Slow Housing Activity

slowhousing
Traditionally, February is the slowest month for house purchases.  I am not sure if it is the lull after the holiday season or the anticipation for the spring buying season, but there are never a lot of transactions during this month.  This year is certainly no exception to that trend. However, what has changed is the nature of the buyer.   The housing market as it exists right now is basically limited to first time homebuyers and those "movers up" purchasing low-to-mid end homes (for purposes of NY metropolitan area I am referring to those with prices up to $700,000 ...

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Rates Holding Steady At Start of 2010

As we all wait to see what 2010 brings for the economy, I am happy to report that interest rates are still low to start off the year.  We are seeing conventional 30 year loans in the low 5s and 15 year loans in the upper 4s.  The ARM rates have not changed at all and are still available in the low to upper 4s depending on product and loan size. Most experts expect rates to stay low for most of 2010, though a little higher than they are now.  I agree with that assertion unless the employment market starts to improve.  An improving employment market will be the one ...

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Changes to Good Faith Estimate Coming January 1, 2010

mortgage lending
Homebuyers should be prepared for major changes in the timing of mortgage approvals and closings starting after New Year's Day.  Due to recent legislation passed by Congress with the intent to further consumer protection, lenders and mortgage brokers will be required to provide more accurate Good Faith Estimates to the buyers.  These GFEs will be required to track the costs at closing set forth on the Hud-1 Settlement Statement. As a result of these changes, certain charges will not be permitted to change at all from those disclosed on the Good Faith Estimate.  ...

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December 2009 Changes

Recent Changes in the Mortgage Industry      A. Homebuyer Income Tax Credit * WHO QUALIFIES: a. First-time buyers, people who haven’t owned a principal residence in the three years before purchasing the home. The principal residence may be a new or resale single-family home, condo, town home, mobile home or houseboat. b. Repeat home buyers purchasing a principal residence. * AMOUNT: Ten percent of purchase price, up to $8,000 for first time buyers and $6,500.00 for repeat home buyers. * TIME FRAME: You must close on the home between November 6, 2009 ...

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Year End Rate Trend

As 2009 comes to a close, interest rates are continuing to rise.  Over the past 3 weeks they have increased by over .50% as the economy continues to improve.  They show no sign of abating unless some negative economic news is reported.  However, they are unlikely to increase too much over the next couple of months until it is clear that the economy truly is improving.  With a weak outlook for residential real estate for the first quarter of 2010, look for relatively low interest rates for the next few months.

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Today’s Popular Rates

30 year fixed-5.125% (up to $417,000)/5.5% (from $417,000-$729,000) 15 year fixed-4.5% (up to $1,000,000)/ 5/1 ARM-3.875% (up to $500,000)/4.0%(from $500,000-$850,000)/4.125%(from $850,000-$1,500,000) 7/1 ARM-4.375% (up to $500,000)/4.625% (from $500,000-$1,500,000) 10/1 ARM-5.125% (NJ)/5.25% (NY)

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