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What’s Up With Housing?

Merry Christmas

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Spanning the color spectrum from cool grays to warm terra-cottas, to blush oranges, these five color trends are expected to dominate the design and manufacturing industries in the coming year.
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First-time homebuyers made up the largest share of the U.S. home purchase market since 2005. Florida in particular has seen its first-time buyer market grow substantially faster than average lately.
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Less is best. Grass, that is. Do your shrubs need constant pruning? Then you don’t have the right shrubs in the right place, according to UF’s Extension Office.
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Many homeowners find themselves asking the question, “If we’re currently in a strong real estate market, why won’t my house sell?” 
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In most Tampa Bay areas, the supply of available houses increased dramatically in November compared to a year earlier. That could lead to lower prices. 
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What’s Up With Housing?

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Latest Florida Realtors data shows Single-family home sales up 8.5% year-over-year; condo-townhouse sales up 14.1%, due in part to rising inventory of active listings.
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Florida timeshare companies and exit companies are blaming each other for rising default rates, with the timeshare industry now lobbying lawmakers and regulators for policy changes.
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National flood insurance, like the 2018 hurricane season, ended at midnight last evening. Many observers predict another short-term extension for NFIP, but newly elected 2019 lawmakers may be more open to a long-term extension that also keeps rates affordable.
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This move could speed closings and reduce costs, but appraisers warn that automated processes are not as reliable.
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The federal agency that creates conventional loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will raise max amounts 6.9% – to $484,350 for most single-family 2019 loans.
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What’s Up With Housing?

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Millennials still show a preference for conventional loans. In Sept., 68% of all loans were conventional; 27% FHA and 2% VA, reports Ellie Mae, which says the industry should “educate these buyers on the options… available to them.”
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As home prices rose in the years before the Great Recession, complaints about a shortage of “workforce housing” became common in many communities throughout Florida. Those complaints are back again, with a vengeance. In most fast-growing areas of Florida — particularly in South Florida and Orlando — housing affordability for low- and moderate-income workers is a bigger issue than ever.
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The federal government’s clampdown on dirty money in luxury real estate markets in South Florida and other metropolitan areas is ramping up.
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Stackable apartments. Robotic valets. Infrared spas. The future has arrived, haltingly, and this time will be different. Maybe.
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Want to retire comfortably? Millennials should buy a home now, finds a ULI study. Those who postpone a purchase now to save money end up losing out later, because buying young nets a “big bang for the housing buck.”
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The 2018 Houzz Bathroom Trends Study finds homeowners are opting for showers over bathtubs in their master suites. And over half (56%) of baby boomer homeowners are addressing aging-related needs during master bathroom renovations.
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For the second consecutive month, sales and prices showed healthy year-over-year gains in October, with Pinellas County recording its biggest price jump — 13.3 percent — since January.
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What’s Up With Housing?

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Plenty of people love a good Halloween scare — as long no one gets hurt. And that includes your house.
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Not all mortgages are created equal. A LendingTree study looked at lending competition and found Florida buyers can save serious money by comparison shopping.
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If buyer demand continues to outpace the current supply of existing homes for sale, prices will continue to appreciate. Nothing nefarious is taking place. It is simply the theory of supply & demand working as it should.
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Hurricane Irma impacted Florida’s Sept. 2017 housing market and economy. With that in mind, 2018 Florida Realtors data finds existing single-family sales up 17% year-to-year, median prices up 4.9%, condo sales up 14.6% and condo median prices up 5.5%.
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Florida led the nation in construction job growth over the past year, according to a new report. Contractors added 70,700 workers to their Florida payrolls, a 14.8 percent growth rate, in the 12 months ending in September.
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A trend in Central Florida’s two major multifamily growth markets may be indicative of a national shift from downtown to suburban markets.
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Due to Hurricane Irma last September, the Pinellas County housing market saw a few large swings in sales & listings year-over-year.