Mortgage Payments Drop $50 per Month on a Median Priced Home
Listings Under Contract Up 19% in 5 Weeks!
Buyers got a break last month as 30-year mortgage rates dropped significantly from an average of 4.41% to 4.08%, which is the lowest they have been since January 2018. On a $267,000 home (the median sales price in Greater Phoenix) the drop equated to nearly $50 per month in savings on principal and interest, which was enough to get many buyers off the couch and looking for homes. This rate drop combined with an increased conventional loan limit up to $484K and a 32% increase in weekly seller price reductions meant that price ranges between $200K all the way up to $800K saw a combined 19% increase in contracts written over the last 5 weeks. Contract activity is expected to increase at this time of year anyway due to seasonality, but last year over the same 5 weeks it only increased 8.6%. For buyers who are still waiting for prices to begin declining, their wait just got longer.
The drop in mortgage rates could not have come at a better time for sellers. Up until 6 weeks ago the negotiating advantage sellers have been enjoying for years in Greater Phoenix had weakened to the point where the market was on track to enter balance within a matter of months and price appreciation would have begun to slow even more. However by April 4th the average 30-year mortgage rate (as reported by Freddie Mac) had dropped to a 15-month low. This spurred buyer activity and resulted in Listings Under Contract, which were 10.2% below 2018 last month, to sharply increase and surpass 2018’s April count by 0.8%. Currently sales volume is down 9.6% from last April, however when these contracts close escrow over the next 4-6 weeks May and June should fare much better. Don’t get too excited though, the seller market is still much weaker than last year. Affordability and demand were helped by this interest rate drop but could quickly be negated as prices continue to rise. Sellers still need to be mindful of their asking price to get under contract before buyer activity seasonally begins to decline between May and the end of the year.
Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2019 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC
For some reason, it is becoming increasingly common for sellers to expressly state in Section 8a of the Residential Resale Real Estate Purchase Contract (Residential Purchase Contract) that the Premises will be conveyed in “as-is” condition.
In February 2017, the Residential Purchase Contract revised Section 5a to express that the Premises are being sold in its “present physical condition as of the date of contract acceptance.” In other words, what you see is what you get. This change eliminated the need for the Arizona REALTORS® As-Is Addendum as well as the need for parties to specify in Section 8a that the Premises will be conveyed “as-is.”
While parties may include additional terms in Section 8a, writing in that the Premises will be sold “as-is” accomplishes nothing.
It should also be remembered that regardless of whether Section 8a of the Residential Purchase Contract specifies that the Premises will be sold in “as-is” condition, buyers may still request repairs. As stated in Section 5a, buyers and sellers “may, but are not obligated to, engage in negotiations for repairs/improvements to the Premises.” The Arizona REALTORS® Buyer’s Inspection Notice and Seller’s Response form remains available for this purpose.
Additionally, “as-is” in no way excuses a seller’s disclosure obligations. Even in an “as-is” transaction, sellers must still disclose known facts materially affecting the value of the property that are not readily observable and are not known to the buyer. Hill v. Jones, 151 Ariz. 81, 725 P.2d 1115 (App. 1986).
While drafting contracts, it is best to avoid redundant and thus superfluous terms. When parties attempt to restate the same proposition in a number of different ways, it becomes increasingly likely that the provisions will actually contradict one another. For this reason, the best course of action when conveying a property “as-is,” is to leave the Residential Purchase Contract “as-is.”
– Scott Drucker, Esq.
Scott M. Drucker, Esq., a licensed Arizona attorney, is General Counsel for the Arizona REALTORS® serving as the primary legal advisor to the association. This article is of a general nature and reflects only the opinion of the author at the time it was drafted. It is not intended as definitive legal advice, and you should not act upon it without seeking independent legal counsel.
Cited From: https://www.aaronline.com/2018/10/01/for-as-is-transactions-leave-the-purchase-contract-as-is/
The reality of “Price per Square Foot”…
- It has become common lingo among many agents, title reps, and marketing firms.
- The stat itself, does not tell the whole story of the property value
- It easily becomes a “debatable” statistic that prevents a great “selling conversation”
- Typically, agents who are not skilled in pricing have a greater tendency to use this formula.
Where Price per Square Foot is great:
- Construction purposes
- Commercial real estate, where emotion is less influential
- The words “price per square foot” does not mean the same as “value”