to search online. Throughout the process, that number jumped to 93%. Today, those numbers have grown exponentially. Most real estate agents have developed a strong Internet and social media strategy to promote the sale of your house. Have you?

      3. There Are Too Many Negotiations

      Here are just a few of the people you’ll need to negotiate with if you decide to FSBO:

      • The buyer, who wants the best deal possible
      • The buyer’s agent, who solely represents the best interest of the buyer
      • The inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always find challenges with the house
      • The appraiser, if there is a question of value

      As part of their training, agents are taught how to negotiate every aspect of the real estate transaction and how to mediate the emotions felt by buyers looking to make what is probably the largest purchase of their lives.

      4. You Won’t Know if Your Purchaser Is Qualified for a Mortgage

      Having a buyer who wants to purchase your house is the first step. Making sure they can afford to buy it is just as important. As a FSBO, it’s almost impossible to be involved in the mortgage process of your buyer. A real estate professional is trained to ask the appropriate questions and, in most cases, will be intimately aware of the progress that’s being made toward a purchaser’s mortgage commitment. Further complicating the situation is how the current mortgage market is rapidly evolving because of the number of families out of work and in mortgage forbearance. A loan program that was there yesterday could be gone tomorrow. You need someone who is working with lenders every day to guarantee your buyer makes it to the closing table.

      5. FSBOing Has Become More Difficult from a Legal Standpoint

      The documentation involved in the selling process has increased dramatically as more and more disclosures and regulations have become mandatory. In an increasingly litigious society, the agent acts as a third-party to help the seller avoid legal jeopardy. This is one of the major reasons why the percentage of people FSBOing has dropped from 19% to 8% over the last 20+ years.

      6. You Net More Money When Using an Agent

      Many homeowners believe they’ll save the real estate commission by selling on their own. Realize that the main reason buyers look at FSBOs is because they also believe they can save the real estate agent’s commission. The seller and buyer can’t both save the commission. A study by Collateral Analytics revealed that FSBOs don’t actually save anything by forgoing the help of an agent. In some cases, the seller may even net less money from the sale. The study found the difference in price between a FSBO and an agent-listed home was an average of 6%. One of the main reasons for the price difference is effective exposure:

      “Properties listed with a broker that is a member of the local MLS will be listed online with all other participating broker websites, marketing the home to a much larger buyer population. And those MLS properties generally offer compensation to agents who represent buyers, incentivizing them to show and sell the property and again potentially enlarging the buyer pool.”

      The more buyers that view a home, the greater the chance a bidding war will take place.

      Bottom Line

      Listing on your own leaves you to manage the entire transaction yourself. Why do that when you can hire an agent and still net the same amount of money? Before you decide to take on the challenge of selling your house alone, let’s connect to discuss your options.

      Will the Housing Market Turn Around This Year?

       

      Will the Housing Market Turn Around This Year? | MyKCM
       

      Today, many people are asking themselves if they should buy or sell a home in 2020. Some have shifted their plans or put them on hold over the past couple of months, and understandably so. Everyone seems to be wondering if the market is going to change and when the economy will turn around. If you’re trying to figure out what’s going to happen and how to play your cards this year, you’re not alone.

      This spring in the 2020 NAR Flash Survey: Economic Pulse, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has been tracking the behavior changes of homebuyers and sellers. In a reaction to their most recent survey, Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR, noted the beginnings of a turn in the market:

      “After a pause, home sellers are gearing up to list their properties with the reopening of the economy…Plenty of buyers also appear ready to take advantage of record-low mortgage rates and the stability that comes with these locked-in monthly payments into future years.”

      What does the survey indicate about sellers?

      Sellers are positioning themselves to make moves this year. More than 3 in 4 potential sellers are preparing to sell their homes once stay-at-home orders are lifted and they feel more confident, which means more homes will start to be available for interested buyers.Will the Housing Market Turn Around This Year? | MyKCM

      Just this week, Zillow also reported an uptick in listings, which is great news for the health of the market:

      “The number of new for-sale listings overall has shown improvement, up 5.9% last week from the previous week. New listings of the most-expensive homes…are now seeing the biggest resurgence, up 8%. The uptick is likely a sign sellers are feeling more confident because of improving buyer demand, as newly pending sales have also jumped up during the same period.”

      What does the survey note about buyers?

      The recent pandemic has clearly impacted buyer preferences, showing:

      • 5% of the respondents said buyers are shifting their focus from urban to suburban areas.
      • 1 in 8 Realtors report changes in desired home features, with home offices, bigger yards, and more space for their families becoming increasingly important.
      • Only 17% said buyers stopped looking due to concerns about their employment or loss of a job.

      As we’ve mentioned before, buyer demand is strong right now, and many are simply waiting for more inventory to become available so they can make a move, especially as the country begins to reopen.

      Bottom Line

      If you’re thinking about putting your house on the market, let’s connect today. There’s a good chance an eager buyer is looking for a home just like yours.

      How the Housing Market Benefits with Uncertainty in the World

      How the Housing Market Benefits with Uncertainty in the World | MyKCM

      It’s hard to listen to today’s news without hearing about the uncertainty surrounding global markets, the spread of the coronavirus, and tensions in the Middle East, just to name a few. These concerns have caused some to question their investment plans going forward. As an example, in Vanguard’s Global Outlook for 2020, the fund explains,

      “Slowing global growth and elevated uncertainty create a fragile backdrop for markets in 2020 and beyond.”

      Is there a silver lining to this cloud of doubt?

      Some worry this could cause concern for the U.S. housing market. The uncertainty, however, may actually mean good news for real estate.

      Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American, discussed the situation in a recent report,

      “Global events and uncertainty…impact the U.S. economy, and more specifically, the U.S. housing market…U.S. bonds, backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government, are widely considered the safest investments in the world. When global investors sense increased uncertainty, there is a ‘flight to safety’ in U.S. Treasury bonds, which causes their price to go up, and their yield to go down.”

      Last week, in a HousingWire article, Kathleen Howley reaffirmed Fleming’s point,

      “The death toll from the coronavirus already has passed Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, that bruised the world’s economy in 2003…That’s making investors around the world anxious, and when they get anxious, they tend to sell off stocks and seek the safe haven of U.S. bonds. An increase in competition for bonds means investors, including the people who buy mortgage-backed bonds, have to take lower yields. That translates into lower mortgage rates.”

      The yield from treasury bonds is the rate investors receive when they purchase the bond. Historically, when the treasury rate moves up or down, the 30-year mortgage rate follows. Here’s a powerful graph showing the relationship between the two over the last 48 years:

      Popular Perspective Delivers Gift to U.S. Housing Market | MyKCM

      How might concerns about global challenges impact the housing market in 2020? Fleming explains,

      “Even a small change in the 10-year Treasury due to increased uncertainty, let’s say a slight drop to 1.6 percent, would imply a 30-year, fixed mortgage rate as low as 3.3 percent. Assuming no change in household income, that would mean a house-buying power gain of $21,000, a five percent increase.”

      Bottom Line

      For a multitude of reasons, 2020 could be a challenging year. It seems, however, real estate will do just fine. As Fleming concluded in his report:

      “Amid uncertainty, the house-buying power of U.S. consumers can benefit significantly.”

      Should I Sell My House This Year?

      Should I Sell My House This Year? | MyKCM

      If one of the questions you’re asking yourself today is, “Should I sell my house this year?” the current Housing Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) Survey from the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) should boost your confidence as it relates to the current selling sentiment in the housing market. Even with all the information overload in the media circling around talk of a possible recession, the upcoming 2020 election, and more, Americans feel good about selling a house now. That’s some news to get excited about!

      As the graph below shows, as of Q4 2019, 75% of people surveyed indicate they believe now is a good time to sell a home:Should I Sell My House This Year? | MyKCM 

      In the case of those with a yearly salary of $100,000 or more, the results jumped even higher, coming in at an 82% positive sentiment.

      When the study divided the outcomes by region, the results still consistently showed Americans feeling good about selling:

      • Northeast: 71% positive
      • Midwest: 76% positive
      • South: 72% positive
      • West: 81% positive

      In addition to looking at income and region, the report also divided the results by generation, as shown in the graph below:Should I Sell My House This Year? | MyKCM 

      As you can see, many believe that, despite everything going on in the world, it is still a good time to sell a home.

      According to NAR, the unsold inventory available today “sits at a 3.0-month supply at the current sales pace,” which is down from a 3.7-month supply in November. The current inventory is half of what we need for a normal or neutral housing market, which should have a 6.0-month supply of unsold inventory. This is good news for sellers, as Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR, says:

      “Home sellers are positioned well, but prospective buyers aren’t as fortunate. Low inventory remains a problem, with first-time buyers affected the most.”

      Bottom Line

      If you’re ready to list your home, you can feel good about the current sentiment in the market. Let’s get together today to determine the best next step when it comes to selling your house this year.

       

       

      2020 Luxury Market Forecast

      2020 Luxury Market Forecast | MyKCM

      By the end of last year, many homeowners found themselves with more equity than they realized, and at the same time, their wages were increasing. When those two factors unite, it can spark homeowners to think about making a move to a larger or more expensive home in the luxury space. That said, now is a perfect opportunity to take a look at the forecast for the 2020 luxury market.

      Three Things to Think About in the 2020 Luxury Housing Market

      1. Prices

      The U.S. economy is strong today, with buying opportunities throughout the luxury end of the market. Thomas Veraguth, Strategist at UBS Global Wealth Management, says in Barrons.com,

      “There’s a good link between luxury real estate prices and [economic] growth.”

      Available inventory is a key element that can impact home prices. In the upper range, the inventory is greater in comparison to the entry-level market, making moving up to a luxury home a growing reality for many buyers right now.

      2. Activity in the Market

      With more buying opportunities at the higher end, we should start to see an increase in activity. The same article states,

      “Affluent homebuyers will start to come out of the woodwork as they find rising luxury rents less appealing and sellers get even more negotiable on price.”

      Buyers looking in the luxury market are taking the opportunity to negotiate on price in a segment where there are more choices, too. According to the Luxury Market Report, homes sold for an average of 96.94% of the list price in December.

      Buyers are also getting more for their money with greater purchasing power due to the current low-interest rates.

      3. Buyers Are Coming Back

      Keep in mind, buyers are often sellers too, especially those looking to move up. Homeowners with an entry-level home can take advantage of the inventory shortage at the lower end of the market, thus driving higher sales prices for their current homes. Combined with growing equity in the homes they’re listing, it’s a great time for those who are ready to make a luxury move.

      The extra equity and greater purchasing power are bringing many buyers back to the market. The same article mentioned that,

      “We’ve already seen buyers who’ve been on the sidelines for two years tread back into the market.”

      Bottom Line

      If you’re considering entering the luxury market, 2020 is shaping up to be a great year for those who are ready to make that move. Let’s get together to set your real estate plan for the year.

       

      Compass Contemplations for Thursday

      Good morning,

      DID YOU KNOW?  Mortgage application volume decreased 9.2% from the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index. The week’s results also include an adjustment for the Thanksgiving holiday. Refinance weakness caused the overall drop. Those applications fell 16% for the week but were 61% higher than the same week a year ago. (CNBC)

       

      DID YOU KNOW?  In 2000, just before the Bush tax cuts and a recession, U.S. governments collected 28.3% of GDP in taxes. Today that figure has dropped to 24.3% of GDP in 2018, the 4th lowest in the OECD and down from 26.8% a year earlier and 25.9% in 2016. (WSJ)


      DID YOU KNOW?  Realtor.com predicts sales of existing homes will fall 1.8% compared with 2019. Home prices will flatten nationally, increasing just 0.8% annually, but in 25% of the 100 largest metropolitan markets, prices will fall. These include Chicago, Dallas, Las Vegas, Miami, St. Louis, Detroit, and San Francisco. Millennials will dominate the housing market, accounting for 50% of all mortgages by spring, according to the forecast. Just short of 5 million millennials will turn 30, which is when many people buy their first home, and the oldest will turn 39.

      DID YOU KNOW? According to its 2019 U.S. Vacation Home Counties Report, between 2013 to 2018, the median sales price in vacation home counties increased at a slightly higher pace of 36% compared to the pace of increase of all existing and new homes sold, at 31%. (NAR)

      DID YOU KNOW? National home prices increased 3.5% year over year in October 2019 and are forecast to increase by 5.4% from October 2019 to October 2020. The October 2019 HPI gain was down from the October 2018 gain of 5.2% and was up a bit from the September 2019 gain of 3.3%.  Home prices have been increasing year over year in a narrow range of 3.2% to 3.5% over the past six months, indicating that the rate of home price growth is leveling off. (CORE LOGIC)

      DID YOU KNOW?  As a percentage of disposable income, we have the lowest debt service to income obligations in 40 years in the USA. (JP MORGAN)
       

      5 Reasons to Sell This Winter

      5 Reasons to Sell This Winter | MyKCM

      Below are five compelling reasons to list your house this winter.

      1. Demand Is Strong

      The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase, and are in the market right now. More often than not, in many areas of the country, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy the same home.

      Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

      2. There Is Less Competition Now

      Inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed for a normal housing market. This means in the majority of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in the market.

      Historically, a homeowner would stay an average of six years in his or her home. Since 2011, that number has hovered between nine and ten years. There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move as they were unable to sell over the last few years due to a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners will be given the freedom to move.

      Many homeowners were reluctant to list their homes over the last couple of years, for fear they would not find a home to move into. That is all changing now as more homes come to the market at the higher end. The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until additional inventory comes to market before you decide to sell.

      3. Buyers Are Serious at This Time of Year

      Traditionally, homeowners think about spring as a great time to list their homes, when more buyer traffic may be out there actively searching. In the winter, however, the buyers who are seeking a home – whether for relocation or otherwise – are serious ones. They’re ready to make offers and they’re eager to move, often quickly. Your house may be exactly what they’re looking for, so listing when other potential sellers are holding off may be your best opportunity to shine.

      4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

      If your next move will be into the premium or luxury market, now is the time to move up. There is currently ample inventory for sale at higher price ranges. This means if you’re planning on selling a starter or trade-up home and moving into your dream home, you’ll be able to do that now. Demand for your entry-level home is high, and inventory in the luxury or premium market is too.

      According to CoreLogic, prices are projected to appreciate by 5.6% over the next year. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and in your mortgage) if you wait.

      5. It’s Time to Move On With Your Life

      Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it’s worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Are you ready to go on with your life the way you think you should?

      Only you know the answers to these questions. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market this winter. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

      That is what is truly important.

       

       

      The information contained, and the opinions expressed, in this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. does not guarantee or warrant the accuracy or completeness of the information or opinions contained herein. Nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. You should always conduct your own research and due diligence and obtain professional advice before making any investment decision. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. will not be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on the information or opinions contained herein

      Compass Contemplations for Friday

      DID YOU KNOW? Construction on U.S. new houses fell more than 9% in September, but a recent surge in permits suggests the decline in so-called housing starts is just a brief pause in a real estate market reinvigorated by lower mortgage rates. Housing starts slid to an annual rate of 1.26 million last month from a revised 1.39 million in August. (Marketwatch)

      DID YOU KNOW? Of the 618,000 “millennial millionaires” - those currently aged 23 - 37 years old with a net worth of over $1 million - in the USA, 44% are concentrated in California. California also has the highest percentage of business owners (23%) and the highest percentage of real estate investors. New York ranks No. 2, home to 14% of the millennial millionaire population. (CNBC)

      DID YOU KNOW? Hedge funder Ray Dalio - speaking at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings - said the global business cycle is in a “great sag” and the world’s economy holds at least two parallels to the 1930s. Here are some of his thoughts: 
      * Monetary policy, and especially interest rate reductions, were unlikely to offer much stimulus.
      * The world was also experiencing the biggest wealth gap since the 1930s and that was creating political stress. In the USA the top one-tenth of 1% of the population has a net worth that is approximately equal to the bottom 90%.
      * Like the 1930s, we have a rising power challenging an existing world power in the form of China-U.S. challenges.
      * There were four types of wars to watch for — trade, technology, currency and geopolitical.  (CNBC)

      DID YOU KNOW? Total national real estate website visits - not unique visitors - in the month of September looked like this: 
      Zillow:                  179 million
      Redfin:                 46,5 million
      Compass:             3,543 million
      Coldwell Banker:  2,9 million
      Sothebys Realty:  2,773 million
      Corcoran:             922,151
      Elliman:                390,000
      Thanks to Jeremy Schwartz from Compass SEO Analytics who provided this information.

      Compass Contemplations for Sunday

       

      DID YOU KNOW? According to a 2018 report from the Pew Research Center, 19% of American adults live in “upper-income households.” The median income of that group was $187,872 in 2016. The share of U.S. adults considered upper-class varies depending on where you live, Pew noted: In affluent metropolitan areas, it’s much higher than 19%. The metropolitan areas with the largest shares of adults in upper-income households are mostly in the coastal areas of the Northeast and California and tend to be in high-tech corridors, such as Boston-Cambridge-Newton, MA-NH, or in financial and commercial centers, such as Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT. The metro with the highest share was San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, where 32% of adults were considered upper-income. (CNBC)

       

      "Narratives that can periodically surge into epidemics are capable of changing the economy’s direction or of turning small booms and recessions into big ones. The probability that a recession will come soon — or be severe when it does — depends in part on the state of ever-changing popular narratives about the economy. These are stories that provide a framework for piecing together the seemingly random bits of information that one picks up from friends, the news or social media." - Robert Schiller, NYT 

       

      DID YOU KNOW? Here are some interesting stats from the NAPLES, Florida area via NABOR (Naples Area Board of Realtors) (Thanks to Yasmin Saad).

      * Collier County Florida 2017 Population: 372,880

      * # of licensed brokers/agents who are members:  Brokers: 689, Agents: 6,375

      * 96% of users logged in at least once to the SunshineMLS in the last 12 months.

      * # of homes sold in the last 12 months (buyer or seller side):  6,574 Single Family homes closed had a Naples agent on the Listing Side

      914 Land sales closed that had a Naples agent on the Listing Side

      * The total number of sales in the last 12 months: 14,130 closed.

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