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Existing home sales expected to surge in 2015

The number of home sales overall took a large hit for several reasons in the early part of this year, most notably because rates had been rising sharply. Even a recent increase in interest among would-be buyers doesn't seem as though it will be enough to push existing home sales forward this year, but that trend is likely to reverse itself in 2015.

The number of existing-home sales nationwide is going to slip somewhat on an annual basis this year, falling to 4.9 million from 2013's level of 5.1 million, according to the latest data from the National Association of Realtors. However, it seems as though the improving housing market and some other conditions will likely push that number to 5.3 million for the entirety of 2015, and then rise again to 5.4 million in 2016.

Some issues remain?
There are, however, some things that could serve to constrain a more robust recovery in the coming years, including the fact that home builders really haven't been able to work at anywhere near the rates seen prior to the recession, the report said. However, other aspects of the housing and economic recovery overall could serve to buoy the market even as those issues remain. 

"Multi-family housing starts have rebounded back to normal since the downturn mostly due to the strong demand for renting," said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors. "On the other hand, single-family housing starts are still lagging as smaller home builders continue to face difficulty obtaining construction loans, and some have even gone bankrupt. Single-family construction still needs to increase to alleviate supply shortages and keep up with the pent-up demand. The typical homeowner today has a household net worth of around $200,000. Meanwhile, renters aren't benefiting from the rise in prices and are facing annual increases of their own in the form of higher rents."

In fact, about 4 million households became renters at some point since 2010, while the number of homeowners slipped about 1 million, the report said. If renting costs keep rising, that might serve to push more people back into the housing market in the near future.

This might be very good news for mortgage originators, because loan requests for refinances are only likely to dry up over the next several months and beyond as rates keep rising.

By: Equity National   November 10, 2014     Closing


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