Home prices are out of reach relative to incomes and mortgage rates. The big question for the economy is how the imbalance adjusts. By: Neil Irwin A sign pointed to an open house in Waukee, Iowa, earlier this year. Housing sales have slowed in recent months. CreditCharlie Neibergall/Associated Press These should be happy times for […]
by Connie Thompson / KOMO News| Imagine scrimping and saving for a down payment to buy a home when a scammer swoops in and steals all that money right before you’re about to get the keys. Even worse, there’s little or nothing you can do to get your money back. This scam is so big, […]
Buyers circle new listings like hungry wolves, plucking choice morsels from a skeletal inventory.
“For every house that comes on the market you have four or five buyers waiting for it,” said Frank Wilson, with John L. Scott in Poulsbo. “As fast as they come on, they’re sucked right back off.”
The median price for homes sold in Kitsap County reached $285,000 last month, as sales activity ramped up and inventory remained low.
The U.S. homeownership rate fell to the lowest in more than 50 years as rising prices put buying out of reach for many renters.
The share of Americans who own their homes was 62.9% in the second quarter, the lowest since 1965, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report Thursday. It was the second straight quarterly decrease, down from 63.5% in the previous three months.
After drifting higher for nearly a month, mortgage rates retreated this week but remain within a tight band.
As the markets calmed, home loan rates stabilized. With several key economic reports coming up, volatility could return. An unexpected global event would also cause a jolt to rates. But it seems more likely that they will continue to hover about where they are.
Mortgage credit continues to tighten
The U.S. economy may be on the upswing, but your chances of securing a mortgage are not.
Mortgage rates moved solidly higher last week, but lenders saw no letup in loan demand.
Mortgage application volume rose 4 percent from the previous week. The Mortgage Bankers Association included an adjustment for the Martin Luther King Day holiday. Volume continues to lag last year, however, by 18 percent, mostly due to the falloff in loan refinances since rates shot up after the presidential election.
Overall housing production declined in January after an unusually robust reading in the multifamily sector in December, but economists were unfazed. “As we move forward in 2017, we can expect the multifamily sector to continue to stabilize and single-family production to move forward at a gradual but consistent pace,” says Robert Dietz, chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders.
The median price for a new single-family home reached a record high in May of $345,800, the Commerce Department reports. Buyers will be paying a huge premium for new construction, as new-home prices are now 16.8 percent higher than they were a year ago.