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15
May

New Listing!!

10005 Reevesbury in BHPO.  Call me for more information and photos … $1,500,000

4
May

Economic Weely Update 5/3/2013

This week marked more good economic news. Real Estate related news began Tuesday when NAR reported March resale number of homes under contract rose 7% from March 2012. Case-Shiller, by far the most conservative on real estate, reported a year over year price increase for LA of 14.1% in their 20 major city report for February. I dont really know what this means as they don’t state median (half are more, half are less), or average price. Its some formula they have for most homes and neighborhoods. Keep in mind the median was up 24% during that period! Based on what I am seeing 14% is low!

 

Stocks soared today after a much stronger than expected jobs report. The economy added 165,000 nonfarm payroll jobs. The unemployment rate fell to 7.5%, a 4 year low. The DOW and S&P are on track to end the week up almost 2% and the NASDEQ up 3.3%. Finally, this is starting to shape up as what a recovery looks like! Stocks also were up with the S&P500 ending the month of April at a record high. The major markets finished April with the DOW up 13.3, NASDEQ up 10.2% and S&P up 12% for the year. This run up has been a result of higher than expected earnings, dropping unemployment,  robust home sales, rising home prices, dramatically fewer foreclosures, and rising consumer confidence. 

As the economy improves, demand for loans increases, and interest rates rise. Rising rates, in turn, drive down the price of bonds. The yield hit 1.75% today as investors jumped into stocks and out of bonds. Minutes from the Federal Reserve meeting last month indicated that policymakers seemed headed to winding down their bond purchasing before a weak March jobs report took them by surprise. They will continue purchases of Treasury’s and agency mortgage backed securities until the outlook for the labor market has improved.  If the outlook for labor market conditions improve as anticipated, the Fed will then decrease purchases of massive bond buying in the year and stop them by year-end. If the Fed does in fact try to pull-out and exit the $85 billion bond buying program because the program has either been deemed a success or has become ineffective, it is possible the Fed will face many unintended consequences.

The latest GDP report confirmed that the housing sector has become an important contributor to the economic recovery. Residential fixed investment added to overall economic growth over the past eight consecutive quarters and contributed more than 0.3 percentage points in growth over the first three months of this year. Moreover, near record low mortgage rates should further drive the housing market recovery over the near term.

This week rates are falling for all types of mortgages, and the average 15-year fixed loan has hit an all-time low of 2.56%, for a second straight week, dropping from 2.61%, both better than the previous low mark of 2.63% set in November. A year ago the 15-year rate stood at 3.07%. The 30-year fixed has now dropped for a fifth straight week to 3.35%, from 3.40% a week ago. After rising as high as 3.63% in March, the rate is again homing in on the 3.31% all-time low seen last November. A year ago the same rate averaged 3.84%.

The five-year ARM sank to 2.56% with an average 0.5 point. It was down from 2.58% a week ago. The one-year ARM dropped to 2.56% with an average 0.3 point. It was down from 2.62% a week ago. This week marked the first time in history the 15-year fixed, five-year ARM and one-year ARM all averaged the same percentage. This week mortgage applications showed a slight uptick and the refinance share of mortgage activity remained unchanged, accounting for 75% of total applications.

Have a great weekend! (AND, open 2-5 every Sunday until its sold is 9007 Larke Ellen in Beverlywood.  See http://www.9007LarkeEllen.com for all information and photos)

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26
Apr

April 26, 2013 Economic update! Woo hoo!!

This week ended with mostly positive economic news. Jobless claims were down 16K, to the lowest level in five years. The DOW closed up for the week. Bond yields showed slightly lower interest rates and gold continued to plummet with more data showing very low inflation.  CAR reported that March inventory was down from February. As a result of brisk sales, inventory levels are the lowest ever reported, yet there is a steady stream of listings. These new listings are selling quickly which is why; even though we don’t have many active listings, there are a larger number of sales than we have had in the past few years.  We have seen an increase in listings in some areas over the last few weeks. This includes Santa Monica, Brentwood, Calabasas, and much of the Valley.  We have not seen an increase listings in Beverly Hills, Bel Air, and the Sunset  Strip areas.

Mortgage rates inched closer to historic lows this week as more homebuyers jumped into an increasingly competitive housing market. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.57 percent compared to 3.61 percent last week. One year ago, that rate stood at 4.09 percent. Four weeks ago, it was 3.75 percent. The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 2.8 percent compared with 2.85 percent last week, and the 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage fell to 2.65 percent from 2.66 percent. The 30-year fixed has dropped for six weeks in a row. If it continues to fall at this pace, the 30-year rate soon is very close to a record low again, which was 3.5 percent in early December. Once again these rates are for conforming rate loans. 

Have a great weekend!

26
Apr

9007 Larke Ellen Cir

9007 Larke Ellen Cir

Entrace to this grand home in Beverlywood

23
Apr

9007 Larke Ellen Circle in Beverlywood $1,599,000

This quite lovely 4+4 home is a new construction “remodel” that oozes high-quality design and workmanship.  It is a must see and will not last long.  Call me for a private viewing!Image

16
Mar

Important news from this Beverly Hills Realtor

Mortgage rates rose this week as positive data indicates that the economy is improving at a surprisingly strong pace. All indicators were positive beyond expectations again this week. Today marked the first day the DOW didn’t finish up after 10 straight days. The stock market rallied at the close and we almost hit 11 positive days in a row, unbelievable! Retail sales, jobs, housing, financials, posted better than expected results. Inflation results showed inflation higher than expected.  Usually inflation causes rates to rise, which they did but  more slightly than expected. The dollar also strengthened against most currencies which was also surprising.    Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.63 percent for the week ending March 14, up from 3.52 percent last week but down from 3.92 percent a year ago. Rates on 30-year fixed-rate loans hit a low in Freddie Mac records dating to 1971 of 3.31 percent during the week ending Nov. 21, 2012. For 15-year fixed-rate mortgages, rates averaged 2.79 percent, up from 2.76 percent last week but down from 3.16 percent a year ago. Rates on 15-year fixed-rate loans hit a low in Freddie Mac records dating to 1991 of 2.63 percent during the week ending Nov. 21, 2012.  For five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid-rate mortgage (ARM) loans, rates averaged 2.61 percent, down from 2.63 percent last week and 2.83 percent a year ago. Rates on one-year Treasury-indexed ARM loans averaged 2.64 percent, virtually unchanged from 2.63 percent last week, but down from 2.79 percent a year ago.
Inventory rates (homes for sale) are the lowest ever recorded. So for now its more of the same: multiple offers, rising prices, few homes to show and quick decisions on the part of buyers is a must! It should be noted that even though stocks are higher that the highs in 2007 adjusted for inflation, in “real” numbers they are quite a bit lower. Housing as well. Some areas have hit the highs from 2007, but adjusted for inflation they are still lower in “real” dollars. I would think that prices will continue to move up sharply before they level off!

26
Feb

405 is unpredictable in March 2013

Three northbound lanes on the 405 freeway through Brentwood and West Los Angeles will close for 55 hours starting March 1, and Metro officials told commuters on Tuesday to plan for traffic delays.

A 2.4-mile stretch of the freeway between Montana Avenue and Getty Center Drive will be reduced from five lanes to two as part of the Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project. The corresponding off-ramps will also be closed during the 55-hour period.

Drivers will be able to bypass the closure by taking Westbound Wilshire Boulevard to Northbound Sepulveda and entering the northbound 405 again at Skirball Center Drive, according to the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

During the closure, crews will realign the freeway to incorporate a carpool lane that will eventually extend 10 miles between the 10 and 101 freeways.

Changeable message signs and traffic control officers will be deployed at key locations within the project area to help guide motorists through the area.  Emergency access will be provided through the lane reduction area.

For more project information and detour maps, visit metro.net/405. For real-time traffic conditions, visit the Caltrans website at quickmap.dot.ca.gov.

23
Feb

February Economic Update

Informative news from Terre Steinbeck, Beverly Hills Realtor, Beverlywood, Hancock Park, Grove // The 30- year mortgage rate slightly rose this week to 3.56 % from 3.53% last week, still at the highest since September. Last year this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.95%.  The 15-year rate stayed the same this week at 2.77%.  A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averages 3.19%.  The 5-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.64 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, the same as last week. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.80 percent. The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.65 percent this week with an average 0.4 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.61 percent.  At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.73 percent.  These low rates are continuing to help the housing market, while mortgage delinquencies are decreasing and home prices are steadily rising as demand surges.

Thursday’s  agreement on the mortgage settlement reported Banks have provided $45.8 billion in aid under the mortgage settlement plan. This relief was a part of the settlement from about a year ago by 49 state attorneys general, several federal agencies and big banks. The settlement resolved investigations into allegations the financial institutions had used faulty paperwork and other unethical practices to foreclose on homes.  Most of the aid to consumers have received have been through short sales not loan modifications, especially in CA.  According to California reports, about 175,000 consumers have received a total of $20.6 billion in principal reductions, short-sale relief and  only a very small  percentage received loan modifications.

What does this mean to us?  The satisfaction of the settlement will take pressure off the lenders to do short sales and modifications.  I really don’t see lenders doing short sales much longer.  We have already begun to see them rescind approvals, so they can re-price the property to a higher value.  I’d be surprised if any short sales are done in 2014.  I expect them to take a “pay or we are foreclosing approach.”  The days lenders are waiting a long period before initiating foreclosure with a borrower in default appears to be over.  This is all good news and very much needed for a “normal Real Estate Market,” if there is such a thing.

Prices, obviously, are rising faster than anyone would have expected. I don’t see any end in sight.

Have a nice weekend.

31
Jan

Home Buying Advice from the Wise Realtor

It’s a question that looms for everyone considering a home purchase: How can I prepare for this monumental event? What must I do to transform a lifelong dream into a comfortable experience? True, there is no secret wisdom that can be decoded for the answer. Nor does there exist a wide open road that will whisk you to ultimate enlightenment. Nevertheless, home shoppers can take a number of practical steps to achieve their goals with maximum smoothness. Here are some of the most highly regarded stepping stones to home buying success.

Hunky Down Payment. Many industry gurus recommend plunking down a minimum of 20% for your down.  Remember, the hunkier the initial outlay, the lower and more manageable your monthly housing expenses will be. So start saving those pennies.

Longer Stays Pay. Generally speaking, don’t consider your home a stopover. Many real estate honchos agree that 5-7 years is the minimum amount of time owners should remain planted. Because homes typically appreciate over time, a buyer who stays glued to home sweet home stands an excellent chance of roping in some juicy profits. Also, home hopping isn’t exactly cheap. Things like closing costs, inspections, and moving expenses are sure to enter the picture, scooping bundles of cash out of your pockets.

Monthly Nut. In a perfect world, monthly housing expenses would be limited to your mortgage outlays. But they aren’t. Owners will be shelling out bucketsful for things like taxes, insurance, and quite possibly HOA fees. Factor all of these money-munchers into the mix before you sign on the dotted line.

Would you like to learn more about reaching your home buying goals with maximum satisfaction? Simply drop your questions and thoughts into the comment box. Or just reach out to our team directly.

And, of course, if you’re ready to discover the latest opportunities in the Beverly Hills real estate market, I’m ready to make it happen.  Call or email today.

Back soon.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE

29
Jan

Sometimes Smaller is Better

They’ve dubbed it ‘Making Room: New Models for Housing New Yorkers’.  But this fascinating museum exhibit goes well beyond spotlighting contemporary living spaces. Running through September 2013, the showcase treats visitors to a number of revealing urban insights, ranging from the Big Apple’s soaring single adult population to the ways in which changing social, economic, and demographic factors are reshaping the city’s environment.

As you might expect, the exhibit’s starring attraction is New York’s sparkling new housing concept. Known as micro-units, the residential breakthrough was born out of Mayor Bloomberg’s program to develop new housing for a severely undersupplied city. Slated to be constructed on a city-owned site in Manhattan later in 2013, the micro-units are New York’s answer to soaring population growth. How intense will the increase be? Planners are forecasting a population jump of one million by 2030. Couple this dramatic rise with the current undersupply of housing, and micro-units are nothing short of salvation for the city.

As the museum exhibit demonstrates, the micro-units not only set vigorous new standards for innovative design, they pack fresh, bold approaches into the construction as well. Visitors even get to sample the goods in advance thanks to the exhibit’s fully furnished micro unit, which has been designed for leisurely, people-friendly walk-throughs. Those who can’t get enough of micro-unit mania also can view the complete collection of concept proposals that made it to the mayor’s desk.

Of course, innovative housing concepts are not limited to New York. Are you curious about some of the unique residential options right here in Los Angeles? Simply drop your questions and thoughts into the comment box. Or just reach out to our team directly.

And, of course, if you’re ready to discover the latest opportunities in the Beverly Hills real estate market, I’m ready to make it happen.  Call or email today.

Back soon.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE