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The latest quarterly report from our Chief Economist Matthew Gardner is now available.  Here is a quote from the report with his take on the Front Range economy:

What a difference a quarter makes! Following the massive job losses Colorado experienced starting in February—the state shed over 342,000 positions between February and April—the turnaround has been palpable.

Through August, Colorado has recovered 178,000 of the jobs lost due to COVID-19, adding 107,500 jobs over the past three months, an increase of 4.2%.

All regions saw a significant number of jobs returning. The most prominent was in the Denver metropolitan service area (MSA), where 78,800 jobs returned in the quarter.

Although employment in all markets is recovering, there is still a way to go to get back to pre-pandemic employment levels.

The recovery in jobs has naturally led the unemployment rate to drop: the state is now at a respectable 6.7%, down from a peak of 12.2%.

Regionally, all areas continue to see their unemployment rates contract. I would note that the Fort Collins and Boulder MSA unemployment rates are now below 6%.

Cases of COVID-19 continue to rise, which is troubling, but rising rates have only slowed—not stopped—the economic recovery. Moreover, it has had no noticeable impact on the state’s housing market.

To receive a complimentary copy of the latest Gardner Report, simply reach out to me and I will send it to you right away.

 

Posted on October 30, 2020 at 7:11 pm
Rondi duPont | Category: Blog, Fun Facts, Gardner Report | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Re Bubble

Bubble

The activity in the Front Range market is causing us to hear the bubble question again.

People are curious to know, based on recent growth in price appreciation, if we are in a housing bubble.

This question seems to crop up when prices go up.

While we do not believe that the current double-digit price appreciation is sustainable, we firmly believe we will not see prices crash or see any kind of a bubble bursting.

Here’s why we think that…

This past Tuesday we hosted a private online event for our clients which featured our Chief Economist Matthew Gardner.

Matthew is well-known and well-respected in the industry.  He is often quoted in leading real estate publications.

He sees four reasons why there is no real estate bubble that is about to pop in Colorado.

  1. Inventory is (incredibly) low.  The number of homes for sale is down over 40% compared to last year.  The market is drastically under-supplied.  Based on simple economic principles of supply and demand, inventory would need to grow significantly for prices to drop.
  2. Buyers’ credit scores are very high.  The average credit score for buyers last month, for example was 759.  So, by definition, average buyers today have excellent credit which means there is low risk of them walking away from their mortgage and causing a foreclosure crisis.
  3. Buyers have high down payments.  On average, buyers are putting 18% down on their purchases.  This means that prices would need to fall by a considerable amount in order for the average buyer to be ‘upside down’ on their mortgage.
  4. Owners are equity rich.  Well over a third of property owners along the Front Range have more than 50% equity in their homes.  This means that a severe economic downturn causing a slew of distressed properties to hit the market is highly unlikely.

Bottom line, as Matthew Gardner reminded us, what we are experiencing in the economy today is a health crisis not a housing crisis.

If you would like a recording of the private webinar I would be happy to send it to you.  Just reach out and let me know.

Posted on October 9, 2020 at 8:24 pm
Rondi duPont | Category: For Buyers & Sellers, Fun Facts, Market News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Another Meltdown?

This week our Chief Economist took a deep dive into the numbers to examine the current health crisis versus the housing crisis of 2008.

The reason why?  People wonder if we are going to have another housing meltdown nationally and going to see foreclosures and short sales dramatically increase.

It turns out that the numbers show that today’s housing environment is quite different than 2007, right before the housing bubble burst.

Specifically, homeowners are in a vastly different situation with their mortgage compared to the pre-Great Recession’s housing meltdown.

In addition to much higher credit scores and much higher amounts of equity compared to 2007, the most significant difference today is in the amount of ARM mortgages.

Back in years leading up to the housing bubble, Adjustable Rate Mortgages were very prevalent.  In 2007 there were just under 13 million active adjustable rate loans, today there are just over 3 million.

The number of those ARMs that would reset within three years was 5 million in 2007 compared to only 320,000 today.

It’s those Adjustable Rate loans resetting to a higher monthly payment that caused such a big part of the housing crisis back in 2008 to 2010.

Back then not only was people’s employment impacted, but many were facing increased monthly mortgage payments.

That’s why there were so many foreclosures and short sales in 2008 to 2010.

That is not the case today and one of many reasons why we don’t foresee a housing meltdown.

Posted on May 1, 2020 at 9:14 pm
Rondi duPont | Category: Economics 101, Fun Facts | Tagged , , ,

Why No Crash

This week we hosted our clients and friends for a special online event with our Chief Economist Matthew Gardner.

Matthew talked about a variety of topics that are on people’s mind right now including home values.

Matthew sees no evidence that home values will crash and actually sees signs that they may rise this year nationally.

Here’s why he says this:

  • Mortgage rates will remain under 3.5% for the rest of the year so there won’t be any interest-rate pressure on prices
  • Inventory, which was already at record-lows, will drop even further keeping the supply levels far below normal
  • New home construction will continue to be under-supplied and will be nothing like the over-supplied glut of inventory that we saw in 2008
  • The vast majority of employees being laid off and furloughed are renters
  • Homeowners have a tremendous amount of equity in their homes right now compared to 2008 which will prevent an influx of short sales and foreclosures

If you would like to receive a recording of the webinar we would be happy to send it to you.  Feel free to reach out and ask for the link.

At Windermere Real Estate we are taking Shelter in Place and Social Distancing very seriously.  Our people are working at home, staying connected to their clients, and providing help wherever needed.

 

Posted on April 24, 2020 at 5:50 pm
Rondi duPont | Category: Economics 101, Fun Facts, Market News | Tagged , , , , , , ,

Special Event

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On Wednesday April 22nd you are invited to a special online event with Windermere’s Chief Economist Matthew Gardner.

He will be giving his insights into the U.S. economy and what that means for real estate along the Front Range of Colorado.

You will hear the answers to the biggest questions we are hearing from clients now like “do you think housing prices will crash?”

This event is exclusively for clients and friends of Windermere Real Estate. To receive the registration link simply comment on this blog or reach out to me.

Many of you have heard Matthew speak at our Market Forecast events we hold each year in January. He is famous for making complex economic dynamics very simple to understand.

You will get useful and valuable information which will give you clarity about where the market is headed and when we can expect the economy to improve.

For example Matthew predicts unemployment to hit 15% by the end of June, but then to improve to 8% by year-end and 6% by this time next year.

Again, if you would like the link just comment on this blog or reach out to me.

At Windermere Real Estate we are taking Shelter in Place and Social Distancing very seriously.  Our people are working at home, staying connected to their clients, and providing help wherever needed.

 

Posted on April 17, 2020 at 3:04 pm
Rondi duPont | Category: Colorado Housing, Fun Facts | Tagged , , , , ,