Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Rooney Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Speed Short Sales, Boost Florida Housing Market
Washington, D.C. – February 26, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) —
U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-17) and U.S. Rep. Robert Andrews (NJ-1) today introduced bipartisan legislation that will speed short sales and spur growth in the housingby requiring lenders to decide whether to accept an offer within 30 days.
“A robust housing market is critical to growing ourand creating jobs in Florida,” Rep. Rooney said. “By streamlining short sales, we can help keep homes out of , fuel growth in the housing market, and deliver a needed boost to Florida’s economy.”
“Potential buyers cannot afford to sit and wait for months while lenders drag their feet on short sales,” said Rep. Andrews. “Since a short sale cannot go through without the lender’s permission, we need to ensure that unnecessary delays by lenders do not turn away buyers when a prudent deal could have been made. Speeding up this process will keep many homeowners out of foreclosure and give our housing market the boost it needs to bounce back.”
“The current short sale process can be time consuming and inefficient for both buyers and sellers. In fact, NAR data shows that short sales typically take nearly 4 months to sell, and many take much longer. As the leading advocate for homeownership, Realtors are supportive of any effort to streamline the short sale approach for homeowners most in need,” said Patricia Fitzgerald, a Jupiter Realtor and past president of Florida Realtors.
“Realtors believe this legislation is important for helping streamline short sales for homeowners most in need. When a family is absolutely unable to keep their home, approving a reasonable short sale offer helps home owners to avoid foreclosure, which is far better for families, neighborhoods and home values,” said Dean Asher, 2013 President of Florida Realtors.
For homeowners who owe more than their home is worth and are in real danger of losing their home, the short sale can help relieve them of the overwhelmingburden of their mortgage. According to the National Association of Realtors, nearly 22 percent of all home sales in Florida in 2012 were short sales. Unfortunately, some consumers have had difficulty executing short sales as lenders have taken months to decide whether to accept proposed short sale .
The “Prompt Decision for Qualification for Short Sale Act of 2013” will bring the processing time for shortapprovals in line with the home-buying and home-selling consumer’s expectations – at most 30 days after submitting the request for short sale approval.
Case-Shiller index shows S. Fla. home prices on upswing
By Paul Owers, Sun Sentinel
5:37 p.m. EST, February 26, 2013
Home prices have increased across South Florida for 12 consecutive months, raising hopes that the region's housing market has recovered from a six-year downturn.
An index measuring home prices in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties rose 10.6 percent in December from a year earlier. That capped a full calendar year of increases and represented the biggest jump in the three counties since August 2006.
The outlook also is brightening across the country. Of the 20 metro areas tracked by the Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index, only New York posted a decline. Phoenix led the nation with a 23 percent gain.
Case-Shiller tracks prices of the same house over time. Some analysts say that's a better measure of the market than median prices of homes sold in a given month.
"Home prices ended 2012 with solid gains," David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at Standard & Poor's, said in a statement Tuesday. "Housing and residential construction led the economy in the 2012 fourth quarter."
Friday, February 22, 2013
REAL ESTATE | SOUTH FLORIDA
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/02/21/3245827_p2/browards-existing-home-sales-prices.html#storylink=cpy
South Florida existing home sales, prices rose again in January
BY MARTHA BRANNIGAN
South Florida’s housing market kept humming in January, with sales agents and a growing crowd of buyers complaining of a dearth of choices on the market.
The median price of an existing single-family home in Miami-Dade County rose 14.8 percent to $194,000 in January from a year earlier, according to the Miami Association of Realtors. The median price of a Miami-Dade condo jumped 24.1 percent year over year.
Sales of previously owned homes and condos in Miami-Dade rose 7.5 percent in January to 1,947 units. That included a 19.1 percent spike in the sale of existing single-family homes, while condo sales were essentially flat, with a 0.3 percent increase in volume year over year.
The scenario was similar in Broward County, where the median price of an existing single-family home jumped 24.5 percent to $224,088 in January from a year earlier, according to the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors.
The median price of a condominium or townhouse in Broward increased 26.5 percent to $94,900 in January from a year earlier.
Sales of single-family homes in Broward increased 15.3 percent in January to 1,033 units from a year earlier, while closings on townhouses and condos increased 10.7 percent year over year, the Realtors group said.
Extremely tight inventory continues to shape South Florida’s recovering housing market.
“There’s like nothing for sale. Inventory is so tight,” said Lisa Dority, an agent with REMAX/Advance Realty. “When something comes on the market, it’s a stampede with multiple offers and backup contracts.”
Over the past five months, Melina Calvo and her husband have been frustrated in their hunt for a home in the $400,000 range in neighborhoods near the University of Miami. They recently put in an offer on a home in the Shenandoah area the day after it hit the market, offering a tad below the asking price.
“We didn’t stand a chance,” Calvo said. The following day, “it fetched four offers above the listing price.”
Their experience isn’t unusual as sellers have gained the upper hand.
“Right now, I am working with five buyers, and I am unable to find homes for them,” said Alina Larrubia-Estrada, an agent with Coldwell Banker Residential in Coral Gables.
She said the shortage of homes for sale runs the gamut of price ranges, from condominiums in the mid-$200,000 range to multimillion-dollar homes: “I’m really having a very difficult time. The inventory isn’t there.”
In Miami-Dade, the total inventory of residences available for sale plunged 10.7 percent in January to 13,316 from a year earlier, with single-family home inventory down 12.9 percent and existing condominium listings off 9.3 percent, the Miami Realtors group said.
In Broward, the number of single-family homes available for sale on the multi-listings service plunged 26.5 percent in January to 4,510 from a year earlier.
The number of available listings of condos and townhouses on the market was down 11.2 percent year over year to 6,407 units in Broward in January, the group said.
The supply of existing single-family homes fell to 3.8 months in Broward, while the inventory of condos and townhouses shrank to 4.7 months.
A six-month supply of homes for sale is considered a balanced market between buyers and sellers, while a lower level favors sellers, helping fuel price increases, Realtors say Broward homes are selling more quickly and for levels closer to their asking prices.
In January, existing single-family homes fetched 93.4 percent of their listing price, up from 90.9 percent a year earlier. Condos and townhouses went for 93.8 percent of their asking price, an increase of 1.4 percent from a year earlier.
The median days on the market was 48 for a single-family home, down from 53 a year earlier, and 42 days for a condo or townhouse, down from 43 in January 2012.
“I’m seeing strength right across the board,” said Charles Bonfiglio, president of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors and head of AAA Realty Group. Many Broward residences are fetching multiple offers, frequently above the asking price, he said.
A shortage of inventory is similarly driving the market throughout Florida and much of the nation.
One major factor: Many homeowners who might otherwise sell still have mortgages bigger than the value of their homes. They are sitting tight as prices steadily tick up but still remain far below their peak.
Statewide in Florida, sales of existing homes jumped 11.7 percent in January to 13,679 units from a year earlier, while condominium and townhouse sales totaled 6,670 units, a 2 percent increase year over year, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.
The median sales price for a single-family existing home across Florida rose 12.4 percent to $145,000 in January from a year earlier while the median price for condominiums and townhouses was up 18 percent year over year to $112,000, the Florida Realtors said.
In many cases, buyers are exhibiting a sense of urgency to lock in a deal, Realtors say.
“We’re turning the inventory faster,” said Ron Shuffield, president of Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell Realtors in Coral Gables. “People are anxious because prices are going up every month now.”
Compared with December 2012, the median price for a single-family home in Miami-Dade fell 9.4 percent in January and was off 4.9 percent for condos. And the level of total sales in Miami-Dade plunged 20 percent in January from December 2012 level, largely reflecting the seasonality of transactions, according to agents.
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/02/21/3245827_p2/browards-existing-home-sales-prices.html#storylink=cpy
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Appraisal prices unable to keep up with market prices
Story Created: Feb 19, 2013 at 12:13 AM America/New_York
COLLIER COUNTY, Fla - The housing market in Southwest Florida continues to strengthen into 2013. Home prices in the Naples area have seen a 16 percent increase over the last year, good news for sellers.
More people are also buying and that is trickling down to the construction industry and companies like Robb and Stucky.
"We're definitely tied hand in hand with what is going on with the real estate market," says Stan Witters, General Manage of Robb & Stucky in Naples.
Europeans, Canadians and snow birds buying second homes are coming right into stores like Robb & Stucky looking to furnish every room in their new house.
"Today I bet you there were ten different customers in there with floor plans, which says they just bought a house," says Witters.
David Gallus, owner and broker for Premiere Plus Realty says there are obvious upsides to home prices going up, but he says there's also a downside. "The appraisal prices are not keeping up with market prices," says Gallus.
In the last year, home prices are up 16 percent with some segments of the market as high as 35 percent, something we haven't seen in years.
"That's not healthy neither for the buyer or the seller because the market can't sustain that and we don't want to end up where we did before," says Gallus. He says appraiser are coming in from out of town and because they don't know the market, appraisals are coming in 10 to 15 percent lower than the purchase price leaving sellers to wait it out.
"Most of them know where the market is heading and very few are saying we'll lower our price," says Gallus. "So, we're going back to what we have before in 2005 and 2006. Supply and demand and the supply is less everyday."
Gallus says about 75 percent of their deals are paid for in cash, but the rest applying for a loan are getting turned down because of the appraisal.
Friday, February 1, 2013
Number of foreclosure filings drop in Cape Coral, Fort Myers
Story Created: Jan 31, 2013 at 6:40 PM America/New_York
LEE COUNTY, Fla. - A real estate recovery in our area. More people in our area are holding on to their homes. While this is encouraging news, Lee County still has thousands of homes going through the foreclosure process.
The Cape Coral, Fort Myers area is now ranked 18th most active in the country for foreclosure filings in 2012 with one in every 32 homes. The area used to be number one for filings in 2010.
"It has the space that my family needs. Its got a lot of room for my kids, it has an extra playroom for my kids." After months of searching, Larry Narvaez and his family, finally closed.
They moved into a once-foreclosed home on Monday. They were drawn to looking at foreclosures for their low prices and value. "That's what we found out that its a good financial opportunity for us to buy a good house at an affordable price," he said.
New numbers released by RealtyTrac show the number of foreclosure filings in the Cape Coral - Fort Myers area is dropping. Marc Joseph known for his foreclosure bus tours looks at this as a good thing. "There was a time period when Cape Coral - Fort Myers was a lot higher up on that list, so being number 18 is actually a positive thing for us right now," Joseph said.
The number of filings in the area is down almost five percent from 2011 and down almost 63 percent from 2010.
But Joseph says there's still a large backlog of homes: more than 9,700 cases going through Lee County's court alone. He says, it's slowing the recovery process. "Us being a judicial state, meaning it has to go through the process, it takes longer for a foreclosure to go from the beginning to the end, it can take anywhere from 400-600 days," he said.
Joseph says the tightening of inventory is driving the average sale price of homes up 26 percent to an average of $134,000.
That means you're going to be spending more on a home now than you would a few years ago, because of the demand. He says January through April is the peak time for buying homes because all the seasonal residents are here.
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