Via Matthew Gardner, Windermere Economist, find him on FB
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Posted November 9 2016, 3:30 PM PST by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate
The American people have spoken and they have elected Donald J. Trump as the 45th president of the United States. Change was clearly demanded, and change is what we will have.
The election was a shock for many, especially on the West Coast where we have not been overly affected by the long-term loss in US manufacturing or stagnant wage growth of the past decade. But the votes are in and a new era is ahead of us. So, what does this mean for the housing market?
First and foremost I would say that we should all take a deep breath. In a similar fashion to the UK’s “Brexit”, there will be a “whiplash” effect, as was seen in overnight trading across the globe. However, at least in the US, equity markets have calmed as they start to take a closer look at what a Trump presidency will mean.
On a macro level, I would start by stating that political rhetoric and hyperbole do not necessarily translate into policy. That is the most important message that I want to get across. I consider it highly unlikely that many of the statements regarding trade protectionism will actually go into effect. It will be very important for President Trump to tone down his platform on renegotiating trade agreements and imposing tariffs on China. I also deem it highly unlikely that a 1,000-mile wall will actually get built.
It is crucial that some of the more inflammatory statements that President-Elect Trump has made be toned down or markets will react negatively. However, what is of greater concern to me is that neither candidate really approached questions regarding housing with any granularity. There was little-to-no-discussion regarding housing finance reform, so I will be watching this topic very closely over the coming months.
As far as the housing market is concerned, it is really too early to make any definitive comment. That said, Trump ran on a platform of deregulation and this could actually bode well for real estate. It might allow banks the freedom to lend more, which in turn, could further energize the market as more buyers may qualify for home loans.
Concerns over rising interest rates may also be overstated. As history tells us, during times of uncertainty we tend to put more money into bonds. If this holds true, then we may see a longer-than-expected period of below-average rates. Today’s uptick in bond yields is likely just temporary.
Proposed infrastructure spending could boost employment and wages, which again, would be a positive for housing markets. Furthermore, easing land use regulations has the potential to begin addressing the problem of housing affordability across many of our nation’s housing markets – specifically on the West Coast.
Economies do not like uncertainty. In the near-term we may see a temporary lull in the US economy, as well as the housing market, as we analyze what a Trump presidency really means. But at the present time, I do not see any substantive cause for panic in the housing sector.
We are a resilient nation, and as long as we continue to have checks-and balances, I have confidence that we will endure any period of uncertainty and come out stronger.
Matthew Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics, and has over 25 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.
Seattle home prices still raging despite extra inventory, slow fall season
After a punishing year for anyone looking to buy a home in and around Seattle, the fall price cool-down that many buyers have been waiting for hasn’t arrived with much force.
The good news for buyers is that Seattle isn’t setting any more home-price records like it did this spring. And the rate of home-price increases has slowed to about half of what it was earlier in the year.
But the bad news is that home costs are still growing much faster than normal, and exceed recent pay hikes. The market remains one of the hottest in the country, even though the region is finally starting to see more houses come on the market.
Real-estate agents are mixed on the new data released Wednesday by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service. Some say it’s a blip on the radar — prices have slowed before, only to rocket back up soon after — while others say it’s a sign of a return to normalcy after four years of price growth.
“There’s still high demand, but instead of 10 offers, we’re seeing two or three,” for lower-priced houses, said Edward Krigsman, a Seattle broker with Windermere. “I don’t think it’s merely seasonal. I feel like we’re in a bit of a structural correction.” READ FULL ARTICLE HERE
Year over Year comparison of neighborhood pricing and appreciation
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