CALIFORNIA HOME PURCHASE & SALES “FAST FACTS”

Month: February 2014

Redfin recently released its latest survey of home sellers, capturing sentiment of homeowners with the intent to sell.

After falling sharply in the fourth quarter, the number of respondents who believe now is a good time to sell rose four percentage points in the first quarter. While overall confidence in the market rose, sellers expressed concerns about buying their next home once they do sell. With home inventory at the lowest point in at least four years, sellers know they will likely have to compete aggressively for their next home. They are also concerned that rising mortgage rates will impact their own ability to buy the home they want.

Highlights from the survey include:

  • Nearly 40 percent (38 percent) of home sellers believe that now is a good time to sell, up from 34 percent in the fourth quarter, and a steep climb from 22 percent last year.
  • Forty-four percent of sellers were looking to move up, or buy a larger or nicer home than the one they have, and 29 percent were looking to move to a different location.
  • Home sellers were equally concerned about buyer financing trouble (29 percent) and low inventory (29 percent).
  • Just over half of home sellers said that mortgage rates were one factor (41 percent) or a key factor (11 percent) in their decision to sell their home.

National data show interest rates on mortgages increased in December, according to the FHFA’s National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders Index. Contract mortgage interest rates increased 0.03 percent from November to December, according to an index of new mortgage contracts.

According to the FHFA, the index was 4.25 percent for loans closed in late December. The index is calculated using FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey. The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans was 4.25 percent, up 3 basis points from 4.22 in November.

FHFA’s interest rate survey shows the average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages of $417,000 or less was 4.54 percent in December, an increase of 6 basis points. The average loan amount for all loans was $277,600 in December, up $12,700 from $264,900 in November.
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