Real estate property taxes are critical funding sources for local, state, and federal budgets. The pandemic continues to impact the country, but the average rate of property tax delinquency improved in 2021, falling to 5.9%, according to a new report from CoreLogic, which analyzes national and state real estate property tax delinquency levels spanning from 2011 to 2021.

Still, some areas of the country are seeing an increase in delinquency. “Increases and decreases in tax payment delinquency rates are often early indicators of further economic change,” researchers note.

The states with the highest average property tax delinquency rates in 2021 were:

  • Mississippi: 15.6%
  • Delaware: 14.5%
  • Virginia: 10.5%
  • New Jersey and Massachusetts (tied): 10.2%
  • Washington, D.C.: 10.1%

On the other hand, the states with the lowest average property tax delinquency rates in 2021 were:

  • North Dakota: 1.2%
  • Minnesota: 1.3%
  • Wisconsin: 1.5%
  • Illinois: 1.8%
  • Utah: 2.2%
Source Realtor Magazine 3/2022

In most U.S. housing markets, owning a home still costs less than renting, despite skyrocketing median home prices, according to a new study. In 58 percent of the 1,154 U.S. counties studied using data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, owning a median-priced home was more affordable than renting a three-bedroom property on average, according to an ATTOM Data Solutions report released on Thursday, the 6th of January!

Renting, on the other hand, was determined to be the most cost-effective option in the majority of large urban locations. “Home prices are rising faster than both rents and wages, while wages are rising faster than rents. Because of this, property values have reached new highs, as Attom’s Chief Product Officer Todd Teta said in a press release.

Because it still takes up less of their wages, home ownership is still the more affordable option for most employees in a large chunk of the country.” However, growing wages and low mortgage rates have offset the effect of rising property prices in nearly 90% of the country.

Home prices rose an average of 1% across the country last year, but income growth has averaged 8%, and mortgage rates have held steady at approximately 3%.

According to the survey, home prices are rising faster than salaries in much of the country. There are counties with over a million inhabitants that have discovered that renting is more cost-effective than buying in the nation’s most populated metropolis, whereas suburban and rural areas found that buying was their most cost-effective option.

In 35 of the 42 counties with a population of one million or more people or more studied in the survey, renting is more affordable than owning, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Phoenix, San Diego, and Orange County. Houston, San Antonio, Detroit, Philadelphia, and Tampa, according to Attom, are all less expensive for homeowners.

The rental and ownership markets in the South and Midwest are still the most cost-effective, while those in the West and the Northeast are among the most expensive in terms of both renting and owning a property.

TETA forecast that renting will become the most cost-effective alternative, but income growth and low mortgage rates will keep homebuying in favor for the time being. Renters could have a big role in slowing price increases in 2022, as the pattern is gradually shifting.” There’s only a certain amount of price inflation left until renting becomes more affordable,” he asserted.

However, rising incomes and interest rates of approximately 3% are enough to offset recent price increases and keep ownership on the more affordable side compared to renting at least for the time being,” says the report.

I have been asked almost every day for the past three weeks when the Federal Reserve raises interest rates how will it effect mortgage rates. I found that Holden Lewis describes these questions fairly clearly. I will be posting some more about Mortgage rates and some projections soon.

The Federal Reserve is one of many influences on mortgage rates, along with inflation, economic growth and other elements.

The Federal Reserve doesn’t set mortgage rates, but it does affect mortgage rates indirectly.

Mortgage rates are determined by many elements, including the inflation rate, the pace of job creation, and whether the economy is growing or shrinking. The Federal Reserve’s monetary policy is a factor, too, and is set by the Federal Open Market Committee. Click here to see current mortgage rates

What the Federal Reserve does

The Federal Reserve is the nation’s central bank. It guides the economy with the twin goals of encouraging job growth while keeping inflation under control.

The FOMC pursues those goals through monetary policy: managing the supply of money and the cost of credit. Its main monetary policy tool is the federal funds rate, which is the interest rate that banks charge one another for short-term loans. Although there’s no such thing as “federal mortgage rates,” the federal funds rate influences interest rates for longer-term loans, including mortgages.

The FOMC meets eight times a year, roughly every six weeks, to tweak monetary policy. Most meetings result in no change to the federal funds rate. At the conclusion of each meeting, the committee releases a statement explaining its reasoning. Three weeks later, the meeting’s minutes are released, serving Fed nerds even more details.

Do mortgage rates follow Fed rates?

The Fed and the mortgage market move like dance partners: Sometimes the Fed leads, sometimes the mortgage market leads, and sometimes they dance on their own.

The federal funds rate and mortgage rates usually move in the same direction. But it’s hard to say whether mortgage rates follow the Fed’s actions or the other way around

The FOMC prefers to give investors a heads-up whenever it plans to raise or cut short-term interest rates. Members of the committee advertise their intentions by sprinkling hints into their public speeches. By the time the committee meets, there’s usually a consensus among investors as to whether the Fed will cut rates, raise them or keep them unchanged. As that consensus solidifies before an FOMC meeting, mortgage rates usually drift in the direction that the Fed is expected to move. Often, by the time of the meeting, mortgage rates already reflect the expected rate change.

At the same time, mortgage rates move up and down daily in reaction to the ebb and flow of the U.S. and global economies, which are the same developments that the Fed responds to. Occasionally, the Fed and mortgage rates move in opposite directions.

What is the current federal funds rate?

The target federal funds rate has been a range of 0% to 0.25% since an emergency rate cut on March 15, 2020. The emergency was the COVID-19 pandemic and the disruption in economic activity that resulted.

“The effects of the coronavirus will weigh on economic activity in the near term and pose risks to the economic outlook,” the rate-setting committee explained.

The Fed began to buy hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities to keep cash in the financial system and to keep long-term interest rates down.

In its regular meeting ending Dec. 15, 2021, the FOMC said “indicators of economic activity and employment have continued to strengthen” due to progress on vaccinations and strong policy support. It added that a resurgence of COVID-19 cases has slowed the economic recovery.

The central bank reiterated that it aims to achieve an inflation rate of 2% over the long run. Because the inflation rate has exceeded 2% for a few months, the rate-setting committee said the Fed would curtail purchases of Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities. These bond purchases, designed to hold down interest rates, are likely to end in March 2022.

After ending the bond purchases, the Fed is expected to raise the federal funds rate for the first time since 2018. Three or four quarter-point increases are expected, according to the committee’s projections.

Federal funds rate and HELOCs

HELOCs Home Equity Line of Credit.

Although the Fed doesn’t determine mortgage rates, it does have a direct influence on the rates charged on home equity lines of credit, which typically have adjustable rates.

Interest rates on HELOCs are linked to the Wall Street Journal prime rate, which is the base rate on corporate loans by the largest banks. The prime rate, in turn, moves with the federal funds rate.

When the FOMC cuts the federal funds rate, interest rates on HELOCs go down, too. The March 15, 2020, reduction of one percentage point saved $100 a year — or $8.33 a month — on the interest-only payment of a HELOC with a $10,000 balance. It reduced the prime rate to 3.25% from 4.25%.

About the author:Holden Lewis is a mortgage reporter and spokesperson who joined NerdWallet in 2017. He previously wrote for Bankrate. He has written articles about mortgages since 2001. He has been president of the National Association of Real Estate Editors and has won writing awards from NAREE, the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, and the Society of Professional Journalists.

78% of community bank executives expect the housing market to crash by 2026.

Ben Winck and Andy Klersz Oct. 13, 2021 10:46 am

I’ve been continually asked, are we in a Housing Bubble? AND The Real Estate Market is going to crash! Let’s drill down on this topic, and I might add, this is not 2008! There are NO apples and oranges to compare from! I honestly believe we are on sound ground, no real worries! I listened to our experts and was preparing in 2007-8.

Let’s look at the convictions in my research, yes we certainty have speculation and the “Social Media Buzz!” A recent pod cast by Nick Baily CEO for RE/MAX International invites two key note speakers to weigh in on all the uncertainty, the panic driven market, and what’s the real story!

Chief economist Dr Lawrence Yun National Assoc. of Realtors

Dr. Lawrence Yun

                Indications from the Federal; reserve is tapering, means buying less mortgage loan securities This means the mortgage industries must find other buyers, is it Wall Street. Chinese Government, Teacher’s pension fund! They need to find buyers that the Federal reserve is not purchasing. This will require paying higher interest rates. This will trickle down to the consumer.

                If interest rates decline in two years or three years, That’s not necessarily good news. It means we have some economic damage.  “Recession, Job Losses!” 

Question is, “will we see homes that may experience loss in value?

Ward Morrison

Ward Morrison answers this by saying “we may see a decrease in appreciation but not decrease in value. Factors that weigh in on this are the 72 million in Millennials, Gen Z behind them is 68 million! Millennials are in their prime home buying cycle. Gen Z is going to enter it soon, so Supply and demand will be leaning towards demand.  Families are going to form, their going to want houses, and Ward doesn’t believe we’ll see a decrease in some markets.  Perhaps a decrease in appreciation will continue to be driven by these markets.

                The Gen Z will eventually be moving away from mom and dad and want their own housing, it may be different than what we may relate to, and the market will accommodate their demand. We are 6 million houses behind in construction. How is this going to impact us?

“Social media BUZZ!”

 From @SMHatLibs         April 22 2021 a Mortgage Banker and Realtor for 25 years, I’ve studied the financial markets closely. It is my prediction the housing bubble will pop again in September 2022. If you have property to sell in the next 10 years, do it before next summer and let someone else hold the bag. 

Lawrence’s reply to this is, “we do not have those risky, sublime mortgages, in this housing cycle as we did in this last cycle. In 2005, 2006 etc. we were lending to people that did NOT have sufficient income and we didn’t ask for supportive history for why they qualified to step into a mortgage!”

 In this cycle we have sound buyers, we are also in a job market with better positions, saving rates are increasing, equities been increasing in home ownership, there’s a lot of sound positives that are going to keep a bubble from happening.

Ivy Zelman

Ivy Zelman who spoke at Inman Connect in Las Vegas.     “It’s the incremental buyer that you need to worry about,” she said.  “Realtor’s need to convince the existing prospective seller that now is a good time to sell. If (clients) thought (they) could double what they paid, that opportunity is going to start to compress.  “Zelman does a great job on prediction of housing!”

Lawrence suggests In terms of expecting the huge price gain or doubling in home values in a short duration of three to five years, that’s not going to happen, we’ll see more of a 3 to 5% growth.  One interesting thing to watch when inflation begins to remain stubbornly high, some people say well that means higher interest rates. Certainly, higher interest rates will pop in home prices but what’s important to note, when inflation occurs rents rise. Because of rise in rents that provides a good buffer room for home prices to remain stable. We saw this in the early 1980’s when mortgage rates were rising very fast home sales did go down. Home values held on because the rents were rising. As an economist it’s not a good thing but if one wants to hedge against inflation, if one is worried about inflation best place to go is real estate.

Blessings are coming @Dxron2

                Housing bubble. The lower the interest rate goes the closer it gets to bursting….then there is the 2.5 million homes behind on their mortgage payments who will be foreclosed upon some time in 2022!

Lawrence reminds us that mortgage forbearance was near 5 million and is only around 2 million today. Mortgage delinquency rose similarly however this occurred when we lost 20 MILLION during the lockdown. People with no jobs, restaurants closed, a divergence people not paying mortgages but virtually no foreclosures. We had 5 million in mortgage forbearance. Today’s number is 2 million. It’s his opinion the forbearance rage will go down to 1 million in a few months.  Their mind set is, I want to keep my home, and I will get a job and the lenders are working with them. Lawrence notes, foreclosures will arise because we know the nature of the economy is always disruptive. Importantly note, there are ready buyers, whether it’s first-time buyers, the millennial generation looking for that starter home, to real estate investors who are just sniffing around for any foreclosure properties to come on to the market. So these properties will not linger on the market and will be snatched up quickly.

                Ward agrees that he does not believe that’s going to happen, the savings rate has been high during this period of time, and perhaps not making their payments out of choice not necessity and believes the forbearance gave them an opportunity to set aside some payments, and not like in the 3008 crisis, they have a lot of equity in their homes and haven’t been using their home as an ATM!  A harsh way to call it, however he believes they’re NOT going to walk away from equity. Last time we had a lot of short sales, and does not foresee that happening like Lawrence related to. Mortgage restrictions are tight to people really who really can’t afford to buy.

We do still have 33% believe we will have a crash eventually, 51% believe it will normalize, and 16% say we are not in a bubble.

Ward in conclusion, be educated by a professional, when rates start to pick up, understand rates are still at historic lows and it’s not necessary to panic buy, and to shop smart. Begin shopping for the best mortgage rates with the mortgage broker you feel comfortable with, so you can compete against the cash buyer out there. It’s important to work with an educated Realtor and Mortgage broker that meets your needs with all the new changes that are going to happen.

Keep in mind the multiple offer environment is subsiding and will eventually disappear. It’s also important to understand if your selling, that those 20 offers are going to become one or two offers and if priced right will be the one or two you should be looking at. 

Lawrence in conclusion.  We have a labor shortage across the country weather construction workers, warehouse workers, at the restaurants, hotels everywhere except Realtors, we continue to see the rise in the number of realtors enter the profession. Maybe some people have the wrong notion that it’s a glamorous profession. They put on nice clothes and sells a home maybe this is the perception, but the reality is it’s a very tough business and we know 20% do exceptionally well and 80 percent, well it’s a extreme challenge! So don’t be that 80 percent who believe they can do this. Educate yourselves, place your license with a reputable broker, and be that 20 percent that protects their client’s best interest.

According to Florida Atlantic and Florida International University research, properties in South Florida were valued over 80% more in 2007 than their long-term price trend. The overvaluation is now 18%. The experts say South Florida homes are overvalued, but not as much as other counties.

“We keep rising, yet we are still low. This is a far cry from 15 years ago, says Ken H Johnson, an economist at Florida Atlantic University. The moderate overvaluation implies that buyers and sellers learnt about the property collapse more than a decade ago. The market does not appear to be headed for a severe recession, as in 2008, when houses in the collapse phase were undervalued by at least 28%.

Mike Pappas

The researchers predict a housing market peak and price stabilization.  When home values start to fall, interest rates will play a role, says Keyes Company president Mike Pappas. As interest rates climb, some purchasers will exit the market.

South Florida is the state’s least inflated housing market. Tampa is about 38% overvalued, Fort Myers is 34%, and Jacksonville is 28%. The researchers looked at 100 of the country’s largest metro areas to see which are overvalued based on past pricing trends and which should be.

Eli Beracha

Nationally, Boise, Idaho; Austin, Texas; Ogden and Provo, Utah; and Phoenix appear to be nearing price peaks, suggesting eventual price stabilization. Those places are also among the priciest. According to Eli Beracha, head of Florida International University’s Hollo School of Real Estate, buying in an overpriced market can lead to long-term financial losses.

“Reselling a house at a profit when values settle is difficult.”

Other research shows a market cooling from hot to warm. expects South Florida home prices will rise roughly 6% over the next year, indicating a market recovery after a year of extraordinary price surge.

Ward Morrison President  of Motto Franchising, LLC  First Real Estate Mortgage Franchise in the Nation   Estimates interest rates rise to  4% for 2022.  It’s not in stone and should not impact home buyers.

 Eli Beracha, head of Florida International University’s Hollo School of Real Estate, Buying in an overpriced market can lead to long-term financial losses. expects South Florida home prices will rise roughly 6% over the next year

Ken H Johnson, an economist at Florida Atlantic University! “We keep rising, yet we are still low. This is a far cry from 15 years ago.”

You want a sound choice, in terms who will represent your best interest, net you the best return on the sale of your home, and without doubt can provide the same services as Opendoor, Redfin, Ibuyer companies, and Zillow, I’ve always pulled more supportive data than Zillow could ever provide, and for their investors to actually buy stock when then took this move, unnerving to say the least. So many of the sell quick and leave all your worries to us? “If it’s too good to be true, IT’S NOT!” I’ve practiced these exit models for my clients for years. It’s nothing new, however the equity you leave on the table when you sell to these companies is far “LESS” than Our Michael Paul team will provide. Call me: 904-671-9225 Dan Swing! Representing Northeast Florida.

There is much to be grateful for among those who owned property and worked during the pandemic.

Consumer confidence and home values are rising across much of the country. Unfortunately, our country is divided along numerous lines.  Even though the pandemic may have been beneficial to some, it has also been detrimental to others, both economically and humanely. In many cases, what we take for granted is only available to those around the globe on their “to-do” lists. Keeping this in mind, I pray most will choose to be appreciative for our many benefits.

Although the holidays bring joy, there is a tinge of worry.  Today’s United States is vastly different from the one that existed only a few short years ago.  Our society and economy are shifting in a troubling direction, and the lack of leadership at all levels of government suggests a bleaker future.

Top economists, and real estate professionals predict elements that will affect the future of real estate:

1.Violent crime has increased significantly

There has been a rise in crime in the United States, whether it’s a car crashing into a bunch of people, smashing, and snatching robbery, or the overall increase in violent deaths.  A 25 percent increase over 2019 is expected in homicide rates for 2020, according to FBI data.

“The reasons for the substantial spike in violence are a matter of speculation and are likely to remain poorly understood for years to come,” the Washington Post stated in July of 2021.  More importantly we are experiencing organized numbers of thieves attacking and stealing as much merchandise as possible and it’s becoming significant. With this in mind many people are rethinking where they reside or even deciding not to purchase a home in an area, they fear will have a high crime rate

2. Climate Change

Regardless of whether you believe in global warming or not, our climate is changing.

A growing number of natural disasters are being exacerbated by the changing climate. Who decides these phenomena, and initiatives in potential prevention? These United States are taking extreme action to accommodate measures to lessen the stress to the environment.  However, our efforts are strongly countered 10-fold or more by Asia and Russia!  These two regions produce the most pollutants and the U.S. continues to purchase their products and drive these countries to produce more pollutants with no end in sight!

The American public is becoming extremely unbalanced and the consequences overwhelming to accommodate so much radical change in accommodating global climate change.  The United States Congress must revisit their strategy and find less strain on the American public or we may see a whole new deteriorating environment.

Even the most casual observer can see that we will need to make significant adjustments in the location and construction of our homes.  In addition, we must strategize for dealing with individuals who now reside in danger zones. Rebuilding is being hampered by restrictions in Future Land Use criteria already in place and making it extremely difficult to provide permits, which raises a new set of challenges.  

3. Disparity in wealth in this United States

There is a significant divide between the rich and poor.  It’s not hard to find information regarding how wealth is being redistributed in the United States by searching for “wealth in America” online.  The pandemic has simply widened the disparity between the wealthy and the poor, and this redistribution comes at the expense of the vulnerable.

We should expect a ripple effect from rising housing prices and a large percentage of Americans receiving some form of government assistance.  An obvious example is the expanding number of homeless tent cities that can be found in most major American cities.

4. Cyber crime is rising.

No one appears to be safe from cyber-crime, despite our best efforts.  A rush has been put on title firms and others in the real estate industry to make certain that transactions are secure, and payments are delivered to the correct recipients.  From Facebook hackers to obtaining credit card I.D.’s on the dark web, compromising a significant amount of victims, creating credit challenges for many looking to buy their first home. Fake websites soliciting goods that do not exist and almost impossible to catch and prosecute.

5. Racial tensions

Racial tensions remain high in the United States today.  Racism in the United States has risen sharply in the wake of recent tragedies.  In addition to whites and blacks, we see other ethnic groups influenced by this. No matter how many demonstrations, we see groups exploiting this and looting small and large businesses.  

When it comes to home ownership, minorities have a significantly lower rate of home ownership than their white peers.  For at least 10 decades both political parties have made attempts to remedy this challenge with o known solutions, despite the existence of fair housing regulations.

6. Problems with the supply chain

Containers being washed overboard at sea; container ships unable to unload; China building super ports, factory shutdowns; wildfire-induced lumber mill closures; global stainless-steel shortages; labor shortages everywhere; rising energy costs; a 30-year high inflation rate — it’s a perfect storm.  The supply chain is in chaos.

As a result, there are fewer new construction starts, considerably fewer home completions, more time spent on home preparation for sale, and less time spent on home remodeling due to a lack of inventory sellers are finding there is no need to prepare needed elements in the home before selling.

Recently, a recent excursion to an IKEA in the Jacksonville Florida area, found many furniture items that were temporarily unavailable, as well as many counter alternatives, appliances, lighting fixtures and other upgrade-related products, for example.

Plastic plants, on the other hand, appeared to be plentiful.  A recent trip to Home Depot indicates they have no shortage in inventory.  Is this a myth, a rumor to create panic, or something else?

7. The labor market is becoming smaller.

In this case, there are three major concerns:  It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find skilled tradespeople in metropolitan regions due to more and more illegal immigrants taking these jobs away from legalized US Citizens in the construction trade and there is no true policing policies being taken to prevent it! This is encouraging economic adjustments or retirement of older workers.  For geopolitical or financial reasons, many of the city’s current tradespeople are either unable or unwilling to relocate to urban regions.

Students graduating from high school are increasingly choosing university and tech careers over vocational schools because of our country’s focus on the technology industry.

When it comes to finding qualified contractors, the home market is in a state of severe stress.

8. The lack of effective answers to the housing shortage.

Another symptom of a housing issue is that more and more people are becoming homeless.  Additionally, Redfin points out that rents are expected to rise, and recent data indicates this is happening now, which will only worsen the situation.

Many landlords have had to give up and liquidate their rental properties because of the pandemic-related moratoriums on evictions and the resulting decrease in rent payments.  As prices continue to rise, more and more investors are selling to maximize their profits.

A growing number of developers are resisting low-cost housing rules, claiming that rising building costs and permission fees are reducing profitability, which no longer justifies their ongoing building in the huge multi-unit market.  I’m aware of no city or town that has an effective strategy for dealing with the rising housing crisis.

State-level taxes (California) are leading landlords to find creative solutions, such as refinancing properties to the max, taking the money out of California and not leaving enough cash flow to appropriately maintain the properties.

9. Widening chasm between liberals and conservatives

My neighbors have made the decision to leave their current location and relocate to regions that better reflect their political beliefs.  When it comes to political tensions, they’re fed up with it.  People who want to live in locations where they are more likely to be politically aligned are looking to do so.

In this case, there are two essential concerns: If we had neighborhoods that were well-balanced in terms of political viewpoints, we would have a much healthier country.

Destination cities like (Charleston, South Carolina), (Savannah Georgia) (San Antonio, and Austin, Texas) to name a few, are experiencing enormous increases in property prices because of supply and demand economics, which has the local population extremely frustrated and angry.

The COVID-19 immunizations are dividing opinion, and that’s just going to get worse.  Vaccination has a similar effect to the prior item, even though it is divided along party lines in some ways.  More tragically, the vaccination crisis is causing families to fall apart and friends to distance themselves from one another.  As a result, many families are relocating from places where the vaccination rate is low to areas where the rate is high.

10. There are increasing concerns about the insure ability of automobiles and other vehicles.

Several insurance companies have withdrawn from the market as the frequency and severity of natural catastrophes rise.  It’s getting increasingly difficult to obtain insurance in high fire or flood zones, which will have an impact on the ability to own or develop properties in specific areas.

During this time of year, I want to emphasize once again how fortunate we are as a nation.  I’d like to express my gratitude.  In the meantime, I’m concerned that we’re losing progress because we can’t seem to deal with these new issues efficiently.  These problems appear to have been exacerbated by the pandemic, according to some observers.

It seems to me that COVID-19 has just pushed issues that had been simmering to the surface. Because of the pandemic, these challenges have been brought to light in an unprecedented way.  It’s my hope that we can all work together to bring America back from the brink of disaster by putting aside our ideological differences and trying to find common ground.

COVID-19 epidemic may be coming to an end soon. Aftermath of economic effects, people who ignored medical care due to pandemic, and skyrocketing food and energy prices undoubtedly cause concern.

For Thanksgiving, how might you find your balance and be happy? Ahhh a revelation about six months ago dramatically shifted my perspective on happiness. Happiness can be defined in a simple four-step model, and it occurred to me.

Cherish the moment……….Develop a state of calm awareness………..Retain a sense of purpose………Focus on the positive aspects

Cherish the moment; A cheerful outlook is easier to maintain when you’re having fun. Focus your attention on a pleasant experience as it happens, absorbing it as it happens. Special occasions, such as a wedding or a vacation, have the potential to bring out the best in us.

On the other hand, ordinary joys can be overlooked unless they suddenly vanish or appear to be in danger.Focus on the task at hand. Whether it’s a meal or a visit with a friend, you’ll have a better time.

Spend time being grateful. Gratitude is the attitude of being grateful for all of life’s blessings, no matter how small they may seem at the time. It may be a good idea to keep a thankfulness diary to remind yourself of the things for which you are thankful on a regular basis. Doing so can help you appreciate your blessings more and take them less for granted as you go about your day. Be descriptive in your writing, and attempt to recapture the feelings you had as you recall the significance of each item.

Develop a state of calm awareness. Mindfulness is often learned through systematically focusing one’s attention on the here and now, and accepting whatever comes up. Savoring entails appreciating pleasant sensations, while mindfulness requires embracing both pleasant and painful sensations to the fullest degree. When you practice mindfulness, you are better able to fully immerse yourself in what you are doing and deal with stressful situations. One of the numerous benefits of practicing mindfulness is that it helps us become less distracted with self-doubt and anxiety about the future, and more open to developing meaningful relationships with those around them.

Retain a Sense of Purpose. A clear goal to work for should always be in mind. If a relationship breaks up, your children leave the house, or you lose a job or retire, it’s normal to feel a sense of loss and even despair. During difficult circumstances, it’s critical to maintain as much normalcy as possible while focusing on what you can manage. Maintain a regular sleep pattern, exercise regularly, eat a balanced diet, and keep in touch with loved ones. Consider a major life shift as a fresh opportunity or challenge, regardless of how difficult it may be.
Donate your time to organizations that can benefit from your professional expertise when you’re out of work or retired. Consider coaching or tutoring if you miss having children in your life. Supporting someone who are grieving can be therapeutic if you’ve just lost a parent or spouse. Maintaining an optimistic outlook will help you withstand the storm.

Focus on the positive aspects.
Resilience, the ability to bounce back from adversity, can be learned by focusing on the positive components of a situation and weeding out the negative ones. Older people, on the other hand, appear to be happier with their life as they get older, despite the losses that accumulate with time. Most likely, this is due to their proclivity for downplaying the negative, for accepting their own limitations and finding ways to work around them, and for setting realistic goals for the future. In order to have a positive impact on your life, you should start using these habits as soon as possible in your life—all of which help to maintain a cheerful mindset.

An old proverb goes like this: “Where your concentration goes, so does your power.” Creating an ideal future for yourself, and you will be able to choose which inputs make their way into your brain’s higher-level thinking regions.

Charlie said, “No one lives forever, Imagination means nothing without doing, Laughter is toxic, life can be wonderful if your not afraid of it. All it needs is a little courage, Imagination, and lots of dough!

I leave you with a method to break the cycle of negativity is to cultivate an attitude of thankfulness. Mounting evidence from medical studies has indicated that people who think positively have a lower risk of dying of all causes compared with others their own age who have a gloomier view of life. Over the last decade, researchers have identified practices that can help you achieve and sustain a positive attitude toward your future. I’m witness to this. This year I experienced a life threatening condition, not long to live. With God’s blessing, our Church ministries, and the Sphere of friends and family in my 55 an older community, wrapped their energy around me and I’m living proof this philosophy works.

Wishing you a very positive and blessed Thanksgiving.

Projected growth in new home sales wouldn’t offset expected drop in existing home sales

The level of existing home sales in July exceeded forecasts, but Fannie Mae economists predict that home buyer demand will slow for the rest of this year and next, due to the limited number of homes available on the market.

The economists at Fannie Mae have updated their latest monthly forecast and now predict home sales will rise by 3.3% this year, to 6.68 million homes, up from their previous forecast of 3.1% growth.

Sales of existing homes saw a slight increase of 2% in June-July, contributing to the higher than expected forecast for this year’s sales.
Fannie Mae economists maintain that sales pace may not be sustainable because for-sale inventories are at low levels, new listings aren’t coming on the market quickly enough to meet demand, and new listings aren’t being created quickly enough.

According to Fannie Mae, next year sales of new and existing homes are expected to drop by 1.9%.
New home sales are expected to increase in 2013, but not enough to compensate for a decrease in existing home sales.

Purchase mortgage applications and pending home sales point to a near-term softening, with the annual pace of existing home sales expected to drop to 5.7 million homes by the end of the year, according to the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae).

Annual pace of new and existing home sales, by quarter. Second quarter of 2021 and beyond are projected. Source: Fannie Mae Economic and Housing Outlook, September 2021.

The vacation-home market has boomed over the past year and is not likely to slow any time soon, even as the rest of the housing market starts to cool, Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, told The Escape Home, a newsletter for second-home owners.

Even as companies bring employees back to the office, vacation homes will remain in demand, Yun said. Part of vacation homes’ rise in popularity has been attributed to the growth in remote work.

Overall, home sales are showing some signs of cooling. Many first-time home buyers are getting priced out of the market, Yun said. The median existing-home price for all housing types was $359,900 in July, nearly an 18% increase from a year ago. Mortgage rates are likely to increase, which could make buying even more expensive, he added. NAR predicts mortgage rates will rise to 3.5% by mid-2022, as the Federal Reserve likely will begin to reduce its bond purchases before the end of the year.

But vacation homes will remain a hot commodity. Rental prices for vacation homes will likely continue to rise too, Yun said.

“One near-certain aspect of the post-pandemic economy, when it comes, is the flexible work schedule,” Yun told The Escape Home. “It is very hard to envision five days a week in the office. Therefore, vacation-home sales will continue to move higher, this year, next year, and for the foreseeable future.”

Lawrence Yun

Lawrence Yun is Chief Economist and oversees the Research group at the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. He supervises and is responsible for a wide range of research activity for the association including NAR’s Existing Home Sales statistics, Affordability Index, and Home Buyers and Sellers Profile Report. He regularly provides commentary on real estate market trends for its 1.4 million REALTORS®.

It’s been some time since I posted a blog, I’ve been asked so many questions about the market, it’s time I share my data and thoughts.

Mortgage rates for the seventh week in a row were 2.9% or lower.
Nadia Evangelou, a senior economist and director of forecasting for the National Association of REALTORS, suggests that home buying will have returned to a more regular seasonal trend of cooling off.

She noted that both buyers and sellers dislike moving their families while school is in session, they prefer to wait until the end of the year when they have more free time for the relocation.
Between August and September, she predicted that sales would fall by 15 percent.
It’s usual to see the market cooling off in the coming months, even at record low rates.
According to NAR, total house sales are expected to decrease by 10% in the last quarter of this year.

Mortgage demand has dropped to the two-month low.

According to Freddie Mac’s chief economist, “Even as the economy expands, it has lost speed since the recent wave of new COVID cases has resulted to worse employment, fewer spending, and a drop in consumer confidence.”
In addition, because of increasing supply and demand imbalances, mortgage rates have remained stable despite increases in inflation.
These low and consistent mortgage rates provide consumers more time to search for homes.

The following nationwide averages for mortgage rates were reported by Freddie Mac during the week ending September 9:

30-year fixed-rate mortgages had an average interest rate of 2.88%, with an average one-tenth of a point (0.7%). This significantly increased from the previous week’s average of 2.87%.
Just one year ago, 30-year interest rates averaged 2.86%.

A 15-year fixed-rate mortgage had an average interest rate of 2.19%, with an average 0.6 point.
A year ago, fifteen-year interest rates averaged two and one-half percent.

2.42% average 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: down from last week’s 2.43% by 0.3 points.
Five-year adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 3.11% one year ago.

Freddie Mac reports average commitment rates along with average points to better reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage.

Source: Freddie Mac and “Instant Reaction: Mortgage Rates, September 9, 2021,” National Association of REALTORS® (Sept. 9, 2021