|DOWN DECEMBERPending home sales dropped 2.2% in December according to the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI). The drop is due to several factors according to NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun who said, “The stock market correction hurt consumer confidence, record high home prices cut into affordability and mortgage rates were higher in October and November for consumers signing contracts in December.” Yun predicts solid market activity for this year, adding, “The longer-term growth potential is high…the forecast for home transactions has greatly improved.”|
|RATES RISEThough mortgage interest rates trended slightly upward in Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey for the week ending January 31, analysts note that the uptick is tempered by slowing home price appreciation and should not be a detriment to the spring home-buying season.|
|EQUITY ASCENSIONAmericans who sold homes in 2018 reaped the biggest profit in 12 years according to the Year-End 2018 U.S. Home Sales Report from ATTOM Data Solutions. Home sellers realized an average home price gain since purchase of $61,000 – up from $50,000 in 2017 and $39,500 in 2016. Last year’s average equity gains reached their highest level since 2006.|
|FEB FACTSOnce every six years, February is the only month that has four, full seven-day weeks. February ends on the same day of the week as October every year. In leap years, it’s the only month that begins and ends on the same weekday.|
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