You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!
The National Market
Interest rates maintained a level below 3% for two solid years. During that course of time, refinancing volume reached an all-time high, along with new and used home purchases. Then on April 5th the 30-year mortgage reached the unimaginably high level of 5.0%. So is the par-ty over? According to American Banker, refinancing is expected to decline by 77%. That is, from 2.4 trillion in 2020 vs an anticipated $573 billion in 2022.
American Banker also stated “A sharp decline in refis will put more pressure on bankers to fight for mortgages tied to home purchases, where volume should remain relatively steady as rates increase. That will intensify competition among mortgage lenders, forcing many to focus more on marketing, relationships with real estate professionals and customer service to drive volume.” So in other words, in spite of increased mortgage interest rates, home sales num-bers should remain fairly strong, inflation, fuel prices and conflicts abroad be damned?
The Local Market
No one seems to discuss covid anymore. Now all conversations seem to focus on the future of the markets. It should be no surprise that 20% + annual appreciation rates in real estate are not sustainable. Yes, the markets will absolutely level out. The diminishing increases in sales numbers were in part a reflection of the lack of inventory in segments of the market, more particularly Walton county. However, the overall number of active homes on the market has now increased from 347 last March to 468 (Stats at a Glance) this year which represents a 34.9% increase in inventory. Sales stats reflect a similar albeit opposite pattern. Single family sales numbers for March 2021 stood at 738 units. March 2022 sold units number 436, or a decrease of 40.9%.
So what now? It is good news/bad news. First and foremost, the elements which contributed to the market meltdown 15 years ago simply do not exist today. Government policy and regu-lations will play the biggest factor in the market direction in the near-term. And certainly, our sun here still shines and the beaches remain pristine. The things that make our area unique remain unchanged. Buyers from near and far continue to be attracted to Florida and our Em-erald Coast. At the end of the day, we see no imminent signs of a bursting bubble. The signs today would imply that 20% appreciation this year is unlikely.
Buying a new home is an incredible experience. It's a great way to start fresh and plan a new life.
You can also use this as an opportunity to meet new friends and adopt new hobbies. Moving into a new home also allows you to bring your vision to life with new furniture, decor, and appliances
However, as soon as you move in, there are a few things you need to do to ensure your safety, security, comfort, and long-term happiness. We are here to help.
Keep reading for a new homeowner checklist. Here are 7 steps to take after moving into a new home.
1. Turn on Your Utilities
One of the most important steps on our new homeowner checklist is to turn on all your necessary utilities. Preferably, this should be done in the days prior to moving into the house. A single day without running water or power would be far from enjoyable.
2. Update Your Mailing Address
After moving into a new home, it's important to update your mailing address. Contact the post office to officially change your address or do it online through their website. You should also contact the companies who send you mail to update them of your new address.
3. Deep Clean
A new home checklist must include the deep cleaning of the house. This is especially important if it's a pre-owned home. You don't know anything about the previous homeowner's cleanliness, hygiene, or habits. What better way to start fresh than ensuring that you have a spotless home to move into.
4. Install New Locks
After moving into a new home, it's imperative to change the locks. The previous homeowners might still have a key. They might also have loaned copies of those keys to friends, relatives, babysitters, house cleaners, etc.
5. Activate the Necessary Services
Of course, our new homeowner checklist includes turning on important services like cable, internet, and phone lines. These are essential to modern living. Most people wouldn't know what to do if they didn't have online access.
6. Check the Home for Any Signs of Water Damage
When moving into a new house, take a moment to give the home a thorough inspection. Look for any signs of water damage. This is vital, as excess water and moisture can lead to toxic mold growth.
7. Install a Security System
Last on our new homeowner checklist, install a security system to protect you, your family, and your home. We recommend investing in an alarm system complete with security cameras.
If someone tries to break into your home (whether you're there or not), the security company will be alerted immediately. If necessary, they'll contact the police and send them to your location.
Have You Completed Everything on Our New Homeowner Checklist?
There's so much to do after moving into a new home. Follow our new homeowner checklist to make sure you hit all the essentials. This will set you up for health, happiness, and safety.
And if you're in the market for a new home, we can help. Contact us today if you're looking to buy a new home. We can also help you sell your current home.
The National Market
Bank of America is predicting a 10% increase in US home pricing for 2022 and a 5% increase in 2023. But take such predictions with a grain of salt. Take for example Zillow and CoreLogic’s prognostication that US home prices would decline in the spring of 2021. Prices of course did the polar opposite, on steroids. The market expected to see a decline in average prices but actually witnessed a historic, meteoric rise in values and sales volume. Estimates indicated that US homeowners have added more than $10 trillion in real estate wealth to their financial statements over the past 12 months. As we mentioned last month, the Fed is raising the Fed Funds rate by .25% this week. You can find a great article on that subject here: https://rem.ax/3qchImW
The Local Market
The Emerald Coast real estate market does not necessarily comport with the nationwide, broad brush prognostications. Our “bubble-world” continues its growth trajectory as the exodus from shut-down states continues. Additionally, the recent expansions of remote office and work opportunities have fueled much of the buyer influx we see today. And with 1,000 people moving to Florida each day, we continue as one of top growth states in the nation.
Our Emerald Coast has certainly been a beneficiary of that influx. Although mortgage interest rates are not directly tied to the Federal Funds rate, yesterday’s increase will eventually impact mortgage interest rates. With six additional .25% bumps planned for 2022, the cost of financing a home or condo will rise, no question. Higher mortgage interest rates will slow the growth and rates of appreciation. Bank of America’s 2022 estimate for real estate appreciation may be close. We believe that the Emerald Coast will fare far better than average.
If you wish to sell, call us. We probably have buyers lined up and ready. Buying? Let us know what you want. We will beat the bushes until we find an off-market property that checks all your boxes!
Stats at a Glance
Ft. Walton Beach to Inlet Beach
Single Family Homes
• Active For Sale: 333
• Sold: 343
• Avg Active / Avg Sold Price - $2,488,166 / $1,161,383
• Active For Sale: 223 Sold: 233
• Avg Active / Avg Sold Price - $1,194,727 / $640,223
• Active For Sale: 263
• Sold: 57
• Avg Active / Avg Sold Price - $908,332 / $854,358
Ed, Terri, Kay, Denis, Mary, Nick and Denise
The monthly recap of our market’s diverse Average “Sold” Prices:
Single Family Condo
30-A $1,931,826 $1,047,586
Destin/Miramar Beach $1,330,172 $638,305
Ft. Walton Beach $ 387,588 $423,349
Selling Fine Homes and Condos Since 1987!
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