Category Archives: Minneapolis, MN

How the 2014 Housing Market Will Shape 2015:

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/456/64414374/files/2015/01/img_2830.jpg
How the 2014 Housing Market Will Shape 2015.
Here are some of the trends realtor.com® notes from 2014 that will help drive a stronger 2015:

An improving economy: “After an especially harsh winter earlier in the year, the economy picked up steam and produced a banner year for new jobs,” realtor.com® notes in its report. “The GDP this year was higher, and is still trending higher, resulting in stronger consumer confidence.”

Low mortgage rates: Despite the end of the Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing this year, mortgage rates continued to decline and helped to lower borrowing costs of home buyers. In recent weeks, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has been below 4 percent.

Returns to normal price appreciation: “After two years of abnormally high levels of home price appreciation in 2012 and 2013, price increases moderated throughout 2014,” realtor.com® notes. “We are now experiencing increases in home prices consistent with long-term historical performance.”

Distressed sales decline: Foreclosures and short sales fell throughout the year. Foreclosures are projected to be down 30 percent year-over-year at the close of 2014.

Investor activity lessens: Coinciding with the drop in distressed sales and higher home prices, large-scale investor purchase activity in the single-family market decreased. Less competition from investors may offer more room for traditional first-time buyers to squeeze into the market.

However, the realtor.com® report notes several factors that continue to plague the housing recovery and prevent it from being stronger, including:

Tight credit standards: “Despite historically low rates, many households were prevented from capitalizing on mortgage access because of overlays lenders added to qualification standards in order to limit put-back risk,” realtor.com® notes. “A tight spread between approved and declined FICO scores shut out nearly half of the potential population this year. As a result, mortgage credit availability did not improve in 2014.”

Tight inventories of for-sale homes: Inventories did rise this year, but supply failed to outpace demand. The monthly supply of new homes and existing homes continued to fall beneath normal levels, and the age of inventory was down year- over-year.

Fewer first-time buyers: The share of first-time buyers dropped to the lowest level in nearly 30 years, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. “But the first-time buyer share is showing signs of modest improvement by the year-end,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. Federal policy actions, such as revised regulations for lenders and new low down-payment programs introduced in December, are believed to have a positive impact in increasing first-time home buyer share in 2015.

Record levels of renters: The home ownership rate continued to fall this year as the number of renters increased. Rent increases have become an inflationary concern this year, and the pace of rental increases does not appear to be slowing down.

Sluggish new-home building: Single-family new-home starts barely budged in 2014 compared to 2013. New home sales remain far from normal levels. They are typically near 16 percent and instead remain around 9 percent. Still, new home prices rose substantially again this year, revealing that higher priced product is limiting the demand.
_______________________________
(Source: REALTOR MAGAZINE)

TOP 10 HOT HOUSING MARKETS TO WATCH IN 2015 • {Minneapolis, MN}

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/456/64414374/files/2015/01/img_5948-3.jpg

Minneapolis: Favorite for Millennial Home Owner Growth and Growth in New Construction

A diverse economy and strong housing affordability lands Minneapolis on our list. The Twin Cities area continues to show low unemployment and is setting new records for jobs in 2014.

The combination of the booming job market and affordable housing makes the city of lakes a hot spot for millennials.

In fact, it’s the second-largest market in the nation among home-owning millennials. The Minneapolis area is also seeing strong growth in new construction, which helps provide supply to meet the increased demand.

CLICK HERE TO READ FULL ARTICLE: Top 10 Hot Housing Markets to Watch in 2015

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/456/64414374/files/2015/01/img_5950-2.jpg

More Home Owners Carve Out Outdoor Entertainment Spaces

More Home Owners Carve Out Outdoor Entertainment Spaces.

Source: HouseLogic & Houzz

CenterPoint Energy Rate Increase Approval

“Minnesota utility regulators, on last Thursday, approved a rate increase for the state’s largest natural gas supplier, CenterPoint Energy, & ordered a change in how its customers are billed.  The permanent rate increase for the company’s 823,000 Minnesota customers is less than the 4.9% interim increase authorized last October.   As a result, most customers will see a small refund on bills later this year.”    http://m.startribune.com/business/?id=258523701&c=y 

Road Rage Survey: Minneapolis No. 6 ‘Most Courteous’ US City

WCCO | CBS Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Believe it or not, Minneapolis has come a long way in the last 5 years when it comes to being courteous on the roads, according to a recent road rage survey.

According to AutoVantage’s 2014 “In the Driver’s Seat Road Rage Survey,” Minneapolis now has the sixth most courteous drivers compared to the largest U.S. cities. In 2009, Minneapolis ranked fifth least courteous.

Ranking are based on measuring driving actions that Minneapolis drivers admit to performing and acknowledge seeing – along with observations of their reactions to other drivers.

According to the report, compared to other large cities, Minneapolis drivers are second least likely to have reported seeing other drivers speeding, third least likely to have observed other drivers tailgating and second least likely to acknowledge eating and/or drinking while driving.

Portland, Ore. was identified as the most courteous city, while Houston, TX was identified as the…

View original post 2 more words