Real Estate, Community News & More from My Desk to Yours

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Increasing Interest from Abroad in U.S. Homes

A growing number of international home shoppers are attracted to residential properties in the United States, according to a survey performed by the National Association of Realtors entitled the 2010 Profile of International Home Buying Activity which covers the one-year period between April 1, 2009, and March 31, 2010. Some interesting statistics revealed were: International buyers came from 53 different countries; top four were Canada, Mexico, U.K. and China. 66% purchased single-family detached homes. 16% of total purchases were for homes priced at more than $500,000. Median price paid by international buyers was $219,400. It is possible that the perception of foreigners is that real estate in the United States is becoming more affordable making it a great time to buy. The majority of international buyers were reported in Florida, California, Arizona and Texas. These four states account for 53% of purchases and have remained the top destinations for the past three years, with Florida and California remaining the top two destinations. Florida typically attracts European, Canadian and South American buyers. Only 44% of international buyers used a mortgage to pay for their home, compared to 92% of domestic buyers. Visit www.slesnick.net to see homes for sale.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Mortgage Interest Rates Continue to Fall

A Florida Realtor article this week noted that a 30-year fixed rate mortgage loan rate (Freddie Mac) dropped to 4.58%! The last time rates were lower was in the 1950s. Rates on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell to an average of 4.04%, down from 4.13% a week earlier. Rates on five-year adjustable rate mortgages averaged 3.79%, the lowest since January 2005. Mortgage applications rose almost 9% last week from a week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Freddie Mac collects data on mortgage rates from lenders across the country on Monday through Wednesday of each week to calculate the national average. Borrowers may be encouraged to refinance, and the Obama administration has launched programs to assist them with refinancing if they owe up to 25% more than their home’s value and have their loans guaranteed by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae.