Clover is hosting the 17th annual Scotch Irish games at Memorial Stadium from 9Am to 4PM the 8th of June. Featuring Athletic Competition, Pipe Bands, childrens activities and more. Visit www.cloverscottishgames.com
Evidence continues to show that the housing market is making a comeback. Here are just some of the positive reports that came in over the last few weeks:
- Housing starts spiked by 7 percent in March to come in at the highest rate since June 2008. In addition, housing starts were up 47 percent since the same period last year.
- The number of mortgages behind on payments or in foreclosure fell in March to the lowest mark since 2008.
- New Home Sales for March increased to come in slightly better than estimates.
- The Mortgage Bankers Association reported small gains in the numbers of loan applications, refinances and purchases.
Not all of the housing news was good last month. Building permits, which are a sign of future construction, did decline slightly. And Existing Home Sales for March came in slightly below expectations. But overall, the housing-related reports were strong and provided further evidence of improvements in the housing sector.
Other economic news wasn’t as positive. Retail Sales for March came in below expectations and marked the largest decline in nine months. However, the rise in payroll taxes, which began in January, is likely a big part of the decline in spending. Consumer Sentiment also fell to its lowest level since July of 2012. And in the manufacturing sector, the Empire Manufacturing Index was much weaker than expected and below the previous month. Those reports indicate that we may see another economic malaise this spring, like we have seen the last couple of years.
What does this mean for home loan rates?
The uncertainty of the economy and continuation of the Fed’s bond purchase program (known as Quantitative Easing) should continue to benefit bonds and home loan rates. That makes now an ideal time to consider purchasing a home or refinancing
A residential design bill is in Senate Committee tomorrow at 11 a.m.! The bill would limit the ability of local governments to require architectural and design controls on single-family homes, duplexes and townhomes. Let our state senators know how important this bill is for our industry and for housing affordability in North Carolina. Click here to help.
The US Congress is considering tax reform that can and will have a huge effect on all property owners and The National Association of Realtors President Gary Thomas recently stated.
As the U.S. Congress considers action on comprehensive tax reform, you can be sure that the National Association of Realtors is doing its best to protect the many long-standing tax incentives to home and property ownership.
These include the following:
- mortgage interest deduction
- capital gains exclusion on the sale of a principal residence
- deduction for mortgage insurance premiums on private mortgage insurance and FHA-backed insurance
- state and local property tax deduction
- carried interest on commercial real estate
We’re going to have to stay on top of the action. These are complicated issues that will not be settled with a direct up or down vote that affects only real estate. They may easily be tucked into the language on a larger bill, and things may move very fast when the time comes.
Right now, we’re in the early stages of what we expect will be a long process. The House Ways & Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee are holding ongoing meetings on the issues. As REALTORS®, we have a seat at the table and are sharing our views.
We tell members of Congress and staff how necessary these incentives are for rebuilding the national economy. Since we’re in the midst of a fragile recovery, additional housing taxes would crush the real estate market just as it is poised to help lift us out of the economic doldrums
Our goal is to see that the tax code will continue to reflect the fundamental American value that homeownership helps build financial stability. Not only is this the right policy for housing, it’s also the best for families, for communities and the entire country.
Our government tax policy should encourage homeownership while giving more Americans a chance for their little piece of heaven.
Contact your Congressman and Senators.
February existing-home sales and prices affirm a healthy recovery is underway in the housing sector, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. Sales have been above year-ago levels for 20 consecutive months, while prices show 12 consecutive months of year-over-year price increases.
Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, increased 0.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.98 million in February from an upwardly revised 4.94 million in January, and are 10.2 percent above the 4.52 million-unit level seen in February 2012. February sales were at the highest level since the tax credit period of November 2009.