Yes, the housing market has rarely looked better

The combination of affordable home prices, historically low mortgage rates, and a first-time home buyer tax credit that’s set to expire in less than three months has created the perfect storm of sorts for buyers who’ve been sitting on the fence, waiting for the market to recover.


·  Last week, Standard & Poor’s reported that its S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price index rose from the first quarter to the second, the first quarter-to-quarter increase in three years.  Its index of 20 major cities also rose, with only two areas reporting declines.  This data suggest that home prices may have reached bottom during the second quarter, and have now begun to rise.  In California, July marked the fifth consecutive month of month-to-month increases in the state’s median price.


·   Real estate prices nationally have declined approximately 30 percent from their 2006 peak and are beginning to show signs of increases—an indicator that prices aren’t likely to go much lower, according to some housing analysts.


·   The inventory of unsold homes rose 7.3 percent nationwide in July, according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.  In California, inventory levels declined to 3.9 months, from 6.9 months a year ago, and are well below the long-run average.  The index indicates the number of months needed to deplete the supply of homes on the market at the current sales rate.


·   Buyers sitting on the fence should note that the federal tax credit of up to $8,000 expires at midnight on Nov. 30, 2009.  With mortgage loans taking longer to close than in years past, buyers should start working with a REALTOR® now to ensure they find the right house for their needs, and close escrow by the deadline.


·   Homeownership provides many benefits, including security, pride of ownership, a sense of community, and decent investment returns as a bonus.  Those thinking of purchasing a home should consider these benefits when making their decision of whether or not now is the right time to buy a home.


County Properties 23 years of brokerage experience and trust. We offer free counseling in real estate re; home values and information on options of selling vs Foreclosure.  If you have equity in your home, we will sell your home and get top dollar in this challenging market. If you do not have enough equity, and you must sell your property as a short sale we have the expertise to do so also.


If you would like to get loan information from recommended banks, or get started and view all homes, condos, investment properties, pre-foreclosures, bank owned foreclosures (REO's) or thinking of selling your property, please visit our website at: County Properties San Diego or County Properties Riverside