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  1. 1. Houston Bucks Apartment Rental Trends • The average rent for apartments in Houston decreased 1.1 percent over the past year, according to a new report from TransUnion. • Houston’s average rent was $881 in the first quarter of 2012, down from $891 in the same quarter a year earlier. • The average rent nationwide was $865 in the first quarter, up 4.4 percent from the $829 average recorded in 2011. That increase is not surprising given that vacancy rates reached their lowest level since 2001, TransUnion’s Mike Mauseth said in the company’s statement. • However, the average rent declined in six of the 10 major markets that TransUnion analyzed for its report with the largest declines in Denver, Chicago and Los Angeles. • Mauseth noted differences even in large metro areas situated relatively close to each other, as prices decreased in Houston and Los Angeles but increased in Dallas and San Diego.
  2. 2. Mortgage Rates Approach Record Low • The average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage has dipped to near its record low, keeping homebuying and refinancing affordable. • Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac announced last Thursday that the rate on the 30-year loan dropped to 3.88 percent, down from 3.9 percent. In February, the rate hit 3.87 percent, the lowest since long-term mortgages began in the 1950s. • The average on the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage, a popular refinancing option, dipped to 3.12 percent, down from 3.13 percent the week prior. The national average hit an all-time low of 3.11 percent in early April.
  3. 3. Weekly HAR Market StatTheres that sound again – the message you used to hear back in the day on the TVand radio or read in newspapers and on the Internet. Real estate stories are mostlybeing cast in a generous light. Thats all well and good, but is now the time to list orbuy? Answering that question still depends on many specific, localized, determiningfactors, but we have reached a place where the process is generally more positive andenjoyable. The American dream of homeownership is no longer haunted by nightterrors. In the Houston region, for the week ending April 22: • New Listings increased 3.7% to 2,430 • Pending Sales increased 59.7% to 1,877 • Closed Sales increased 18.9% to 1,206
  4. 4. Negotiate Your Way to Success Advanced Negotiations for Sellers Date: Wednesday, May 9 Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Location: HAR Central Investment: $99 Negotiations Generational/Cultural Factors Date: Thursday, May 10 Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Location: HAR Central Investment: $99Register Online at Questions? 713-629-1900 ext. 6