Call it a late spring market for home sales. The median sales prices for a home in the Twin Cities hit its highest mark in 4½ years in April. The median sales price of $182,312 for April reflected a 12.2 percent increase compared to the same period a year ago.Home prices have now posted 14 consecutive months of year-over-year price gains. As prices are climbing, the inventory of homes for sale remains low.Andy Fazendin, president of the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors, said that he has started to see an uptick in new listings.“Maybe it has something to do with the weather, it’s hard to say. It’s almost like the spring market is really kicking in right now,” Fazendin said. “I think we’re going to continue to see a shortage of listings and I think we’re going to continue to see prices continue to appreciate.”For the month, pending sales were up 16 percent and closed sales were up 5.3 percent compared to April 2012. New listings were up 7.7 percent, but the inventory of homes for sale remains low at 29.3 percent below the levels seen a year ago.The Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors released the latest market statistics, which cover the 13 county metro area, on Friday morning.For April, traditional homes comprised 68.4 percent of closed sales, an increase of 19.3 percent since a year ago. That’s the highest percentage for traditional sales seen since July 2008. At the same time, foreclosure sales comprised 24.2 percent of closed sales and short sales accounted for 7.4 percent of closed sales.“Every month we see less and less distressed property,” said Kate Beckman, president of the St. Paul Area Association of Realtors and branch vice president of the Crocus Hill office of Coldwell Banker Burnet. “It feels like a nice, steady, slow recovery.”Fazendin said that he’s hearing numerous stories about multiple offers for homes and properties selling within 24 to 48 hours of hitting the market.“It’s certainly a seller’s market right now,” Fazendin said. “The traditional sales are more prominent than the distressed properties. …It looks like things are headed in in the right direction.”Prices post 14 months of year-over-year gainsApril 2013 / % change from April 2012Median sales price: $182,312 / +12.2 percentClosed sales: 4,138 / +5.3 percentPending sales: 5,507 / +16 percentDays on market: 98 / -27.4 percent% of original price received: 95.9 percent / +2.7 percentInventory of homes for sale: 13,113 / -29.3 percentSource: Minneapolis Area Realtors Association
Is Buying a Home Together the ‘New Engagement’?
Daily Real Estate News | Thursday, April 18, 2013
Young couples are more often choosing the mortgage before the marriage, according to a new survey from Coldwell Banker.
Twenty-four percent of married couples surveyed aged 18-to-34 said they had purchased a home before they were married. Of married couples aged 45 and up, only 14 percent said they had purchased a house before marriage.
Unmarried couples who live in the Northeast are the most likely to buy a home together prior to marriage, according to the survey.
In the Northeast, 60 percent of those surveyed said they waited until marriage to buy a home together, compared to 72 percent in the South.
For some young couples, buying a home together has become “the new engagement ring,” says Dr. Robi Ludwig, a psychotherapist and Coldwell Banker’s “lifestyle correspondent.” Millennials “know that they have an opportunity here, with low mortgage rates and low housing prices. And they think, ‘We’re moving toward marriage anyway, so let’s buy.’”
Some are even choosing to bypass the fancy wedding and honeymoon and save up for a downpayment instead, Ludwig says.
Couples are finding they can learn a lot about their future spouse when buying a home first, including about one another’s finances and even how many kids the other wants one day, since that often comes into play in finding a suitable size and style of home.
“It’s easy for couples to not think or talk about these things, but they’re forced to once mortgages and banks are involved,” Ludwig says.
Source: “More Young Couples Commit — To Homeownership Before Marriage,” TIME (April 17, 2013)
Fewer foreclosures and short-sales are coming to market. Those that are getting listed in desirable rental markets are going quickly and usually getting bid up as a result of multiple offers. As you can see from the following link, fewer investment properties are available in a market where traditional homes are making a strong comeback. Just a few years ago, of all the homes for sale in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area, over 50 percent were distressed/investment properties. In February of this year, in a market starved for new listings, traditional listings were up only 8 percent over the previous year. Foreclosure listings were down 35 percent and short-sale listings were down 40 percent. If you are interested in any of the properties listed, please contact Dan to make sure they still available as most short-sale properties stay listed as active on MLS until closing with the bank.
By using a mortgage factor chart, like the one below, you can estimate the monthly mortgage payment on your new home. The factors in the chart is per $1000 of mortgage. So a 250,000 mortgage at 4.25% for 30 years would be figured as follows: (250 x 4.91940) or a monthly payment of $1,229.85.
If you will be adding taxes and insurance to your mortgage payments you just take those annual numbers divided by 12 and add them to the mortgage payment you get from the chart. So if you had taxes of $2,400 (2400/12=200) and Insurance of $1,200 (1200/12=100), your total payment would be $1,529.85 (1229.85+200+100).
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