More Homes Sold, Fewer Available

2017-03-02_11-47-28via The New York Times – According to data from the National Association of Realtors, the number of existing homes sold in 2016 was the highest in a decade: 5.45 million single-family houses, townhouses, condominiums and co-ops were sold, up 3.8 percent from 5.25 million in 2015. The previous high, in 2006, was 6.48 million.

All but the least expensive homes (those priced up to $100,000) showed an increase in sales, with the greatest gains for homes priced between $250,000 and $500,000.

Not surprisingly, by the end of 2016 the number of existing homes for sale had dropped 6.3 percent compared with a year earlier, to 1.65 million — the lowest number since the National Association of Realtors began tracking that figure in 1999. Coupled with rising interest rates, that could make buying a home more challenging in 2017.

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More millennials buying homes without parents’ help

2017-01-11_10-49-39Younger homeowners are increasingly buying first homes, without the Bank of Mom and Dad.

Sometimes they go it alone out of a desire for independence; sometimes it’s a reflection of their parents’ financial realities. Whatever the reason, area real estate agents say the trend speaks well of millennial homebuyers.

According to the National Association of Realtors, millennials were the largest generation of homebuyers in 2015 at 35 percent, and 67 percent of them were first-timers. The association’s 2016 “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers” report notes that the second-most popular way for first-time buyers to finance their down payment was a gift from a relative or friend, at 24 percent – a drop from 27 percent in 2015. (Savings was the preferred choice among 76 percent of respondents.)

Full story at NorthJersey.com >>>