Consumer Confidence and To Rent? Or To Buy?

Existing home sales came in lower in February, but experts warn not to read too far into the drop. Experts predict that the combination of pent-up housing demand and historically high consumer confidence will increase existing home sales in the months ahead.

“Despite a monthly drop, existing sales remain above last year’s levels, due to a continually strengthening labor market and pent-up demand from both entry-level and trade-up buyers,” Quicken Loans Vice President Bill Banfield said. “Consumer confidence in the economy is also very high, which is a critical psychological element to consider as Millennials continue to enter their prime home-buying years.”

 

existing sales

(Source: Trulia)

However, the root cause for the decrease in home sales is inventory, which continues to plague the market. There are a lot of buyers on the market right now, but they are unable to find the homes they want, at the prices they can afford. “These affordability challenges are the result of inventory shortages, which leads to bidding wars, and rising mortgage rates, resulting in higher monthly payments,” says Senior Economist Joseph Kirchner of realtor.com . To read more, visit HousingWire.com .

Is it better to rent or buy? This is an on-going question in every adult’s mind, today. The New York Times posted an article this week, that enables you to plug in your monthly affordability, calculate and compare the results with a mortgage rate and home-upkeep.

In local news, President Donald Trump proposed a budget this week that eliminates New Starts, a key infrastructure program expected to be one of the largest funding sources for the tubes under the Hudson River. The first phase of the Gateway project, which includes the new tunnel and replacement of the troublesome Portal Bridge in New Jersey, was accepted into the New Starts pipeline last year but had not yet received a full funding commitment. Zeroing out funding for New Starts will interrupt both of these constructions. To read more, visit Politico.

And a new plan to transform a former fire station on Palisade Avenue into residences is moving forward! The local developer will go before the Zoning Board in the next few months to gain approvals for the project. To read more, visit Jersey Digs.

And here’s what’s happening in your neck of the woods this weekend! Check out Jersey City Upfront for details.