Listing Courtesy of OCEAN ATLANTIC SOTHEBY'S INTL REALTY
Suppose you are a Rehoboth Beach homeowner who intends to move to a different home eventually, but for the moment, you aren’t under any particular deadline pressure that would dictate when you have to put your home on the market. In that case, you’re likely to keep tabs on overall market conditions, awaiting what looks like circumstances favor those with homes for sale.
Twice a year, the National Association of Realtors® issues their economists’ midyear forecast—it appeared last week. For those with homes for sale in Rehoboth Beach (or anyone thinking about adding theirs to the homes already for sale), the outlook was heartening.
The forecast was for the greater U.S. economy to improve, bouncing back from the weather-blasted winter stall which made the first quarter a disappointment. Subsequently, consumer spending opened up, causing expectation that the GDP would rise in the remainder of the year. Overall, the forecast for 2015 was positive, though lukewarm. As a whole, the year promises to be “not bad but not great.”
On the other hand, focusing narrowly on the outlook for U.S. housing market activity—homes for sale—the upside momentum was already decidedly more in evidence. The prospects for any single one of the Rehoboth Beach homes for sale depend upon a combination of factors, but if national activity is any reflection, the latest numbers packed what you could call a “6-7-8-9 punch”:
· Existing home sales in May notched a high water mark not seen in 6 years (and the 2009 level had been artificially inflated because of an $8,000 homebuyer tax credit).
· New home sales hit the highest level in 7 years.
· Housing permits to build new homes registered an 8 year high.
· Pending contracts to buy existing homes for sale reached a 9 year high.
Examining the demographics behind the figures, it was clear that, for the first time in quite a while, first-time buyers are back. Last year during the same period, only 27% of buyers were first-timers. They now make up a more normal 32%. As prices brought by homes for sale continued to rebound, institutional investors were disappearing from the scene, creating a more typical mix of buyers.
A major part of the reason why homes for sale were fetching “stronger than normal home price growth” had to do with a shortage of inventory—ascribed to the volume of new homes being built (or not being built). The rule of thumb is generally for about 1.5 million new homes to be constructed per year, a mark that’s failed to be realized for a number of years. In 2009, only 550,000 home were built—and the total had barely reached a million through last year. But now, with optimism among homebuilders at newly robust levels, it’s expected that normal output will have fully resumed by 2017.
The other major factor boosting sale prices was the specter of mortgage rate increases. Rising mortgage rates “initially rush buyers to decide”—just the kind of sign that could tip the scales for a homeowner who’s been waiting to add their property to the homes for sale in Rehoboth Beach. Should you decide that this summer is shaping up to have just the conditions you’ve been waiting for, I hope you’ll give me a call for a no-obligation consultation! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
Delaware real estate has greatly benefitted from one offshoot of “virtual” technology. Just click on a listing’s “virtual tour” button and a progression of two-dimensional views of the listed property parade across your laptop or smartphone screen.
Those Delaware listing virtual tours are real estate’s first step toward “VR”—Virtual Reality. VR isthe more immersive version that allows viewers to move around within three-dimensional renderings of computer-generated environments. A current example is the TV commercials depicting delighted VR goggle-wearers experiencing animated fictional worlds. They demonstrate two things: 1) the people who don the goggles look as if they truly do feel as if they are surrounded by a mind-bendingly realistic version of reality; and 2) they also look as if they are disconnected from the actual world around them (as when they duck to get out of the way of something that doesn’t really exist).
As it relates to Delaware real estate, there is a slightly different emerging technology. You might say that it’s half-way between today’s virtual tours and full virtual reality. This is “AR”—Augmented Reality—which combines the real and virtual worlds. It allows consumers to superimpose computer-generated images into real life scenes. Some applications are already popping up, with more on the way thanks to support from the latest operating system releases which allow software developers to dream up applications that take advantage of the possibilities.
IKEA is one company that has developed an application to project how any given furniture model would look in a customer’s own home environment. Customers need a copy of the company catalog and access to IKEA’s website. Simply click on the sample item shown on the site, then position the catalog on the floor where the furniture would be placed. Just point your smartphone at the scene and take the picture—the app recreates the scene with the IKEA piece in place, properly scaled with lighting and shadows correctly rendered!
My guess is that it certain that Delaware homeowners will soon have a lot of AR remodeling aids to help them visualize design choices. One countertop manufacturer has already developed an application that shows exactly what different surface finishes would look like atop an existing counter.
House hunters will benefit, too. The Realtor.com web developers are working on “augmenting reality” in the same way that Hollywood adds subtitles to movies. Their “Street Peek” application will allow house hunters to walk down a street, point their smartphone (Android, at first) at a house, and watch a cartoon bubble pop up over its roof with text showing whether it is for sale, the listing price or most recent sale price, and other information drawn from the NAR database. For Delaware new home buyers choosing model home variations as well as for builders eager to show the potential of an unfinished space, the only current drawback is the difference between the look of the real thing and the computer-generated image. Count on that difference rapidly disappearing.
Whether you are buying or selling, I work to keep my clients informed about the coming advances in the tools affecting their Delaware real estate options. Call me! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.