Wed (3/25) top story was “New Home Sales” fell to record low in February as glut of foreclosed homes and a weak economy dampened the housing market. New-home sales fell 2.2% to seasonally adjusted rate of 308,000 last month, compared to upwardly revised annual rate of 315,000 in Jan. per Census Bureau said.
The lowest rate since government began keeping records in 1963 and the fourth straight month of declines!
What about the RESALE side of Residential real estate?
The resale market has cooled a bit in March in terms of buying activity, but demand continues and we expect this to build as we enter Spring/Summer period where buying/selling activity traditionally increases. Below are some excerpts from CNN-FN article (3/25) and I’ve attached link at bottom for those who would like to read the entire text:
6 housing trends in a still-shaky market
By Amanda Gengler, writerMarch 24, 2010: 4:48 AM ET
(Money Magazine) — The drama is nearly over. After a decade of extremes — the ebullient highs of the real estate boom, then the devastating lows of the bust — calmer forces are beginning to prevail in the housing market.
The big fall-off in home values, which has taken median price of a house down almost 30% since 2006, looks to be in its final stages in most places: Three-quarters of nation’s 384 metropolitan areas will see prices down less than 5% a year from now, according to projections from Fiserv and Moody’s Economy.com; 10% seem poised for modest increases. Meanwhile, Uncle Sam is lending a steadying hand with programs designed to prop up the market — at least for a while yet.
Add to this the fact that while Federal Tax Credit for residential Buyers expires April 30 the State of CA just Monday passed it’s own new tax credit to incentivize Buyers as follows:
Tax credit proposal will have following highlights:
The Governor plans to set aside $200 million, twice the amount set aside last year. The credit will be offered on a first come first served basis till the fund is exhausted. Last year the fund ran out in 8 months. The legislature approved the extension Monday, which will provide an extra $200 million for income tax credits to Californian’s who buy a home between May 1st 2010 and Dec. 32, 2010 and closes escrow by August 1, 2011. $100 million for first time homebuyers purchasing existing homes and $100 million for anyone who buys a new, unoccupied home.
Ø The tax credit will apply to buyers of new & existing homes. The last credit was only applicable to new homes.
Ø The tax credit will be available only to first time home buyers.
Ø The current proposal is for the purchase of an existing home, as well as a newly built residence.
Ø The tax credit will be $10,000 or 5% of the purchase price whichever is lower.
Ø The tax credit would begin May 1st, 1 day after the Federal Tax Credit ends April 30th.
Ø The credit should last between May 1, 2010 and December, 31, 2010.
Ø The credit will be given in 3 payments to a taxpayer’s personal income tax returns over 3 year period; a credit of $3,333/year.