The Mullins Group

Real Estate Consulting & Sales | Residential + Commercial

Strategic Defaults and the Foreclosure Crisis Buzz up

Nearly a year after the Obama administration unveiled its ambitious housing rescue program, foreclosure tallies continue to break records. Foreclosure filings were reported on more than 2.8 million properties in 2009, up 21 percent from the previous year and 120 percent from 2007, according to RealtyTrac. With nearly 10 percent of mortgages now delinquent–which is also a new record–even more homeowners appear headed for foreclosure this year. ” Continue reading “Strategic Defaults and the Foreclosure Crisis Buzz up”

2009 Twin Cities Home Builder Activity – a late rally

Homebuilding activity in the Twin Cities declined for the 6th consecutive year.  This past year a total of 4,405 new housing units were constructed, a slight decline from the 4,405 units built in 2008.  During the heyday of the real estate boom, the Metro Area peaked at over 19,000 units in 2003! 

Builders did see some “encouraging” signs from the tax credit in late 2009 and are hoping this momentum continues.  The expansion of the tax credit is expected to carry some momentum into early 2010, but it remains to be seen how the industry will react after the tax credit expires.   If homeowners start to see more stabilization in the economy, these buyers will “get off the fence” and pursue new housing.  However if the economy continues to decline, we could be in for another year of stagnant new housing development.

2010 Twin Cities year-end housing numbers

According to year-end numbers from the Minneapolis Association of Realtors, 2009 performed better than 2008 on most fronts.  Closed sales increased, new listings were down, however the median sales price decreased by about 15% to $166,000 – the lowest level since the year 2000. 

The increase in sales and the decrease in the median sales price is largely attributed to first-time home buyers taking advantage of the $8,000 tax credit and the absorption of foreclosures and short sales.  The majority of these sales were priced under $150,000.   The median sales price of a lender-mediated property was only $124,000, compared to $204,000 for traditional sellers.

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Weekly Market Activity Report Did you get all your screams out over the Halloween weekend? Well here’s a scary thought to keep you in the Halloween spirit: we’re running out of homes to sell in the lower price ranges. For the week ending October 24 there were 926 signed purchase agreements, up a monstrous (get it?) 53.8 percent from a year ago. Over the last three months, sales of homes under $250,000 are up 40.0 percent from the same period during 2008, while sales above that watermark have dipped by 0.3 percent. As a result, compared to a year ago the inventory of available homes below $250,000 has dropped by over 5,300 units. With the possibility of the federal tax credit for first-time buyers being extended and expanded, there may be significant shortages of inventory for buyers looking in those price ranges as 2010 begins. For November, the overall Supply-Demand Ratio is a paltry 7.69 per buyer, down 29.3 percent from the year prior. VIEW FULL REPORT | VIEW MORE RESEARCH REPORTS

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Weekly Market Activity Report

Once again, the six-day gap between where Labor Day fell in 2008 and where it fell this year is causing our year-over-year weekly numbers to look weird. For the week ending September 12, you’ll see a steep drop-off in new listings and pending sales, but there’s no such dip last year.

New listings for the week ending September 12 were 1,624, a 12.9 percent drop from this period last year. Pending sales agreements also dropped precipitously to 840 from 1,070 a week ago, 7.3 percent higher than this week last year.

Next week’s figures should begin to provide more relevant year-over-year comparisons. As the final days of the tax credit tick down (72 days and shrinking), we’ll be watching market activity with heavy interest. Stay tuned.