January 9, 2017 Market Update:  

QUOTE OF THE WEEK... "Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year." --Ralph Waldo Emerson, American essayist, lecturer and poet

... This year we should have 357 best days ahead of us, if most of the housing market forecasts come true. One online real estate firm expects a fast sales pace, thanks to millennials surging into the market, helping to push existing home sales up by 2.8% in 2017. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) currently estimates existing home sales will rise by 2.0%, their lower estimate based on increasing home prices. Yet a financial services company, whose house price index looks at inflation, wage growth and other factors, says prices are still more affordable now than during the housing boom.

Speaking of home prices, a real estate tech and data firm reported prices in November up 7.1% versus a year ago. The property economist for a research consultancy put this to continued low inventories and the rise in housing demand after the election. Of course, the situation varies by market. That data firm forecasts the year will show a 5% increase in prices overall. But some areas may hit double-digit gains, while others decline. Last week, Case-Shiller reported home prices were finally above their all-time highs. Now a listing site notes that the value of housing stock nationally hit an all-time high in 2016, though some markets are still below their peak prices.

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... The beginning of the year is a great time to re-commit yourself to your business. It takes a 100% commitment to give you the drive you need to keep meeting the challenges and enjoying the ride.