Realtor News

What can we expect in the housing market in 2018?

  • by Snohomish County-Camano Association of REALTORS®
  • Jan 20, 2018, 16:44 PM
The start of the new year is a time when many people reflect on their goals and pledge personal resolutions for the next 365 days. Whether optimistic about or hoping for changes in the year to come, switching over the calendar also allows an opportunity to reassess one’s housing situation. This time of year has potential buyers and sellers reflecting on last year’s housing market data and examining the outlook for the next 12 months to better prepare themselves for entering the market and buying or selling a home. Home sales and prices both increased in 2017. In 2018, existing-home sales are projected to be unchanged from 2017, at about 5.5 million sales, after rising the past three years, and the median home price will edge up only about 2 percent. One of the biggest challenges in 2018 will continue to be the low levels of homes available for sale. The National Association of Realtor’s® Housing Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) survey tracks topical real estate trends and renters and homeowners’ views and aspirations regarding homeownership. Released in December, the quarterly survey showed that at the end of 2017 a smaller share of homeowners believed that now is a good time to buy or sell a home, even with strong job creation and faster economic growth in the last months of 2017. “Since rising to 62 percent in the third quarter of last year, optimism that now is a good time to buy slipped to 60 percent, from 57 percent a year ago,” said Bob Wold, President of the Snohomish County-Camano Association of Realtors®. The report also found that 76 percent of homeowners think now is a good time to list their home for sale, which is down from last quarter (80 percent) but up from a year ago (67 percent). This data should help potential buyers and sellers better understand the market environment and know what to expect in 2018. “The takeaways from this survey should help buyers and sellers who are heading into the market, and working with a real estate professional they can apply the lessons learned from the past year and expectations for the year ahead to achieve their home buying and selling goals,” said Wold. For information and advice about buying or selling a home in 2018, speak with a local Realtor® in your area today.
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How have low supply and price growth affected first-time buyers?

  • by Snohomish County-Camano Association of REALTORS®
  • Dec 23, 2017, 16:50 PM
The National Association of Realtors® 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers shows that despite strong interest in owning a home, a continued drought in housing supply has led to price growth over the past year. This accelerated price growth has kept many first-time home buyers out of the market, even when the economy has experienced steady job gains and mortgage rates at record lows. “The share of sales to first-time home buyers went backward to 34 percent, from 35 percent in 2016, which is the fourth lowest share since 1981. Individuals who wanted to buy their first home faced roadblocks last year through a rise in home prices and inventory shortages – with the lower end of the market witnessing the worst of the supply crunch,” said Natasha Zieroth-Chaumont, President of the Snohomish County-Camano Association of Realtors® The Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers identified numerous current consumer housing trends that affect first-time buyers, including mounting student debt balances and smaller down payments. Characteristics of first-time buyers The median age of first-time buyers was 32 years old, and first-time buyers saw their household income grow from $72,000 a year ago to $75,000 in 2017. First-time buyers purchased a slightly smaller home (1,640 square feet compared to 1,650 square feet in 2016) that was also more expensive ($190,000 versus $182,500 in 2016). Fewer first-time buyers purchased a home in an urban area (17 percent compared to 20 percent in 2016). Student debt Student debt balances continue to grow, making it more difficult for first-time house hunters to break into the market. The report found that over 40 percent of first-time buyers had student debt, and the typical debt balance increased in the last year from $26,000 to $29,000. “The homeownership rate has fallen, and fallen more steeply among younger generations, in a large part because of student debt delaying their ability to buy a home, typically by seven years,” said Zieroth-Chaumont. Down payments The increase in home prices pulled the typical down payment for first-time home buyers to 5 percent, compared to 6 percent in 2016. The primary source of funding for a down payment among first-time buyers was personal savings, followed by a gift from a friend or relative. “More than 50 percent of first-time buyers said it took a year or more to save for a down payment, and 25 percent said saving was the most difficult task in the entire buying process,” said Zieroth-Chaumont. The report also found that nearly 90 percent of all buyers ended up purchasing their home through a real estate agent. Finding the right property to buy and help negotiating the terms of the sale were the most common benefits that buyers wanted from their agent. For more up to date and accurate information about buying or selling a home, speak with a local Realtor® in your area today.
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Call for Action Launched!

  • by Ryan McIrvin
  • May 1, 2017, 12:24 PM
Below is information for a REALTORS® Call to Action on SB 5239, which addresses the impacts of the Supreme Court’s Hirst water rights decision, and SB 5254, which improves the Growth Management Act’s Buildable Lands Review process and provides funding for low-income and homeless housing programs.
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Are more and more buyers looking for greener and smarter homes?

  • by Snohomish County-Camano Association of REALTORS®
  • Apr 29, 2017, 10:58 AM
Growing consumer interest and demand for greener, more sustainable properties is driving a dialogue between Realtors® and homebuyers and sellers. In April 2017, the National Association of Realtors® introduced the REALTORS® and Sustainability report, which surveyed Realtors® about sustainability issues facing consumers in the real estate market and ways Realtors® are setting their own goals to reduce energy usage. According to the report, over half of Realtors® find that consumers have an interest in real estate sustainability issues and practices.
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Should I Consider Downsizing?

  • by Snohomish County-Camano Association of REALTORS®
  • Aug 31, 2016, 09:40 AM
People buy and sell homes for many reasons. Perhaps they need to relocate for a job, or maybe they simply want a change of scenery. However, according to the National Association of Realtors®, if you are 50 years old or older chances are you are selling your home to downsize.
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Where Do Buyers Want to Live?

  • by Snohomish County-Camano Association of REALTORS®
  • Aug 22, 2016, 11:35 AM
People buy and sell homes for many reasons. Perhaps they need to relocate for a job, or maybe they simply want a change of scenery. However, according to the National Association of Realtors®, if you are 50 years old or older chances are you are selling your home to downsize.
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