Australian Home Prices May Rebound on Low Rates, Easy Credit

(Bloomberg) — Australian home prices may have bottomed out and could be set to rise through the end of the year on the back of lower interest rates and easier credit, according to Bloomberg Intelligence.



a house with trees in the background: Residential properties stand along a street in Brisbane, Australia, on Tuesday, May 7, 2019. Australian central bank chief Philip Lowe dashed expectations of an interest-rate cut, looking through recent weakness in inflation to hitch the policy outlook to a labor market that he says remains strong.


© Bloomberg
Residential properties stand along a street in Brisbane, Australia, on Tuesday, May 7, 2019. Australian central bank chief Philip Lowe dashed expectations of an interest-rate cut, looking through recent weakness in inflation to hitch the policy outlook to a labor market that he says remains strong.

Property prices have fallen just 3% since the Covid-19 crisis began, defying concern of a steeper slide. A plan to ease responsible-lending rules and mounting speculation for further loosening of monetary policy in coming months may unleash a wave of borrowing, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Mohsen Crofts said in a report Wednesday.

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What Bloomberg Intelligence says:

Home prices may have reached a near-term bottom in most

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Sales of Luxury Homes Soar as Low Rates, Stay-at-Home Shoppers Fuel Market

Sales of high-end homes climbed 41.5% year over year in the third quarter, according to online real estate broker Redfin (NASDAQ: RDFN), the largest year-over-year jump since at least 2013.

In a news release Monday, Redfin said that sales of luxury homes, defined as the top 5% of market values, as well as sales of second- and third-tier houses climbed year over year, while sales in the bottom two buckets fell by 4% each. The median sale price of a top-tier luxury home in the U.S. in the quarter was $862,700, up 6.5% year over year, while the median price of a house in the bottom tier was $90,000.

A for sale sign in front of a house.

Image source: Getty Images.

In a typical downturn, it is the luxury market that takes the biggest hit, but as Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather noted, “This isn’t a normal recession.” Changes in behavior driven by the coronavirus pandemic are

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2020 General Contractor Rates Per Hour | Average Contractor Fees

Average General Contractor Costs

Average Cost $4,000
High Cost $58,000
Low Cost $250

Standard General Contractor Fee Percentage

the fee percentage for a general contractor if 10% to 20% of the total project cost.

General contractor management fees generally total 10 to 20% of the project cost. The rate can get as high as 25% depending on the size of the project.

The fees are calculated from a markup on materials, subcontractor labor and the total price of the job. The GC packages their fee in with all services for one total price. They pay on your behalf for services, subcontractors and materials.

Contractor Pricing

Contractors price their work as a markup on various services and materials in order to cover factors like:

  • Labor and workers’ compensation
  • General liability and other insurances
  • Overhead for staff, office and operations
  • Taxes
  • Profit

Commercial General Contractor Fee vs. Residential Construction

Commercial general contractor fees can be higher than those for residential construction depending on factors that impact overhead —

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Mortgage rates fall as demand for home loans rises

The 15-year fixed-rate average reached 2.36 percent, down from 2.40 percent, with an average 0.7 point. The five-year adjustable-rate average at 2.90 percent, with an average 0.2 point, was unchanged from the previous week. The 15-year rate was 3.14 percent and the five-year was 3.38 percent a year ago.

“Mortgage rates are in a holding pattern because we have lots of big things looming and investors are waiting to see what happens,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist with Realtor.com. “Obviously, they’re waiting on the election results, but also on the next stimulus plan, which seems to start and stall. I expect mortgage rates to stay stable and not go up or down much until we get some of this big news.”

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, from which the averages are derived, is confined to rates on conventional home loans for borrowers who make a 20 percent down payment

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Mortgage rates keep falling, but will rising home prices push some buyers out of the market?

Despite the economic downturn, home prices have continued to increase this year — largely because mortgage rates have remained below 3%. But will home buyers reach a breaking point where they’re priced out of the market en masse?

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.88% for the week ending Oct. 1, down two basis points from the week prior, Freddie Mac
FMCC,

reported Thursday. A few weeks ago, the average rate for the 30-year loan fell to an all-time low of 2.86%.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped four basis points to an average of 2.36%, while the 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage held steady at 2.9% on average.

Low mortgage rates have been a boon to home buyers and sellers alike. The low-rate environment has given buyers a boost even as the economy has remained in a coronavirus-fueled downturn and home prices have risen.

“In the pandemic-driven recession of 2020, we’ve

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Stockton Suffers Among Top U.S. Foreclosure Rates : NPR

Stockton, Calif., has one of the biggest foreclosure rates in the country, according to RealtyTrac. Art Godi, a longtime Realtor there and former president of the National Association of Realtors, talks with Michele Norris.



MICHELE NORRIS, host:

The mortgage meltdown has hit the Golden State with a wallop. California has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the country. Of the top 10 list of cities with the largest number of foreclosures, six are in California.

One of those towns is Stockton, about an hour and a half east of San Francisco. Just two years ago, the housing market was hot, fueled by homebuyers looking for affordable housing beyond the pricy San Francisco Bay market.

According to the housing data firm, RealtyTrac, Stockton now has the highest foreclosure rate in the country.

Art Godi is a longtime realtor in Stockton and a former president of the National Association of Realtors.

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Real Estate Professionals Point to Sellers’ Market in Oregon, Florida and New York Due to Low Inventory, Interest Rates

Real Estate professionals from across the United States say that current real estate market conditions point to a seller’s market in most areas.

Across the United States, many Real Estate Brokers say that inventory is low, so now is an ideal time to sell. For buyers, it’s a good time to buy before prices escalate. Seven professionals offer their insights about preparing to buy or invest in real estate in their areas ranging from Oregon, Florida, and New York.

Leslie Purdy, Real Estate Profitability™ Author and Broker Associate at EXP Realty, LLC, in Melbourne, located in Broward County, Florida, said now is the time to prepare for homeownership and real estate investments.

Purdy said, “First, save your money and have at least six months of living expenses so that you won’t be anxious about your safety and security. Second, don’t make any major purchases unless necessary. Third, pay off your

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Home equity surges as demand soars and mortgage rates hover near lows

After a brief stall in home sales at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, homebuyers came rushing back in — so fast that prices never even took a hit. In fact, the gains in prices accelerated quickly, causing home equity to soar even more.  

Home equity for homeowners with a mortgage rose 6.6% annually in the second quarter, according to CoreLogic. Collectively, that adds up to a gain of $620 billion, or $9,800 per home.

Home values have continued to rise and are now up 5.1% annually, according to Zillow. Price gains accelerated in 48 of the 50 largest metropolitan housing markets across the country.

The reason is twofold: Demand is outpacing supply by a lot, and mortgage rates are sitting near record lows. The latter gives buyers more purchasing power.

The total supply of homes for sale was just over 29% lower annually for the week ending Sept. 12,

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Home Prices Skyrocketing Because Of Low Mortgage Rates, Not Because Covid-19 Increased Demand For Large Homes

Home prices are skyrocketing in most U.S. markets despite Covid-19, a recession and a shockingly high unemployment rate.

Many analysts are speculating that part of the boom in house prices is caused by Covid-19—that some people are concerned about Covid-19 contagion and don’t want to live in tight, multi-family buildings anymore, so they’re buying single-family homes in the suburbs. Another theory along the same lines is that because working from home has skyrocketed, some people want more space, so they’re buying larger single-family homes, especially if their kids are home all day, too. This seems to be happening in metro New York City, but what about places that weren’t hit as hard by Covid-19 and aren’t as dense as New York City?

Certainly the lower mortgage interest rates are a huge part of the current home price boom. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate the first week of January 2020

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