Last night I was saying good night to the coolest 8 year old girl in the world. I glanced over at her dresser and I saw 3 individually labeled jugs that made me smile. They are “spending”, “giving”, and “saving”. All the jugs are about the same size, but the “savings” jug is clear so I could see its contents. In a 64 ounce jug she has 3 quarters. No more no less. It is so funny! She could see I was smiling and she said “what?” I said “Olivia, I love your optimism!” “What’s optimism?” she asked…
That got me thinking, we should all have some optimism right now. Things are looking up in the world of finance and real estate. There are several indicators that things are changing. Here are a few of them.
Banks want to pay back their TARP funds. Next week the Federal Reserve will announce which of the 19 banks that underwent the government’s stress test will be allowed to repay the money under the Treasury Department’s controversial Troubled Asset Relief Program. It is expected that at least 4 banks, and up to as many as 10 will be eligible, so we’re moving in the right direction.
Homes are selling more quickly! Pending U.S. home sales in April posted the biggest monthly jump in nearly 8 years, a sign that home sales are finally coming to life after a long and painful slump.
Homes are more affordable now than at any time in record keeping history.
This past week Thomas Monigan, the Business Editor of the Northwest Florida Daily News interviewed me to ask about housing affordability. The story is likely to run in next week’s paper and I’ll reference it when it’s available. Suffice to say, the news is very good!
And finally, the government is handing out cash to people that haven’t owned a home in the past 3 years. Unbelievably, there are a lot of people that aren’t aware of how this works, or if they are eligible. Next week, I’ll provide detail on the tax credit, how it can be used, and who is eligible to receive it.
If it’s any indication of how the local real estate market is going, the Niceville office of Baker and Lindsey (formerly Superior Home Loans) will close more loans in May and June than we closed over the entire first half of last year!!
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