Mortgage News Roundup

May 15th, 2014

Mortgage and credit conceptAnd we’re coming to the end of another week, creeping closer towards summer. It’s time to start cleaning the grill for Memorial Day barbecues, and pulling patio furniture out of storage if you haven’t already.

First, we need to mention that mortgage rates have hit a 2014 low in part because the Spring home buying season is in full swing. Global unrest and a weak U.S. economic recovery also have kept rates low on U.S. Treasury bonds. And as we mentioned last week, nearly half of all home sales were all cash. So, now is the time to talk with a professional loan officer about your situation so you can lock in a low rate.

Home Ownership Rates Slip In 2013

Home ownership in Sacramento County has plunged to its lowest level in 40 years after last decade’s catastrophic housing crash and the mass purchase of foreclosed homes by real estate investors.

“It’s a combination of people losing their homes to foreclosure, first-time buyers not being able to get loans, and investors swooping in and taking over neighborhoods,” said Kevin Stein, associate director of the California Reinvestment Coalition, a statewide group that advocates for low-income communities on housing and banking matters.

San Francisco and Los Angeles metro areas tend to have a much lower rate because the cost of housing is so much higher. The Los Angeles metro area home ownership rate slipped to a 19 year low in 2013.

In comparison, the overall nationwide home ownership rate is 64.8% down from 69% ten years ago. Home ownership is lowest in the West, at 59.4%.

Student Debt Keeps Young People From Buying Houses

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York reported Tuesday that in 2013 student debtors between the ages of 27 and 30 were less likely to have a mortgage than their peers who were student-debt free. It makes sense as it’s more difficult to save up a down payment, and with the new regulations, it would be more difficult to prove ability to pay. What’s interesting is that the number of mortgage holders dropped from about 34% in 2008 to about 22% in 2013.

But what’s also interesting is that the Federal Reserve released an additional report at the end of 2012 that showed that borrowers who were current on their student loan payments were actually more likely to take out a mortgage than other young adults.

Making the Most of an Open House Visit

Zillow posted a great blog entry on how to get the most out of an open house visit when you’re looking for your dream home.

  • Use the open house to learn the market without committing
  • You don’t have to sign in (but don’t be rude)
  • Watch the other buyers
  • Ask the agent questions
  • Be open to meeting your future agent

Are you looking for a new home this weekend?

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