Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Nov. 19, 2020

Brevard County Housing Statistics - October 2020

A quick recap of the Brevard County Residential Report for October 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +39.2% for October 2020 in which the number of units closed was 1,029 compared to 739 in October 2019, with an increase in cash sales of +14.8% compared to October 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +18.0% and New Listings are up +4.8%.
  • The Median Sales Price for Brevard Single Family homes is up +14.2% to $274,150 compared to a year ago, which was $240,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -46.4% to 1.5 months, a decrease from 2.8 months in October 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +41.2%, with a median sales price of $274,535.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -61.5%, with 5 sales and a median sales price of $244,000.
  • Short Sale Closings are down -100.0% with 0 closed sales compared to 1 sale in October 2019
A quick recap of the Brevard County Townhouses/Condos for October 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +27.7% for October 2020 in which the number of units closed was 281 compared to 220 in October 2019, with an increase in cash sales of +19.2% compared to October 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +9.0% and New Listings are down -10.8%.
  • Median Sales Price for Townhomes/Condos is up +15.1% to $213,000 compared to a year ago, which was $185,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -31.4% to 2.4 months in October 2020 from 3.5 months in October 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +28.6%, with a median sales price of $213,000.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -33.3%, with 2 closed sales compared to 3 closed sale in October 2019.
  • Short Sale Closings are unchanged with 0 closed sales in October 2020 and 0 closed sales in October 2019.
Posted in Market Updates
Nov. 17, 2020

Why the 2021 Forecast Doesn’t Call for a Foreclosure Crisis

Why the 2021 Forecast Doesn’t Call for a Foreclosure Crisis



As the current forbearance mortgage relief options come to an end, many are wondering if we’ll face a foreclosure crisis next year. This is understandable, especially for those who remember the housing crisis that began in 2008. The reality is, plans have been put in place through forbearance to ensure history doesn’t repeat itself.

This year, homeowners are able to request 180 days of mortgage relief through forbearance. Upon expiration of that timeframe, they’re also entitled to request 180 additional days, bringing the total to 360 days of deferred payment eligibility. As forbearance expires, homeowners should stay in touch with their lender, because creating a plan for the deferred payments is a critical next step to avoiding foreclosure. There are multiple options for homeowners to pursue at this point, and with the right planning and communication with the lender, foreclosure doesn’t have to be one of them.

Many homeowners are concerned that they’ll have to pay the deferred payments back in a lump sum payment at the end of forbearance. Thankfully, that’s not the case. Fannie Mae explains:

You don’t have to repay the forbearance amount all at once upon completion of your forbearance plan…Here’s the important thing to remember: If you receive a forbearance plan, you will have options when it comes to repaying the missed amount. You don’t have to pay the forbearance amount at once unless you are able to do so.”

When looking at the percentage of people in forbearance, we can also see that this number has been decreasing steadily throughout the year. Fewer people than initially expected are still in forbearance, so the number of homeowners who will need to work out alternative payment options is declining (See graph below):Why the 2021 Forecast Doesn’t Call for a Foreclosure Crisis | MyKCMThis means there are fewer and fewer homeowners at risk of foreclosure, and many who initially applied for forbearance didn’t end up needing it. Mike Fratantoni, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), explains:

"Nearly two-thirds of borrowers who exited forbearance remained current on their payments, repaid their forborne payments, or moved into a payment deferral plan. All of these borrowers have been able to resume - or continue - their pre-pandemic monthly payments."

For those who are still in forbearance and unable to make their payments, foreclosure isn’t the only option left. In their Homeowner Equity Insights ReportCoreLogic indicates:

“In the second quarter of 2020, the average homeowner gained approximately $9,800 in equity during the past year.”

Many homeowners have enough equity in their homes today to be able to sell their houses instead of foreclosing. Selling and protecting the overall financial investment may be a very solid option for many homeowners. As Ivy Zelman, Founder of Zelman & Associates, mentioned in a recent podcast:

“The likelihood of us having a foreclosure crisis again is about zero percent.”

Bottom Line

If you’re currently in forbearance or think you should be because you’re concerned about being able to make your mortgage payments, reach out to your lender to discuss your options and next steps. Having a trusted and knowledgeable professional on your side to guide you is essential in this process and might be the driving factor that helps you stay in your home.

Posted in Homeowners
Nov. 14, 2020

Homeownership Is a Key to Building Wealth



For years, real estate has been considered the best investment you can make. A major reason for this is due to the net worth a household gains through homeownership. In fact, according to the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finance Data from the Federal Reserve, for the average homeowner:

“…a primary home accounts for 90% of the total wealth of a family in the U.S.”

How do homeowners gain wealth?

Most large purchases, like cars and appliances, depreciate in value as they age, so it’s understandable to question how owning a home can increase wealth over time. In a simple equation, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) explains how the combination of paying your mortgage and home price appreciation grow overall wealth:

Principal Payments + Price Appreciation Gains = Housing Wealth Gain

As home values increase and you make payments toward your home loan, you’ll gain wealth through equity. The same article from NAR also addresses how wealth gains tend to play out over time:

“Housing wealth accumulation takes time and is built up by paying off the mortgage debt and by price appreciation. And while home prices can fall, home prices tend to recover and go up over the longer term. As of September 2020, the median sales price of existing home sales was $311,800, a 35% gain since July 2006 when prices peaked at $230,000.”

Taking a look at how equity has grown for the typical homeowner, it’s clear to see how real estate is a sound long-term investment. NAR notes:

“Nationally, a person who purchased a typical home 30 years ago would have typically gained about $283,000 as of the second quarter of 2020.” (See graph below):

Homeownership Is a Key to Building Wealth | MyKCM

Bottom Line

Whether you’re a current homeowner planning to put your equity toward a new home or have hopes of buying your first home soon, homeownership will always be a great opportunity to build your net worth and overall wealth. Owning a home is truly an investment in your financial future.

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Nov. 5, 2020

Real Estate Is a Driving Force in the Economy

As the economy recovers from this year’s health crisis, the housing market is playing a leading role in the turnaround. It’s safe to say that what we call “home” is taking on a new meaning, causing many of us to consider buying or selling sooner rather than later. Housing, therefore, has thrived in an otherwise down year.

Today’s high buyer demand combined with low housing inventory means we’re seeing home prices appreciate at an above-average pace. This demand is being driven by those who want to take advantage of historically low mortgage rates. According to Freddie Mac:

"The record low mortgage rate environment is providing tangible support to the economy at a critical time, as housing continues to propel growth."

These factors are driving a positive impact on the economy as a whole. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the real estate industry provided $3.7 billion dollars of economic impact to the country last year. To break it down, in 2019, the average newly constructed home contributed just over $88,000 per build to local economies. Across the country, real estate clearly makes a significant impact (See map below):Real Estate Is a Driving Force in the Economy | MyKCMIn addition, last week, the Bureau of Economic Analysis announced the U.S. Gross Domestic Product increased at an annual rate of 33.1% in the 3rd quarter of this year, after decreasing by 31.4% in the second quarter. There’s no doubt the growing economy is being fueled in part by the soaring housing market. Experts forecast this housing growth to carry into 2021, continuing to make a big impact on the economy next year as well.

Bottom Line

The American Dream of homeownership has continued to thrive in the midst of this year’s economic downturn, and “home” has taken on a new meaning for many of us during this time.  Best of all, the housing market is making a significant impact as the economy recovers.

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Nov. 1, 2020

Brevard County Housing Statistics - September 2020

A quick recap of the Brevard County Residential Report for September 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +29.3% for September 2020 in which the number of units closed was 1,002 compared to 775 in September 2019, with an increase in cash sales of +28.6% compared to September 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +35.2% and New Listings are up +10.0%.
  • The Median Sales Price for Brevard Single Family homes is up +8.3% to $260,000 compared to a year ago, which was $240,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -42.9% to 1.6 months, a decrease from 2.8 months in September 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +30.7%, with a median sales price of $260,000.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -50.0%, with 7 sales and a median sales price of $254,900.
  • Short Sale Closings are up +100.0% with 2 closed sales, and a median sales price of $142,250.
A quick recap of the Brevard County Townhouses/Condos for September 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +25.1% for September 2020 in which the number of units closed was 274 compared to 219 in September 2019, with an increase in cash sales of +55.3% compared to September 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +23.8% and New Listings are up +16.6%.
  • Median Sales Price for Townhomes/Condos is down -5.0% to $190,000 compared to a year ago, which was $199,990.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -26.5% to 2.5 months in September 2020 from 3.4 months in September 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +25.2%, with a median sales price of $190,000.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -100.0%, with 0 closed sales compared to 1 closed sale in September 2019.
  • Short Sale Closings are up +100.0% with 1 closed sale in September 2020 compared to 0 closed sales in September 2019.
Posted in Market Updates
Oct. 11, 2020

Halloween 2020 - Brevard County Events

Halloween 2020 in Brevard County, like other places will be a little different, or the new normal for year anyway.

Here are some events along the Space Coast to keep in the Spirit!

 

Boo at the Zoo - They changed from night to daytime to keep with social distancing but still have fun with the kiddos!

 

Halloween Cruise - Carnival Cruise - From Port Canaveral to Nassau, Oct 17th - 22nd

 

Quarantine-O-Ween, Melbourne Auditorium - Oct 31st Drive thru Trunk or Treat 10am till 12pm

Drive- Thru Trunk or Treat Saturday, October 31st from 10 am to Noon. At the Melbourne Auditorium (Entrance on Lake Street) Please join the: Melbourne Police Department, Melbourne Fire Department, Play Melbourne Parks & Rec, and City of Melbourne Streets & Storm water for a spooktacular event. Trunk or Treat will be strictly Drive-Thru ONLY keeping within the CDC guidelines for social distancing. Come see Fire Trucks, Police Vehicles, & Heavy Equipment! And, of course get lots of goodies!

 

Trick or Treat Market - Riverview Park - Melbourne, FL

Bring your family and shop the market and enjoy trick or treats from over 50 + vendors. Use our spacious walking path to cruise by and show off your costumes. We also have a huge green space, covered picnic areas, enormous playground and food trucks if you get hungry. Hand wash stations and sanitizer will be available. Hayes Express Train will be with us to give the kiddos train rides too!

 

Spooky Halloween Paddles - Turkey Creek Sanctuary, Paddling Paradise

We're going to paddle the Turkey Creek Sanctuary for Halloween and see what ghosts and goblins we can roust from the shoreline. Overhead will be a full moon so we'll have to watch for flights of witches overhead too! This will be a fun paddle, and no you don't have to dress up, but can if you want.

 

Whatever you decide to do, we hope you have a safe & spooktacular Halloween!

 

Oct. 8, 2020

Brevard Buyers Are Finding More Space in the Luxury Home Market

A year ago, additional space and extra amenities had a very different feel for homebuyers. Today, the health crisis has brought to light how valuable more square footage and carefully designed floorplans can be. Home offices, multi-purpose rooms, gyms, and theaters are becoming more popular, and some families are finding the space they need for these upgrades in the luxury market.

The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing (ILHM) explains:

“With quarantine concerns still top of mind for many luxury buyers, we see large, sprawling estates making their comeback.

For instance, the last six months have seen a resurgence in the buying of mega mansions and estate-size homes – specifically properties that offer space (both inside and outside), separate home offices, gyms, and private amenities such as swimming pools, yoga studios, and recreation rooms.”

This was not the case at this time last year, as the most recent Luxury Market Report from ILHM emphasizes:

“Exactly one year ago, we reported that demand for large properties, mega mansions, private estates, and luxury ranches had reduced significantly over the previous few years; especially from the younger generation of luxury property buyers.”

For today’s buyers looking for larger homes, steady increases in equity might be what makes a move possible. Leveraging home equity makes it easier to afford the down payment on a luxury home, and current low interest rates are making mortgage payments more affordable than they have been in years. The report from ILHM also notes:

“Luxury real estate prices may continue to strengthen further into the third quarter, as the affluent continue to see large investment returns from the currently strong stock market.

Coupled with the low interest rates, the policies granting (and insisting) on working from home implemented by many employers, and the concerns of the pandemic, all translate to the affluent increasingly trading in their city lifestyle for a home that has it all.”

Clearly, today’s strong gains in home equity paired with record-low interest rates make fall a great time to move up into the luxury market to meet those changing needs.

Bottom Line

If you’re ready to gain some breathing room in a larger home, let’s connect so you have the guidance you need to find more space in the luxury home market.

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
Oct. 1, 2020

Why Selling this Fall in Brevard May Be Your Best Move

If you’re thinking about moving, selling your house this fall might be the way to go. Here are four highlights in the housing market that may make your decision to sell this fall an easy one.

1. Buyers Are Actively in the Market

ShowingTime, a leading real estate showing software and market stat service provider, just reported that buyer traffic jumped 60.7% compared to this time last year. That’s a huge increase.

It’s clear that buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase – and they’re in the market right now. In many regions of the country, multiple buyers are entering bidding wars to compete for the home they want. Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market so you can sell your house in the most favorable terms.

2. There Are Not Enough Homes for Sale

In the latest Existing Home Sales Report, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) announced that there were only 1.49 million units available for sale. That number was down 18.6% from one year ago. This means in the majority of the country, there aren’t enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers.

Due to the health crisis, many homeowners were reluctant to list their homes earlier this year. That will change as the economy continues to recover. The choices buyers have will increase going into the new year. Don’t wait until additional sellers come to market before you decide to make a move.

3. The Process Is Going Quickly

Today’s ultra-competitive environment has forced buyers to do all they can to stand out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing. This makes the entire selling process much faster and simpler, as buyers know exactly what they can afford before shopping for a home. According to the latest Origination Insights Report from Ellie Mae, the time needed to close a loan is just 49 days.

4. There May Never Be a More Important Time to Move

You’ve likely spent much of the last six months in your current home. Perhaps you now realize how small it is, and you need more space. If you’re working from home, your children are doing virtual school, or you just need more space, your current floor plan may not work for your family’s changing needs.

Homebuilders are beginning to build houses again, so you can choose the exact floor plan to match what your family needs, and you can make sure the outdoor space is what you want too.

Bottom Line

The housing market is prime for sellers right now, so let’s connect to get the process started this fall. If the timing is right for you and your family, the market is calling your name.

Posted in Sellers
Sept. 24, 2020

Brevard County Housing Market Report for August 2020

A quick recap of the Brevard County Residential Report for August 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +5.1% for August 2020 in which the number of units closed was 991 compared to 943 in August 2019, with a decrease in cash sales of -8.1% compared to August 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +22.1% and New Listings are down -3.5%.
  • The Median Sales Price for Brevard Single Family homes is up +14.7% to $268,500 compared to a year ago, which was $234,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -35.7% to 1.8 months, a decrease from 2.8 months in August 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +6.0%, with a median sales price of $269,900.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -29.4%, with 12 sales and a median sales price of $166,500.
  • Short Sale Closings are down -50.0% with 2 closed sales, and a median sales price of $400,000.
A quick recap of the Brevard County Townhouses/Condos for August 2020:
  • Closed Sales are up +2.7% for August 2020 in which the number of units closed was 270 compared to 263 in August 2019, with a decrease in cash sales of -8.2% compared to August 2019.
  • New Pending Sales are up +24.5% and New Listings are up +14.8%.
  • Median Sales Price for Townhomes/Condos is up +20.4% to $222,750 compared to a year ago, which was $185,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is down -22.9% to 2.7 months in August 2020 from 3.5 months in August 2019.
  • Traditional Sales are up +3.5%, with a median sales price of $223,000.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -100.0%, with 0 closed sales compared to 2 closed sale in August 2019.
  • Short Sale Closings are unchanged with 1 closed sales in August 2020 compared to 1 closed sale in August 2019, and a median sales price of $92,000.

Posted in Market Updates
Sept. 12, 2020

Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

 

Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

The year 2020 will certainly be one to remember, with new realities and norms that changed the way we live. This year’s real estate market is certainly no exception to that shift, with historic highlights continuing to break records and challenge what many thought possible in the housing market. Here’s a look at four key areas that are fundamentally defining the market this year.

Housing Market Recovery

The economy was intentionally put on pause this spring in response to the COVID-19 health crisis. Many aspects of the common real estate transaction were placed on hold at the same time. Thankfully, technology and innovation helped the industry power forward, and business gradually ramped back up as shelter-in-place orders were lifted.

The result? Total transformation of the market from rock-bottom lows to exceptional highs. Today, the housing recovery is being called truly remarkable by many experts and is far exceeding expectations. From pending home sales to purchase applications, buyers are back in business and homes are selling – fast.

According to the Housing Market Recovery Index by realtor.com, the market has surpassed pre-pandemic levels, and has regained the strength we remember from February of this year (See graph below):Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This? | MyKCM

Record-Breaking Mortgage Rates

Historically low mortgage rates are another 2020 game-changer. Today’s low rate is one of the big motivating factors bringing buyers back into the market. The average rate reached an all-time low on multiple occasions this year, and it continues to hover in record-low territory.

When rates are this low, buyers have a huge opportunity to get more for their money when purchasing a home, something many are eager to find while continuing to spend more time than expected at home this year, and likely beyond.

Continued Home Price Appreciation

One of the key drivers of home price appreciation this year is historically low inventory. Inventory was low going into the pandemic, and it is still sitting well below the level needed for a normal market. Although sellers are slowly making their way back into the game, buyers are scooping up homes faster than they’re coming up for sale.

This is a classic supply and demand scenario, forcing home prices to rise. Selling something when there is a higher demand for what is available naturally bumps up the price. If you’re ready to sell your house today, this may be the optimal time to make your move. As Bill Banfield, EVP of Capital Markets at Quicken Loansnotes:

“The pandemic has not stopped the consistent home price growth we have witnessed in recent years.” 

Increasing Affordability

Even as home prices continue to rise, affordability is working in favor of today’s homebuyers. According to many experts, rates this low are off-setting rising home prices, which increases buyer purchasing power – an opportunity not to be missed, especially if your family’s needs have changed. If you now need space for a home office, gym, virtual classroom, and more, it may be time to reconsider your current house.

According to Mortgage News Daily:

“Those shopping for a home can afford 10 percent more home than they could have one year ago while keeping their monthly payment unchanged. This translates into nearly $32,000 more buying power.

Bottom Line

With mortgage rates hitting historic lows, home prices appreciating, affordability rising, and the market recovering like no other, 2020 has been quite a year for real estate – perhaps one we’ve never seen before and may never see again. Let’s connect today if you’re ready to take advantage of this year’s record-breaking opportunities.

 

Posted in Buyers, Sellers