Home prices pick up pace according to Case-Shiller
The new Case-Shiller HPI figures show that the national price of homes across the 20-city survey increased by 5 per cent in February compared to a year earlier; the pace in January was 4.5 per cent. Low supply is pushing sales to complete more quickly and hiking prices with bidding wars in many areas. The biggest gain in prices was in Denver with a 10 per cent annual rise; San Francisco was close behind at 9.8 per cent. Prices are however still below their 2006 peak by 10 per cent nationally. Some areas are well below their highs; Las Vegas for example is still 41.5 per cent below its previous peak having plunged more than 60 per cent in the bust.
New Manhattan condos set to exceed $3 million
The price of a new condo in Manhattan is set to soar to above $3 million in the next two years according to a report from CityRealty. Prices have been rising fast in the last few years following the downturn of the financial crisis. The report predicts that the median price of a 1,550 square foot condo will reach $3,500,000 next year and $3,625,000 in 2017. The new condo buildings house fewer homes than some of the older stock and are therefore outpacing the wider market. CNN reports that in 2014 the median cost of a new condo was just over $2.5 million while the general condo market median was more than a million dollars lower.
Maryland sales grew in March but prices dipped slightly
Home sales in Maryland surged by 25 per cent in March compared to the same month last year but average prices slipped back 1.1 per cent. The figures from the Maryland Association of Realtors show that the median price was essentially flat. “The solid jump in home sales confirms our expectations for a healthy spring selling season,” said MAR President Janice Kirkner, “Clearly pricing is very attractive to buyers, with the stability in both average and median price. The number of homes under contract was up by 16 percent since last year at this time.” Inventory is up by almost 1,700 homes.
NYC brokers bullish on prospects for 2015
New York City brokers’ confidence remained positive and robust in the first quarter of 2015 with strong sales prices and market activity, according to the Real Estate Board of New York’s latest Broker Confidence Index. The index has slipped back slightly from the end of 2014 but largely due to anticipation of higher interest rates pushing up the cost of mortgages by the end of this year. Low inventory is also of concern. Steven Spinola, REBNY President said: “Despite concern about future financing six months from now, they are still very optimistic about the market and show no indications that a rise in interest rates would have any serious adverse impact.