Bozeman Montana Real Estate Market News

October 2017 News

October 2017 News

Note: August data below is the most recent available from the National Association of Realtors® 

According to National Association of Realtors® (NAR) data, sales of existing homes dipped in August for the fourth time in five months. A low supply of homes continues to impact home sales. Nationally, the Northeast and Midwest saw sales gains, while declines occurred in the South and West.
 
Total existing-home sales (measuring transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops), fell 1.7% to an annual rate of 5.35 million in August against 5.44 million in July.   

Existing Home Sales By Region
NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, indicated that the dip in existing sales created headwinds in August despite ongoing demand for homes. "Steady employment gains, slowly rising incomes and lower mortgage rates generated sustained buyer interest all summer long, but unfortunately, not more home sales." Yun added, "What's ailing the housing market and continues to weigh on overall sales is the inadequate levels of available inventory and the upward pressure it's putting on prices in several parts of the country. Sales have been unable to break out because there are simply not enough homes for sale."
 
Housing Data Highlights
 
  • August's median existing-home price (all housing types) was $253,500, a rise of 5.6% over August 2016 ($240,000). August's price gains mark the 66th straight month of year-over-year gains.
     
  • Total U.S. housing inventory at the end of August fell 2.1% to 1.88 million existing homes available; this is 6.5% lower than a year ago (2.01 million) and has declined year-over-year for 27 consecutive months. Nationally, unsold inventory sits at a supply of 4.2-months at the current sales pace, down from 4.5 months a year ago.
     
  • First-time buyers drove 31% of U.S. sales in August, a dip from 33% in July and the lowest share since August 2016 (also 31%). For all of 2016, first-time buyers were responsible for 35% of sales.
     
  • Freddie Mac data indicates that the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage dropped to 3.88% in August from 3.97% in July; this is the lowest rate since November 2016 (3.77%). By comparisin, 2016's average commitment rate was 3.65%.

Find the Right Coverage

When purchasing a home, you will need to acquire homeowners insurance. In fact, all lenders will require a policy to be in force prior to funding the loan. Make sure you have enough coverage should anything happen. Policies refer to "replacement costs" that may not cover everything. You should ask your insurance agent a lot of "what if" questions. The deductible amount also plays a big part in setting your premium. Higher deductibles lower the number of claims, and reduce your insurance costs.

Check with your insurance agent for more information on these issues and others. If you don't have an insurance agent, we have access to several top-notch agents to whom we can refer you with confidence.

Seller Strategy

Selling your home in today's market requires strategy and execution. Here are some tips to help sellers reduce their time on market while getting excellent value:

  • Make it shine. Buyers are attracted to attractive homes. To make your home stand out, mow the lawn, rake the leaves, wash your windows, and clean the carpets. These small things can make a big difference.
     
  • Remove clutter. Not only do clean homes show better, but tidy homes offer more to the imagination. One person's treasure is another person's trash. Removing unnecessary clutter will help potential buyers envision their own potential for the home.
     
  • Consider removing art and personal keepsakes. This one is tough for certain people emotionally, but don't take it personally. Some savvy sellers go beyond de-cluttering and remove all (or most) of their personal artwork, family photos and personal mementos to make easier for potential buyers to imagine the home being theirs
     
  • Pay attention to the market. Work with your agent and price your home to sell. A competitively priced home is the one that sells first, and in this market that counts for a lot. Even in fast-moving markets in many parts of the United States, overpricing your home can lead to selling it for less or incurring greater holding costs than if you had priced the house appropriately in the first place. An experienced agent will help you arrive at the most advantageous price for your home.

These simple tips can help you sell your home and take advantage of our today's market. Please contact us if you have any questions about selling your home. We are here to help!