Wednesday, July 30, 2008

7,500 Tax Credit for First Time Buyers is Official

It's official.

First time home buyers who make less than $150,000 annually ($75,000 if single) qualify for a $7,500 tax credit if they purchase a home by the end of June next year. President Bush passed the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 today.

This winter will be the a great time for first time buyers in Logan. There is lots of selection, many motivated sellers willing to accept low offers, and now a $7,500 savings on taxes.
This tax credit does have a catch though. It's really just an interest free 15 year government loan. After the second year the "tax credit" is payed back at $500 a year or with the capital gains when the house is sold. If you have no equity when you sell your home, the "tax credit" really is a tax credit and doesn't have to be paid back.
If this tax credit intices you to start looking, click this link to start searching for homes now and click this link to see how much home you can qualify for.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Homes less than $160,000 are selling, expensive homes are not.

The number of active listings of homes for sale in Cache County appears to finally be going down. More homes are finally selling than new new listings are being taken. Right now there are 763 active residential listings on the MLS. While the number of listings is dropping, certain price ranges are selling better than others. A good portion of homes currently on the market will not sell this year. Here is a break down of different price ranges comparing the 594 homes that have sold this year with the number of active listings in the same price range.

Sold Homes Active Listings

$60,000 1 0 4 49 25%
$70,000 3 43 8 109 38%
$80,000 8 45 7 117 114%
$90,000 21 22 10 103 210%
$100,000 33 55 36 79 92%
$120,000 59 57 33 78 179%
$140,000 105 51 78 77 135%
$160,000 89 55 99 79 90%
$180,000 68 57 84 84 81%
$200,000 97 86 107 97 91%
$250,000 46 97 101 128 46%
$300,000 24 83 61 117 39%
$350,000 17 92 44 158 39%
$400,000 7 80 19 94 37%
$450,000 2 70 16 90 13%
$500,000 6 102 14 101 43%
$600,000 1 23 14 122 7%
$700,000 0 5 108 0%
$800,000 5 59 0%
$900,000 5 96 0%
$1,250,000 2 71 0%
$1,500,000 1 7 0%
$3,000,000 1 420 0%

The price range that sells the best is the $90,000 - $100,000 price range, so most likely older Logan Condos, and older fixer upper houses. There have been more than twice as many homes sold in this price range than current active listings.

The next best selling price range is homes priced between $120,000 and $160,000. There has been a significantly higher number of homes sold in this price range than are currently active.

Homes priced between $160,000 and $200,000 are selling, but there are more active listings in these price ranges than that have sold.

There is a huge surplus of homes priced between $200,000 and $450,000. There is more than twice as many active listings in this price range than homes that have sold in the first half of the year. These active listings have already been on the market for more than 100 days on average.

Homes priced above $450,000 just plain aren't selling in Cache County right now. In the first 202 days of this year there were just 7 homes priced above $450,000 that sold. There are currently 63 listings more expensive than $450,000. People don't "need" to move up to homes this expensive and with all the negative economic news they just aren't selling.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hot new Logan Deal

This is a clean house in great condition. It has new flooring and blinds. At only $65 a square foot this Logan Home it is a deal.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Update of Mortgage Interest Rates

Another week! The fed made our job pretty interesting yesterday! To say the least rates have been pretty volatile the last couple of days, but it looks like they are staying pretty steady as of this morning, that could change so just give us a call!

Fixed Rates
30 Year: 6.125
15 Year: 5.875

Brad White
Northern Utah Mortgage
The Fed approved a plan Monday that would crack down on dubious lending practices. The Fed’s plan would bar lenders from making loans without proof of a borrower's income, require lenders to make sure risky borrowers set aside money to pay for taxes and insurance, restrict lenders from penalizing risky borrowers who pay loans off early (prepayment penalties are banned if the payment can change during the initial four years of the mortgage, or a penalty can't be imposed in the first two years of the mortgage), prohibit lenders from making a loan without considering a borrower's ability to repay a home loan from sources other than the home's value. Other practices also would be clamped down on. Lenders, for instance, have to credit a mortgage payment to the homeowner's account on the day it is received. And, brokers and others are forbidden from "coercing or encouraging" an appraiser to misrepresent the value of a home. Much will hinge on effective enforcement. The plan would apply to new loans made by thousands of lenders, including banks and brokers, not current loans. Those different lenders fall under a patchwork of regulators at the federal and state levels. So it will be up to each of these authorities to enforce the new provisions.
We had some important economic news out today. The Producer Price Index, expected to increase +1.3%, was +1.8%. The core PPI, useful for folks that don’t eat or drive, was expected +0.3% and came out at +.2% - slightly better. Producer Prices for the last year are +9.2%, the largest increase since 1981! June Retail Sales, expected +0.4% overall, were only +.1%, so analysts believe that the Fed stimulus checks didn’t have quite the impact previously thought. Auto sales were -3.3%, the biggest drop in over two years, and are down almost 10% versus a year ago.  The July Empire manufacturing index, expected +0.7 points, went from -4.9 from -8.7, better than consensus expected. The components generally back up the headline as orders and shipments both improved. Employment, however, deteriorated. Ahead we have May business inventories, which are expected to show another +0.5% increase.  Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will testify before the Senate Banking Committee on monetary policy and the economy at 10AM EST

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

June Sales Numbers Surprisingly Down

June is traditionally one of the strongest selling months for Cache Valley Real Estate. This year, June Sales were actually down 36%. Only 91 single family homes and condos were sold. Is this just a fluke month, or is it a sign of things to come?

Up until this point Cache County home sales were among the strongest in the state. While home sales were down from last year, they were down less than 15%. The last time there was less than 100 homes sold in the month of June was 2003.

Cache Valley is usually a step behind Utah Real Estate trends, and while the Salt Lake, Provo, and Davis County real estate struggled substantially more at the beginning of the year these markets appear to be improving. It is possible that Cache Valley Real Estate will experience a substantial decline as well, but I personally believe that June home sales were probably just a fluke.

While home sales numbers were down, the average sold price in June for Cache County homes was actually up at an average sold price of $205,258.