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Why Are Mortgage Rates Increasing?

by Ashlie DuCros

According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage interest rate jumped up to 3.94% last week. Interest rates had been hovering around 3.5% since June, and many are wondering why there has been such a significant increase so quickly. 

WHY DID RATES GO UP?
Whenever there is a presidential election, there is uncertainty in the markets as to who will win. One way that this is noticeable is through the actions of investors. As the election was drawing nearer, many investors pulled their funds from the more volatile and less predictive stock market and instead, chose to invest in Treasury Bonds.

When this happens, the interest rate on Treasury Bonds does not have to be as high to entice investors to buy them, so interest rates go down. Once the elections are over and a President has been elected, investors return to the stock market and other investments, leaving the Treasury to raise rates to make bonds more attractive again.

Simply put, the better the economy, the higher interest rates will go.

THE GOOD NEWS
Even though rates are closer to 4% than they have been in nearly 6 months, they are still slightly below where we started 2016, at 3.97%.

The great news is that even at 4%, rates are still significantly lower than they have been over the last 4 decades, as you can see in the chart below.

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Nov. 17:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.94 percent, with an average 0.5 point, rising from last week’s 3.57 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.97 percent.

  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.14 percent, with an average 0.5 point, increasing from last week’s 2.88 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.18 percent.

  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.07 percent, with an average 0.4 point, rising from last week’s 2.88 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.98 percent.



BOTTOM LINE
Interest rates are impacted by many factors, and even though they have increased recently, rates would have to reach 9.1% for renting to be cheaper than buying. 

If you are ready to purchase a home of your own, now is a great time to jump in. Contact me to get started on owning your dream home!


 

3 Advantages of Selling Your Home During the Holidays

by Ashlie DuCros

Thanks to reduced competition, motivated buyers and a warm and cheery holiday home, you can sell your home faster and for more money during the holiday season.
 
We all know—or maybe we assume—that spring and summer are the best times to sell a home. And it’s true that many buyers do plan their new home purchases during the warmer months. But that doesn’t mean all the serious buyers evaporate after Labor Day.
 
If your home is for sale now, you’re actually in a great position to sell your home faster and for more money by taking advantage of the unique characteristics of the holiday selling season.
 

 
You’re not the only homeowner who’s considered taking your home off the market during the holidays—most don’t want the hassle. And most new sellers will decide to wait until the first of the year or even springtime to put their homes up for sale.
 
That’s great news for you because you won’t have to compete with dozens of other homes just like yours to get buyers’ attention. Reduced inventory means more buyers checking out your home, either online or in person. Keep their attention by making sure your home is priced to sell and that your home is in “show” condition at all times.
 

 
Anyone who takes time out of their busy holiday schedule to shop for a new home is serious about buying now. Perhaps they are buying a home for tax reasons or are relocating to start a new job in the new year. Maybe they’ve been looking for months and just haven’t found that perfect home yet.
 
Whatever their reason, make it easy for these folks to get a good look at your home by staying flexible with your showing times and be open to negotiating contract terms that work with their schedules.
 


 
Emotion plays a huge role in which home a buyer purchases, and you can capitalize on that by making your home cozy and cheery during showings. Tasteful decorations and a minimum of clutter will allow buyers to see their own families celebrating the holidays in your home next year.

Make sure your decorations enhance rather than detract from your home’s best features, and remember to remove them as soon as the season is over.



If you're thinking about selling this season, call me! I won't disappear during the Holidays and will go above and beyond to get your home sold. 

Orange County Housing Update :: November 2016

by Ashlie DuCros

Values Up, Affordability Down
 

Homeowners in Orange County have benefited significantly from a rise in values, pushing affordability considerably lower. 

It has been nearly five years since the Orange County housing market ignited at the beginning of 2012. The median sales price then was at $400,000. With such low prices and low interest rates, it made sense to purchase. In many cases, it was actually cheaper to own than to rent. As a result, home values appreciated rapidly in 2012 and 2013. The appreciation continued in 2014 and 2015, just not as rapidly.

2016 has been more of the same, slow, methodical appreciation.

This year, the median sales price reached record levels, eclipsing heights reached in 2007. The median in August was at $649,000, that’s up 62% since the start of 2012. The tremendous appreciation translates to fewer properties for sale within the affordable price range of less than $500,000. 

Detached homes below $500,000 almost do not exist. In the past year alone, the numbers have dropped an additional 33%. Even with a slower, more methodical appreciation, more homes are climbing above the half-million-dollar threshold. And, soon, there will be fewer than a thousand condominiums available within this affordable price range.  

 

Demand

As for demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, decreased by 8% from 2,693 to 2,480 in the past two weeks, the largest drop so far this year. Demand was at 2,333 pending sales last year.

With a giant drop in demand and the active inventory slowing its descent, the expected market time increased from 72 days to 77 days, a slight seller’s market.

Just the Facts

  • The average list price for all of Orange County is $1.5 million. 
  • There are 21% fewer homes on the market below $500,000 compared to last year at this time and demand is down by 9%. Fewer and fewer homes and condominiums can now be found priced below $500,000.
  • For homes priced below $750,000, the market is HOT with an expected market time of just 52 days. This range represents 46% of the active inventory and 67% of demand.
  • For luxury homes priced between $1 million to $1.5 million, the expected market time is at 128 days, increased by 15 days in the past couple of weeks. For homes priced between $1.5 million to $2 million, the expected market time increased considerably from 165 days to 187 days. For luxury homes priced above $2 million, the expected market time increased from 245 days to 258 days. 

 

​​If you're thinking about making a move, call me today to discuss the value of your home. 

Coldwell Banker Announces $20K Giveaway Winner

by Ashlie DuCros

Sheri and Tim Meech are now $20,000 richer thanks to Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s $20,000 Giveaway, which was open to Southern California residents in the Los Angeles, Orange County, Desert community and San Diego markets. The winner was announced November 1st.

“It is truly an honor and a thrill to hand $20,000 to one of our many loyal Coldwell Banker clients to thank them for their business and simply give back,” said Jamie Duran, president of the Orange County, San Diego and Desert companies of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. “We are a world class sales organization that provides truly remarkable real estate services to our customers, one home at a time. It made our day to make a difference in this family’s home."

A ceremonial check was presented to the winners at the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office in Laguna Niguel. It was presented by Duran; Amy Sims, the sales associate affiliated with the Laguna Niguel office of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage on whose entry page the winner submitted their entry; and Tom Pelton, branch manager of the Laguna Niguel office.

“I am over the moon excited for my clients, Sheri and Tim,” said Sims. “I am honored to be part of such a great brokerage and handing this wonderful couple a check for $20,000. It could not have happened to two finer people.”

Thank you to all those that participated! Contact me if you'd like to be notified of the next giveaway!

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Ashlie DuCros & Associates
Coldwell Banker Previews Global Luxury
21580 Yorba Linda Blvd.
Yorba Linda CA 92887
714-743-9778
Fax: 714-849-5489