CategoryUncategorized

The Housing Market Needs More Cowbell (Lower Rates)

The economy continues to remain strong, with unemployment staying below 4%. While housing sales remain weak, there are recent signs of expanded new signed contract activity, a product of a strong economy and the notion that buyers might be able to refi out lower over the next few years. The housing market has been punished harder than most other sectors with the rapid gain in interest rates over...

Post-Super Bowl Housing Market Taylored For Swifter Conditions

The back half of 2024 continues to look better for housing transaction volume with eventual rate cuts, combined with low unemployment. The Chief's Justin Watson should be nominated as the next Fed chair! Did you miss last Friday's Housing Notes? February 8, 2024 Housing Numbers Are Still More Powerful Than Its Letters Or Symbols But I digress... The San Francisco And Kansas City Housing Markets...

Housing Numbers Are Still More Powerful Than Its Letters Or Symbols

In the late 90s, the size of Former Fed Chair Alan Greenspan’s briefcase was tracked to consider the odds of a rate cut or increase. Last December, Fed Chair Powell said they planned to cut rates by 75 basis points sometime in 2024 but wasn’t specific about “when.” I prefer numbers over briefcases because who carries one these days? Here’s a better way to look at it...

‘Date The Rate’ Is Bad For Housing Business

Throughout my career, I've always found the "date the rate, marry the house" phrasing by mortgage professionals to be awkward. I've had enough trouble with "starve a cold, feed a fever." Aside from being trite, the implication is that you've figured out the U.S. financial system, and this is not the time to say that to someone making what is likely the most significant investment of their life...

Like A Rat On An Escalator, Housing Sales Expected To Climb

In the housing markets we cover across the U.S., more contracts are being signed in January than last January. We are publishing our Elliman Reports of newly signed contracts next week as the month closes. Since last fall, the decline in mortgage rates has trickled in more supply and encouraged more sales, yet many homeowners are still locked into a previous low rate. So don't overinterpret the...

It’s A Green Day For Housing

Mortgage rates continue to fall, and the Fed hasn't cut rates yet. Credit conditions are easing, and unemployment remains low. And going on the Manhattan subway is still an inexpensive and fun way to get around the city. Wait for it. This kind of activity is more common than you think (when we're not searching for the "pizza rat.") Did you miss last Friday's Housing Notes? January 12, 2024:...

Falling Mortgage Rates Provide Possible Termination Of Housing Recession

The Fed Pivot that began in December with the statement that there would be 75basis point cuts in 2024 conveyed a sense of optimism to that economic sector after a rough two years of steep ascent in mortgage rates. Mortgage applications have rebounded, and credit has eased rapidly. Of course, it's also hard to believe that the Terminator came out 40 years ago and still holds up for its genre. My...

Housing 2024: The Year Of LESS Disappointment (The Front Won’t Fall Off)

Mortgage rates have already fallen substantially since the Fed paused in December. Mortgage rates are expected to fall further in the first half of 2024 before the Fed cuts rates. I struggled to better my 2023 market description: "2023: The Year of Disappointment." I ended up with a 2024 descriptor of "2024: The Year of Incremental Change." When I mentioned this descriptor to reporters, I could...

The Housing Recession Is Probably Ending In 2024 (and other wild guesses)

Last year, 85% of economists surveyed thought there would be a recession, yet we seem to be already experiencing a soft landing (no recession). There were forecasts of a recession "in the next 6 months" for the last two years. To those in the real estate industry, it felt like a recession, while the rest of the economy seemed strong, with elevated wages and unemployment below 4%. The economy has...

Happy Holidays To All And To All A Good 2024

This has been a tumultuous year for the housing market. Mortgage rates surged, prices held, and listing inventory fell. All the rules of thumb we started the year with ended up broken. And it doesn't help when the Mayor of New York is doing our city's public relations. Oof. This is a place where every day you wake up you could experience everything from a plane crashing into our trade center...