A report from CNN which cited statistics from a government-backed mortgage buyer claims that home installment payments are now a bit easier on the wallet, as a result of lower mortgage interest rates.
The latest data from Freddie Mac shows interest rates on 30-year fixed mortgage products at 4.15 percent as of last Thursday, a slight increase over the previous week, but still considerably lower compared to year-ago data. The figure is still higher than rates were prior to last summer’s big mortgage rate spike, but rates do seem to be trending downwards, despite analyst forecasts that the U.S. Federal Reserve’s confirmation of a tapering of economic stimulus would drive rates upwards in 2014.
“This is more remarkable with the economy coming back up to speed and a bit more inflation pressure than we’ve seen for a while,” said HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger in an interview with CNN Money. The eloquent Gumbinger said that there are still a lot of unknowns with regards to forecasting when mortgage rates will tick up as previously expected. With that in mind, he posited that consumers are taking advantage of the lack of guidance on mortgage rate gyrations and the prevailing lower rates as of the present.
CNN Money also stressed that lower interest rates are a boon to first-time home buyers more so than other consumers, especially with statistics indicating that new residential construction sales were up by close to 20 percent, and existing home sales up by 5 percent as of May 2014. Unfortunately, the opposite is happening for prospective home sellers, who stand to be worse off for the ongoing rate decreases.
The Associated Press and CBS Money Watch, for instance, quoted Seattle homeowner Ryan Carson, 39, who said that it would behoove him to stay put in his present home, even if a larger one would be more beneficial for his growing family. The CBS report added that many homeowners are opting to rent out their old properties, which also contributes to supply being constrained, and home prices increasing as a direct result of low inventory.
“Higher prices and limited selection have put the brakes on a housing recovery that began in 2012,” said the above reports. “And slower home sales, in turn, drag down economic growth. Fewer sales mean lower commissions for real estate agents. Sales of furniture, appliances and garden supplies also take a hit.”
With increased home prices and low inventory working in concert to derail the pace of the housing market recovery, one company has sought to assist real estate brokers in achieving some equilibrium in their home sales regardless of mortgage rate gyrations. RealBiz Media Group Inc.’s (OTCQB: RBIZ) Nestbuilder Agent tool is designed for real estate agents, regardless of whether they have listings or not, to promote new listings and open houses via video, create content for consumers, and establish a deeper connection with would-be clients.
According to a press release from RealBiz Media President and CEO Steven Marques, Nestbuilder Agent is a “boon for agents who want creative outreach options to capture the attention and the imagination of prospects and clients with new and innovative content.”