Americans’ confidence in their ability to buy and sell a home climbed sharply in May, likely due to reports of strong home price gains, according to results from Fannie Mae’s May 2013 National Housing Survey.
The share of respondents who say now is a good time to sell a home reached a record high of 40 percent, compared with 30 percent in April and 16 percent one year ago. At the same time, the share of those who say it is a good time to buy a home moved up 5 percentage points from April to a survey high of 76 percent. Americans’ average 12-month home price change expectation also reached a survey high in May, climbing to 3.9 percent from 2.7 percent in April.
Currently, 46 percent of Americans think it would be easy for them to get a mortgage today, retreating slightly from April’s survey high, while 50 percent believe it would be difficult to get a mortgage. Consumers have been asked since the survey’s inception in June 2010 for their perceived ease or difficulty in getting a mortgage, and the question was added in May 2013 as an indicator to the monthly data findings report to help determine whether rising mortgage rates affect their views.
Source: CNN Money
The mortgage interest deduction is one of the most-expensive tax breaks on the books, but its benefits are distributed unevenly across the country, according to a new report by the Pew Charitable Trusts.
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The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had improved in April, increased again in May and now stands at 76.2 (1985=100), up from 69 in April. The Present Situation Index increased to 66.7 from 61, and the Expectations Index improved to 82.4 from 74.3 last month.Consumers’ appraisal of present-day conditions improved in May, with those saying business conditions are “good” increasing to 18.8 percent from 17.5 percent, and those stating business conditions are “bad” decreasing to 26 percent from 27.6 percent. Consumers’ assessment of the labor market also was more positive. Those claiming jobs are “plentiful” increased to 10.8 percent from 9.7 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” edged down to 36.1 percent from 36.9 percent.
Source: Los Angeles Times
Violations of a landmark mortgage settlement alleged by New York’s attorney general are also widespread in California, a housing advocacy group says.
Read the full story: http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-mortgage-violations-california-20130506,0,7934465.story
Calif. median home price: March 2013: $378,960 (Source: C.A.R.)
Calif. highest median home price by region/county March 2013: Marin, $888,890 (Source: C.A.R.)
Calif. lowest median home price by region/county March 2013: Siskiyou County, $123,330 (Source: C.A.R.)
Calif. Pending Home Sales Index: March 2013: 110.2 , up 8.7 percent from January’s 101.4.
Calif. Traditional Housing Affordability Index: First Quarter 2013: 44 percent (Source: C.A.R.)
Mortgage rates: Week ending 5/16/2013 (Source: Freddie Mac)
- 30-yr. fixed: 3.51% fees/points: 0.7%
- 15-yr. fixed: 2.62% fees/points: 0.7%
- 1-yr. adjustable: 2.55% Fees/points: 0.4%