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Weekly Mortgage Update: (06/19/2017)

June 19, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – JUNE 18, 2017

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (JUNE 18TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Even with a Fed rate hike last week, mortgage rates barely budged.
  • The Fed did announce plans to begin reducing its massive balance sheet, at some point later in the year. The plan is very gradual and should help the market slowly adjust to a less accommodative policy.
  • Overall, the economy seems to continue to remain in the same slow recovery mode that we’ve all grown accustomed too. As the 2nd quarter’s data trickles in, it appears we won’t have any large increase in overall economic activity.
  • Industrial Production flat-lined, with manufacturing pulling back. 
  • Once again, inflationary pressures cooled while consumer moods are becoming less enthusiastic. 
  • Retail Sales retreated 0.3%. This week is relatively light for economic data, but we will get more insight into the housing market. We are expecting new and existing sales to head in opposite directions. If both can move upward, then we might see a little upward movement in rates.
  • However, given last week’s somewhat weaker-than-expected data, mortgage rates may have a stronger tendency to slip downward.

DON’T FLIP OUT. IT JUST MIGHT BE YOUR TURN

Many of us watch the television shows on flipping homes, and dream of breathing new life into that rundown gem of a home. Of course, flipping really is only for those can flip dozens of homes, right? Wrong! According to research from ATTOM data solutions, a whopping 69% of flippers in the first quarter of this year were mom and pop operations that only flipped one home.

Weekly Mortgage Update: (06/12/2017)

June 12, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – JUNE 11, 2017

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (JUNE 11TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Mortgage rates found room to trend downward last week, as politics weighed heavily on financial markets.
  • Domestically, the drama surrounding all things Russia continued to decrease the odds of the new administration completing any real regulatory or tax reform program.
  • “Across the pond,” the UK’s snap election resulted in a hung parliament, which translates into more uncertainty for the start of the BREXIT negotiations.
  • All of this pushed even more money into US Treasuries and bonds.
  • This week is heavy with economic data and a Fed meeting. Markets have already “baked in” another rate increase, but analysts will be scouring everything released from the Fed.
  • The big question will be how likely the Fed is to raise rates again.
  • A more dovish outlook from the Fed could actually help pull rates downward, slightly. This could easily be reinforced if any of the big economic reports, including Retail Sales or Industrial Production, come at, or under, expectations.
  • If the Fed surprises the market with no change to its rates, then we could see rates falling even further.

SURVEY SAYS: NOW IS THE TIME TO SELL

According to the latest Home Purchase Sentiment Index from Fannie Mae, 32% of Americans believe that now is a good time to sell their home. This represents the highest level in the seven-year history of this index, and a jump of 6 points over last month. Conversely, and unsurprisingly, the survey saw an 8 point drop to 27% of Americans who believe that now is a good time to buy a home. Interesting, only 40% of respondents believe that home prices will go up.

Weekly Mortgage Update: (06/05/2017)

June 6, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – JUNE 4, 2017

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (JUNE 4TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Mortgage rates slipped slightly as last week ended. 
  • While the ISM Manufacturing Index managed to squeeze out a slight increase, the rest of the week’s economic data told a tale that we’ve been hearing for some time – slow growth.
  • Friday’s employment report sported another drop in the unemployment rate, but it was due to folks leaving the workforce. Only 138,000 new jobs were created last month, and both April and March’s numbers were revised downward by a total of 66,000.
  • Consumer Confidence remains elevated, but slid a bit more, as consumers notched down future expectations.
  • This week is slim in terms of economic data points, but other factors could play heavily into financial markets’ volatility.
  • If the ISM Services Index remains mostly flat, it may help to anchor rates a bit. However, the political drama playing out in Washington and Europe could sway rates.
  • Former FBI Director Comey’s testimony, a snap election in the UK, and a meeting of the European Central Bank could make traders jittery, and the more uncertainty created, the more likely rates are to retreat.

THE BEST PLACES TO LIVE AS YOU GET OLDER

SeniorAdvice.com has developed a comprehensive data-driven scoring model to identify locations that are best and worst for seniors. The model takes into account more than 100 factors in four different categories: health and safety, recreation and leisure, finance, and general quality of life.  Virginia takes the top spot for seniors. Rounding out the top ten, in order, are Hawaii, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Kansas, Maryland, Florida, Texas, Arizona, and West Virginia.

Weekly Mortgage Update (05/28/2017)

May 30, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – MAY 28, 2017

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (MAY 28TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Housing came into focus last week, revealing that inventory levels helped pullback Existing Home Sales by 2.3%. 
  • At the current rate of sales, there are only 4.2 months of supply, which is considered below the optimal level of about 6 months of inventory. 
  • GDP numbers were adjusted upward more than expected, with 1st quarter GDP now sitting at 1.2%, a fair increase from the initial 0.7%.
  • The minutes from the Fed’s last meeting also revealed more optimism for the economy. However, even with all the upward pressure that rates should be experiencing, they managed to decrease slightly.
  • This holiday-shortened week comes with a barrage of important economic data. Both the ISM Manufacturing Index and the Employment report could easily pressure rates back upward.
  • If the ISM reading comes in with another better-than-expected reading, rates will likely be trending upward.
  • However, Friday will set the tone for the month. If we see another month of reasonable-to-strong job growth, rates should trend upward. However, news and political drama could keep rates contained.

COUPLES QUARREL IN THE HOME BUYING PROCESS

Recent research from LendingHome provides some insight into the common disagreements between couples who are hunting for a home. While longer-term relationships were correlated with a more harmonious process, about 15% still quarreled over details. The top contentious issues across all relationships were the amount of debt to take on, followed by the style of home to purchase, size of house, and whether or not to buy a house in need of renovation.

Weekly Mortgage Update (05/01/2017)

May 1, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – APRIL 30, 2017

Posted by First Team Real Estate on Monday, May 1st, 2017 at 11:00am.

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (APRIL 30TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Mortgage rates experienced a bit of upward pressure as last week began, but settled down as the week ended. 
  • Consumer Confidence slid back another 4.6 points and the first estimate of Q1’s GDP fell slightly short of consensus, coming in at 0.7%.
  • However, traders weren’t too concerned with the shortfall in GDP, as we’ve experienced a number of years of Q1 weakness, followed by significantly better GDP numbers for the rest of the year.
  • New home sales did take another step upward as builders continue to ramp up their production capabilities to meet the growing demand for housing.
  • This week is jam-packed with significant economic data and a Federal Reserve meeting. The Fed is expected to stand pat on rates while letting the market know that two more rate increases are likely.
  • If the policy announcement and after-meeting statements reveal any dovish tendencies, then we could see rates slipping downward.
  • The week ends with employment data and expectations of 180K new jobs for last month. If we get a major shortfall again, then rates will likely begin trending downward.

BELIEVE IT OR NOT, MONEY DOES GROW ON TREES!

According to a study by the US Forest Service, a tree planted in front of a home increases the sales value of the home by $7,130. If boosting the resale value isn’t incentive enough to dig that hole, planting a tree on the west side of a home shaves $25 off the average summertime electric bill and reduces AC usage by 30%. These homeowner savings are in addition to the other benefits of trees, including cleaner air, moderated storm runoff, and reduced of atmospheric CO2.

Weekly Mortgage Update: Week 04/23/17 – 04/29/17

April 24, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – APRIL 23, 2017

Posted by First Team Real Estate on Monday, April 24th, 2017 at 9:17am.

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (APRIL 23RD, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Global news helped drag mortgage rates slightly lower last week. While no one specific event caused the downdraft, the never-ending mess in Syria, the growing focus on North Korea, the return of Brexit into the news, and the drama around the French election, all seemed to dominate the news cycles.
  • The falling rates, however, are not indicative of any unusual slowing of the US economy. Rather, we continue on the same course as we have been on for many years.
  • Rates have drifted down to where they were after the election. Perhaps, the hopes that we would see a quick, radical change in Washington are fading.
  • Tax reform appears to be in the sights of the administration, but if the fate of any tax changes falls to the same infighting that hit healthcare, rates will likely remain steady.
  • This week, rates will once again be contending with some international concerns, along with the first estimate of the first quarter’s GDP.
  • With another first-of-the-year slowdown expected, a reading over 1.5% could reverse the recent downward trend for mortgage rates and send them back upward. 

YES, GREEN DOES MATTER IN HOME SALES

The recently released Bank of America Homebuyer Insights Report reveals that 61% of homeowners have personally researched energy-efficient improvements. One might be tempted to think “green” was more interesting to those of the younger generation, but the survey showed that only 78% of millennials have energy-efficient products in their home, while 93% of seniors do, with a full 83% of respondents claiming to have some energy-efficient products.

Weekly Mortgage Watch for 4/16-4/23

April 17, 2017dillonBlog0

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (APRIL 16TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Average mortgage rates wobbled downward last week, touching their lowest point of 2017. Both economic data and international drama contributed to the slide.
  • Retail Sales slipped a bit more than expected, dropping 0.3%.
  • Inflationary pressure reined back for the most part, with the core CPI decreasing for the first time in seven years.
  • Internationally, the drama playing out in the Middle East, along with Iran and Russia’s involvement, coupled with the heightened tensions in North Korea, seems to have made markets a bit more uncertain than they were just a few weeks ago.
  • This week could see rates continuing to trend slowly downward again. Any additional drama from outside the United States would put more downward pressure on interest rates across the board.
  • The biggest economic data point due this week is Industrial Production. If it comes in flat or declines, then rates will likely move downward.
  • We’ll also get more insight into the housing market with Starts and Existing Home Sales. Positive news in housing could help rates from falling very much. 

DEED OR SELL THE HOME TO YOUR KIDS?

As retirement approaches, many parents think about giving their home to their children as they move. However, that may not be a great idea, as one could end up facing a large tax bill. Additionally, the child may need to calculate any capital gains based on the original price that one paid for the home. Experts recommend that before deeding one’s home to a relative that one gets sound tax and financial advice to understand what may happen for everyone involved.

UPDATED MORTGAGE WATCH – APRIL 9th, 2017

April 10, 2017dillonBlog0

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (APRIL 9TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • Mortgage rates drifted slightly lower again last week, with mixed economic news.
  • While US military action can often impact markets, the airstrikes in Syria had a somewhat tempered impact.
  • The Fed’s meeting minutes did contain some important news. At some point later this year, the Fed will begin to wind down its massive holdings of Treasuries and Mortgage-Backed Securities. We’ll have to wait to see the exact impact, but if private markets don’t have much appetite for the securities, rates will tend to drift upward.
  • March’s employment report was very mixed, with unemployment falling to the lowest level of the recovery, but only 98,000 new jobs were created. 
  • Some analysts are beginning to worry about wage-driven inflation, but we really aren’t to a point to get too concerned, yet.
  • The first part of this week may see rates impacted more by politics and market sentiment than any solid economic data.
  • The most important data comes at the end of the week with the CPI and Retail Sales. If Sales falls further than expected and the CPI rises, then rates might begin trending upward.

MILLENNIALS MISINFORMED ON RATES. ARE YOU?

The headlines always seem to be dominated by actions of the Federal Reserve, especially when it comes to the Fed Funds Rate. However, that rate only influences mortgage rates. According to a recent study, 42% of millennials put off a home purchase because of the December rate hike. Since qualifying for a home loan is a multifaceted process, with rates only playing one factor, talking with your mortgage professional before making a decision is a very wise move.

Mortgage Watch: Monday 03/27/2017

March 27, 2017dillonBlog0

WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH – MARCH 26, 2017

Posted by First Team Real Estate on Monday, March 27th, 2017 at 10:15am.

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (MARCH 26TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • As expected, mortgage rates moved downward last week, after the Fed soothed markets by behaving as expected.
  • Housing news continues to show a strengthening market. While Existing Home Sales did contract, the lack of inventory remains the key constraint holding back sales.
  • Builders continue to ramp up production numbers, and New Home Sales reflected this optimism, climbing to almost 600K.
  • The drama surrounding the healthcare bill dominated markets for the last portion of the week. The bill’s postponement created some uncertainty about both the efficiency and speed at which the new administration’s more pro-business agenda can be executed, helping pull rates down a bit more.
  • This week will be dominated by end-of-the-month data including Consumer Confidence, GDP, and PCE numbers.
  • With some indicators pointing to a slowing of growth in March, any weaker-than expected readings from this week’s data may create an environment for rates to keep moving downward.
  • With home prices up and spring buying beginning, more rate relief may be welcome.

RENTERS NOW DOMINATING THE BIG METROS

Even though it is now cheaper to own a home in most of the US, renters now make up more than half of the population in 53 of the largest 100 US metro areas, according to Census Bureau data. With statistics pointing to a continuation of this trend through at least 2030, now may be a great time to invest in rental properties.

Weekly Mortgage Watch (03/20/2017)

March 20, 2017dillonBlog0

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FIRST TEAM’S WEEKLY MORTGAGE WATCH (MARCH 19TH, 2017) THIS WEEK HIGHLIGHTS THE FOLLOWING UPDATES:

  • With the market convinced that the Fed was going to raise rates last week, anxiety began to surface that perhaps the Fed would become even more aggressive and move toward four rate increases this year, rather than the anticipated three.
  • After meeting market expectations of bumping rates upward, the Fed stood pat, revealing a strong bias toward only two more rate increases this year.
  • The week ended with rates trending back downward. Economic news continued in the same vein that it has for years, good, but not great.
  • Retail Sales grew slightly, manufacturing and mining sub-indexes within Industrial Production rose, and inflationary pressures continue to slowly build.
  • Housing continues to be a bright spot with Housing Starts pegging in at 1.288 million, the highest level since 2005.
  • After markets let out a sigh of relief over the Fed remaining on its previously charted course, we’re likely to see rates slowly drifting downward over the next couple of weeks.
  • An occasionally upward bump will likely happen, but unless we see significant economic changes, rates should remain tame.

MILLIONS OF CREDIT SCORES MAY GET A LITTLE BOOST

An announcement from TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax may result in many consumers receiving a small bump upward in their credit scores. With many tax lien and civil judgments lacking critical details, on July 1st, the reporting agencies will remove records that do not contain the consumer’s name, address, and either a social security number or a date of birth. Future records will not be included if they lack these important data points.

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    Yorba Linda, CA 92886
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