Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Weekly Market Activity Report

The good news is that we were up in pending sales 1.2%. And, here's the rest of the same kind of news we've been hearing. For those of you listing your homes, hang in there, there are pending sales happening every week. For those of you buying a home... congratulations, you are in a serious buyers market.

Fireworks, fried food and family fun have once again conspired to drag down the Twin Cities housing market during the first week of July. With Twin Cities residents taking their annual break to celebrate Independence Day, new listings in the region took a swan dive for the week ending July 7—dropping 600 units from last week and 14.2 percent behind this week last year. Buyer activity also declined from the week before, but not as severely. Newly signed purchase agreements (pending sales) fell by only 200 units from the previous week and were actually ahead of last year at this time by 1.2 percent.

This week's edition of the MAAR Weekly Market Activity Report features updated figures for the Housing Affordability Index (HAI) and the Housing Supply Outlook (HSO) for July 2007. The HAI took another steep and significant fall this month to 127, down 12 points in the last two months due to seasonal increases in mortgage rates and home prices. Affordability is essential to the long-term health and accessibility of our housing market, so it will be important to keep our eyes on the HAI in the months ahead. The HSO increased to 9.6 months, which means it will take the current supply of homes on the market roughly 9.6 months to completely sell through.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Weekly Market Activity Report

The word of the month for buyer activity in the Twin Cities housing market is "flat." For the week ending June 30, newly signed purchase agreements (pending sales) posted 926 units as compared to 924 units the week before and 925 the week before that—now that's consistency. The unfortunate reality is that this flatness is taking place during what is normally the peak season for sales growth. Compared to one year ago, pending sales were down 15.4 percent. Seller activity has also declined, but to a lesser degree; new listings were behind last year at this time by 3.2 percent for the same time comparison.

This week's edition of the MAAR Weekly Market Activity Report features two updated figures. The June 2007 Percent of Original List Price Received at Sale declined slightly to 95.7 percent. The Mortgage Rates chart for July 2007 showed a significant increase from last month, rising from 6.3 to 6.7 percent in the Twin Cities region. Increases in the cost of borrowing money will have an effect on our region's still-recovering housing affordability.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

End of the 1st half real estate update for the Twin Cities Minneapolis St. Paul

Here is the latest data from the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors. While the news may seem bleak, we are also in the midst of the mid summer market which is typically a slower time during the year due to consumer vacations and the corporate transfer season. The good news is that we have 71.2% of the 2005 market buying levels (which was a record year for real estate sales) in the Twin Cities.

~Week by week and month by month, we have been saying the same thing for well over a year now. The Twin Cities housing market is in a state of post-boom correction and recalibration; both buyer and seller activity are down from 2006. It's also important to note that the 2006 market was down from 2005, making our current activity levels seem even slower in comparison. Newly signed purchase agreements (pending sales) for the week ending June 23 were behind last year by 9.3 percent and behind 2005 by 33.8 percent. Seller activity is also on the decline, but to a much lesser degree than buyer activity. New listings for the same week were 2.2 percent behind 2006 and 0.8 percent ahead of 2005.

As of the morning of Monday, July 2, there are 34,630 single-family housing units for sale in the Twin Cities region, up 12.2 percent from last year and 60.2 percent from two years ago. Inventory growth has been less dramatic this year due to a relative drop-off in new construction activity. One year ago, new construction housing units for sale accounted for 19.4 percent of total inventory; new units account for just 15.2 percent of inventory today.