Bend Oregon Real Estate Blog
BEND OREGON REAL ESTATE

Bend Real Estate Blog

We provide you with the latest Bend Oregon Real Estate updates as well as general information on Bend and other real estate in Central Oregon.

Jan. 31, 2016

Bend Home Sales Steady December 2015

Home Sales Steady - Bend Oregon Homes

Pending home sales were mostly unchanged in December, but inched forward slightly, fueled by a large increase in the Northeast that outpaced declines in the other three major regions, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, crawled 0.1 percent to 106.8 in December from a downward trend revised 106.7 in November and is now 4.2 percent above December 2014 (102.5). The index has increased year-over-year for 16 consecutive months.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says contract activity closed out the year on stable footing but lost some momentum, except for in the Northeast. "Warmer than average weather and more favorable inventory conditions compared to other parts of the country encouraged more households in the Northeast to make the decision to buy last month," he said. "Overall, while sustained job creation is spurring more activity compared to a year ago, the ability to find available homes in affordable price ranges is difficult for buyers in many job creating areas. With homebuilding still grossly inadequate, steady price appreciation and tight supply conditions aren't going away any time soon."

According to Yun, although healthy labor market conditions will persuade more households to buy, it's possible overall demand could be somewhat curtailed in coming months. The stock market's sizeable losses since the start of the year and the effect slowing manufacturing activity is having in some areas — especially in the energy sector — could cause some to hold off on buying.

"The silver lining from the market turmoil in recent weeks is the fact that mortgage rates have slightly declined," says Yun. "Buyers looking to close on a home before the spring buying season begins may be rewarded with a mortgage rate at or below 4 percent."

Existing-homes sales this year are forecast to be around 5.34 million, an increase of 1.5 percent from 2015. The national median existing-home price for all of this year is expected to increase between 4 and 5 percent. In 2015, existing-home sales increased 6.5 percent and prices rose 6.8 percent.

Rents — which have far outpaced wages in recent years — are expected to slightly slow to 3.3 percent growth in 2016 from 3.6 percent a year ago. Multifamily housing starts are expected to reach 420,000 units this year, the highest level since 1987.  Rents in Bend, OR remain high.

The PHSI in the Northeast increased 6.1 percent to 97.8 in December, and is now 15.3 percent above a year ago. In the Midwest the index decreased 1.1 percent to 103.6 in December, but is still 3.6 percent above December 2014.

Pending home sales in the South declined 0.5 percent to an index of 119.3 in December but are 1.0 percent higher than last December. The index in the West decreased 2.1 percent in December to 97.5, but remains 3.4 percent above a year ago.

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Dec. 26, 2015

Real Estate Homes Sales Slowing

Bend Oregon Real Estate Sales

Existing-home sales dropped off considerably in November to the slowest pace in 19 months, but some of the decrease was likely because of an apparent rise in closing time frames that may have pushed some transactions into December, according to the National Association of Realtors. All four major regions saw sales declines in November.

Existing-home sales in the West dropped 13.9 percent to an annual rate of 990,000 in November, and are now 4.8 percent lower than a year ago. The median price in the West was $319,700, which is 8.3 percent above November 2014.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, town homes, condominiums and co-ops, fell 10.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.76 million in November (lowest since April 2014 at 4.75 million) from a downward revised 5.32 million in October. After last month's decline (largest since July 2010 at 22.5 percent), sales are now 3.8 percent below a year ago — the first year-over-year decrease since September 2014.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says multiple factors led to November's sales decline, but the primary reason could be an anomaly as the industry adjusts to the new Know Before You Owe rule. "Sparse inventory and affordability issues continue to impede a large pool of buyers' ability to buy, which is holding back sales," he said. "However, signed contracts have remained mostly steady in recent months, and properties sold faster in November. Therefore it's highly possible the stark sales decline wasn't because of sudden, withering demand."

According to Yun, although Realtors are adjusting accordingly to the Know Before You Owe initiative, the main takeaway so far has been the need for longer closing times. According to NAR's Realtors® Confidence Index, 47 percent of respondents in November reported that they are experiencing a longer time to close compared to a year ago, up from 37 percent in October.

"It's possible the longer time frames pushed a latter portion of would-be November transactions into December," says Yun. "As long as closing time frames don't rise even further, it's likely more sales will register to this month's total, and November's large dip will be more."

The median existing-home price for all housing types in November was $220,300, which is 6.3 percent above November 2014 ($207,200). November's price increase marks the 45th consecutive month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of November decreased 3.3 percent to 2.04 million existing homes available for sale, and is now 1.9 percent lower than a year ago (2.08 million). Unsold inventory is at a 5.1-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 4.8 months in October.

"Realtors® worked hard to prepare for Know Before You Owe, and we knew there would be some near-term challenges as the industry continues to adapt," says NAR President Tom Salomone, broker-owner of Real Estate II Inc. in Coral Springs, Florida. "Nonetheless, an early trend of longer lead times to closings is cause for concern. As Realtors® report issues with their transactions, we will continue to work with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to ensure as little disruption as possible to the business of real estate."

Properties typically stayed on the market for 54 days in November, a decrease from 57 days in October and below the 65 days in November 2014. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 91 days in November, while foreclosures sold in 47 days and non-distressed homes took 54 days. Thirty-seven percent of homes sold in November were on the market for less than a month.

The percent share of first-time buyers was at 30 percent in November, down from 31 percent both in October and a year ago. Despite first-time buyers' continued absence from the market, NAR's inaugural quarterly Housing Opportunities and Market Experience survey —released earlier this month — found that an overwhelming majority of current renters who are 34 years of age or younger want to own a home in the future (94 percent). The top reason given by renters for not currently owning was the inability to afford to buy.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage hovered below 4 percent for the fourth consecutive month but increased in November to 3.94 from 3.80 percent in October. A year ago, the average commitment rate was 4.00 percent.

"The Federal Reserve's decision this month to raise short-term rates is the first of many increases over the next couple of years," says Yun. "Although this first move will likely have minimal impact on mortgage rates, additional hikes will push borrowing costs to around 4.50 percent by the end of next year. With home prices expected to continue rising, wages and new home construction need to start increasing substantially to preserve affordability."

Matching the highest share since January, all-cash sales rose to 27 percent of transactions in November (24 percent in October) and are also up from 25 percent a year ago. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 16 percent of homes in November (also the highest since January), up both from 13 percent in October and 15 percent a year ago. Sixty-four percent of investors paid cash in November.

Distressed sales — foreclosures and short sales — climbed to 9 percent in November, up from 6 percent in October but unchanged from a year ago. Seven percent of November sales were foreclosures and 2 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 15 percent below market value in November (18 percent in October), while short sales were discounted 15 percent (8 percent in October).

Single-family and Condo/Co-op Sales

Single-family home sales dropped 12.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.15 million in November from 4.72 million in October, and are now 4.6 percent lower than the 4.35 million pace a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $221,600 in November, up 6.6 percent from November 2014.

Existing condominium and co-op sales increased 1.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 610,000 units in November from 600,000 in October, and are now 1.7 percent above November 2014 (600,000 units). The median existing condo price was $211,400 in November, which is 4.7 percent above a year ago.

Regional Breakdown

November existing-home sales in the Northeast declined 9.2 percent to an annual rate of 690,000, but are still 1.5 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $254,800, which is 3.2 percent above November 2014.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales descended 15.4 percent to an annual rate of 1.10 million in November, and are now 2.7 percent below November 2014. The median price in the Midwest was $169,300, up 5.3 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South decreased 6.2 percent to an annual rate of 1.98 million in November, and are now 5.7 percent below November 2014. The median price in the South was $189,400, up 6.3 percent from a year ago.

Bend Oregon Homes Sales

 

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Dec. 20, 2015

Home Buying Survery

 

Desire to Buy Homes in Bend Oregon and U.S. Strong

Although only half of surveyed households believe the economy is currently improving, nearly all young renters eventually want to buy a home, and a convincing majority still view homeownership as part of their American Dream, according to a new quarterly consumer survey released today by the National Association of Realtors. Additionally, a newly-introduced index tracking the financial outlook of households found that compared to earlier this year an increasing share believes their personal financial situation will improve in the months ahead.  None of the surverys were conducted on Bend Oregon Real Estate.

NAR's inaugural quarterly household survey, Housing Opportunities and Market Experience(HOME), tracks topical real estate trends, including current renters and homeowners' views and aspirations regarding homeownership, whether or not it's a good time to buy or sell a home, and expectations and experiences in the mortgage market. New questions may be added to the survey each quarter to reflect timely topics impacting real estate.

The HOME survey data reveals that an overwhelming majority of current renters who are 34 years of age or younger want to own a home in the future (94 percent). Overall, 83 percent of polled renters have a desire to own, and 77 percent believe homeownership is part of their American Dream.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says the survey's findings debunk the notion that young adults aren't interested in buying a home. "Despite entering the workforce during or immediately after the worst of the financial and housing crisis, the desire to become a homeowner appears to be a personal goal for a convincing majority of young renters," he said. "Furthermore, there appears to be sizeable, pent-up demand for buying that currently remains untapped because of a variety of economic and personal reasons impacting many households."

The top two reasons given by renters for not currently owning was the inability to afford to buy (53 percent) and needing the flexibility of renting rather than owning (19 percent). When asked what would likely be the main reason for buying in the future, renters cited lifestyle considerations such as getting married, starting a family or retiring (33 percent) and an improvement in their financial situation (26 percent).

"A combination of factors such as rising rents and home prices, limited supply, repaying student debt, and getting married and having children later in life has more to do with the currently underperforming share of first-time buyers than the idea that buying a home is not as desirable as it used to be," adds Yun.

Households lukewarm about the ??U.S. economy

Among all households (renters and homeowners) in the survey, the results highlight a split between those who agree the U.S. economy is on the right track and those who disagree. Only half of respondents believe the economy is currently improving, and 44 percent think the economy is actually in a recession.

Renters were only slightly more optimistic about current economic conditions, with 57 percent believing the economy is improving. Regardless of their confidence in the U.S. economy today, over three-quarters (76 percent) of those who don't think the economy is improving still want to eventually buy a home.

"The promising stretch of job creation in several parts of the country in recent years has the housing market in 2015 on track for its best year of sales since the downturn," says Yun. "However, that only half of surveyed households believe the economy is improving can be attributed to the fact that some areas have been slow to recover and wages have yet to grow in a meaningful way for far too many families."

Adds Yun, "With roughly 26 million more people in the U.S. compared to the peak year of home sales in 2005 (7.08 million), the pace of existing sales would likely be more robust if not for the economy's subpar growth since the downturn and wage gains that have failed to keep pace with rents and home prices."  The economy is booming in Bend, OR.

Homeownership remains good financi?al decision, part of American Dream

Despite uncertainty about the economy's current performance, at least 84 percent of all households within all surveyed age groups and education levels believe owning a home is a good financial decision. When asked if they believe this strongly or moderately, 76 percent who believe it's a good decision feel strongly about it.

Additionally, at least 85 percent of surveyed households in each age category as well as across all education levels believe homeownership is part of their personal American Dream. The most appealing aspects of homeownership cited by those with this feeling include a place to raise a family (36 percent), owning their own place (26 percent) and a nest egg for retirement (14 percent).

Good time to buy, but skep?tical about ability to obtain a mortgage

NAR's survey found that more homeowners (82 percent) than renters (68 percent) during the polling period believe that it's a good time to buy a home. Furthermore, of those who thought it was a good time to buy, 64 percent felt strongly about buying. Among current owners, 61 percent believe it is a good time to sell a home, of which 53 percent felt strongly that it was a good time to sell.

According to the survey, roughly two-thirds (65 percent) think it would be very or somewhat difficult to obtain a mortgage. Furthermore, there are differences among income brackets. Renter households making between $30,000 and $40,000 were the most likely to be declined a mortgage (10 percent), while 51 percent of those who make more than $50,000 a year have not tried but feel confident they would succeed in getting a mortgage. Overall, five percent of renters have recently tried and failed to obtain financing for a home.

By nearly double the amount of other responses, the most common reason homeowners purchased a home was for lifestyle changes such as getting married, starting a family or retiring (35 percent). Eighteen percent said the desire to settle down in one location influenced their decision to buy, and 15 percent cited an improvement in their financial situation.

Direction of home prices, financial outlook on the rise

Reflecting the ongoing recovery of home values throughout most of the country, 89 percent of respondents said home prices in their communities have either risen or stayed the same in the past year. Looking ahead toward the next six months, 91 percent of respondents believe home prices in their community will increase or stay the same.

The HOME survey also calculates a monthly Personal Financial Outlook Index measured by household type, age, income and type of location. Since tracking began in March, the index representing all households has slowly trended upward to its highest current reading in December – reflecting stronger confidence that respondents' financial situation will be better in six months. Currently, renters, younger households and those living in urban areas are more optimistic about their future financial situation.

"Young adults, who make up the majority of all renter households, are typically more optimistic about their future," adds Yun. "As more of them settle down and begin plans to start a family, the allure of owning their own home as well as the long-term financial stability homeownership provides will drive their emergence into the housing market. However, the extent to how fast this occurs will greatly depend on more entry-level housing supply coming onto the market and needed improvements in affordability conditions."  

About NAR's HOME survey

In March through early December 2015, a sample of U.S. households was surveyed via random-digit dial, including half via cell phones and the other half via land lines. The survey was conducted by an established survey research firm, TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence. Each month approximately 900 qualified households responded to the survey. The data was compiled for this report and a total of 9,034 household responses are represented.

The National Association of Realtors, "The Voice for Real Estate," is America's largest trade association, representing over 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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Oct. 11, 2015

Internet Used to Find Bend Oregon Real Estate

Bend Oregon Real Estate On Line

Finding the perfect home to buy in Bend Oregon is made easy by signing up for an account on this web site to search the MLS for the perfect home!  Bend Oregon Homes for Sale

Once you have found the perfect home then it's time to decide how to make an offer.  That's where my 40 years of real estate experience comes into play.  I can save you thousands of dollars by negotiating a good price on you new home.  Feel free to call, text or email today. 

Even though more consumers are using the Internet as a tool during their home search, buyers are increasingly utilizing the knowledge and expertise of a real estate agent,  according to the National Association of Realtors Real Estate in a Digital Age report.

"Consumers have the ability to do more home buying research online and be more connected during the home search process than ever before, but research proves they are still seeing the value a Realtor brings to the transaction, from the initial search to well after the closing," said NAR President Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Arkansas. "Realtors bring great value to buyers from every generation, demographic and location as well as in every financial and familial situation. So while consumers have more technological tools available at their fingertips, Realtors® are now more than ever a part of the home buying and selling equation."

The report found that finding the right property was ranked as the most difficult step in the home buying process. Since the Internet is now the first place many people go for information, it's not surprising that 4 in 10 buyers looked for properties online as a first step in the home buying process (up from 36 percent in 2010). However, 88 percent of buyers in 2014 purchased their home with assistance from a real estate agent, up from 83 percent in 2010.

While 94 percent of millennials and 84 percent of baby boomers used online websites in their home search, only 65 percent of the Silent Generation - those ages 69 to 89 years - did the same. Older boomers, those aged 60 to 68 years, used a mobile device to search for properties at less than half the rate of millennials (30 percent versus 66 percent).

When it comes to website listing features, photos and online property information were more important to millennials, while virtual tours and direct contact with a real estate agent were more important to baby boomers. Despite visual content growing in popularity and importance, older homebuyers found virtual tours more useful than younger buyers (45 percent among the Silent Generation and baby boomers compared to 36 percent among millennials).

As for the length of time it takes for consumers to find a home, millennials typically looked for about 11 weeks, while baby boomers and members of the Silent Generation searched for 8 weeks. Internet use also impacted the length of a home search; those who used the Internet to search homes visited more homes and searched for longer, looking at 10 homes over a 10-week period (versus four homes in four weeks for those not looking on the web). 

While not all consumers use the Internet in their home search, a growing number are first finding their future home online. Forty-three percent of buyers first found the home they ended up purchasing on the web; that number was just 8 percent in 2001. In 2001, nearly half (48 percent) of buyers found the home they purchased from a real estate agent; today that number is 33 percent.                         

The Real Estate in a Digital Age report also found greater technology use by Realtors® and real estate firms to better meet the needs of clients. Realtors® prefer to communicate with their clients via email (at 93 percent) as well as text messages (85 percent) and instant messaging (31 percent).  

Social media is also popular with Realtors, though 70 percent of female Realtors® are active on social media compared to only 58 percent of male Realtors. Some social media platforms are more popular than others among Realtors®: Facebook and LinkedIn are most utilized by Realtors® (at 80 percent and 71 percent). Realtors® that are active on social media do so for visibility/exposure/marketing (81 percent), building relationships and networking (66 percent), advertising (59 percent) and promoting listings (51 percent).

Realtors and firms know that they must adapt to technology to better work with and understand their clients; however, it is not always an easy feat. In fact, 46 percent of all real estate firms cite keeping up with technology as one of the biggest challenges they face over the next two years. That number is even higher for commercial real estate firms, at 53 percent.

"Realtors constantly strive to find ways to make the home buying and selling process easier for and more accessible to their clients," Polychron said. "There is nothing more important than helping people find and land their dream home, and since technology helps Realtors® do that, it will continue to be a priority."

The National Association of Realtors, "The Voice for Real Estate," is America's largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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Oct. 8, 2015

Bend Oregon Home Sales Slow

BEND OREGON HOME SALES SLOW

Home sales in Bend, OR and nation wide slowed following three straight months of gains, existing–home sales dipped in August despite slowing price growth and a positive turnaround in the share of sales to first–time buyers, according to the National Association of Realtors®. None of the four major regions experienced sales increases in August.

Total existing–home sales, which are completed transactions that include single–family homes, town homes, condominiums and co–ops, fell 4.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.31 million in August from a slight downward revision of 5.58 million in July. Despite last month's decline, sales have risen year–over–year for 11 consecutive months and are 6.2 percent above a year ago (5.00 million).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says home sales in August lost some momentum to close out the summer. "Sales activity was down in many parts of the country last month — especially in the South and West — as the persistent summer theme of tight inventory levels likely deterred some buyers," he said. "The good news for the housing market is that price appreciation the last two months has started to moderate from the unhealthier rate of growth seen earlier this year."

The median existing–home price for all housing types in August was $228,700, which is 4.7 percent above August 2014 ($218,400). August's price increase marks the 42nd consecutive month of year–over–year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of August rose 1.3 percent to 2.29 million existing homes available for sale, but is 1.7 percent lower than a year ago (2.33 million). Unsold inventory is at a 5.2–month supply at the current sales pace, up from 4.9 months in July.

"With sales and overall demand higher than a year ago and supply mostly unchanged, low inventories will likely continue to limit options for those looking to buy this fall even with the overall pool of buyers shrinking because of seasonal factors," adds Yun.

The percent share of first–time buyers rebounded to 32 percent in August, up from 28 percent in July and matching the highest share of the year set in May. A year ago, first–time buyers represented 29 percent of all buyers.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30–year, conventional, fixed–rate mortgage declined to 3.91 percent in August after climbing above 4 percent in July (4.05 percent) for the first time since November 2014 (4.00 percent).

"When the Federal Reserve decides to lift short–term rates — likely later this year — the impact on mortgage rates and overall housing demand will likely not be pronounced," says Yun. "With job growth holding steady, prospective buyers can handle any gradual rise in mortgage rates — especially if today's stronger labor market finally leads to a boost in wages and homebuilding accelerates to alleviate supply shortages and slow price growth in some markets."

NAR released a study earlier this month that examined new home construction in relation to job gains. The findings revealed that home building activity is currently insufficient in a majority of metro areas and is contributing to the ongoing housing shortages and unhealthy price growth in many markets.

Properties typically stayed on the market for 47 days in August, an increase from 42 days in July but below the 53 days in August 2014. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 124 days in August, while foreclosures sold in 66 days and non–distressed homes took 45 days. Forty percent of homes sold in August were on the market for less than a month.

All–cash sales decreased slightly to 22 percent of transactions in August (23 percent in July) and are down from 23 percent a year ago. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 12 percent of homes in August, down from 13 percent in July and unchanged from a year ago. Sixty percent of investors paid cash in August.

Matching the lowest share since NAR began tracking in October 2008, distressed sales4 — foreclosures and short sales — remained at 7 percent in August for the second consecutive month; they were 8 percent a year ago. Five percent of August sales were foreclosures and 2 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 18 percent below market value in August (17 percent in July), while short sales were discounted 12 percent (unchanged from July).

NAR President Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Ark., says Realtors® worked hard over the summer to prepare for the Oct. 3 implementation of Know Before You Owe, also known as the TILA–RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule. "A large majority of Realtors® have taken some form of training5 to prepare for the new disclosure requirements," he said. "As the ruling goes into effect next month, communication is crucial between all parties involved in a real estate transaction to ensure consumers get to closing seamlessly and without delay. NAR will monitor the progress of the rule in the weeks ahead and will share any concerns that arise as part of our continued partnership with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau."

Single Family Home and Condo Sales

Single–family home sales declined 5.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.69 million in August from 4.95 million in July, but are still 6.1 percent above the 4.42 million pace a year ago. The median existing single–family home price was $230,200 in August, up 5.1 percent from August 2014.

Existing condominium and co–op sales declined 1.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 620,000 units in August from 630,000 units in July, but are still up 6.9 percent from August 2014 (580,000 units). The median existing condo price was $217,400 in August, which is 2.2 percent above a year ago.

Regional Breakdown

August existing–home sales in the Northeast were at an annual rate of 700,000, unchanged from July and 6.1 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $271,600, which is 2.4 percent above August 2014.

In the Midwest, existing–home sales declined 1.5 percent to an annual rate of 1.28 million in August, but remain 5.8 percent above August 2014. The median price in the Midwest was $181,100, up 4.0 percent from a year ago.

Existing–home sales in the South fell 6.6 percent to an annual rate of 2.14 million in August, but are still 5.9 percent above August 2014. The median price in the South was $196,300, up 6.0 percent from a year ago.

Existing–home sales in the West dropped 7.8 percent to an annual rate of 1.19 million in August, but remain 7.2 percent above a year ago. The median price in the West was $321,300, which is 7.1 percent above August 2014.

There are many factors that cause sales to slow in Bend.  You can search BEND OREGON REAL ESTATE here.

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Aug. 12, 2015

Buying Bend Oregon Real Estate

Buying  Bend Oregon Real Estate

90 Second Video on Buying A home in Bend LINK 

I'm Jim Johnson, owner and broker of Bend Oregon real estate expert. I've been helping buyers like you find the perfect home in Bend since 1981.
 
There are many steps involved in finding a home, making an offer and closing the transaction.
 
First I can help you determine the best neighborhood to fit your needs. I've lived in Bend for over 34 years and know all the neighborhoods.
 
Once we've determined the location, price range, square footage and number of bedrooms and baths, we can look at homes until you find the best home to fit your needs.
 
After you've found the perfect home then it's time for me to go to work and help you negotiate the best price and terms possible.
 
Buying a home is most likely to be the largest investment you'll ever make. Let me put me experience to work for you. I've been writing real estate contacts for or 39 years.
 
My many years of real estate experience can save you thousands of dollars and I'm with you every step of the way!
 
I'm always available to answer your questions about contracts, CC&Rs, construction, financing, appraisals, inspections, title insurance and anything relating to the purchase of your new home.
 
My services are free to you because the seller pays my commission.
 
Please call, text or email me today and let's talk. I hope to hear from you soon!  Jim Johnson Owner,  541-389-4511
 

 

 

 

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Nov. 29, 2014

More Bend Oregon Real Estate Statistics

Real Estate Statics

Pending Bend Oregon real estate sales continue a steady pace while nationally, pending home sales declined in October but remained at a healthy level of activity and are above year-over-year levels for the second straight month, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, decreased 1.1 percent to 104.1 in October from an upwardly-revised 105.3 in September, but is 2.2 percent higher than October 2013 (101.9). The index is above 100—considered an average level of contract activity—for the sixth consecutive month.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says despite October's modest decline, contract signings have remained at a healthy pace now for six straight months. "In addition to low interest rates, buyers entering the market this autumn are being lured by the increase in homes for sale and less competition from investors paying in cash," he said. "Demand is holding steady but would be more robust if it weren't for lagging wage growth and tight credit conditions that continue to hamper those individuals looking for relief from rising rents."

The median existing-home price for all housing types in October was $208,300, which is 5.5 percent above October 2013. Monthly median price growth has averaged 5.8 percent in 2014 (through October) after averaging 11.5 percent last year.

"The increase in median prices for existing-homes has leveled off, representing a healthier pace that has kept affordability in-check for buyers in many parts of the country while giving more previously stuck homeowners with little or no equity the ability to sell," says Yun.

Yun says evidence of rising home prices allowing more willing homeowners the ability to sell can be found in NAR's annual survey released earlier this month, which revealed that the typical seller over the past year was in their home for 10 years before selling—an all-time survey high for tenure of home.

NAR also recently released its economic and housing forecast for 2015 and 2016. Yun is forecasting existing-home sales this year to fall slightly below 2013 (5.1 million) to 4.9 million, and then increase to 5.3 million next year and 5.4 million in 2016. Yun expects the national median existing-home price to rise 4 percent both next year and in 2016.

The PHSI in the Northeast inched 0.5 percent to 87.9 in October, and is now 3.4 percent above a year ago. In the Midwest the index slightly declined 0.6 percent to 100.6 in October, and is now 3.0 percent below October 2013.

Pending home sales in the South decreased 1.0 percent to an index of 118.3 in October, but is still 3.9 percent above last October. The index in the West fell 3.2 percent in October to 98.1, but remains 4.1 percent above a year ago.

Click this link to view homes currently for sale in NorthWest Crossing.

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Nov. 29, 2014

Commerial Real Estate Sales October 2014

Bend Oregon commercial real estate

The Bend Oregon commercial real estate market keeps plugging along.  Nationally, despite a slowing global economy, forward economic momentum in the U.S. should keep commercial real estate activity on firmer footing, according to the National Association of Realtors quarterly commercial real estate forecast.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says commercial activity should progress at a gradual pace heading into 2015. “Solid economic growth in the third quarter proved that the second quarter wasn’t an anomaly, as business spending increased, commercial construction rose and the labor market continued to make positive strides,” he said. “Job growth is the catalyst to improved demand for commercial real estate leasing and new construction projects.”

However, Yun does caution that softening in the global economy will likely widen the trade deficit in the U.S. and could trigger some weakening in the overall economy. “GDP growth in the fourth quarter will be sluggish at around 2 percent behind stalling exports. Although GDP will likely climb to near 3 percent in 2015, the current pace of job growth could slow and ultimately impact commercial real estate activity if sluggishness in the global economy persists,” he said.

National office vacancy rates are forecast to decrease 0.5 percent over the coming year due to job growth exceeding inventory coming onto the market. Improved manufacturing activity should lead to a declining vacancy rate for industrial space (0.4 percent), while retail space is forecast to decline 0.2 percent behind a boost in consumer spending from personal income gains and lower gas prices.

“Low housing inventory and the sizable demand for rentals will continue to spur multifamily construction as well as keep rents rising above inflation through next year,” says Yun.

NAR’s latest Commercial Real Estate Outlook offers overall projections for four major commercial sectors and analyzes quarterly data in the office, industrial, retail and multifamily markets. Historic data for metro areas is provided by REIS Inc., a source of commercial real estate performance information.

Office Markets

Office vacancy rates are forecast to slightly decline from 15.7 percent in the fourth quarter to 15.6 percent through the fourth quarter of 2015.

The markets with the lowest office vacancy rates in the fourth quarter are Washington, D.C., at 9.3 percent; New York City, 9.6 percent; Little Rock, Ark., 11.6 percent; San Francisco, 12.2 percent; and Seattle, at 12.8 percent.            

Office rents are projected to increase 2.4 percent in 2014 and 3.3 percent next year. Net absorption of office space in the U.S., which includes the leasing of new space coming on the market as well as space in existing properties, is likely to total 35.6 million square feet this year and 48.8 million in 2015.

Industrial Markets 

Industrial vacancy rates are expected to fall from 8.8 percent in the fourth quarter to 8.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015.

The areas with the lowest industrial vacancy rates currently are Orange County, Calif., with a vacancy rate of 3.6 percent; Los Angeles, 3.7 percent; Seattle, 5.8 percent; Miami, 6.0; and Palm Beach, Fla., at 6.5 percent. 

Annual industrial rents should rise 2.4 percent this year and 2.9 percent in 2015. Net absorption of industrial space nationally is expected to total 110.7 million square feet in 2014 and 102.5 million square feet next year.

Retail Markets

Vacancy rates in the retail market are expected to decline from 9.7 percent currently to 9.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015.

Currently, the markets with the lowest retail vacancy rates include San Francisco, at 3.5 percent; Fairfield County, Conn., 3.9 percent; San Jose, Calif., 4.6 percent; Orange County, Calif., 5.2 percent; and Long Island, N.Y., at 5.3 percent.

Average retail rents are forecast to rise 2.0 percent in 2014 and 2.5 percent next year. Net absorption of retail space is likely to total 11.4 million square feet this year and jump to 18.9 million in 2015.

Multifamily Markets

The apartment rental market – multifamily housing – should see vacancy rates slightly increase from 4.0 percent currently to 4.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015. Vacancy rates below 5 percent are generally considered a landlord’s market, with demand justifying higher rent.

Areas with the lowest multifamily vacancy rates currently are Orange County, Calif., and Sacramento, Calif., at 2.2 percent; Providence, R.I., and New Haven, Conn., at 2.3 percent; and Hartford, Conn., at 2.5 percent.

Average apartment rents are projected to rise 4.0 this year and 3.9 percent in 2015. Multifamily net absorption is expected to total 216,300 units in 2014 and 171,200 next year.

Click this link to see all multifamily units for sale in Bend Oregon.

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Nov. 29, 2014

Real Estate Sales October 2014

Real Estate Sales Brisk

Bend Oregon real estate sales continue at a brisk pace while existing-home sales in the West declined 5.0 percent to an annual rate of 1.14 million in October, and remain 3.4 percent below a year ago. The median price in the West was $296,800, which is 5.0 percent above October 2013.  Nationally, existing-home sales rose in October for the second straight month and are now above year-over-year levels for the first time in a year, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, town homes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 1.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.26 million in October from an upwardly-revised 5.18 million in September. Sales are at their highest annual pace since September 2013 (also 5.26 million) and are now above year-over-year levels (2.5 percent from last October) for the first time since last October.  

Lawrence Yun, National Association of Realtors chief economist, says the housing market this year has been a tale of two halves. “Sales activity in October reached its highest annual pace of the year as buyers continue to be encouraged by interest rates at lows not seen since last summer, improving levels of inventory and stabilizing price growth,” he said. “Furthermore, the job market has shown continued strength in the past six months. This bodes well for solid demand to close out the year and the likelihood of additional months of year-over-year sales increases.”

The median existing-home price for all housing types in October was $208,300, which is 5.5 percent above October 2013. This marks the 32nd consecutive month of year-over-year price gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of October fell 2.6 percent to 2.22 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.1-month supply at the current sales pace – the lowest since March (also 5.1 months). Unsold inventory is now 5.2 percent higher than a year ago, when there were 2.11 million existing homes available for sale.

“The growth in housing supply this year will likely prevent the drastic sales slowdown and coinciding spike in home prices we saw last winter due to low inventory,” says Yun. “However, more housing starts are needed to increase supply, meet current demand and keep price growth in check.”

All-cash sales were 27 percent of transactions in October, up from 24 percent in September but down from 31 percent in October of last year. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 15 percent of homes in October, up from 14 percent last month but below October 2013 (19 percent). Sixty-five percent of investors paid cash in October.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage in October dropped to 4.03 percent, its lowest level since June 2013 (4.07 percent), and down from 4.16 percent in September.

The percent share of first-time buyers in October remained at 29 percent for the fourth consecutive month; first-time buyers have represented less than 30 percent of all buyers in 18 of the past 19 months. A separate NAR survey released earlier this month revealed that the annual share of first-time buyers fell to its lowest level in nearly three decades.

Distressed homes were in the single-digits for the third month this year, decreasing to 9 percent in October from 10 percent in September; they were 14 percent a year ago. Seven percent of October sales were foreclosures and 2 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 15 percent below market value in October (14 percent in September), while short sales were discounted 10 percent (14 percent in September).    

“Although distressed sales are trending downward, there are still areas (such as judicial states Florida, Maryland and New York) plagued by foreclosures, and homeowners faced with the awful choice between a tax bill they are unable to pay and losing their home,” says NAR President Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Ark. “Realtors® urge the U.S. House to schedule a vote on “The Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act,” as soon as possible. This bipartisan legislation would extend an expired provision that has helped millions of distressed American families by allowing tax relief when lenders forgive a portion of the mortgage debt they owe.”

Properties typically stayed on the market in October longer (63 days) than last month (56 days) and a year ago (54 days). Short sales were on the market for a median of 150 days in October, while foreclosures sold in 68 days and non-distressed homes took 61 days. Thirty-three percent of homes sold in October were on the market for less than a month.

Single-family home sales increased 1.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.63 million in October from 4.57 million in September, and are now 2.9 percent above the 4.50 million pace a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $208,700 in October, up 5.6 percent from October 2013.

Existing condominium and co-op sales increased 3.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 630,000 units in October from 610,000 in September, unchanged from the 630,000 unit pace a year ago. The median existing condo price was $205,400 in October, which is 4.5 percent higher than a year ago.

Regionally, October existing-home sales in the Northeast climbed 2.9 percent to an annual rate of 710,000, and are 4.4 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $246,900, which is 1.2 percent above a year ago.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales jumped 5.1 percent to an annual level of 1.24 million in October, and are 2.5 percent higher than October 2013. The median price in the Midwest was $164,100, up 6.8 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South increased 2.8 percent to an annual rate of 2.17 million in October, and are now 5.3 percent above October 2013. The median price in the South was $178,000, up 5.1 percent from a year ago.

Click this link to see real estate for sale in Bend Oregon.

 

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Nov. 21, 2014

Bend Oregon Passive Solar Homes - Energy Efficient Homes

Passive Solar Homes in Bend Oregon

What does energy efficiency mean?  You might say, “solar panels.” Your neighbor might say, “low utility bills.”

You can find passive solar homes for sale in Bend Oregon by clicking on the link.

 You’re both right.  “Energy efficiency means something different to everyone,” said Nate Ellis, director of education for the Contra Costa Association of REALTORS®, who spoke at Friday’s “Marketing New and Energy-Efficient Homes” session.   And that means you need to customize your message.

 To do so, Ellis said, you need to first understand your market. Start by tapping the big data available through such sites as the REALTORS Property Resource, an NAR-owned, members-only, searchable property database that overlays property tax records with MLS data, where available.

 In RPR’s “commercial section,” you can find demographic reports and maps, such as which areas are dominated by wine drinkers and which by beer drinkers. Information like this gives you financial insights, because wine drinkers tend to have higher incomes.

 Another source of demographic data: Nielsen’s My Best Segments, which will serve up the top-five profiles of people who live in a particular ZIP code.  How do you come up with concepts for multiple pieces of marketing?

 Take a phrase like “energy efficiency” and free associate 20 related words, such as “saving money,” “comfort,” and “utilities.”

  • Do the same exercise for each of those 20 words. For instance, from “utilities,” you might come up with terms like “solar.”
  • Brainstorm three questions consumers might ask about solar, such as “How much is it?” “How much will I save?” and “Should I lease or buy solar panels?”

 By doing this exercise for each term, you’ll end up with hundreds of marketing messages that you can apply based on demographics. These ideas also double as good topics for blog posts.

 Tip: Avoid energy-efficiency jargon in your marketing. You might know that FSC stands for the Forest Stewardship Council, which denotes sustainably harvested wood, but consumers won’t. 

 If you’re wondering how you can possibly find the time and money to create all this marketing, Ellis has an answer. He recommends online tools like Canva.com, which let you easily design flyers and other collateral online using templates and fonts. With Canva, you can use your own imagery or choose from the service’s library.

 Finally, what are some ways to convince people to invest in energy efficiency, especially when your listing is competing with a less expensive property?

 Try a little healthy competition. Ellis cited an American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy study that found the most effective way to get people to change their habits is to get them to compete with their neighbors. Some energy companies do that by including information in utility bills comparing your consumption with that of your neighbors.

  • Complete the Appraisal Institute’s “Residential Green and Energy Efficient Addendum” (Form 820.04, which you can find here) to list all the relevant energy-efficient features of the home from insulation to HVAC. And provide that to the appraiser who won’t be able to see things like the fact that the R-value of the insulation is higher than other homes in the area.
  • Keep a record of the home’s utility bills. But make sure to establish a baseline for consumption, because a family four with two infants will have different energy use than a family of four with two teenagers.

Click here to search for Bend Oregon Real Estate.

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