With rates racing up to still ridiculous rates we would think that mortgage applications would be flooding in and the business would be back to its peak in 2007 but the housing prices have not caught up with the market and that leaves a lot of would be home buyers out of the market. With an upside down mortgage on a current residence the home seller wanting to buy a new home is at a tremendous disadvantage. But now the great news comes out that the appreciation announced last week by the National Association of Realtors indicates that appreciation in some markets was as high as 25% year over year. That is great news for those home owners drowning under a mortgage that they cannot afford to pay off, sell or maintain.
The markets that were identified as experiencing the most appreciation are both surprising and not so surprising. San Francisco is of no great surprise, but Las Vegas also saw appreciation nearly as high which is a surprise at first but when we realize that Las Vegas also saw some of largest declines in housing prices, its really not.
Mortgage leads are now more valuable as more people can actually move from the home that they had been stuck in since the real estate collapse in 2007. In fact the National Real Estate Association indicated that the sharp increase in appreciation is the greatest improvement in valuations since 2007. So what is the downside of this good news?
The downside is the Federal Reserve will soon stop printing money at the rates that they have been which will increase interest rates and therefore impact the value of real estate and keep the appreciation from getting out of control. The question will be “Will the Fed balance or over correct?” We have a degree of experience with the Fed and government trying to control the economy with mixed reviews. The best defense against any ridiculous over correction would be to store up a book of business now and communicate urgency now instead of allowing the potential mortgage lead to try to wait it out and see what the future holds. Right now is the future and it is looking really promising. In 12 months we will undoubtedly see housing prices level off at a higher level and rates increase to try to reduce the chances of another housing bubble.
Brings to mind the old Aesop fable “The ant and the grasshopper”. Work now to prepare for a rainy day later.
The rainy day analogy is accurate but it is also about cycles. The real estate market is cycle driven and we need to be able to keep this in perspective. Like a merry go round the bad parts are just a couple of cycles away. The good news is that the good cycles are also coming right behind them.
Thanks, very interesting blog!