Tag Archives: National Association of Realtors

What a Year It’s Been for Homeownership

looking back at the housing market

All the news and events going on in the country seem to have made a lot of us gaze back on all that’s happened in 2016 and think “Thank Goodness It’s Almost Over!” We can understand that. But it’s precisely because of that sentiment that we’d like to bring up some of the good news from the past year that we reported on in our blog posts about the state of the housing market. What’s more, as far as we can see, there’s good reason to believe that there 2017 will be great, too. Take a look and see what you think.

The Las Vegas Housing Market Has Returned
In fact, not only the housing market, but the economic status of our exciting city has bounced back from the years immediately following the Great Recession. For a long time, it seemed that the country had given up on Las Vegas – but they didn’t count on Las Vegas not giving up on itself. But we’re back, baby! And with the lowest unemployment rate since August 2008, the new T-Mobile Arena and our very own NHL hockey team (Go, Vegas Golden Knights!). Then there’s the opening of major new hotel/casinos and the start of more, new medical facilities, the possibility of an NFL team on the horizon (and did we mention IKEA?). With all that came people, families, and jobs. And following close on the heels of everything was a rise in the construction and sale of new homes, the resale market ticked up, and foreclosures came down. Plus, the year’s run of record-low interest rates helped homeownership return to numbers that naysayers never believed would happen again. Additionally, the slow and steady rise of real estate values in Las Vegas has helped many long-time homeowners escape the ‘underwater borrower’ scenario and begin to return to firm financial footing, too. In short – it’s clear that people are rebuilding their lives in Las Vegas, and thanks in no small part to the entrepreneurial spirit of our residents.

Mortgage Standards Loosened Up
Following the economic crash (can you believe it was nearly 10 years ago?) – banks and other lenders tightened their belts and made the task of obtaining a mortgage loan much more difficult than it had ever been. Partly due to new regulations, partly due to economic and social pressures – the fact is, the restrictions put in place were at such a high threshold that getting a loan became an onerous task – even for those who were gainfully employed and had good credit scores. As for those who had been financially harmed by the housing crisis, the thought of owning a home again seemed an impossibility. But 2016 saw mortgage lenders nationwide begin to ease their lending guidelines – with FHA and VA following that lead, as well. As a result, and with the passage of time that resolved many credit issues incurred due to the recession, more and more people are able to escape the rental market, invest in themselves and their family, and begin planning for the future by buying a home of their own.

Millennials Join First-Time Buyers in Huge Numbers
We mentioned this in a recent blog post, but it bears repeating here: According to recent reports from the National Association of Realtors® and Zillow – the market share of first-time buyers has risen to 35% of all homes purchased. (Big news when so many headlines reported a lack of homes in this price range!) Even more notable is that 61% of those buyers were under the age of 35. Many new statistics have confirmed this trend and further indicated that not only weren’t those Millennials going to be living in their parents’ basement forever (did you really think they would?) – but many were actually choosing to wait to buy until they could start with what would normally be considered a “2nd move up home” (which leaves that many more ‘starter homes’ available for the buyer’s market).

Since the election, many industry experts forecast that the 2017 housing market will continue to grow, but at a more moderate pace (which is something we’re all in favor of, quite honestly). Western cities will continue to lead the nation in home sales and pricing. Interest rates are anticipated to rise slightly, but since 2016 saw the record lowest home mortgage rate occur in August 2016, that’s not the worst news we’ve heard all year!

All things considered, Las Vegas and its housing market have bright futures to look forward to – both in 2017 and beyond. The even better news – is that Premier Mortgage is here to help homebuyers get the most value for every dollar. How? By offering “No Fee” loans that make sure you spend less of your hard-earned cash towards the cost of getting your mortgage loan – and more into the home you’re buying.

Find out more about Premier Mortgage Lending’s true “No Fee” mortgage loans, as well as their many other products and services by calling (702) 485-6600. Their experienced loan officers are there to help with your questions and can assist you in navigating from signed purchase agreement – to getting the keys to your new home.

Premier Mortgage Lending, NMLS #393282, is located at 701 N. Green Valley Pkwy., Suite 125, Henderson, 89074. The full-service lender is a member of the Las Vegas, Henderson, and Boulder City Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau and Southern Nevada Home Builders Association, as well as an affiliate member of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.

With First-Time Home Buyers on the Rise, Mortgage Availability Plays a Role

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According to recent reports from the National Association of Realtors®, 2016 has shown some positive and interesting developments when it comes to the sale of residential real estate. The market share of first-time home buyers has risen to a high of 35 percent of all homes purchased. Even more impressive is that 61 percent of those buyers were under the age of 35. Those figures could actually be even higher, as Zillow recently released data indicating first-time home buyers were actually 47 percent of the market. But either way, it’s good news for them and good news for U.S. real estate. (Watch out – here come the Millennials!)

It’s an exciting development that shows young adults are choosing – and more importantly are able – to realize the dream of homeownership. However, it’s also a trend many weren’t expecting. Not long ago, papers were filled with articles suggesting the majority of Millennials were deciding to live at home during their college years and possibly even planning to take up permanent residency there. Accordingly, the housing market began actively promoting the development of multi-generational home designs to accommodate this generational shift.

But this newly reported uptick in Millennial first-time buyers wasn’t surprising news to Rick Piette, owner of Premier Mortgage Lending.

As he explains, “A lot of times, the “trends” that media sources report don’t reflect the big picture. It was only this past May the ‘experts’ (such as Bloomberg and the Washington Post) were predicting this age group was more likely to continue living in their parents’ basements indefinitely – simply out of financial necessity. “In essence, they were saying that an entire generation of young Americans may not be ever want, or be able, to become homeowners.

“But at Premier, we had a much different take,” continues Piette. “We were seeing signs that this market growth was coming some time ago. (Click here to view our article from May 2015 on the subject.). And the three indicators that led us to our conclusion were these:

1. “Naturally, the first was due to the sheer volume of the Millennial Generation. At 75.4 million, their numbers have surpassed even the Baby Boomer presence of 74.9 million. That fact is going to have an impact, any way you slice it.

2. “Next, we were seeing that lending restrictions were slowly loosening up in the years after the economic crash. Because we work so closely every day with many different lenders – and we’re always educating our team about changing mortgage rules and regulations – it was clear to us that mortgage loans would be working more in favor of first-time buyers at almost precisely the same time Millennials were planning to head out on their own. Making the move into buying a home was the next logical step,” adds Piette.

3. “Finally, we know something about what the desire and opportunity to own a home means to people. Times may change, the economy may have its ups and downs (okay, sometimes very low downs) – but the innate need to create a nest or a safe haven for yourself and your family has never wavered. It’s simply human nature, perhaps even more so in our society. The fact is, there are few things that instill such a sense of achievement, pride, and self-worth than the ability to own a home.

“I suppose what I’m saying is that at Premier, we know the mortgage lending industry. Not only because we need to – so that we can provide the most knowledgeable service to our customers. But because we simply love what we do. In fact, sometimes I wonder if all our Loan Officers carry a ‘mortgage lending DNA’ gene,” Piette says with a smile.

That type of intimate industry knowledge is one of the prime benefits of choosing Premier Mortgage as your lender. Another is that – unlike huge multi-state banks or online lenders – Premier’s clients work directly with their Loan Officer in a personal, one-on-one relationship. As a locally owned Mortgage Broker, borrowers get the highest quality service from a tight-knit team of professionals that know their local Las Vegas market. In most cases, Premier’s Loan Officers are personally acquainted with the agents, builders, escrow and other individuals that are involved with every mortgage transaction – and their customers benefit from those relationships.

As Piette states, “Las Vegas is our town, too. This is the community where we live, work, raise our families, play, and participate. It is personal to us, because our clients are our neighbors and often become friends, too. Without staying on top of our game – with a team of experts and great programs like our true “No Fee” mortgage loans – we wouldn’t be able to give them the extraordinary service and outcomes they deserve. The great news for Millennials is that we’re happy to be here to make the dream come true for our next homebuying generation, too!”

Find out more about Premier Mortgage Lending’s true “No Fee” mortgage loans, as well as their many other products and services by calling (702) 485-6600. Their experienced loan officers are there to help with your questions and can assist you in navigating from signed purchase agreement – to getting the keys to your new home.

Premier Mortgage Lending, NMLS #393282, is located at 701 N. Green Valley Pkwy., Suite 125, Henderson, 89074. The full-service lender is a member of the Las Vegas, Henderson, and Boulder City Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau and Southern Nevada Home Builders Association, as well as an affiliate member of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.

The Mortgage Industry Should Continue Evolving on the Consumer’s Behalf

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Bad things happen to good people. In fact, Harold Kushner even wrote a book on the topic a few years back. That was in 2004, when the economy and housing market were on a roll. The book itself dealt with human issues and the difficulties that we often face going through life. But we see an interesting correlation between that concept and the economic hardships so many millions of Americans experienced in recent years, as a result of the actions of the financial institutions in which we placed our trust.

“For decades, the final word on our biggest financial decision – buying a home – was at the whim of these large banking institutions,” reveals Rick Piette, owner of Las Vegas-based Premier Mortgage Lending. “They made the rules, bent them for some, broke them for others, and ignored them for many. A stigma arose in our society that caused many of us to look down on those whose credit scores were less-than-worthy, often making the assumption that if these people would just “do the right thing” – they’d be better, upstanding members of society.

“But when the curtain was pulled back in 2007/2008 as The Great Recession began – suddenly there were many more members unintentionally joining the ranks of those unable to meet their obligations, with all the falling credit scores and unimaginable loss of credit and financial stability that accompanied it.”

Piette continues, “Many discovered that the state of their credit could quickly become a life-changing variable. Suddenly, society came to recognize that it IS possible to ‘do everything right’ – and still wind up on the wrong side of a good credit score. You know, that credit score that decides your finances, the interest you pay, your insurance rates, and even where you’re able to live.

“At Premier Mortgage Lending, we have long believed that changes to the “old order” of things is not only desperately needed, but deserved – for the millions of people in our country who put their trust in a system many feel was rigged against them. That’s why we have embraced the changes introduced by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and why we deliberately choose to practice complete transparency with our borrowers.

“We’re also encouraged to learn about new changes we hope to see implemented soon, as proposed by industry-related organizations. It includes those designed to level the playing field by introducing more fairness into a process that gives full consideration to each consumer’s individual circumstances.

“After all – these are people’s lives being dealt with – on a huge scale. Those people are more than a three-digit score – which in millions of cases took a serious hit that was not only unintentional, but often out of their control.”

One example is this: In June 2016, the National Association of Realtors sent a letter to two members of Congress to declare their support of alternative credit-scoring models under the “Credit Score Competition Act of 2015,” a bill still to be considered by the House Financial Services Committee.

This bill would allow Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the government-sponsored entities that assist Americans to obtain home loans) to use scoring models other than the standardized FICO to consider loan approval – such as their record of paying rent and utilities on time (true indicators of fiscal consistency not currently tracked in FICO’s credit scoring). The goal is to assist middle-to-lower income Americans who are financially qualified to buy a home – but are unable to do so because of their FICO score (or lack of one altogether).

This is only one of many recommended changes headed for congress and led by many different homebuyer and consumer-related advocates and industries. While each is to be considered individually to determine its probable impact, we believe that pursuing these types of ‘fairness doctrines’ will not only help our economy continue to recover, but restore a large piece of humanity to those whose lives were (in some cases, irrevocably) damaged by the financial hardships of the last several years.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject. News? Ideas? Recommendations? The more it’s open for discussion, the more likely change is to occur. Share your comments below.

Visit our website at www.PremierMortgageLending.com for more information about our true “No Fee Mortgage” loans. And to learn which are the most important questions to ask your mortgage lender, visit our www.KnowBeforeYouOweNevada.com website – where you’ll find quick informational videos that take the mystery out of getting the best mortgage loan for your needs.

Premier Mortgage Lending, NMLS #393282, is located at 701 N. Green Valley Pkwy., Suite 125, Henderson, 89074. The full-service lender is a member of the Las Vegas, Henderson, and Boulder City Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau and Southern Nevada Home Builders Association, as well as an affiliate member of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.

Trends Converge Illustrating Home Ownership Is On The Rise

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It’s not uncommon to find conflicting stories about current trends in the U.S. that pertain to the status quo of home ownership. Since the housing market collapse in 2008, it’s as if everyone suddenly acquired their own ‘crystal ball’ – claiming to know when, or how or where to make your next move into real estate.

But now, enough time has passed to allow us to view things in perspective. Actual data replaces “best guesses” and reveals real economic, geographic, and demographic statistics as they affect (and reflect) the state of the U.S. housing market. Plus, studies conducted by industry leaders have been implemented and tracked over time to help us determine how best to serve the homebuyers of the future.

Right now, there are several trends that indicate our industry is on the verge of a new upswing, for several different reasons.

Home Sales in 2015 Expected To Be At Highest Point Since 2006 This growth projection by the National Association of Realtors is driven by the combination of strong job growth, low interest rates and a gradual loosening of lending standards. Early results this year indicate that buyers who have been kept out of the market by those restrictions are beginning to return, and it is anticipated that 2015 will be the first time since 2008 that single-family home starts will exceed apartment starts.

Did you know? In most markets, the cost of renting is roughly twice the cost of owning a home. In reality – people have to live somewhere – whether they own their residence or not. And many are now realizing that it just makes more financial sense to buy than to keep renting.

The Future Plans For Most Millennials Include Home Ownership. Millennials, or “Generation Y” – whatever the popular term you use to describe them (maybe it’s even “son” or “daughter” in your case), they’re big numbers in our society. Approximately 80 million in the U.S. alone meet this demographic description, generally acknowledged to be those between 19-36 years of age today. And according to a recent study by the Urban Land Institute, this group is poised to begin moving into the home buyer’s market in droves – an estimated 70% are planning to do so within the next 5 years. And that’s a whole bunch of first-time homebuyers entering the marketplace.

Department of Commerce data shows that in 2014, more millennials moved from the city to the suburbs, a significant change for a trend that has historically operated in reverse. And this is a generation that faced a host of new challenges: mounting student debt, stricter mortgage qualification standards, and until the past year, weak job and wage growth. It’s becoming clear that these hurdles may delay the step, but ultimately, they want to own homes of their own for reasons that will sound very familiar: marriage, starting families of their own, or even simply this: “I want a yard.”

Financial Regulations Continue To Evolve In Favor of Consumers. As we have reported before, the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act has brought sweeping changes to the home mortgage industry – and additional regulations continue to go into effect as the calendar progresses. In addition to laws that now limit the fees able to be collected from buyers by mortgage brokers (although the same does not apply to banks or mortgage bankers) – this fall is scheduled to see new rules go into in effect with regard to documentation, Good Faith Estimates, and advance disclosures prior to close of escrow regarding your mortgage loan’s terms (translation: No more surprises for consumers.)

Buyers Have More – and More Affordable Options – For Home Mortgages. Gone are the days when banks and mortgage bankers held all the cards for buyers when it came to obtaining a home loan. In the lending industry – as in every other area of consumer spending today – buyers are more in control of their mortgage destiny than ever before. Shopping for the best interest rates and the lowest costs for a new loan can yield tremendous savings for home buyers that still comes as a shock to many (the ones that are used to ‘the old ways’). One example: Premier Mortgage’s clients literally save thousands of dollars in cash-out-of-pocket at close of escrow using our popular “No Fee Loans.” “The ability for consumers to close a home loan and pay absolutely no lender fees is a huge plus for homebuyers,” says Rick Piette, owner of Premier Mortgage Lending.

These are just a few of the recent reports hitting the newsstands these days, and taken collectively, it all points to the fact that for consumers, the “home buying playing field” is finally leveling off. That just might make now the best time in a long time to plan on moving into a home of your own.

Premier Mortgage Lending, NMLS #393282, is located at 701 N. Green Valley Pkwy., Suite 125, Henderson, 89074. The full-service lender is a member of the Las Vegas and Boulder City Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau and Southern Nevada Home Builders Association, as well as an affiliate member of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.