Thursday, September 29, 2011

June Real Estate Update

Are We There Yet?
The most asked question these days is “Has the market hit bottom yet?” I’d love to reply with a resounding yes but the truth is, I’m just not sure. I have seen indicators over the past two years that seemed to point to that only to see the market drop even further.
The National Association of REALTORS recently released a report showing that total existing homes sales, which include single family homes and condos, rose 8.3% in the first quarter of this year.
Locally our home and condo sales are almost exactly the same as last year in the time frame of January 1st to April 30th based on information from the Bagnell Dam Association’s Multiple Listing Service. In 2011, one more home sold than in 2010 and 3 less condos sold this year over last. It is promising that we are starting to stabilize on the number of home and condo sales. However we have seen a continued decrease in average sales prices. The average 2011 Homes sales price is down 8.9% compared to the first four months of 2010. The average 2011 Condo sales price has seen a decrease of 8.2%.
The Housing Finance Reform Act of 2011 was introduced in May and seeks to maintain government role in mortgages. The plan is to dissolve Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and introduce at least five private firms that would be in charge of funding and securitizing conventional mortgages. The resulting bonds would have a federal guarantee for which these firms would be charged a fee. If passed it will make it more expensive for buyer’s to buy a home, restricting the availability of mortgages. Higher down payments will be required and the closing fees almost certainly will increase.
Based on this information, the current low interest rates and the low prices, even if we haven’t reached absolute bottom, I not only believe that now is a good time to purchase lake property, I encourage you to move forward quickly. Waiting for a lower price could result in you paying higher interest rates, higher down payment and larger closing costs. Or it might even affect your ability to qualify for a mortgage. Don’t wait! If you’d like a copy of the Outline of the Housing Finance Reform Act, call or email me.
If you would like a detailed sales report on your specific property type or neighborhood, or would like information on the best buys at the lake, contact C. Michael Elliott & Associates at 866.Your.Lake or View thousands of lake area listings at You can also log your opinions on Michael’s real estate blog,

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