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Tag Archives: Ann Arbor Real Estate Trends

New Listings in Ann Arbor – Not Quite What You Think

The new Ann Arbor Board of Realtors statistics have just come out and it shows that the number of new listings to the market in Washtenaw County is essentially unchanged from last year.  Through the end of April, there were 2,540 new listings, versus 2,499 in 2009.  At a quick glance, this would signal that inventory is holding steady in the greater Ann Arbor Real Estate market.

Upon further examination, however, you’ll notice that those numbers are not accurate.  I’ve noticed that on a daily basis, that many of the “new” listings are actually relists.  Just for fun, I checked yesterday’s listings (May 10, 2010), and noticed the following statistics.

As of 6PM, there were 34 new listings in the Ann Arbor Area MLS.  Of those 34 listings, there were 16 relists, and an additional 7 were developer units at Ashley Terrace.  These have essentially been on the market all along, being available if you came to the building – they just weren’t in the MLS, so they’re not really new listings. Continue reading

Time’s a’ tickin’, Chicken Licken!

In the children’s story, Chicken Licken was hit on the head with an acorn one day when he was eating his lunch. He assumed that the sky was falling and persuaded his friends to join him in going off to report the impending disaster to the king. He made the unfortunate mistake of crying “The sky is falling” to the wily Foxy Loxy who diverted the frightened animals into his den and had them for lunch.

There are people right now in Ann Arbor and all across America who are swept up in the Chicken Liken mode.  Tantalized by the home buyer’s tax credit that is set to expire soon, they are holding back from taking action. A look at the economy has them convinced that the sky is falling, so they are gripped with fear that prevents them from committing to buy.

Now if Chicken Licken had felt first signs of an earthquake, he would have been a hero.  Instead, without looking at the evidence clearly, he leapt to a false conclusion, caused a panic, and never made it to supper.

Buying a home is big commitment that will dominate your finances for years to come, so being careful is important, but if you are paralyzed from taking action, there may be something else going on that will prevent you from enjoying the benefits of homeownership now. If you are holding back from buying, are you being realistic or suffering from Chicken Licken syndrome? It’s important to discern the difference, as Time’s a’ tickin’, Chicken Licken!

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Timing is Everything for Ann Arbor Home Buyers & Sellers

Buying or Selling - Timing is KeyHow the end of federal programs affects the Ann Arbor real estate market.

With the federal tax credits for home buyers winding down, last week also saw news of the federal government ending their year-long support of the mortgage industry. This government backing helped banks keep mortgage rates at or near historic lows, allowing many first-time home buyers a chance to buy their dream home and existing home owners a chance to refinance or move into a new home.

So what does this mean for Ann Arbor home buyers?

Saavy house hunters in Ann Arbor can still combine low mortgage rates and the federal tax credit program to get them into the house or condo of their dreams! But time truly is of the essence. Federal support for the mortgage industry is slated to wind down at the end of March…at which point interest rates may start to climb again.

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Ann Arbor Real Estate Market Does Better than National Sales Trend

Ann Arbor Ahead of National TrendNAR just came out with a report which shows that Nationally, sales in November 2009, climbed 44.1% compared to the same month last year.  There was a lot of variance around the country.  The sales rate rose 53.5% in the Midwest, 52.7% in the Northeast, 44.8% in the South, 28.1% in the West when compared year-over-year in November.

Good News for Homes Inventory

While the meduim sales price was down 4.3% to $172,600, the good news is that the month’s supply of resale homes was down 40.9% in November 2009, compared to November 2009. It now sits at 6.5 months.

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Ann Arbor Real Estate Market Showing Signs of Recovery

ks14500The Ann Arbor Real Estate Market is showing signs of recovery under $300,000.    One of the best indicators to watch is the months supply of housing.     Generally speaking, when the months supply of housing gets over 8 months, there is downward pressure on price.    Currently in Ann Arbor below $300,000, the months real estate supply ranges from 4.7 – 7 months.

Contrast that with the higher range of the market where once you get above $500,000, the months supply of housing is consistently over 15 months, and goes all the way up to 83 months once you get over $1,000,000.

Other Positive Signs of Ann Arbor Area Real Estate

Another indicator to watch is the Activity Index (AI) – which is the number of homes that are currently for sale which are under contract to close.  A number over 20% indicates activity that is generally seen in a seller’s market.    Under $300,000, the AI ranges from 25% – 40%.     The Northeast part of Ann Arbor  (bounded by US23, M-14, Pontiac Trail and Plymouth Rd)  shows even better signs of recovery, where 66% of all 2 story homes are under contract – an extremely healthy sign for a recovering market.8-27-09_Market_Stats

As we watch Ann Arbor area real estate trends, you will notice that the numbers for homes under $300,000 are better in August than July, however, once you get over $300,000 the numbers aren’t improving.    Hopefully as the market firms up in the lower end, we will begin to see a ripple effect up through the price ranges.

Staying Positive

I feel confident that we are at a turning point in the market.    For a long time, consumers have felt that the future was going to be worse than today.    For the first time in over a year, I sense that consumers are finally beginning to feel that the future will be better than today.    Once that thinking starts to take off, consumers will gain the confidence that will allow them to make large purchases, and the market will begin it’s slow recovery.

Contact me, your Ann Arbor area real estate expert when you are ready to learn more about purchasing and selling real estate in Washtenaw County.