Long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell this week with the benchmark 30-year home loan hitting its lowest level ever.
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the average rate on the key 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.07%, down from last week’s 3.13%. For the second week in a row, it is the lowest level since Freddie began tracking average rates in 1971. A year ago, the rate stood at 3.75%. Yes, read that again. The lowest rate since 1971. That is 49 years people! Almost half a century.
The average rate on the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage also fell slightly to 2.56% from 2.59% last week, but it is down from 3.18% a year ago.
The historically low interest rates come as the U.S. housing market appears to be bounding forward from a corona virus-caused spring freeze. Sales of new homes rose a surprisingly strong 16.6% in May as major parts of the country reopened, though sales of existing homes struggled through the month with a 9.7% decline.
A report on pending home sales last week offered more optimism, with the number of Americans signing contracts to purchase homes jumping 44.3% in May after a record-breaking April decline. Those contract signings are a barometer of finalized purchases over the next two months.
The impact of the corona virus pandemic sidelined both buyers and sellers somewhat in March and April, so there remains a tight supply of homes available for sale, running up against high demand.
Last month in Benton and Bryant School districts we had 139 homes sell with a median price of $192,400. Those homes had a median time of only 6 days on the market. It is enough to say that the market is HOT. So the smart homebuyers are getting there ducks in a row, such as locking down their financing ahead of time so when they find the home they want they are able to act quickly. Most homes selling in Saline County right now are getting multiple offers in the first days of being on the market. Often times they are selling above asking price with very few seller concessions such as closing cost assistance.
Currently in those same areas we have 167 homes for sale with a median price of $279,900. These numbers seem to show that there is a greater demand for homes priced under $200,000, and that is where inventory is extremely low. Currently we have only 59 homes under the $200,000 price for sale with the median price being $155,000.
The Bottom Line
For the buyer- Get with a lender and get approved for a loan. When you find a home you like, make an offer quickly and be sure to put your best offer forward the First time. Once your offer is accepted lock in your rate quickly.
For the Seller- Don’t try to be greedy. Prepare your home for the sell and price it right. Remember that it will have to appraise for the bank. Start looking for your new home ASAP and be ready for some showings with the initial peak of interest.
Buying or Selling, reach out to me and my team and we can coach you through the process. It doesn’t need to be a stressful time on either side and we can show you how fun the process really can be!
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