California home sellers slash prices

After three years of soaring home prices, the heat is coming off the U.S. housing market. Home sellers are slashing prices at the highest rate in at least eight years, especially in the West, where the price gains were hottest.

In the four weeks ended Sept. 16, more than one-quarter of the homes listed for sale had a price drop, according to Redfin, a real estate brokerage. That is the highest level since the company began tracking the metric in 2010. Redfin defines a price drop as a reduction in the list price of more than 1 percent and less than 50 percent.

“While home prices continued to rise modestly in August, the deceleration in price growth and the surge in housing supply suggest that a market shift is underway,” said Leslie Appleton-Young, senior vice president and chief economist at the California Realtors group. “We are seeing active listings increasing and more price reductions in the market, and as such, the question remains, ‘How long will it take for the market to close the price expectation gap between buyers and sellers?'”

The price gap may close even more quickly if mortgage rates continue their trend higher. The average rate on the popular 30-year fixed mortgage loan is up more than a quarter of a percentage point in the past month and is knocking on the door of 5 percent, a level not seen in nearly a decade.

read more at: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/20/home-sellers-are-slashing-prices-especially-in-california.html

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Update your home with lasting changes – guidelines to avoid looking dated

Stick with the basics for your basics

Clean lines and neutral colors, while not the stuff of Instagram likes, will probably outlast current obsessions such as patterned cement tiles and benches upholstered with ratty sheepskins. Design pros preach that the backbones of your home — floors, walls and major furniture — should skew toward simplicity. In a decade, that swoop-armed Pottery Barn sofa might feel more tired than a low-slung, squared-off midcentury modern couch.

Indulge in trends — in a small way

Holland says she sometimes gets pushback from clients when she presents a design proposal with neutral base elements. “They’ll sometimes say, ‘That’s boring,’ but I emphasize that the way to do these trends — macramé, a bold pattern — is in a pillow or a small area rug,” she says. It’s akin to shelling out for the little black designer dress you’ll wear forever, then dolling it up with this season’s necklace and shoes.

read more at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/home/seven-tips-for-creating-a-classic-look-at-home/2018/08/07/93eae784-9036-11e8-bcd5-9d911c784c38_story.html?utm_term=.1afadb5462bc

Existing home sales price drop in July

WASHINGTON (August 22, 2018) — Existing-home sales subsided for the fourth straight month in July to their slowest pace in over two years, according to the National Association of Realtors®. The West was the only major region with an increase in sales last month.

Total existing-home sales1, https://www.nar.realtor/existing-home-sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, decreased 0.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.34 million in July from 5.38 million in June. With last month’s decline, sales are now 1.5 percent below a year ago and have fallen on an annual basis for five straight months.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says the continuous solid gains in home prices have now steadily reduced demand. “Led by a notable decrease in closings in the Northeast, existing home sales trailed off again last month, sliding to their slowest pace since February 2016 at 5.21 million,” he said. “Too many would-be buyers are either being priced out, or are deciding to postpone their search until more homes in their price range come onto the market.”

Read more at: https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/existing-home-sales-slip-07-percent-in-july

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