The U.S. economy saw modest to moderate growth in October and early November and in the Federal Reserve district that includes Chicago, the construction and real estate sectors also had positive gains, according to the Federal Reserve’s latest Beige Book report.
Residential home prices, sales and rents rose and while inventories remain low, there are expectations that rising home prices will prompt more potential sellers to put their homes on the market. Commercial real estate activity was up due in part to increased retail leasing and demand for residential construction grew slightly. Read the report for the Seventh District – Chicago for more details.
In other headlines:
How the Fed compiles the Beige Book, at a glance – Quincy Herald Whig
New-home sales surge 25% in October – CNN Money
Mortgage servicers to face more scrutiny -Chicago Tribune
The temperatures are dropping and the snow may soon be falling but there can be seasonal benefits for consumers who decide to shop for a home this winter including: less competition, better prices and motivated sellers, according to realtor.com’s Winter Home Buyer Report.
The site surveyed 1,300 prospective buyers to find out who is hoping to buy this winter and what market challenges they expect to face. The findings:
- Many expect the lower housing inventory to be a challenge.
- Relocation buyers, owners downsizing and first-time buyers are the most common winter buyers.
- Nineteen percent of winter home buyers expect to pay in cash.
Read the news release from realtor.com for more information on the survey and its findings.
In other headlines:
Chicago sees sharp rise in home prices in October – Daily Herald
Investors Target ‘Hipster’ ZIPs for Rental Returns – REALTOR® Magazine
Planning on making some energy-efficient home improvements this year? Homeowners who move quickly and get the qualifying improvements done by Dec. 31, 2013, could be eligible for up to $500 in consumer tax credits. The improvements must be made to a primary residence and include upgrades to insulation, windows, roofs and more. Read more in the Chicago Tribune article, “Time is running out on energy tax credits,” and find details of the tax credit program at www.energystar.gov.
In other headlines:
Seeing green over mortgages – Daily Herald
Home Buyers Plan to Make a Move This Winter – REALTOR® Magazine
Average US rate on 30-year mortgage at 4.22 pct. – Herald-Review
One in five homebuyers looking for a home this winter expects to pay cash and 29 percent of buyers using all cash are downsizing to a smaller home or less expensive home, according to a new Winter Home Buyer Report from realtor.com. The survey looked at buying patterns of those expecting to purchase a home this winter.
The findings? Downsizers and relocation buyers make up a large share of winter buyers and many who shop for a home at this time of year do so because they expect prices to be better, sellers to be more motivated and competition to be lower. Other buyers are still in the market after not finding a property earlier this year.
“This summer and spring home buying season was particularly challenging for buyers, especially first-time home buyers trying to compete with all-cash offers and bidding wars because of reduced inventory. In fact, a quarter of the winter home buyers revealed they are in the market now because they were unable to find a home during this last home buying season,” said Alison Schwartz, vice president of corporate communications at realtor.com.
Annual housing market gains continued in Illinois in October with sales up 3.7 percent and the statewide median price up 13.8 percent over previous-year levels. But there are factors impacting the market including: lower inventory, the effects of the federal government shutdown and seasonal slowdowns. Watch a new video from the Illinois Association of REALTORS® on the market.