Just Listed | Kensington Heights | Kensington, MD 20895

Listed | October 22, 2021

Tremendous opportunity for an investor and/or owner to remodel this singe family Cape Cod. As is, 3 bedrooms, 1 bath, needs work. Conveniently located, close to downtown Kensington (1/2mi), local parks, weekly farmers market, shops, restaurants, commuter MARC station and 1.3 miles from Wheaton Metro.

Link to Listing


Rising Prices Push Home Equity to Its Highest Level in 10 Years

Source: Rising Prices Push Home Equity to Its Highest Level in 10 Years
Highlights:

  • Homeowners with a mortgage gained a 29.3% year-to-year increase. It’s the biggest jump since 2Q 2010.
  • Wolf projects that U.S. home price growth will slow to about 5% next year
  • Wolf said. “Those who have chosen not to purchase a home or have been unable to are finding it very hard to enter the market now, and in a lot of cases these individuals are missing out on wealth accumulation.”

LOS ANGELES (AP) – Soaring home prices have pushed up average homeowner equity growth to the highest level in more than a decade, though recent signs of a cooling U.S. housing market point to more moderate gains in the second half of the year.

Homes with a mortgage gained an average of $51,500 in equity in the second quarter, an increase of 29.3% from the April-June quarter last year, according to real estate information company CoreLogic. That’s the highest quarterly average gain in home equity since the second quarter of 2010, the firm said.

That works out to nearly $3 trillion in equity gained by U.S. homeowners with a mortgage, which is about 63% of all homes, CoreLogic said. Average homeowner equity jumped nearly 20% in the first quarter from a year earlier.

Home equity growth can have broad impacts on the economy, giving homeowners more financial flexibility to spend on big purchases or build a nest egg. Rising home values also make it increasingly tougher for would-be homeowners to buy.

Homeowners in California, Washington state and Idaho saw among the biggest average equity increases in the second quarter: $116,000 in California, $103,000 in Washington state and $97,000 in Idaho.

The surge in homeowner equity gains follows a record run up in U.S. home prices this year amid a searing hot housing market fueled by ultra-low mortgage rates, a thin inventory of properties for sale and many would-be buyers’ desire for more living space during the pandemic.

S&P said this week that its closely watched S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city home price index surged 19.9% in July from a year earlier, the largest gain on records dating back to 2000.

Still, there are signs the soaring home price gains fueling homeowner equity may have peaked. The National Association of Realtors’ most recent housing market snapshot showed the median home price of previously occupied U.S. homes rose 14.9% in August from a year earlier to $356,700. That’s a more modest gain than earlier this year, when year-over-year increases were running at 20%-25%.

“It seems that there was that shift from July to August where there starts to be a little bit of pushback in terms of where prices have gone,” said Ali Wolf, chief economist at Zonda Economics, a real estate industry tracker.

Wolf projects that U.S. home price growth will slow to about 5% next year, citing expectations of modestly higher mortgage rates and a small but notable increase in the number of homes on the market.

“The days of runaway home price growth are behind us,” she said.

In its most recent quarterly housing forecast, mortgage buyer Freddie Mac envisions home prices growing 5.3% next year, down from a projected 12.1% increase in 2021.

If those home price outlooks hold, it would translate into a less torrid pace for homeowner equity growth next year. Still, the outsized growth in homeowner equity this year will have ripple effects for the broader economy, and the housing market. Rising homeowner equity creates a buffer for borrowers against potential financial hardship, such as job loss. And it can give homeowners financial flexibility to borrow against their equity to pay off high-interest debt or finance large purchases, such as home improvement projects, which can give a boost to the economy.

“It is good for wider economic growth, but there’s an ugly side to today’s level of pricing,” Wolf said. “Those who have chosen not to purchase a home or have been unable to are finding it very hard to enter the market now, and in a lot of cases these individuals are missing out on wealth accumulation.”

The surge in home prices this year has made it tougher for would-be homeowners to buy. First-time buyers accounted for 29% of home sales in August, according to the National Association of Realtors. A year ago they made up 33% of buyers.

The U.S. homeownership rate was 65.4% in the second quarter, down from 66.6% last year and 66.2% a decade ago.

The increase in home equity has helped limit the number of homeowners who end up “underwater” on their mortgage, or owing more on their loan than their home is worth. Also known as being in negative equity, that can happen when a home’s value declines, or when the size of the mortgage increases, say when someone takes out a home equity loan.

At the end of the second quarter, 1.2 million homes, or 2.3% of all U.S. homes with a mortgage, were in negative equity, CoreLogic said. That’s down 30% from the same quarter last year.

Among U.S. metropolitan areas, Chicago had the biggest share of homes with negative equity in the April-June quarter at 5.2%, the firm said.

 


Is the Number of Homes for Sale Finally Growing?

Is the Number of Homes for Sale Finally Growing? | MyKCM

An important metric in today’s residential real estate market is the number of homes available for sale. The shortage of available housing inventory is the major reason for the double-digit price appreciation we’ve seen in each of the last two years. It’s the reason many would-be purchasers are frustrated with the bidding wars over the homes that are available. However, signs of relief are finally appearing.

According to data from realtor.com, active listings have increased over the last four months. They define active listings as:

The active listing count tracks the number of for sale properties on the market, excluding pending listings where a pending status is available. This is a snapshot measure of how many active listings can be expected on any given day of the specified month.”

What normally happens throughout the year?

Is the Number of Homes for Sale Finally Growing? | MyKCM

Historically, housing inventory increases throughout the summer months, starts to tail off in the fall, and then drops significantly over the winter. The graph below shows this trend along with the month active listings peaked in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

What happened last year?

Is the Number of Homes for Sale Finally Growing? | MyKCM

Last year, the trend was different. Historical seasonality wasn’t repeated in 2020 since many homeowners held off on putting their houses up for sale because of the pandemic (see graph below). In 2020, active listings peaked in April, and then fell off dramatically for the remainder of the year.

What’s happening this year?

Is the Number of Homes for Sale Finally Growing? | MyKCM

Due to the decline of active listings in 2020, 2021 began with record-low housing inventory counts. However, we’ve been building inventory over the last several months as more listings come to the market (see graph below):There are three main reasons we may see listings continue to increase throughout this fall and into the winter.

  1. Pent-up selling demand – Homeowners may be more comfortable putting their homes on the market as more and more Americans get vaccinated.
  2. New construction is starting to take off – Though new construction is not included in the realtor.com numbers, as more new homes are built, there will be more options for current homeowners to consider when they sell. The lack of options has slowed many potential sellers in the past.
  3. The end of forbearance will create some new listings – Most experts believe the end of the forbearance program will not lead to a wave of foreclosures for several reasons. The main reason is the level of equity homeowners currently have in their homes. Many homeowners will be able to sell their homes instead of going to foreclosure, which will lead to some additional listings on the market.

Bottom Line

If you’re in the market to buy a home, stick with it. There are new listings becoming available every day. If you’re thinking of selling your house, you may want to list your home before this additional competition comes to market.


Neighborhood Expert Or Expert in Residential Real Estate

I understand that some neighborhoods are unique, thus the value of an expert would apply. But doesn’t it make sense to want an expert in the successful execution of real estate sales not just an expert in one neighborhood.

Here are a few things to consider:

  • One of the most valued characteristics of an agent should be the ability to interpret the market and to be able to position their sellers in the most favorable position to sell each home or property for the most amount of money given market trends.

  • An agent who understands the larger market can speak to why their seller’s neighborhood might be a better fit for buyers over other areas.

  • Marketing consists of location, condition, a property’s pricing and how all three are presented to the public.

  • Buyers are not thinking “Is the listing agent a neighborhood expert?” They are scrolling through myriad listings and know when a listing is in line with area comps. When they find one, they take a look at the photographs to make a decision whether to actually look at the property.


The Need For More Inventory Has Never Been More Apparent

Based on compiled data from more than six million property showings scheduled across the country, Home Buyer Demand jumps 98.4% in the West as traffic grows again nationwide.

  • March 24, 2021 – Dwindling inventory was again met with an outpouring of buyer demand throughout the country in February as an unprecedented 75 markets reported double-digit growth, according to the ShowingTime Showing Index®
  • Nationwide, buyer traffic jumped 49.5 percent, continuing a trend of national year-over-year growth in buyer demand that began in May 2020.
  • “In March and April, year-over-year comparisons will be less meaningful as the onset of COVID-19 in 2020 drove showing traffic down in those two months, but on a month-to-month basis we’re still likely to see further seasonal increases in demand, taking us further into this unprecedented direction. We expect that this will correlate with continued broad increases in prices.”


Americans have saved $1.6 trillion since the pandemic began.

Where To Spend All That Savings | An Opportunity To Build Wealth

  • Americans have saved $1.6 trillion since the pandemic started, per the Commerce Department.

  • That’s roughly half of overall global savings during the pandemic, and the same as South Korea’s GDP.

  • It’s also greater than the output gap, or economic hole created by Covid-19, signaling a coming economic boom.

Experts are currently projecting 4.6% growth for US GDP this year, per Bloomberg. If Americans spend all the money they saved in the past year, that could jump to 9%; whereas if they don’t, the GDP forecast could drop to 2.2%.

It’s why so many economists are predicting that lockdown lifting will see the biggest boomtime in a generation, potentially ushering in a new era in the US economy.

*Read full Insider article


Happy Anniversary | How Much Is My House Worth Today?

Congratulations Kevin and Danielle! Happy Anniversary to my clients who closed on this day March 4th, 2016 in Springfield, VA.

Located in the Glenwood Manor development, the couple purchased a 1700 sqft., 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath townhome for $379,000. 5 years later, for similar properties (any three bedrooms sold in the last 365 days), the median Close Price was $478,500 and the median Days On Market was 5. 

The decision to purchase instead of renting positioned them nicely to build equity that they now can utilize for their next move.

If you have been debating owning versus renting, understanding the market and how either decision could effect you in 3-5 years is worth discussing.

  • This information is not meant to be used as an appraisal. This is a snapshot of the Glenwood Manor development listings sold in the last 365 days as of March 4, 2021.

SOLD | Serving the DMV | Inside the Beltway

8101 CONNECTICUT AVE, Chevy Chase MD 20815 | #LaurelsListing

One of the better,  if not the best value, inside the Beltway. 8101 Connecticut Ave Condo real estate sales were relatively slow compared to other years. Owners no doubt, like a lot of other sellers, took a wait-and-see approach. How long could the disruption caused by Covid really be? However, for owners that decided to forge ahead and sell their properties, it proved lucrative. So far in 2021, average days on market is 2, down from 7 in 2020. Grossing 104.14% of the list price, up from 98.32% in 2020. 

Great way to start the new year. 
I am currently having conversations with owners who no longer can or want to wait it out. 
Looks and feels like there will be more inventory at 8101 this year. 
What is for sale right now? Please call, text or email me for more information.


December: The Washington DC Metro Area Real Estate Market

These real estate markets reported record-setting activity in 2020, despite enduring a weaker spring market due to social distancing protocols.

The following analysis of the Washington, D.C. Metro housing markets has been prepared by Bright MLS and is based on December 2020 Bright MLS housing data.

In Summary:

  • In 2020, the total sales dollar volume for the D.C. metro reached $34.6 billion (+11.7%).
  • Total sales volume for the year (57,266) ended up 3.3%. Seven months of the year marked ten-year monthly highs.
  • New listing volume was essentially flat with 2019. Combined with strong buyer demand, it created the region’s tightest market on record.
  • The year saw buyers snap up homes across the metro area, as days on the market fell into the single digits for the first time (nine days).
  • In December, new pending sales showed an unprecedented year-over-year growth, up 30.3% in a traditionally slow month. It was the best gain for any month in the past ten years.