Archive for the 'National Housing Market' Category

Closing Cost Guidelines 2017

Monday, October 23rd, 2017

Town & Country provides this guide to estimate closing costs for you, for informational purposes only. Both Buyers and Sellers should receive Estimated Closing Costs from their respective attorneys prior to closing. Purchasers using a lending institution receive a Truth in Lending Statement from the lender. These are itemized lists of expenses. Request them as early as possible so that you can best prepare for closing.

One of the buyer’s greatest expense is the Peconic Transfer Tax. In November of 1998 voters overwhelmingly approved the Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund or CPF. Later, in 2012, East End residents voted in all 5 towns, by a 2:1 vote, to extend the tax for an additional 10 years, thus extending the expiration date to 2022, with an additional extension to 2030. 

Since its inception in 1999 the Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund has generated over $1Billion. These funds have enabled the 5 East End Towns to preserve open space, farmland, beaches, pine barrens, water recharge areas, wetlands, and even an island. In fact, some 10,000 acres through more than 600 acquisitions have been secured. An accomplishment we can all be proud of. The money collected is managed by the respective towns. In East Hampton and Southampton, the towns have borrowed against future fund revenue. While everyone agrees the objective of preserving the rural beauty and protect our natural resources should remain top priority, some have questioned the

fairness of existing property owners voting on taxes they don’t pay – a sensitive issue. Furthermore, the levels at which the Peconic Tax begins, have come under scrutiny. Back in 1998 you could possibly buy a starter home at $250,000 and a vacant lot at $100,000 on the South Fork and $150,000 and $75,000 respectively on the North Fork and Riverhead, but our values have come along way over the past 20 years. Yet this entry level has never been adjusted to reflect where markets have appreciated to.

2014 remains the year that the 5 East End Towns collected the greatest sum — $107.69M, eclipsing the previous high water mark set back in 2007 when $96.02M was received. Both were banner years for high end real estate sales according to Town & Country Home Sales Reports. Thank you to all the buyers who have footed the bill. The 5 East End Towns have preserved sensitive land and increased park lands for public enjoyment for generations to come. To view Home Sales Reports visit TownAndCountryHamptons.com/html/MarketReports.php.

On July 7, 2017, an exception was imposed for first time home buyers purchasing their primary residence. Eligible individuals must apply with Suffolk County. Your attorney can assist with this.

It is important to mention that there are some who confuse Peconic Land Trust with Peconic Bay Region Transfer Tax, referred to as Peconic Land Tax or CPF (Community Preservation Fund,) but they are vastly different. The Peconic Land Trust is 501 (c) (3) non profit organization established in 1983 by John v.H.Halsey and a group of East End residents with a focus on protecting Long Island’s heritage of farming. The trust does not share in the taxes collected. For more information visit PeconicLandTrust.org

National Homes Sales Are Rocking!

Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

East Hampton | $17,750,000 | IN # 42068

The National Association of Realtors has released the first quarter home sales report for 2017 and the numbers are impressive.

Total existing-home sales rose 1.4% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.64 million.  This was the highest level since the first quarter of 2007, ten years ago!  Second only to 2005.

First time home buyers are back in the game. The national median home sale price climbed nearly 7% year over year. Reports show the driver, demographically, are millennials. These young adults are some of the oldest age groups to pull the trigger on the American Dream.  Failure to launch, The Great Recession, employment issues, and outrageous prices followed by the housing market crash all contributed. 

Although mortgage rates and prices are on the rise, there seems to be no pull back in sight. This is great news for the overall economy as everyone knows when homes sell, jobs are created. In fact, after the Great Recession, I predicted the housing market would pull the country out of the troth… and it did!

Furthermore, as is the case most times, the East End markets moved conversely to National trends. 

To view the Hampton Home Sales Reports visit www.TownAndCountry.com/Reports

The latest May 2015 Stats on the Real Estate Market – Making sense of National, Regional and local data.

Saturday, June 27th, 2015

The US Real Estate Market – Nationally – good news!

“Fueled partly by an increase in the share of sales to first-time buyers, existing-home sales increased in May to their highest pace in nearly six years”, according to the National Association of Realtors®. “Led by the Northeast, all major regions experienced sales increases in May” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.

This article in RIS Media explores the importance of Millennial buyers in this Real Estate Market.

Good news: May home sales rebounded strongly following April's decline and are now at their highest pace since November 2009 (5.44 million). "Solid sales gains were seen throughout the country in May as more homeowners listed their home for sale and therefore provided greater choices for buyers," he said. "However, overall supply still remains tight, homes are selling fast and price growth in many markets continues to teeter at or near double-digit appreciation. Without solid gains in new home construction, prices will likely stay elevated — even with higher mortgage rates above 4 percent."

On a national level, in other words, absence of newly built housing accounts for much of the low inventory, and Mr. Yun continued: “Total housing inventory2 at the end of May increased 3.2 percent to 2.29 million existing homes available for sale, and is 1.8 percent higher than a year ago (2.25 million). Unsold inventory is at a 5.1-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 5.2 months in April”.

NAR reported that The median existing-home price for all housing types in May was $228,700, which is 7.9 percent above May 2014. This marks the 39th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains.

The percent share of first-time buyers rose to 32 percent in May, up from 30 percent in April and matching the highest share since September 2012. A year ago, first-time buyers represented 27 percent of all buyers.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage climbed in May to 3.84 percent from 3.67 percent in April but remained below 4.00 percent for the sixth straight month.

With demand continuing to far exceed supply, properties typically stayed on the market (DOM) for 40 days in May, up from April (39 days) but the third shortest time since NAR began tracking in May 2011. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 131 days in May, while foreclosures sold in 56 days and non-distressed homes took 38 days. Forty-five percent of homes sold in May were on the market for less than a month.

All-cash sales were 24 percent of transactions in May for the third straight month and are down considerably from a year ago (32 percent). Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 14 percent of homes in May, unchanged from last month and down from 16 percent in May 2014. Sixty-seven percent of investors paid cash in May.

Distressed sales — foreclosures and short sales — remained at 10 percent for the third consecutive month in May and are below the 11 percent share a year ago. Seven percent of May sales were foreclosures and 3 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 15 percent below market value in May (20 percent in April), while short sales were also discounted 16 percent (14 percent in April).

Regional Breakdown

May existing-home sales in the Northeast jumped 11.3 percent to an annual rate of 690,000, and are now 11.3 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $269,000, which is 4.8 percent higher than May 2014. Again great news from NAR.

The New York State Association of Realtors® published the latest skinny market report video and more  data in a PDF on New York State and Suffolk County Real estate data.  Take away: the NY market is stable, doing especially well in the high end and luxury end of the market.

Million Dollar Listing (Bravo)  mentioned that even in Los Angeles the luxury market is driven by NY City buyers –whose success comes  mostly in  finance ( bankers hedge fund) and Entertainment . New York City in many upper end markets is booming! Of course – this is of a major consequence to the East End markets – and it is good news. If New York City does well – typically the East End does well.

But  All Real Estate is Really Local

While the National and regional good news translates into a much better Real Estate Market on the East End than after the 2007 recession, it is important to distinguish the Local Market date from the National data to get a useful idea of what and how the Real Estate Market is doing on the East End, in the Hamptons and on the North Fork & Shelter Island.

The Hamptons is traditionally very well known as the playground of the rich and famous, tied to Manhattan New York City and also internationally buyers and sellers.  The North Fork is increasingly grabbing attention as a popular Farm to Table life style and vineyard region, with increasing buyer demand. While each market behaves intrinsically different, the entire East End behaves more and more as one market with the characteristics of a Resort and Second Home market. Mostly a “want to buy” rather than a “I have to buy” market.

In such markets, different than National and other regional markets, distressed Real Estate (Short Sales and Foreclosures) plays a much smaller role, even more so East of Riverhead than West.

One of the most important characteristics of the East End market is its seasonality.  Harsh winters can slow certain months down, and create pent up spike demand later. Being able to use the new home in summer stresses the importance of closing before July, creating a spike just before in March-May, and then again as lots of people are out during the summer, with lots of closings 2-3 months later.

Exact listing data on the exact number of the Hamptons listings are harder to come by.TandC Stats Judi Desiderio's East End Market reports

A few companies report on market data. Judi Desiderio (Town and Country Real Estate CEO) so publishes a authoritative quarterly market report for the Hamptons, Shelter Island and North Fork providing clear data and analysis. 2014 year end reports for the Hamptons and North Fork show a robust recovery while first quarter reports for the Hamptons and North Fork reflect seasonality. Such reports show another important difference with national and other regional markets: a median sale of $950K+ in the Hamptons – creating very different market dynamics than lower priced markets. Such higher median prices typically cause listings to take longer to sell than national averages, as mentioned before.

So too on the North Fork:  a very different RE market. It is of crucial importance to know how to read national and regional Real Estate data into the local market conditions.

The North Fork today –contrary to what you typically read- has normal levels of inventory, not much lower than normal. The MLS (which is not as important in the Hamptons) shows around 450-475 listings on the North Fork (seasonally low in winter around 375, highest I saw in 2009 at 520). Agents perception of their own listings, however, with more competing  agents joining their ranks as the economy is improving, maybe misleading and allude to a really non-existing scarcity of available homes for sale and may lead to incorrect pricing of homes. While DOM (Days on Market) improved drastically to 90-120 days for the North Fork – this number is still much higher than national averages.

The East End RE market so behaves very differently from the National and even regional New York State and even Suffolk County markets in some important respects.

When looking at the North Fork markets specifically, it is interesting to watch how different price segments behave – and similar differences in the different price ranges can be observed in Judi Desiderio’s market reports.

Based on Contract signed in 2015 (data from MLSLI in selected North Fork hamlets and towns)– this is a first publication of my findings for this year – to date:

Competitivene Price Ranges North Fork 2015

This graph shows how vastly differently stats for homes in different price ranges behave.

This is what a Realtor ® Pro can do for any consumer buying or selling Real Estate in the East End: make sense of national and regional RE data – and apply them locally – and to a specific buyer’s or seller’s property. An agent properly chosen can help any buyer or seller with reasonable expectations based on facts, and provide an accurate picture of national, regional and local statistics on the Real Estate market. The right agent can analyze all these data based on his or her knowledge, experience, hard work and become a valuable resource for anyone involved in the Real Estate market.

Depending on the different characteristic of a home, or a buyer or seller, the perfect choice for the Realtor ®  to be chosen may so vary. So call any of the agents at Town and Country ReaL Estate to make sense of national, regional and local RE statistics – and price your home right for the market, limit guessing about your expectations, but rather make educated decisions and create the elements for a successful transaction.

Joan Bischoff van Heemskerck,

NY State Lic.Associate RE Broker

Executive Sales Director Town And Country North Fork & Shelter Island

Mobile: 631 948 0234   jbischoff@townandcountryhamptons.com

NATIONAL AND HAMPTONS HOME SALES REPORTS

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

NATIONAL AND REGIONAL HOME SALES REPORTS ARE ALL IN AND IT’S UNANIMOUS, 2013 WAS THE BEST YEAR FOR HOME SALES SINCE 2005.
THIS STATEMENT WAS MADE BY T&C, REGARDING THE HAMPTONS,  NORTH FORK & SHELTER ISLAND BACK IN DECEMBER.
THE WELL RESPECTED CASE-SHILLER PRICE INDEX, WHICH MEASURES HOME SALE PRICES IN 20 MAJOR METROPOLITAN AREAS ROSE 13.4%.
THE FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY WROTE THAT PRICES HAD GONE UP NATIONALLY 7.7%, WHICH WAS ALSO AN 8 YEAR HIGH.
TOWN & COUNTRY’S YEAR END HAMPTONS HOME SALES REPORT CONFIRMED THE NUMBER OF HOME SALES ROSE 26% YEAR TO YEAR
AND THE TOTAL HOME SALES VOLUME AN IMPRESSIVE 21.88% INCREASE 2012-2013.
THE MEDIAN HOME SALE PRICE REMAINED UNCHANGED AT $895,000.
HOME SALES OVER $10MILLION SHOT UP 24% FROM 33 TO 41.
2013 WAS THE BEST YEAR FOR EAST END REAL ESTATE SINCE 2005!
IF THE FIRST 2 MONTHS ACTIVITY IS ANY INDICATION OF HOME SALES ACTIVITY FOR 2014
WE SHOULD PEIRCE OUR 2013 LEVELS WITH EASE.
ALL 8 TOWN & COUNTRY OFFICES ARE POSTING RECORD ACTIVITY LEVELS.
 
TO VIEW ALL HOME SALES REPORTS VISIT WWW.1TOWNANDCOUNTRY.COM/REPORTS
 

HOUSING MARKETS—LOCAL & NATIONAL

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

It was exactly a year ago that I wrote a blog called “Housing Will Save US”.
I had been BLOGGING about all the good news relative to housing statistics both locally & nationally for guite some time now. I predicted that a housing boom would help to pull this nation out of it’s Great Recession and that’s exactly what happened. While governments and corporations went on a belt tightening mission by decreasing staff—costs—in order to boost profits, the housing sector was growing from the foundation up. Literally and figuratively.

Locally, our economies have enjoyed a healthy steady growth through all facets of housing and the ancillary services housing supports. From landscapers to framers, all report an uptick in business. While the jobs may be on tighter margins, at least there are jobs to report. Nationally, the same has held true.
 
This trend is poised to continue as the October report on US Building Permits hit the highest since June 2008 with 1.034 million permits issued—a 6.2% increase from September, which was a 5% increase from August. The trend is set. Now the S&P/ Case-Shiller Index on US Home Prices in September realized the highest gains since February 2006, over 7 years ago, with a 13.3% rise year over year in September.
 
We’ve all listened to the experts say the rise in building permits was so great due to multi-family homes, so should not be counted as so great. How silly— what ever form of housing is under demand, that is the void that builders fill. And Professor Shiller cautioned us that the price spike was due to institutional buyers of single family homes… with all very well earned respect sir, 100,000 institutional purchases over the millions sold does not make me gasp!
 
Bottom line…Housing remains the American Dream.
It provides one of the 3 essentials in life—shelter— Home values took the greatest hit since the Great Depression after the collapse of Lehman and now we are all wiser for it.
 
That’s not to say there are not bubbles that form in certain segments of markets with in markets. Whenever you have a market driven by a specific niche set of buyers it’s a fragile market. It has happened before and will happen again, but the scale on which our last correction was denoted  will not be seen in our lifetime.
 
Slow and steady wins the race…. We are just enjoying a little sprint after a long rest!

TODAY’S WALL STREET JOURNAL

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Justin Lahart, writer for the WSJ wrote the article, ‘U.S. Consumer Rebound on More-Solid Foundations’. He outlines how the steadily improving housing market will keep the national economy from buckling.

He discusses economic issues abroad, corporate profits tied to same, corporate confidence, jobs, the Case-Shiller 20 City home-price index (which T&C BLOGGED about earlier this week) .. the bottom line.. when home values improve, so betters consumer spending.. the single most important component to our overall economic recovery.

Thank you Justin!

HOME VALUES CONTINUE TO RISE

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012
The Federal Reserve said Thursday, the value of Americans' real estate holdings jumped approximately $400 billion dollars to $19.1 trillion or 2.1%, in the second quarter to the highest level since the 4th quarter of 2008. This increase is a of the similar rise in the 1st quarter of this year. This news follows the rise in home prices and new construction activity which T&C BLOGGED about yesterday. CoreLogic Inc said home prices rose 6.9% in the 2nd quarter from the 1st quarter. Consumer confidence is a critical factor to this recovery, as consumer spending fuels 2/3rd of the US economic activity. With household debt down and real estate values rising, we are poised for a steady recovery.


US HOME SALES

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

Nationwide, home sales rose in August, to their highest levels in over two years.

The National Association of Realtors published a 7.8 % increase, to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.82 million. This is the most monthly home sales since May of 2010.

Town & Country has been reporting, that, regionally, we began our ascend months ago..

Now, clearly, nationwide, the housing market has moved off the floor!

More good news came from the government, which reported that construction of single family homes nationwide rose to the strongest level in more than two years, this past August.

Wise will be the investors who have been in acquisition mode; sorry will be those who chose to sit on their hands. As when the demand returns to normal levels, inventory will be at ridiculously low levels.. and we all know what that means when the scales of supply & demand take that tact.. go ahead you can say it, we’re all thinking the same thing.. yes.. prices will go up .. and in this scenario, at impressive rates.

Have you pulled the trigger yet?

NATIONAL HOME SALES BEGIN THEIR ASCENT

Monday, August 27th, 2012

National Association of Realtors (NAR) announced re-sales of single family homes, town houses, condos & co-ops grew 2.3% in July from June to a seasonally adjusted 4.47 million. Additionally, the year over year July sales jumped an impressive 10.4%. NAR’s economists predict home sale to reach 5 million in 2013.

On a national level, home sale prices, year over year, had a strong performance at 9.4%.

Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist remarked that demand is stronger due to low mortgage interest rates & rising rents but “ the market is constrained unnecessarily tight lending standards and shrinking inventory supplies, so housing could easily be much stronger without these abnormal frictions”.

Regionally, we are enjoying a balanced market, but again banks continue to have a strangle hold on our housing market as well

BUILDING PERMITS UP 6.8% NATIONWIDE FOR THE MONTH OF JULY…HERE’S WHAT WE CAN EXPECT

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

National Housing Federation responds to the Chancellor's statement.

21 March 2012

Responding to the Budget and its impact on the housing sector, National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'We welcome the Chancellor’s move to close the loophole that allowed wealthy individuals to buy properties through companies and avoid stamp duty. It meant people on high incomes could avoid paying tax on the purchase of expensive homes.

'However it is disappointing that the Chancellor has failed to put investment in housing at the forefront of driving forward economic growth in the UK.

'Supporting housing associations to maximize the investment they make in building and maintaining homes creates new jobs, saves the Government benefit payments, invests in local communities and boosts general economic activity.

'Every new home built creates 1.5 new jobs directly and up to four times as many in the wider economy. It also improves access to housing overall particularly for those on lower and middle incomes. Few other sectors can offer this potential with such short lead-in times and the prospect of so much growth directly benefiting local communities.
'Boosting the housing sector would be an easy win for the economy, for taxpayers and for families. And with 4.5 million people on waiting lists and one million children in overcrowded accommodation a big boost for fairness too.'

Responses to specific housing issues are below:

VAT for repairs and maintenance

On failure to reduce the rate of VAT to works to repair and maintain social housing property:

National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'The Government missed a vital opportunity to extend the reduced rate of VAT to works to repair and maintain social housing property. This simple measure, which wouldn’t have cost the Government more money, would have released in excess of £620 million a year for housing associations. This would not only improve the quality of the housing provision but also assist in meeting the growing need for more social housing. This relief is already available in other parts of the EU.'

Energy efficiency improvements

On failing to extend the reduce rate of VAT (to 5%) to works to improve the energy efficiency to housing association homes:

National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'The Government has missed a crucial opportunity to extend the reduced rate of VAT on works to improve the energy efficiency for all housing association tenants, who could benefit from cheaper energy bills and reduced fuel poverty.

'Only minor changes to the legislation would have allowed the reduced rate to be extended to all housing association tenants so housing associations can improve the energy efficiency of existing homes. But this anomaly has opened a chasm between those who had housing associations as their landlords and those who don’t.
“If the reduced rate was applied to all, the VAT saving would be almost £12 million – meaning a further 3,300 homes could have their heating replaced in 2011.'

National Planning Policy Framework

On the National Planning Policy Framework:

National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'We are pleased to hear the Chancellor say that the National Planning Policy Framework next week will strongly emphasize growth.

'For local businesses to flourish, housing for people of all income levels is needed. We urge the Government to ensure the NPPF requires local plans with strong policies on the supply of affordable housing.

'With average house prices still at 11 times average incomes and 4.5 million people on waiting lists, local plans have a vital role to play in ensuring we can also build housing for people on low to moderate incomes.'

Welfare Reform

On Welfare Reform:

National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'Social tenants – including those in work – are facing significant cuts in their support for housing costs under the Welfare Reform Act.

'We are concerned that the Chancellor wants to make further savings on welfare payments before the impact of the current cuts on families has been understood. The Government should wait to assess the impact of the bedroom tax, the overall benefit cap and the shift to Universal Credit before embarking on a fresh round of changes.

'The best way of reducing the welfare bill is to get people into work. Economic growth – which can be boosted by building new homes – is central to this.'

Feed in Tariffs

On equalizing Feed in Tariffs (FiTs) schemes in charitable and non-charitable housing associations:

National Housing Federation chief executive David Orr says:

'Recent government changes have made it difficult for housing associations to consider FiTs as a means to reduce carbon emissions and fuel poverty. However, despite that, many have persisted with FiTs.

'We are disappointed the Government has not equalized this anomaly that exists in the taxation of FiTs in the hands of charitable and non-charitable housing associations.

'Equalization of the tax treatment will allow housing associations to carry out more of these installations – reducing both carbon emissions and fuel poverty.”