Listing Courtesy of RE/MAX ABOVE AND BEYOND
Rehoboth Beach's economy, like all others, is largely dependent upon consumers doing what consumers are supposed to do: buy! Why they make their decision to behave or not is every bit as complicated as you would suppose. It’s the product of how their own careers are faring; how the greater economy (and the economy in Rehoboth Beach) are doing; even how the world economy is behaving—or seems likely to behave anytime soon.
In all of this, the hard facts about how the economy is actually doing are not just backward-looking, they’re also slow to arrive. Worse yet to those who think numbers should mean something definite, the numbers are frequently recalculated later. The latest ‘jobs’ numbers or the ‘housing starts’ numbers, when they are announced, are often accompanied by a statement that the previous quarters number has been "revised to" x. If you are a local business person who makes projections based on the best information available, that wouldn’t be the new number—it would be the previous, now revised number: very old information.
There is one way around this, though, and that’s fortunate. Everybody has the same reliability and timeliness problems, yet have to have some basis for making discretionary spending decisions. The usual solution is to rely upon measurements not of the actual economy’s activity now or in the past, but of what most people expect that activity to be in the future.
Yes, that kind of measurement is ‘soft’—opinion, rather than hard data. But if those expectations are widely publicized, they affect what actually comes to pass. If consumers are bullish on the future, well, that’s reassuring news! Rehoboth Beach businesses are encouraged to stock their shelves. People are more likely to list their Rehoboth Beach homes for sale. The local economy looks better and better! On the other hand, if consumers are depressed about the future, caution will prevail. Businesses will hold off on new hires and trim their inventories. You can’t be too careful, after all. To some degree, consumer expectations often become self-fulfilling prophesies.
That’s why latest consumer confidence reports are the best news for the future of the economy we’ve heard for some time. Last week, Reuters ran the headline, "U.S. Consumer Sentiment at Eight-Year High"; the Business Insider, "Consumer Confidence Crushes Expectations." Reuters attributed the burst of citizen optimism to "improved prospects for jobs and wages, and on lower gasoline prices…"
The University of Michigan co-sponsors the index upon which the numbers are based, which showed December’s reading of consumer sentiment at 93.8, "the highest reading since January 2007." That was a full 4 points above the median that had been previously forecast by 70 economists. It was also 5 points higher than the final reading for November.
If the Rehoboth Beach economy perks up as anticipated, area real estate watchers should expect a noticeable uptick in activity—particularly if mortgage interest rates stay low, and inflation remains a non-factor (the same survey pegged consumer inflation expectations at 2.9%). If you are an Rehoboth Beach homeowner or prospective buyer with an equally upbeat outlook, it’s good reason to give me a call to discuss how your plans dovetail with a rebounding market!
My organization—the National Association of Realtors®—offers a wide range of guidance for Delaware families who have decided it’s time to land their first house. With more than a century’s worth of experience, you’d expect nothing less.
Last week I happened across an article the NAR had distilled that looked like a must-read for anyone who is just starting out on the path to buying their first Delaware house. Its title was “8 Critical Things to Do Before Buying a Home”—but it could just as well have been “8 Critical Things to Do Before Buying Your First Delaware House.” Each of the eight was apt—and important to mull over—but it’s the kind of list that’s awfully easy to read without giving much thought to the individual items.
The challenge was to come up with an interesting way to share the ideas with you. The article put the “8 critical things” in order—so I decided to make a game out of them: a quiz.
See if you can guess what was the order—from first to last—that the NAR presented them in. I don’t know that the order I’d choose would match theirs exactly …but see how well yours does:
-A. Amass a down payment
-B. Go mortgage shopping
-C. Ponder the future (*I love this one: wait till you see where the NAR put it!)
-D. Crunch your numbers
-E. Know your credit score
-F. Get educated
-G. Ballpark your closing costs
-H. Interview at least three real estate agents
The NAR’s answers are at the bottom, but I have a minor addition for Delaware first house buyers: if you’re just getting started, you can get a head start right now by giving me a call. There’s never an obligation, but I’m always happy to discuss where you are and the options you might already have. In any case, later—when it comes to action H.—you’ll definitely have a head start! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.