According to ATTOM Data Solutions This Week in Real Estate U.S. homeowners who sold in the third quarter of 2019 realized an average home price gain since purchase of $68,686. That represented an average 34.5 percent return as a percentage of original purchase price. Below are a few highlights from the fourth week of October that influence our business:
U.S. Median Home Prices Jump 8 Percent, to New High in Q3 2019. ATTOM Data Solutions released its Q3 2019 U.S. Home Sales Report, which shows that single-family homes and condos sold for a median price of $270,000 in the third quarter, up 2.9 percent from the previous quarter and up 8.3 percent from a year ago – reaching a new high. Meanwhile, the report shows that homeowners who sold in the third quarter earned a median profit that ticked up to a post-recession high of 34.5 percent, up from 34.4 percent in Q2 2019 and 34.3 percent from Q3 2018. Among the 164 metropolitan statistical areas analyzed, those with the highest average home seller returns in Q3 2019 were San Jose, CA (82.2 percent); San Francisco, CA (72.0 percent); Seattle, WA (64.9 percent); Salem, OR (60.6 percent) and Salt Lake City, UT (59.6 percent). Average homeownership tenure hit a new high of 8.19 years, up 3 percent from last quarter and up 3 percent from Q3 2018. Homeownership tenure averaged 4.20 years nationwide between Q1 2000 and Q3 2007, prior to the Great Recession. “The seven-year U.S. housing boom is back in high gear. After a series of relatively small price increase quarters, home prices saw quite the uptick, seller profits rose and the problem of distressed sales continued to fade, helping to make the third quarter the strongest in four years,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer at ATTOM Data Solutions. “That all happened as mortgage rates sank back to near-historic lows, which clearly powered the market upward along with stock market surges and a continued strong economy. There had been signs before the latest surge of a cooling market, but they seem to have diminished, at least for now.”
New Home Sales Remain Solid in September. Contracts for new, single-family home sales inched down 0.7% in September to a 701,000 seasonally adjusted annual rate according to estimates from the joint release of HUD and the Census Bureau. The decline came off a downwardly revised August estimate, which was decreased from an initial reading of 713,000 to a new estimate of 706,000. Year-over-year, the September estimate is 15.5% higher. Sales in September continue strength supported by lower mortgage rates. Total sales for the first nine months of 2019 (527,000) were 7.2% higher than the comparable total for 2018 (491,000). We expect sales volume to continue to trend up slightly in the coming months as more new homes are built. For the first nine months of 2019 (and relative to the first nine months of 2018), new home sales were up 12.8% in the South, 7.3% in the West, and down 10.3% in the Northeast and 10.6% in the Midwest.
Cheap Rates Will Push 2019 Mortgage Volume Past $2 Trillion, Fannie Mae Says. Fannie Mae boosted its mortgage origination forecast past $2 trillion, saying 2019 probably will be the best year since 2016. Lenders likely will originate $2.04 trillion in home loans this year, Fannie Mae said, boosting its forecast 3.4% from its month-ago projection. The new estimate is just a few billion dollars shy of the $2.05 trillion lent in 2016. But, the trendline shows an even bigger record might be cuing up. Fannie Mae has raised its lending forecast every month since April as mortgage rates tumbled. The average monthly hike has been 3.6%, according to HousingWire calculations. If November’s forecast sees a hike of just 0.7%, it would push 2019 past 2016’s level and make it the best year since the $2.31 trillion lent in 2007, according to Freddie Mac data.