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Monthly Archives: February 2011

Austin Mortgage Market Update – For the week of February 28, 2011

hings do keep changing, but we all hope that by and large those changes mean progress. We certainly saw evidence of that in the housing market last week, as Existing Home Sales headed up in January for the third month in a row. They've now reached a 5.36 million annual rate, close to the long-term trend of 5.5 million and up over 5% from a year ago. This, as Martha Stewart says, is "a good thing," since the supply of existing homes has now dropped to 7.6 months, close to the 6-month ideal, which favors neither buyers nor sellers.

Austin Mortgage Market Update – For the week of February 21, 2011

We who work in the real estate and mortgage industries know exactly how Elvis felt. The same people who unfairly blamed us totally for the recession now look to us alone for signs the economic recovery has taken hold. They might want to remember the health of the housing market is directly dependent on the health of the jobs market, which is not under our control. In any case, everyone felt better last week when January Housing Starts were UP a surprising 14.6%. Even though starts are down 2.6% from a year ago, this still shows builders are more hopeful going forward. The boost came from multi-family units, though single-family starts were off a mere 1% for the month.

Austin Mortgage Market Update – For the week of February 14, 2011

Last Thursday the National Association of Realtors (NAR) came through with the encouraging report that sales of existing single-family homes and condominiums in Q4 of 2010 increased over Q3 in 49 out of 50 states -- a 15.4% rise for the three-month period. However, sales were down 4.78% for the year, to an estimated 4.91 million, from their 5.16 million level the year before. Fueled by the homebuyer tax credit, that higher 2009 sales rate was deemed "unsustainable" in 2010 by the NAR.

Texas Mortgage Rates Increase Week of Feb. 11

Inflation concerns and a higher than expected January budget deficit caused Texas mortgage rates to move a little higher during the week. Solid demand for this week's longer-term Treasury auctions helped prevent a larger increase in Texas mortgage rates. Investors hoping for inflation relief from the Fed were disappointed. In testimony on Wednesday, Fed Chief Ben Bernanke suggested that Fed officials view overall inflation levels as low and have no near-term plans to tighten monetary policy to fight rising inflation.

Austin Mortgage Market Update – For the week of February 7, 2011

There's good news in the latest housing market forecast for 2011 from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). After dipping 4.8% last year, sales of existing homes are predicted to grow 7.9% this year, to 5.3 million. The gain for 2012 is forecast to be a little less, up 4.5%, to 5.53 million. The existing home median price went up 0.3% in 2010, a nice recovery from the 12.9% price drop of 2009. For 2011, the NAR sees it rising 0.5%, to $173,000, then another 2.4%, to $177,900, in 2012.

Texas Mortgage Rates Moved Higher This Week

US Inflation concerns hit bond markets this week. Despite soothing comments from Fed Reserve Chief Bernanke, stronger than expected economic growth and higher commodity prices raised investor fears that future inflation may increase. As a result, Texas mortgage rates moved higher during the week.

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