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An Unusual Market

For the third consecutive month, existing-home sales fell, but buyers are still eager. Higher mortgage rates and prices and low inventory continue to chip away at affordability. Some regions of the U.S., however, continue to see gains.Nationwide, existing-home sales—completed transactions of single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops—decreased 2.4% in April compared to March, according to the National Association of REALTORS®’ late

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The Most Unexpected Housing Costs

As home buyers have stretched their budgets to buy, they have discovered more unexpected costs of homeownership. Forty-four percent of recent buyers surveyed said they already spent over their personal budget for the home, according to a new ConsumerAffairs survey of about 1,000 adults.Home buyers said they spent an average of $10,334 more than they intended for their home, and younger adults—millennials—were the most likely to overspend. The

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Rents Jump to New Record Once Again

The rental market boom continues, and renters are paying a lot more. The U.S. median rental price reached a new high in April—$1,827, realtor.com® reports. Rents have maintained their record-breaking streak that began in January 2021.“April data illustrates the perfect storm of supply and demand dynamics behind the continued rent surge, from a low number of available rentals to higher for-sale housing costs forcing many would-be buyers to re

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Most Borrowers Don’t Compare Mortgage Rates

Fifty-six percent of home buyers went with the first mortgage rate offer they received, according to a new survey from LendingTree of more than 1,000 homeowners. But nearly half of those who gathered multiple quotes reported that they saved money by doing so—46% of borrowers who shopped around said the first offer they received was not the lowest rate.Overall, only about a quarter of survey respondents said they received offers from two lenders

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Top 10 Places with Highest Share of ‘Equity Rich’ Homes

As home prices climb, the number of homes considered equity rich is growing nationwide, but some areas are outpacing others. A home attains an equity rich status when a loan balance secured on a property is less than 50% of the home’s estimated market value.In the first quarter, about 45% of residential homes with a mortgage were considered equity rich, according to the first quarter of 2022 U.S. Home Equity and Underwater Report published by A

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Building Materials Press Even Higher

New-home buyers are facing higher prices, and a big reason is escalating building costs. Building material prices are up 19% over a year ago, according to a report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Material costs have jumped by about 36% just since the pandemic began. Many builders are passing on those higher costs to home buyers.The price of a new home continues to climb and reached a median sales price of $436,700 in March. That is up 2

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The Most Popular Spaces to Remodel and their Costs

Since the pandemic began, homeowners have been eager to spruce up their spaces. Even recently, homeowners are spending more on home improvement projects than they have—due partially to higher building material costs, but also to a desire to widen the scope of their projects.Kitchens and bathrooms continue to be the most popular areas to renovate, according to the 2022 U.S. Houzz & Home Study. The median spend in 2021 on a kitchen remod

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52% of Homes Sold Above List Price in April

Competition abounds in the real estate market, and buyers are continuing to bid up home prices this spring. Fifty-two percent of homes sold above the list price in April, up from 45% in March and from 42% a year earlier, according to OJO Labs, a real estate technology company.Homes in April sold for an average of $13,655 above the list price across metro areas, according to the OJO Lab analysis that tracked MLS sold data.In San Francisco, 82% of

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Nearly Half of US Homeowners Considered ‘Equity Rich’

As home prices continue to increase, homeowners are getting richer and richer. About 45% of mortgaged residential properties in the U.S. were considered “equity rich” in the first quarter, up from about 32% a year earlier, according to a new report from ATTOM Data Solutions. Equity rich means that the combined estimated amount of the loan balance on the home was no more than 50% of the home’s estimated market value.“Homeowners continue to

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ARM Demand Hits 14-Year High

More home buyers are reaching for the ARMs. Adjustable-rate mortgages generally offer a lower introductory mortgage rate that is locked in for five, seven, or 10 years before then adjusting.As mortgage rates rapidly rise, some buyers may be getting priced out, unless they lock in an ARM, which may have an introductory rate closer to the level of fixed-rate mortgages when they started their house hunt.The average contract interest rate for a 30-ye

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