A May 10th article in The Week stated home prices are increasing at the highest rate in seven years, according to Nick Timiraos in The Wall Street Journal. Prices jumped 9.3 percent in the 12 months throught February “while mortgage-interest rates hovered near record lows,” accordingg to an index that tracks home prices in 20 major cities.
All 20 cities surveyed posted year-over-year increases, and in some cases even double-digit gains; in Phoenix, for example, prices are up 23 percent from a year ago. “Nobody that I’m aware of anticipated the kind of price growth that we’ve had, ” said Budge Huskey, chief executive of Coldwell Banker. “It’s simple supply and demand.”
“Steady hirining and near-record low mortgage rates” are driving the demand, siad Christopher S. Rugaber in the Associated Press. Also, ‘buyers have fewer homes to bid on” as bank foreclosures ebb and homeowners remain unable to unwilling to sell. Rising home values are often considered a harbinger of economic recovery because they encourage people to buy before prices rise further, entice buyers to sell, and encourage banks to provide morggage loans. Higher home prices can also “increase homeowners’ wealth, which encourages more spending,” and create construction jobs as homebuilders work to keep up with demand.
With interest rate at an all-time low, house hunting is on the rise, according to Kate Ashford from Forbes.com. Those new to the process should adhere to some basic rules. First, get preapproved for a mortgage– “it will prove you’re serious to your Realtor and to home sellers, ” and will give you a realistic idea of what you can affort. Think about your down payment; putting a nominal amount, should as 3 1/2 percent, isn’t “necessarily a bid thing, but it does mean that you’ll have very little equity in your home when you first move into it.” And whatever you do, don’t skip the home inspection. It’s “worth every penny.”
According to Wikipedia, a credit score is a numerical expression based on a statistical analysis of a person’s credit files, to represent the creditworthiness of that person.
Well, credit scores aren’t the only way credit card companies keep an eye on customers, said Mandi Woodruff in BusinessInsider.com. Companies use several other “scores,” based on customers’ spending and repayment patterns, to size up customers.
“If you normally shop at high-end stores and regularly pay off your card, and then suddenly start shopping at discount stores and carrying a balance, the company could use this data as an indicator that you have become higher risk,” said Adrian Nazari, CEO of CreditSesame.com.
Companies also use a “carefully formulated algorithm,” based on debt balances and payment histories, to predict how likely a customer is to go bankrupt. “This score helps creditors assess and minimize their risk in advance,” said Nazari.
Creditors also use what’s called a “Wandering Eye” score, which sizes up how likely you are to be using a card issued by a competing lender. “When this score is high, it tells the lenders they may need to sweeten the pot and offer you various perks.”
So, if you want to protect the volatility of your credit score, be careful when selecting your credit cards, because they will be watching…
Home values were up 10 percent nationally from the forth quarter of 2011 to the same period of 2012, according to data from the National Association of Realtors.
Locally, Cache County has only 526 homes on the market, which is nearly half the inventory available a year ago, according to Lisa Udy, Principal Broker for Platinum Real Estate.
With interest rates still at historic lows and spring around the corner, now is an excellent time to consider selling your current home and building a new one!