Listing Courtesy of JACK LINGO REHOBOTH
With fall newly arrived, it’s a time of year when Dewey Beachhomeowners can breathe a sigh of relief; relax and take it easy. With summer behind us, most gardens require less attention. The demands harsh winter weather will make are off in the distant future— or are they?
This year it might be prudent for Dewey Beachhomeowners to mentally remove a month or two from their home maintenance timetables. The reason comes in two familiar words (and they aren’t English): El Niño.
According to the government’s NOAA climate forecasters, there is “an approximately 95% chance that El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2015-2016…” Since that is definitely our area’s hemisphere, they’re speaking to us. They answer the question, “How strong is this El Niño now?” with, “it’s pretty strong.” In August, it ranked second all-time (behind August 1997) in the Equatorial Southern Oscillation Index, which is one way of measuring its power. El Niño is the condition where weather shifts occur due to a change in warm ocean currents in the Pacific.
What this means to Dewey Beachhomeowners is as unpredictable as…well, as the weather! What is acknowledged is that normal patterns can be disrupted to varying degrees. The reason we can never get much clarity about how it’s going to affect us is that (unsatisfying though this answer may be), winter could be markedly more—or markedly less—stormy than usual. Since the maximum effect is expected in late fall through December (hence the Christmas allusion of the ‘El Niño’ name), Dewey Beachhomeowners might consider getting on with their winter maintenance preparations earlier rather than later.
So here—a bit earlier than usual—are some regular fall maintenance heads-ups:
As a check of comments on the weather sites confirms, local homeowners have differing memories of how previous El Niños have affected them. But since we are now officially in an El Niño year—it can’t be a bad idea to prepare ahead of time (and if you have Dewey Beachreal estate plans in the offing, now would also be a good time to give me a call)! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
For Sussex County homeowners, the news was a long time coming. The bounce back from last decade’s dizzying plummet in the nation’s residential housing values has been underway for quite a while now—but those values hadn’t quite returned to their former heights.
Until last month!
The Wall Street Journal was early to break the long-awaited headline, “Existing-Home Prices Hit Record: $236,400.” Using just-released June sales numbers, the Journal reported that the nation’s average housing prices now topped the previous high water mark set in 2006. It meant that a lot of paper losses have been obliterated—and the return of full nights’ sleep for many U.S. homeowners who have long been underwater.
Another aspect of June’s housing report card could also ease nerves on a wider scale. USA Today led with it: “Existing homes were sold at the fastest pace in eight years…” It quoted the NAR’s Lawrence Yun as pronouncing this year’s spring buying season “the strongest since the economic turndown.”
That’s where the current housing market profile seems to differ in kind from the previous peak of $230,400, registered in July 2006. That mark was reached after sales volume had started to fall. Prices then followed, starting with a slow decline that continued until the spring of 2008, when the slump became a nosedive—unleashing the subprime mortgage crisis. The “bubble” of unsupported high prices had burst.
There was more glad tidings in last week’s news, as well. U.S. home builder confidence levels hit its highest mark in “nearly a decade” (WSJ). A rise in demand for apartment housing caused a jump of 9.8% in housing starts.
But the biggest news was the existing-home price rise, reported as having “rocketed” 35% since 2011, “benefiting current homeowners by giving them an opportunity to trade up to better homes or sell and cash out.” That’s the kind of spur that can stimulate the entire housing market.
With one economist (Andrew Hunter of Capital Economics) quoted as saying “the housing recovery has shifted into a higher gear,” it wasn’t surprising that other analysts were in agreement. “Don’t Laugh” read one headline from international observer Quartz.com; “the U.S. housing market is the best story in the global economy right now.” Reuters agreed about the implications. Their headline: “Strong U.S. housing data boosts dollar.”
Sussex County residents don’t have to be global investors to take advantage of this summer’s values. A simple call to my office is all it takes to get things started! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.