Thursday, January 31, 2013

The booming real estate market in california

As we begin to see a return in the housing market there is no better example of things to come than in California. Currently the real estate market in California is booming, somewhat reflecting what everyone hopes is on the horizon for the real estate market in general. California is presently home to 7 of the top 10 cities for growth, showing positive signs for the economy and the housing market alike. The Huffington Post article below goes into more detail about this phenomenon. Click here to read the entire article.

Sacramento Real Estate Boom Leads Nation In Growth
By: Aaron Sankin

A woman walks towards a home for sale during a viewing for brokers in Leucadia, Calif., in November 2012. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)
According to a report issued this week by, real estate in Northern California is booming -- especially in one housing market that was among the hardest hit of any in the country by the collapse of the housing bubble.

The report, which looked at the year-over-year increases in median home listing prices in housing markets across the United States, found that the Sacramento area had the largest gains of any metro region. This data suggests that sagging housing prices, which have been a drag on the economy in much of California's Central Valley for years, are not only beginning to rebound, but are doing so with surprising strength.

Five of the top 10 cities with the fastest growth are located in Northern California and two more are in the southern portion of the state.


"In Sacramento, you have a desirable area that was hit really hard by the housing bubble, with a lot of foreclosures and a lot of overbuilding," said Alison Schwartz of Move, Inc., the operator of, who noted that the spike in prices in the area is largely a result of how far home values had dropped in the region during the recession.

During much of the 2000s, loose financing led to an oversupply of housing being built in the San Francisco Bay Area's far outlying suburbs in the run-up to the crash. Since then, there's been little new construction; so as demand naturally increases with the gradually improving economy, supply hasn't been able to keep up and prices have jumped.

Additionally, many homeowners in the region still underwater on their mortgages, making it impossible for them to sell and further drying up some of the liquidity that would otherwise be present in the market.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Was 2012 the Year the Housing Market Recovered?

Hey all you Homeowners out there, we know it's very important to have a solid grasp on where the Housing Market is and what that means for you as a Owner. This morning we came across this great article, definitely a must read. The article discusses what happened to the Housing Market in 2012 and the state of the Housing Market as we move into 2013. Click here to read the entire article.

Was 2012 the Year the Housing Market Recovered?
By: Daniel Carroll and Samuel Chapman

On many occasions during the past few years, housing market conditions have been cited as a key factor contributing to the slow recovery. For a typical household, the largest component of wealth is house value. As house prices fell and sales were depressed, household wealth shrank. The decline in house values has been indicted as leading cause of restrained consumption, as households saved from current income to recoup the loss in housing wealth. The decline in house values has also been suggested as partly responsible for stubbornly high unemployment due to “lock-in,” where a household that is underwater on its mortgage limits its job search because it cannot afford to move.

Fortunately, over this past year there have been signs of modest, yet sustained, improvement in the housing market. According to the latest report, sales of single-family units, both of new and existing, have been up year-over-year from January to November. The latest month shows new and existing sales up by 15.3 and 12.4 percent, respectively, compared to their values in November 2011. Since April 2012, monthly sales of existing multifamily units have also been positive relative to the previous year, with the November data turning in a whopping 33 percent increase.

After several years of weakness in the home construction sector, 2012 has also been marked by large increases in home starts. For single-family units, the change each month from its counterpart in 2011 has averaged 23.6 percent; for multifamily units the average is 38.0 percent.

The descent of home prices has leveled off, and prices have begun to move upward again.

During 2011, home price indexes reported negative year-over-year changes each month; however in 2012, these changes have been increasing each month. As of October, house prices were roughly 5 percent greater than the previous year. Price increases are a welcome sign as they point to a steady return of demand and suggest household conditions are improving both in terms of income and credit. The recovery also has a positive implication for general aggregate activity as it increases household net worth, thereby stimulating consumption.

Finally, while the good news discussed above is certainly encouraging, it should be noted that it is unclear at what point we should declare the housing market “fully recovered.” The data on sales, starts, and prices were all well above trend before they began to plummet in 2005. Therefore, the previous peak level is not likely the correct baseline by which to judge recovery. Nevertheless, any recovery must begin with a sustained increase in housing activity, and 2012 has, so far, appeared to deliver just that.

Friday, January 11, 2013

It's that time again! National Bath Safety Month!

Nearly 370 people suffer bathtub or shower related injuries each day throughout the country according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. With January being National Bath Safety Month, we felt it was a good time to share some of the great tips to keep families safe throughout the year. From grab bars and walk-in tubs to something as simple as rubber shower mats, there are a number of options for making your bathroom safer for the elderly and children alike.

Here are three things to keep in mind when choosing to improve the safety of your bathroom:

  • Traffic: Is the bathroom in question one that is frequently used? Do you have a lot of family visiting throughout the year for holidays and other events? Do you have kids or elderly people in your home? These are some very important questions to ask yourself when choosing safety options. Just like people, all homes are different and looking into the needs of a home can help with making decisions.
  • Practicality/Time: As we all know, some projects take longer than others. When choosing to improve or renovate your bathroom having a timetable of when projects need to be completed will reduce your stress and keep you on task. Knowing that your improvements will keep your family safe should be fun and will ultimately give you peace of mind.
  • Cost: It's what we're all thinking, right? Don't worry, there are a number of options to choose from that might be right for your family without re-doing your entire bathroom. Any improvements you make will be worth every penny when the ones you love are safe in your home.
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