Posts made in January 2016

Sales and Prices increased in 2015

The final 2015 numbers are in, and they show that both sales numbers and sales prices rose in central Indiana.

The number of sales reported by the MLS increased 8.5% over 2014; with 32,190 houses being sold in the region.  That’s a big increase.

The median sales price rose 5.1% over the preceding year, finishing at $147,000.  (The median price is the middle price, with half of all homes selling above or below this number.)  Prices have now risen for the past seven years, and this year’s prices were even higher than the bubble prices of a decade ago.  Now, I’m not sure whether that’s good or bad for the market, but it definitely was good for those who were selling.

New listings did not keep pace with the run up in sales, increasing only 3.2%.  With new sales outpacing new listings, the inventory of houses with For Sale signs decreased 6.6%.  The current menu of 10,390 houses for sale is what you might call a limited supply.  In fact, it’s the lowest supply relative to sellers in over a decade.

So, I have to ask, “Where are the sellers?”  To a certain degree it doesn’t make any sense.  Demand is outpacing supply, prices are rising, and the fear of rising interest rates scaring buyers to the sidelines looms larger following the Fed’s recent rate hike.  So, help me out, tell me, why aren’t more people selling?

If I can be of help, let me know.  “I work harder to make good things happen!”  -Bob

Who’s Selling in Indianapolis?

A recent survey commissioned annually by the National Association of Realtors answers that question quite nicely.  Read on…

In 2015, the average Indy home seller was 50 years old and had owned their home for the previous eleven years.  The eleven year hold period is longer than the nine year national average, and roughly twice what was common in decades past.  Undoubtedly, downward price pressure during the Great Recession caused many would be sellers to hold off for better prices.  But, now that prices have been on a strong uptick, sellers are finally motivated to put their houses on the market.

The primary reason cited for selling and moving was the home was too small (18%), followed by a change in family situation (16%) and a declining neighborhood (15%).

92% of home sellers utilized a Realtor’s expertise.  On average, houses were on the market for four weeks before an accepted offer was achieved.  Sale prices averaged 98% of the final list price (which is to say that sellers got awfully close to their asking price).

Now, if you’re tossing around the idea of selling, and would like some insight into what price your home might sell for, what improvements might be cost effective/beneficial to a sale, and how it could be successfully marketed— just give me a call.

“I work harder to make good things happen!”  -Bob

Millennials Nervous About Rates

A recent survey showed Millennials to be nervous about rising interest rates, and much more so than other age groups.  Undoubtedly, the burden of student loan debt hangs heavier on this cohort than others, and makes the thought of anything debt related stomach problems.

But, before everyone runs around like Chicken Little shouting “the sky is falling”, let’s consider what the latest interest rate bump from the Fed actually amounted to.  The bump (maybe we would be better to call it a nudge) was less than ¼%.  To put that in dollar terms, on a standard 30 year fixed rate mortgage of $100,000 a quarter percent nudge translates to an extra $10.57 per month (meaning one might have to skip stopping at Starbucks once every couple weeks if they want to get out of Mom & Dad’s basement).

Millennials certainly don’t need another reason to shy away from becoming home buyers.  This past year saw the share of first time home buyers slip for the third consecutive year, and to hover at the lowest point in three decades.  Millennials would normally be leading the first time home buyer charge.  But for now, they remain nervous.  To learn how to make your homebuying dollar go further, call me.