Mortgage Rates Move Slightly Lower – 30-year at 2.77%

After last week’s notable increase in mortgage rates, the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage dipped a bit as it continues to hover near all-time record lows.

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. long-term mortgage rates slipped this week while remaining at record-low levels.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the average rate on the benchmark 30-year fixed-rate home loan eased to 2.77% from 2.79% last week. By contrast, the rate stood at 3.60% a year ago.

The average rate on 15-year fixed-rate loans, popular among homeowners seeking to refinance their mortgages, declined to 2.21% from 2.23%.

The damage from the coronavirus pandemic on the U.S. and global economies suppressed home loan rates through most of last year.

Long-term bond yields, which can influence interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, have climbed recently amid expectations of higher U.S. government spending on pandemic relief and an economic recovery as more people get vaccinated for COVID-19.

Economists forecast modest increases in mortgage rates this year, but they likely will remain relatively low as the Federal Reserve keeps interest rates near zero until the economy recovers, Freddie Mac chief economist Sam Khater said Thursday.

While the rise in mortgage rates is unlikely to derail the bustling housing market, it could make it tougher for would-be homebuyers.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Can Sellers Demand Closing Money Before Delivering Keys?

Can Sellers Demand Closing Money Before Delivering Keys?

By Joel Maxson

Money isn’t always disbursed instantaneously at closing, and occasionally a seller wants to see closing proceeds in their bank account before they’ll hand over the keys. Is the seller allowed to do this? If not, what can the buyer do about it?

ORLANDO, Fla. – It’s the day of closing. The buyer’s funds reached the closing agent’s account in time. All the documents are properly signed, witnessed, and notarized. The closing agent has reviewed all documents and sends a message to both sides confirming the transaction is closed.

The buyer has a moving van on its way and asks where to pick up the keys. But the seller replies, “You’re not getting the keys until I confirm my proceeds from the sale have been wired into my account.”

Can the seller do this?

Well, the first and most practical answer to this question is that they’ve already done it, so what is your next move, buyer?

If I were a buyer, I’d probably ask the closing agent when they plan to wire the funds. Many wire transfers happen shortly after closing, so it may just be a matter of waiting a short period of time, with no (or minimal) harm to the buyer.

However, what if the closing agent confirms the deal is closed, but they won’t be able to wire funds to the seller for a few days? And what if, when the seller hears this news, they refuse to budge on their “wire for keys” stance. In that case, the buyer and seller should orient themselves on the contract to see where they stand. Let’s look at a couple of provisions in the Florida Realtors/Florida Bar “AS IS” Residential Contract for Sale and Purchase. These provisions are identical to the version that is not AS IS.

First, what does the contract say about the seller’s delivery of keys to the buyer? Section 6(a) provides “Also, at Closing, Seller shall have removed all personal items and trash from the Property and shall deliver all keys, garage door openers, access devices and codes, as applicable to Buyer.”

So, the seller is obligated by the contract to deliver all keys, access devices and codes no later than closing.

Second, when is closing? Section 4 provides that “Unless modified by other provisions of this Contract, the closing of this transaction shall occur … (“Closing”) on [insert date] (“Closing Date”), at the time established by the Closing Agent.” Based on this sentence, the parties know what the closing date is, but it’s up to the closing agent to inform them of the precise moment when the closing occurs on that date. That is the seller’s deadline to deliver the keys to the buyer.

Note that the seller doesn’t get to dictate what time closing occurs – that’s the job of the closing agent. Also note the closing agent’s perspective. Does the closing agent wire funds to seller before closing has occurred? No, that would be premature and highly risky, just in case a last-minute issue arises. Delivery of funds to all necessary parties (including the seller) and recording of documents typically occurs after closing.

Back to our scenario – the transaction closed. The seller is holding firm to a “wire for keys” position and is unmoved by the buyer’s protest. Now the buyer could potentially hold the seller liable for any harm that occurs due to the delay. Will there be costs incurred for temporary lodging, temporary storage of personal property, or rescheduled delivery dates? If so, those expenditures, which the buyer wouldn’t have incurred if the seller had delivered the keys on time, could become the focus of a potential legal dispute in the future.

Note that if these costs are low or nonexistent, like if it’s an investment property where the buyer doesn’t need to access the property for a few weeks, it’s possible that the buyer doesn’t have a case worth pursuing. In that scenario, a hostile demand for keys may not be a good idea.

If, on the other hand, the buyer stands to lose substantial money based on the delay, the buyer could alert the seller about their potential liability if the seller doesn’t deliver keys. Setting the right tone for this discussion is a strategic decision, though, which should be left to the buyer or seller. After all, they’re the ones who live with the consequences if the flow of conversation stops and liabilities start accruing.

This discussion has focused on buyers and seller so far, but there’s one final perspective to keep in mind: Realtors should avoid advising buyers or sellers about legal matters.

If you’re able to convince both sides to iron out this issue one way or another before the buyer starts incurring costs (regardless of who is “right”), that’s a successful resolution. But if the situation deteriorates, members could face liability for potential missteps they take along the way.

In other words, the sooner buyers and sellers take charge of their own legal matters and dictate the tone, the safer a member will be.

Joel Maxson is Associate General Counsel for Florida Realtors

© 2021 Florida Realtors®

July Sales Stats are In

July sales stats are in and look great compared to last July and amid a pandemic.

Indian River County sales increased 5.6% to 337 as compared to last year at this time.
Miami-Ft. Lauderdale-West Palm Beach sales increased 2.2% as compared to last year at this time.
The State of Florida sales increased 11.7% as compared to last year at this time.

The one thing that stands out most to me is the Median time to contract.  It dropped across the state compared to last year at this time.

To see the full reports click the links below

Sebastian-Vero_Beach_MSA_Single_Family_Homes_2020-07_Detail

Miami-Fort_Lauderdale-West_Palm_Beach_MSA_Single_Family_Homes_2020-07_Detail

Florida_Single_Family_Homes_2020-07_Detail

Sales Stats

REALTORS® Association
Of Indian River County, Inc.
MLS Statistics

Statistics developed by the REALTORS Association of Indian River County through its Multiple Listing Service and in conjunction with Florida REALTORS reflect the following for January 2020/2019. The Residential closed sales of single-family detached homes totaled 197 units for January 2020.  This compares to a total of 160 units in January 2019.  The median price of single-family detached homes sold by members of the REALTORS Association of Indian River County MLS for January 2020 was $240,000. This compares to a median price of $232,000 for January 2019.  Current active inventory of residential single-family detached homes total 1,405 for January 2020.  This compares to the active inventory of 1,660 for January 2019.

The Residential closed sales of condominium homes totaled 56 units for January 2020.  This compares to a total of 44 units in January 2019.  The median price of condominium homes sold by members of the REALTORS Association of Indian River County MLS for January 2020 was $161,638. This compares to a median price of $143,500 for January 2019.  Current active inventory of condominium homes total 539 for January 2020. This compares to the active inventory of 501 for January 2019.

Report Prepared on February 19, 2020

Click here for Single Family Housing details Indian River County_Single Family Homes_2020-01_Detail

Click here for Town Home and Condo details Indian River County_Townhouses and Condos_2020-01_Detail

U.S. Housing Supply Reaches All-Time Low

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U.S. Housing Supply Reaches All-Time Low

Realtor.com: Housing inventory dropped 13.6% in Jan. – the steepest year-over-year decline in over four years. The current supply of for-sale homes in the U.S. is the lowest it’s been since realtor.com began tracking it in 2012. It’s down 10%-20% in the four Fla. cities tracked.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – National housing inventory declined 13.6% in January – the steepest year-over-year decrease in more than 4 years – pushing the supply of for-sale homes in the U.S. to the lowest level ever since realtor.com began tracking the data in 2012.

Based on realtor.com’s analysis, January’s steep year-over-year decline amounted to a national loss of 164,000 listings that tightens the housing shortage plaguing the U.S.

And based on realtor.com’s data, a dearth of for-sale homes shows no signs of easing in the near future as the volume of newly listed properties also declined by 10.6% since last year.

“Homebuyers took advantage of low mortgage rates and stable listing prices to drive sales higher at the end of 2019, further depleting the already limited inventory of homes for sale,” says Danielle Hale, realtor.com’s chief economist. “With fewer homes coming up for sale, we’ve hit another new low of for sale-listings in January.”

Hales calls it a “challenging sign for the large numbers of millennial and Gen Z buyers coming into the housing market this homebuying season, as it implies the potential for rising prices and fast-selling homes – a competitive market.”

The supply shortage is found at every price tier throughout the U.S., but it’s especially pronounced at the entry-level. In January, properties priced under $200,000 declined by 19%, an acceleration compared to December’s decline of 18.1%.

The decline in inventory of mid-tier properties priced between $200,000 and $750,000 also accelerated, to a decline of 12% year-over-year, compared to December’s 10.2% decline. Even upper-tier properties priced at more than $750,000 declined by 5.9% year-over-year compared to December’s decline of 4.4%.

As inventory dropped, both listing prices and days-on-market reacted to the imbalance of supply and demand. The median U.S. listing price grew by 3.4% year-over-year, to $299,995 in January, while prices in 18 metros grew by more than 10%.

Of the 50 largest metros, 46 saw year-over-year gains in median listing prices, with Philadelphia as the nation’s standout with a 16.0% increase over last year. Additionally, with the lack of supply, homes are selling in an average of 86 days – two days more quickly than January of last year.

Florida housing markets’ year-to-year changes

  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater: Active listings down 20.2%, with 4 fewer days on the market
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford: Active listings down 15.8%, with 6 fewer days on the market
  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach: Active listings down 11.2% with 3 fewer days on the market
  • Jacksonville: Active listings down 10.5% with 5 fewer days on the market

© 2020 Florida Realtors®

Single Family Housing Supply for Indian River County

Mike Lafferty - The Real Estate Guru

I was sitting with a few people this weekend and since I am the Broker for The Lafferty Group Real Estate, the #1 Boutique Real Estate shop in Vero Beach and Sebastian, FL, and the President Elect for the Realtors Association of Indian River County (“I’m kind of a big deal”~ Ron Burgundy) I was asked what the supply of listings are in the area and I was able to give close numbers,  but it really depends on price range so I ran these numbers for Single Family houses (no condos) and found this.

Sebastian Vero Beach Mainland Barrier Island
$0-100,000 1 4
100,001-250,000 99 205
250,001-350,000 65 189
350,001-500,000 23 143 23
500,001-1,000,000 13 93 174
1,000,000+ 6 24 174

This gives you a better look at supply by price range and where your competition will be.

If you have any questions give me a call.

View original post 3 more words

Single Family Housing Supply for Indian River County

I was sitting with a few people this weekend and since I am the Broker for The Lafferty Group Real Estate, the #1 Boutique Real Estate shop in Vero Beach and Sebastian, FL, and the President Elect for the Realtors Association of Indian River County (“I’m kind of a big deal”~ Ron Burgundy) I was asked what the supply of listings are in the area and I was able to give close numbers,  but it really depends on price range so I ran these numbers for Single Family houses (no condos) and found this.

 

Sebastian Vero Beach Mainland Barrier Island
$0-100,000 1 4 0
100,001-250,000 99 205 0
250,001-350,000 65 189 0
350,001-500,000 23 143 23
500,001-1,000,000 13 93 174
1,000,000+ 6 24 174

 

This gives you a better look at supply by price range and where your competition will be.

If you have any questions give me a call.

The Lafferty Report

Absorption Rate is one of, if not the best, indicator for the Real Estate Market.  The Absorption Rate is just what it says.  It’s the rate at which a home is absorbed into the Market.

These are the Absorption Rates for Single Family Homes (no condos) for the Vero Beach Barrier Island, Vero Beach Mainland and Sabastian, FL using 12 months of data.  By using the Absorption Rate and the Current number of listings you can also find the number of months of supply in any given market.

  • Barrier Island – Absorption rate is 33.42. That’s 33.42 single family homes being absorbed into the market every month for the last year.  With the current number of listings the supply of inventory is 9 months down from 10.55.  That means it will take 9 months to sell every listing on the island if no other listings enter the market (which won’t happen)
  • Mainland – Absorption Rate is 164.42 up from 162.4 with 5.13 months of supply up from 4.8
  • Sebastian – Absorption Rate is 68.33 up slightly from 68 with 4.5 months of Supply up from 4 months

Traditionally over 6 months of supply is a buyers market and under 6 months is a sellers market. So on a whole the Island is a buyers market, Vero Mainland and Sebastian are a sellers markets.

These rates are for all sales in the area, but could be calculated by neighborhood or price range to get a very specific Absorption Rate.  Every Realtor should be showing these rates to sellers and buyers.  If you are working with a Realtor I suggest you ask for this information.  If they don’t know how to do it call me.

The Lafferty Report

Absorption Rate is one of, if not the best, indicator for the Real Estate Market.  The Absorption Rate is just what it says.  It’s the rate at which a home is absorbed into the Market.

These are the Absorption Rates for Single Family Homes (no condos) for the Vero Beach Barrier Island, Vero Beach Mainland and Sabastian, FL using 12 months of data.  By using the Absorption Rate and the Current number of listings you can also find the number of months of supply in any given market.

  • Barrier Island – Absorption rate is 33. That’s 33 single family homes being absorbed into the market every month for the last year.  With the current number of listings the supply of inventory is 10.55 months.  That means it will take 10.55 months to sell every listing on the island if no other listings enter the market (which won’t happen)
  • Mainland – Absorption Rate is 162.4 with 4.8 months of supply
  • Sebastian – Absorption Rate is 68 with 4 months of Supply

Traditionally over 6 months of supply is a buyers market and under 6 months is a sellers market. So on a whole the Island is a buyers market, Vero Mainland and Sebastian are a sellers markets.

These rates are for all sales in the area, but could be calculated by neighborhood or price range to get a very specific Absorption Rate.  Every Realtor should be showing these rates to sellers and buyers.  If you are working with a Realtor I suggest you ask for this information.  If they don’t know how to do it call me.