Mark Livingstone, a mortgage broker and president at Cornerstone First Financial in Washington, D.C., says he sees a prosperous 2015 ahead, and he plans to add to his staff of mortgage officers as a result. The key factor? “Interest rates are going to stay low because of geopolitical unrest, and that will keep inflation in check, along with lower oil prices. That will translate into more buyers starting as soon as February,” he said.
That’s one of the Five Real Estate Trends for 2015 says Daniel Goldstein at Market Watch: Mortgage rates stay low. Daren Blomquist of RealtyTrac even says the industry is “addicted” to low rates.
The second Trend for 2015: Better market for buyers. Dan Levy of CityRealty, a real estate sales search website in New York City, says that low interest rates, a booming stock market and a strengthening economy, plus foreign investors’ continuing interest in American real estate, will create almost “the perfect storm” for real estate in 2015: “The market is as healthy and people are as bullish as I’ve seen in 20 years.”
The third Trend for 2015: Credit crunch will continue for many. “…the overall tightness in credit standards will continue to hurt first-time borrowers in 2015, especially the millennials. While the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to begin buying loans in 2015 with as little as a 3% down payment, Trulia’s Kolko says that is unlikely to help.”
The fourth Trend for 2015: Local markets to watch. Locations are the story. The nation is not one homogenous market, not that it often has been. There are luxury markets of the largest cities. There are recovering markets like Detroit and Memphis. Smaller cities where quality of life is important and cities still reeling from drought and high unemployment.
The fifth Trend for 2015: Gas prices could affect the housing market. Daren Blomquist of RealtyTrac says lower gas prices could boost the refinance markets or encourage move-up borrowers. “I don’t see it moving the needle that much, [but] it could make some homeowners more comfortable tapping their equity,” for a large purchase such as a boat or a vacation home.