Entering into the spring season, more California homes went into escrow. Pending home sales rose 22.9% from December, according to the California Association of Realtors, the first increase since October. Low inventory, higher mortgage rates and higher prices have caused a struggle for buyers and has cast some doubt about just how strong spring home-buying will be. But, the association reports, buyers are starting to adjust as home prices and mortgage rates have stabilized. Sellers too ” . . . . realize that home prices are holding steady and are gearing up for the upcoming season by listing their homes for sale.” See http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-california-pending-sales-20140226,0,5963789.story#axzz2uTXEnt5g
Source: Los Angeles Times
Stricter mortgage underwriting standards, higher unemployment, and heavy student debt are among the key factors that stand in the way of many potential buyers in their 20s and 30s. But first-time home buyers in this age group may be able to turn to effective techniques that family members, friends, and even employers can use to bridge the generational gap by offering a helping hand.
Americans who were 30 to 34 in 2012 had the lowest homeownership rate of any similarly aged group in recent decades at 47.9 percent. A new federal rule imposing a 43 percent maximum debt-to-income ratio for “qualified mortgages” is particularly difficult for younger buyers with high student debt. According to one industry estimate, 27 percent of first-time buyers last year received gift money from relatives to help defray the down payment and closing costs. With professional help, some family members are providing either second mortgages or first mortgages, and properly structured, these loans provide annual returns to family members well in excess of money-market funds or bank deposits. See http://www.latimes.com/business/realestate/la-fi-harney-20140216,0,7652846.story#ixzz2thIIjI3U
Source: LA Times
How does a one-year Hotel del Coronado Resort Membership valued at $14,000 sound? Or, how about an Asian Curry Dinner for 20 in a private Coronado home or seven nights at a Grand Cayman Island Resort? Plan on attending the Celebrating Coronado History gala on February 22 at the Coronado Island Marriott and bid on these and 130+ exceptional travel destinations, one-of-a-kind gift items and local romantic hotel and dinner opportunities. The CCH event, themed “Those Times in Tent City,” includes cocktails, dinner and stories from Coronado’s wonderful history. For more info, visit www.CoronadoHistory.org.
“Falling in love can be wonderful–and finding the perfect house can make a house-hunter weak in the knees”, writes Sanette Tanaka of the Wall Street Journal (see: http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2014/02/10/why-we-fall-in-love-with-houses/tab/print/. A survey by Realtor.com reports that 69% of respondents experienced a home crush. As defined in the survey, a “home crush” occurs when a house-hunter is drawn to the same house again and again. Not unlike the approach to dating, checking compatibility and common interests, Leslie Piper, Realtor.com’s consumer-housing specialist, says it is the “intangible factors” that tip a house from a crush to true love. “You have to make sure you know what’s really out there. You evaluate what is a turn-on and turn-off, and perhaps you’ll fall in love,” Ms. Piper says. And, guess what ladies, when a woman has a “home crush” she is more likely to “crush” on a home out of her price range. Another interesting result of the survey, nearly 80% find their true home love on the computer and about one-third of those go see the house in person. But remember, similar to relationships, there can be heartbreak . . . but, Ms. Tanaka reminds us, ” … unlike with relationships, picky homebuyers do not need to limit themselves to what’s on the market…. Rebuilding, redecorating or building from scratch are an option, too.”
Source: Wall Street Journal