The mortgage rates have been dropping since February which is a welcome sign for a lot of homeowners or those ready to buy. Combined with new higher loan limits, the amount of mortgage applications have increased for the past few weeks. The housing market was quiet in the last quarter of 2018 due to; the volatile stock market, the holidays, poor air quality from natural disasters (CA wildfires), the government shutdown, and rising interest rates.
The housing market is always slower in the beginning of the year and starts to pick up in the spring. 2019 has so far been slow as investors and buyers sit on the sidelines and monitor the rates, housing inventories, and activity.
Meanwhile, the Senate Banking Committee voted to advance the nomination of Mark Calabria to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency this week. Mark Calabria is a supporter of the elimination of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac which provide small down payment programs for first time homebuyers as well as low and median income families.
Alongside this, complaints are arising that tariffs on foreign goods have resulted in a billion dollar tax on housing goods, and harms affordability in general, most prominently in the Bay Area.
In the last few years, housing in the Bay Area has had its prices increase drastically. Most people don’t blame this on the government’s housing management, but rather the tech companies that have recently been expanding. With the tech companies come more jobs, and as a result the real estate developers raise prices to maximize profits.
With the slow 2018 Q4, combined with lower interest rates, it is a very good idea to consider a purchase now. The competition for homes is currently low and rates are favorable, a perfect time to grab your dream home.