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Blog Post
Market UpdateJune 3, 2024
Housing Market Update | Week of June 3rd
Last week, mortgage rates continued to slide closer to 7% after the Federal Reserve’s favorite yardstick for inflation, the PCE report, showed cooler monthly core inflation. This week is a big one for mortgage rates; with the labor market appearing to soften, this week’s flurry of labor data—which includes job openings, ADP jobs reports, jobless claims, and more—could cause rates to continue to drop if the data falls in line with recent trends. Last Week's Mortgage Rate Recap Mortgage Rates Dropped Despite a shortened week last week, mortgage rates dropped because the monthly core inflation seen in the PCE report came in slightly cooler than expected. The lower consumer spending figures seen in Friday’s report also align with the notion that the labor market is beginning to soften. This Week's Mortgage Rate Forecast Rates Could Drop Further This week is a big one for mortgage rates: it’s jobs week! As we’ve said throughout the year, the likelihood of the Federal Reserve cutting rates this year hinges on weakness in the labor market. Throughout the week, we have a flurry of labor data set to be released, including jobless claims, the ADP jobs report, and the big U.S. employment report. If the data shows prolonged unemployment and increased jobless claims, expect rates to dip further. As I said before, an appraisal gap is the last thing we want to see at the end of our borrowers’ homebuying journeys. Education is a great way to show them why you are their trusted real estate advisor. Feel free to share my comprehensive blog on why appraisal gaps happen and what to do when one faces an appraisal gap with the borrowers you’re working with.
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Blog Post
PurchaseMay 30, 2024
Homebuyer’s Appraisal Gap Guide: How to Navigate Low Appraisals & Win Your Dream Home
Finding your dream home is a process. From your initial pre-approval to the steps taken searching the housing market and submitting your offer letter, it’s not uncommon to get excited and attached to a home once you’ve had your offer accepted. However, that excitement can quickly turn to stress if your home appraises for a price lower than your offer. Although appraisal gaps aren’t uncommon in a competitive housing market, these gaps can significantly impact your home purchase. Let's dive deeper into understanding what appraisal gaps are, their implications, and strategies to navigate them. What is an Appraisal Gap and Why Do They Occur? An appraisal gap occurs when a professional appraiser determines that a home's market value is lower than the price a buyer offered. This discrepancy can raise concerns for both buyers and lenders and might lead to various complications in the homebuying process. Understanding the Home Appraisal Process Appraisals are conducted by licensed professionals who possess extensive knowledge of the local real estate market. They meticulously analyze the property's characteristics, comparing it to similar recently sold homes in the area, known as "comps." An appraiser considers factors like square footage, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the home's age and condition, any recent upgrades or renovations, and the property's location and surrounding neighborhood to land on the appraised value. By meticulously weighing these factors, appraisers arrive at a fair market value estimate for the property. Reasons That a Home Might Appraise Lower Than Your Offer • Competitive Markets: In hot markets with low inventory and high demand, buyers often offer above the asking price to secure a home. This can lead to prices exceeding the actual market value. • Dated Comparisons: The appraiser may compare the property to those that don't accurately reflect recent market trends or the unique aspects of the home being appraised. • Seller Concessions: If a seller agrees to cover certain closing costs or make repairs, the appraiser might lower the value to offset these concessions. How an Appraisal Gap Can Impact Your Offer Appraisal gaps have far-reaching implications for buyers. Mortgage lenders rely heavily on appraisals to ensure they're not lending more money than a home is worth. If a gap exists, the lender won't loan you the full amount needed to cover your offer and can force you to make up the difference in cash. This unexpected financial burden can be a major obstacle for many buyers, especially those looking to buy their first home or those without substantial cash savings to cover the difference. A low appraisal can be used as leverage to renegotiate the price with the seller. However, this isn't always successful, especially in competitive markets where sellers may have other offers. Additionally, renegotiations can delay the closing process and create tension between parties. What to Do If Your Home Appraises Lower Than Your Offer Facing an appraisal gap can be daunting, but it's not the end of the road. These strategies can help you overcome this hurdle and potentially get your homebuying journey back on track: • Cover the Gap with Cash: The most straightforward solution is to pay the difference between the appraised value and your offer price in cash. However, this is only feasible for buyers with ample savings. • Renegotiate the Price: If the seller is motivated, you can try to negotiate a lower price based on the appraisal. This requires strong negotiation skills and a willingness to compromise. • Challenge the Appraisal: If you believe the appraisal is inaccurate, you can dispute it by providing additional evidence of the property's value, such as recent comparable sales data or information about renovations or upgrades the appraiser might have overlooked. • Order a Second Appraisal: Sometimes, getting a second opinion from a different appraiser can reveal a different valuation. However, this comes at an additional cost and may not always yield the desired results. • Exercise Your Appraisal Contingency: Many real estate contracts include appraisal contingencies and clauses that allow buyers to back out of the deal if the appraisal falls short of the offer price. These contingencies often come with deadlines, so it's important to act fast if you wish to exercise them. Appraisal gaps are a common but often stressful aspect of the homebuying process. By understanding what they are, their impact, and the available strategies for addressing them, you can confidently navigate this obstacle and make informed decisions to secure your dream home without compromising your financial well-being. If you experience an appraisal gap or have any concerns about a potential appraisal gap before submitting your offer, feel free to reach out to your UMortgage Loan Originator for expert financial guidance.
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Blog Post
Market UpdateMay 28, 2024
Housing Market Update | Week of May 27th
Mortgage Rate Update - Week of May 27th Last week, mortgage rates experienced slight volatility as the market digested a mix of economic data and Fed commentary. We saw a minor uptick from the previous week's lows, with the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage now hovering around 7.25%. However, the overall range remains in line with recent trends. Upcoming economic indicators, such as the latest inflation report and employment figures, are also likely to impact rate movements in the coming week. Mortgage Rate Recap Last Week, Rates Experienced Slight Volatility Rates inched up slightly last week, primarily due to a combination of factors: Mixed economic data, with some indicators suggesting a cooling economy while others pointed to persistent inflation. Continued uncertainty surrounding the Federal Reserve's monetary policy trajectory. Normal market fluctuations as investors adjust their expectations based on new information. Mortgage Rate Forecast This Week, Continued Fluctuation We anticipate continued rate volatility this week as the market reacts to new economic data releases and Fed statements. Key events to watch include: Release of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) report, which will provide insights into the current state of inflation. Employment data releases, including the monthly jobs report, which will offer clues about the health of the labor market. Statements from Federal Reserve officials, which could provide hints about the future direction of monetary policy. With the spring housing market in full swing and rates still relatively favorable, many potential buyers are eager to hit the market, making now the perfect time to leverage our exclusive 0% down payment program. Don't hesitate to contact your UMortgage Loan Officer to learn what programs are available for your buyers!
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Blog Post
Market UpdateMay 20, 2024
Housing Market Update | Week of May 20
Weekly Mortgage Rate Update - May 20th We saw rates drop slightly last week as more data trickled in signaling a softening labor market and slowing economy in the U.S. Throughout the week, we will hear from a few of the presidents of the Federal Reserve which could hint at the future of the Fed’s policy regarding potential rate cuts. Last Week's Mortgage Rate Recap Rates Dropped Slightly Last week, a handful of different pieces of data caused rates to drop slightly. The CPI report came in cooler than market estimates and showed inflation decrease year-over-year. Continuing Jobless Claims—which measures individuals who continue to receive unemployment benefits after their initial claims—rose to 1.794mil, the highest figure seen since November 2021. Continued weakness in the labor market will be the ticket to pressure the Fed to cut rates. This Week's Mortgage Rate Forecast Rates Could Move The biggest data points that we’re looking out for this week will be the rhetoric shared by the Fed presidents who are making media appearances throughout the week. With the recent economic data seen since the last Fed Meeting, any hints at their policy regarding rate cuts could see rates move preemptively. With activity in the housing market ramping up, our clients might need that extra push to help turn their dreams of homeownership into reality this summer. My new 0% down payment program presents our buyers with a golden opportunity to buy a home this summer without breaking the bank on their down payment. My team created this co-brandable flyer; let me know if you’d like me to input your information to share this opportunity with our prospective buyers!
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