Study Finds Local Real Estate Brokerage Websites Offer Most Complete, Accurate and Timely Info• An independent study of 11 major markets by the WAV Group finds that local real estate brokerage websites give consumers the most complete, accurate and timely information about homes for sale.• The study evaluated sites from three local brokerages with real estate agents who help consumers buy and sell homes, comparing listing search results to those found on two national portals, Trulia and Zillow, which operate almost exclusively online.• In the markets analyzed, the study concluded that: -Local real estate brokerage sites display 100% of the agent-listed homes for sale compared to about 80% for the national portal sites. -Local real estate brokerage sites show newly listed homes for sale seven to nine days earlier than national portals. -Local real estate brokerage sites almost never show a home listing as active that has already sold; about 36% of listings that appear as active on national portals are no longer for sale.
Mortgage Rates Hit New Record Lows• Average rates on fixed mortgages fell to fresh record lows for the second straight week last Thursday.• Freddie Mac said the rate on the 30-year loan dropped to 3.36 percent, down from the previous week’s rate of 3.40 percent, which was the lowest since long-term mortgages began in the 1950s.• The average on the 15-year fixed mortgage, a popular refinancing option, dipped to 2.69 percent, down from the previous week’s record low of 2.73 percent.• Rates are falling after the Federal Reserve started buying mortgage bonds to help strengthen the national housing recovery that began earlier this year. The Fed plans to continue the program until there is substantial improvement in the U.S. job market.• Nationally, as in Houston, sales of both existing and new homes are up from last year. Home prices are rising more consistently. And builders are more confident in the market and are starting to build more homes.
Weekly HAR Market StatSome say that housing and the economy are woven together into a single garment ofdestiny. Lets review recent national economic data: a good September non-farmpayroll report marking 31 consecutive months of private job growth, the unemploymentrate falling to 7.8 percent–a 44- month low, a widely positive S&P/Case-Shiller homeprice report and mortgage rates averaging close to 3.4 percent. Combine the abovetrends with less housing supply and strong home sales numbers, and you can start tosee just whats driving this recovery. Its still the early innings, but were rooting for thehome team. In the Houston region, for the week ending September 30: • New Listings decreased 8.0% to 1,829 • Pending Sales increased 48.5% to 1,610 • Closed Sales increased 13.3% to 1,817
Graduate to a New Designation Graduate REALTOR® Institute – GRI 1 Finance The GRI designation is the most widely recognized of the National Real Estate Designations. Consisting of three courses, each taught by experts in their respective fields, this module consists of Contract Forms, Contract Procedures, Residential Finance and Cultural Diversity & Fair Housing. A calculator is required. GRI courses may be taken in any order and satisfy your 9 hours of non-legal MCE requirements. TREC rules mandate that each student be on time. Please bring your license number with you to the class. Date: October 18, 19, 22 and 23 Time: 8:15 a.m. – 5 p.m. Location: HAR Central Investment: $295Register @ www.har.com/edu Questions? 713-629-1900 ext. 6