What’s to Come in 2013 for Real Estate

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February 8, 2013

What’s to Come in 2013 for Real Estate

2013 is shaping up to be an amazing year for real estate. Spend the next few weeks getting your buyer and seller packages ready, your pending to close checklists prepared concentrate a few hours on tweaking your 2013 plan. We are very excited for what 2013 will bring!

We are just 1 month into 2013 but already things are changing that will impact your business. This year has brought in a huge economic indication with the bill to circumvent the fiscal cliff, signed by the President weeks ago. While approval of these tax cuts for 98% of Americans coupled with curtailing automatic deep spending cuts (including cuts to unemployment) should avert another recession, this deal is not done. According to CNN, had this bill not passed and we indeed went over the fiscal cliff, our country would have slipped back into a recession with unemployment teetering around 9%. its no coincidence that the recovery of the real estate market has closely followed the recovery of unemployment rates.

Some important things to keep in mind:

  • Home ownership remains important to 96% of Americans with 77% of respondents ages 25-34 and 78% ages 35-44 indicating home ownership is “very important.” More so, 74% of respondents agree that with interest rates at historically low levels now is a great time to buy a home.
  • Space, safety and investment drive the reasons to own a home, with 97% respondents stating that home ownership allows for more control over living space. Tax benefits finished a distant sixth on the survey’s reasons for buying a home.
  • 63% of Americans have a favorable or somewhat favorable perception of the U.S. residential real estate market and, again, younger generations are more likely to possess a favorable opinion when compared to their older counterparts.

Here’s a few predictions that have been made for the real estate industry in 2013 

  • Housing Inventory: Inventory levels will continue to decline in 2013. As the economy improves and interest rates hold at record low levels, buyer demand increases.  The surge in buyer activity and investor demand is forcing inventory numbers down to record low levels. This demand will force construction to increase in 2013 due to this strong demand.
  • House prices: House prices will increase dramatically in 2013 in part due to shortages in inventory. Other factors that will add to the increase in house prices include high demand from investors buying single family homes to hold as long term rentals, a decline in foreclosures and short sales and an increase in buyer demand. The median expected house prices should rise 4% nationally while the State of Washington should rise 5% to 8%. Some high-demand markets and high-demand home styles could increase as high as 15% to 20% (this increase is largely due to inventory issues).
  • New Home Sales: New home sales continue to trend higher as demand increases. The lack of new home inventory over the past 6 years has created a new interest in new homes. New home sales were up 27% from the fall of 2011 to the fall of 2012 while inventory is almost at a 50 year low. I anticipate that in 2013 we will see our highest sales rate of new homes in history. This means that new home inventory will be absorbed by the market quicker than any other time on record.
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