Northeast Florida Real Estate Market Overview January 2013
Employment, the Economy and Government lending changes
Overall January had lots of positive changes. These are the most positive changes we’ve seen since 2006.
However, with the positive does come a few potential negative items on the horizon to be aware that will effect the real estate market. To what degree is unknown, it may just provide some stability in attaining a more neutral market by eliminating some potential buyers from obtaining financing.
New listings this month did increase by 2.3% over January 2012 and were up 52% over December 2012 so the seasonal market and the last minute renewal of the mortgage debt relief act did come into play. However, the pending sales continue to climb 14.2% more than last month and 46.7% year over year all while our inventory has decreased to 20.5% year to date. What does this mean? If we don’t get more inventory or have less buyers then our market will swing into a seller market and those move up buyers will be quickly priced out of the market. A way to decrease the buyers in the market are items such as the new FHA regulations slated to begin in April 2013 where the annual mortgage insurance for most FHA loans is increasing by 10%. This effects the monthly payments for all new FHA loans with case numbers after April 1st. Then on June 3rd, the FHA mortgage insurance on most loans will now be for the life of the loan vs. the old 78% or 5 years whichever is longer rule. These rules will not effect the FHA streamline refinances. Also the underwriting rules for FHA are tightening with regard to the ratios and credit scoring requiring some loans to be manually underwritten which will tighten lending criteria for most banks.
Jobs added over the last 36 months: 6.1 million. Housing and jobs go hand in hand they fuel each other. Interest rates are remaining low but increasing in some sectors overall it is still VERY affordable to buy a home.
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