Happy December! We want to wish you a very happy holiday season. May it be filled with joy, warmth, and goodwill.
We want to thank you for your trust and support this year. We helped over 90 families with their home purchases and sales this year. In 2015, many of our clients have upsized, downsized, bought a first home, relocated, bought an investment property, or sold an investment property. Whatever the purpose and reason, we are honored to have been a part of the journey. Each and every journey we took with clients was special and memorable in some way. We believe in home ownership and real estate investment. We are grateful to have been entrusted to be the guides in achieving your real estate goals.
Looking back in 2015, the Orlando housing market continued its stability. The chart below shows the 3-year history of housing inventory level (number of homes for sale). As you can see, 2015 is the highlighted portion. It was very stable and fluctuated within a very narrow range of just a few hundred homes.
When you read national news, you may see descriptions of inventory tightening, not here. You can see the inventory buildup in 2013 and 2014 but leveled off in 2015. The roller coaster years are behind us now. As a result, the prices have also been stable with a mild positive trend. This positive trend is not across the board. Let us know where you are looking and we will evaluate the local trend for you.
The interest rates in 2015 also remained stable within an average range of about 3.67%- 4.08%. This was lower than what the industry projected, which contributed to the robustness of the housing market in 2015. Buyers did not wait on the interest rates though. Instead, individuals’ circumstances were the main determinants of timing in this market. There weren’t a lot of external factors that significantly swayed things one way or another, so people tended to make the move when they were ready without waiting for a particular event.
The biggest change in real estate transactions in 2015 was probably the implementation of the Federal TRID mortgage rules in October. Although much feared, with the proactive preparation all year long, it has been smooth sailing so far. It does take longer to close a loan now, but we see a sliver of hope on the horizon that we may be able to reduce the time frame through tight team work.
I will continue to report housing market conditions to you as we enter the coming New Year. At this point, 2016 is projected to be another stable year in the Orlando real estate market. Interest rates are expected to move above 4% and gradually into the high 4’s. We have been there before. Please see the mortgage rate chart above from mid-2013 through 2014. Higher interest rates do decrease purchasing power, but at these historically low levels, we hope they will not diminish market demand.
I’ll stop here. We sincerely wish you a truly wondrous holiday season. May you enjoy the fruits of your labor and the warmth of loved ones in the remainder of this year.