April 1, 2016
Cuba welcomes American home buyers
The Cuban Association of REALTORS stated in a news release that they would welcome Americans of either the Republican or Democratic political parties who want to flee the United States if the other party’s candidate wins the presidential election in November of this year. “Why go to Canada?” they ask. “It’s so cold there.”
This is an interesting development as the Cuban Association of REALTORS is not an officially recognized body in that country as it is not possible for anyone but the government to own property there.
In their press release, found in a bottle on a Miami area beach, the
Cubans warned that if certain of the current candidates running for
president in the United States were elected it might be possible that one day, in the not too distant future, only the government would own property in this country as well. They suggest in their release that all Americans should read Michael Lewis’ book The Big Short or at least see the movie with the same title. “You Americans don’t seem to realize that the vast majority of home loans are ultimately owned by your government,” explained the news release. “You can visit your own government’s U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s website where it’s explained how it works. Nothing much has changed since your Great Recession of 2008.”
Even more interestingly, the Cubans went on to warn that since the U.S. is borrowing so much money by selling Treasury Bonds to foreign governments that it could ultimately be possible for a foreign government (China?) to own American real estate secured by home loans if the U.S. Treasury ever went into default.
They concluded their news release by stating, “Stranger things have happened. We know, The Rolling Stones just put on a concert here.”
March 29, 2016
S&P/Case-Shiller Index up 5.7%
“Home values in 20 U.S. cities kept climbing in January, a sign the limited supply of available properties may push prices out of reach for some buyers,” reports BloombergBusiness. The same report indicated that San Diego County prices increased 6.9% over the same period according to the San Diego-Union Tribune. Lack of inventory both locally and nationally is a major factor in increasing sales prices as potential home buyers compete and bid up prices.
March 28, 2016
U.S. Pending home sales up 3.5%
Pending home sales, a barometer of future purchases, hit it’s highest level in seven months if February according the the National Association of REALTORS as reported by CNBC. Pending sales were also up 0.7 over February of last year.
March 24, 2016
County has negative population growth
Back in the 1980’s I attended a real estate seminar where one of the speakers predicted that San Diego County would become a “service economy” where only a percentage of highly trained professionals and business owners would be able to afford housing in San Diego County while everyone else would work in businesses that served these people. That seems to be exactly what is happening today according to an article in the San Diego Union-Tribune citing U.S. Census Bureau statistics.
March 22, 2016
San Diego median price $455,000
The San Diego Union-Tribune headline for this story “Median home prices drop slightly to $455,000” but the article goes on to say that prices are still 3.5% higher than last year according to CoreLogic data.
March 21, 2016
U.S. existing home sales slip in February
The National Association of REALTORS reports that existing home sales dropped by 7.1% in February across the country but sales are still by 2.1% from last year. These are national statistics and, like politics, all real estate valuation is local so the value of any property is what is going in the neighborhood.
March 17, 2016
County median prices down slightly
CoreLogic statistics reported by the San Diego Union-Tribune show that the median sales price for San Diego County homes was down 1.7% from January to February but still 3.5% higher than February 2015. Encouragingly, “The number of sales was up significantly from the typically sluggish January. CoreLogic recorded 2,648 home sales last month, up 11.7 percent from the month before and 2 percent from February 2015.”
March 11, 2016
San Diego County new home projects
The San Diego Union-Tribune slide show of the fifteen new home projects scheduled to open in 2016. It’s interesting to see the pricing of these new developments based on their location. It’s really true, the value of real estate is based on “location, location, location.”
March 10, 2016
Mortgage rates move higher
The Washington Post reports that Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp data shows mortgage interest rates edged up to 3.68% after falling for eight straight weeks.
March 6, 2016
Sold in one day
Villa Martinique loft style one bedroom, one and one-half bath. Great location, walk to lake and shopping. Offered by Pete Saxon Realty for $199,900.
March 3, 2016
“Home Improvement” habits to break
The National Association of REALTORS magazine lists 8 home maintenance habits you should reconsider before completing according to This Old House.
Mortgage interest rates edge higher
The Washington Post article reports that mortgage rates moved higher as yields on 10-year Treasury notes rose according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.