Tag Archives: Bedford Corners Homes for Sale

Bedford Corners Homes for Sale

Lumber prices on the rise | Bedford Corners Real Estate

The price of softwood lumber rose by 2.3% in December, while prices paid for ready-mix concrete, gypsum products, and OSB all fell, according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Ready-mix concrete, gypsum products and OSB prices fell by 0.1%, 0.2%, and 1.3%, respectively. The 2.3% increase in the softwood lumber price index is the largest monthly increase since April 2016.

Over the course of 2016, softwood lumber prices rose nearly 8.7% while prices paid for OSB spiked by 13.8%.  In November, the cost of ready-mix concrete and gypsum products rose 3.5% and 5.0%, respectively, on a year-over-year basis.

In contrast to the price of softwood lumber–which has been relatively stable over the last two years–OSB prices have risen almost 30% during the same period.  OSB prices leveled off in August 2016, but remain near their two-year high.

The economy-wide PPI increased 0.3% in December, 80% of which was driven by a 0.7% rise in prices paid for goods. Prices for final demand services rose only 0.1%.  A 0.3% increase in the final demand prices for core goods (i.e. goods excluding food and energy) continued a positive trend that started with a 0.2% increase in November.  Prices for core goods less trade services climbed 0.1% and rose 1.7% in 2016, far outpacing the 0.3% rise seen in 2015.

Sixty percent of the rise in prices for goods—the fourth straight increase—was due to the increase in prices of final demand energy.   Gasoline prices alone (+7.8%) accounted for nearly half of the increase.  In contrast, prices of fruit and residential electric power led declines among goods. The increase in prices for final demand services was led by securities brokerage, investment advice, and related services, which advanced 4.4%.

 

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http://eyeonhousing.org/2017/01/osb-prices-climb-14-in-2016/

U.S. EPA settles with firm for failure to protect residents from lead-based paint | Bedford Corners Real Estate

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a settlement with Powerstar Home Energy Solutions for failing to comply with federal lead-based paint rules at several residential properties in Southern California.  The company will pay a civil penalty of $11,429.

Powerstar has also agreed to spend about $34,000 to purchase equipment to test blood lead levels in children. Blood lead analyzers will be donated to ten community health clinics in San Bernardino and Orange counties. The analyzers measure lead in blood samples and give results in as little as three minutes, allowing immediate follow-up by health care providers. The clinics will receive enough kits to test 480 children.

“Children are highly susceptible to lead-based paint and symptoms are not easily recognized,” said Alexis Strauss, EPA’s Acting Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “This settlement will give hundreds of families the opportunity to have their children tested, giving parents the information they need to protect their loved ones.”

Powerstar Home Energy Solutions, a trade name of Smithlum & Friend, Inc., is headquartered in Anaheim and offers residential coatings and window replacements. In 2014, EPA found the company violated EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting rule by renovating five homes built before 1978 in the cities of Anaheim, Brea, Chino and Redlands without following practices required to reduce lead exposure. The company failed to:

  • Become certified by EPA to perform residential work;
  • Distribute the “Renovate Right” brochure to educate occupants about lead-safe work practices;
  • Keep complete records documenting whether the work followed lead-safe practices.

Common renovation activities like sanding, cutting, and demolition can create hazardous lead dust and chips. When companies fail to follow lead-safe practices, the resulting lead dust and chips can contaminate home surfaces. Contractors who disturb painted surfaces in pre-1978 homes and child-occupied facilities must be trained and certified, provide educational materials to residents, and follow safe work practices. The U.S. banned lead-based paint from housing in 1978 but EPA estimates that more than 37 million older homes in the U.S. still have lead-based paint.

Though harmful at any age, lead exposure is most dangerous to children because their bodies absorb more lead, and their brains and nervous systems are more sensitive to its damaging effects. Babies and young children can also be more highly exposed to lead because they often put their hands and other objects that can have lead from dust or soil on them into their mouths. The effects of lead exposure can include behavior and learning problems, slowed growth, hearing problems, and diminished IQ.

Often lead poisoning occurs with no obvious symptoms, so it may go unrecognized. Parents or caregivers who think their child has been in contact with lead should notify their child’s health care provider who can help decide whether a blood test is needed or recommend treatment.

EPA enforces the federal Toxic Substances Control Act and its Renovation, Repair, and Painting rule and the lead-based paint Disclosure Rule. The Renovation, Repair, and Painting rule protects residents and children from exposure to lead-based paint hazards from activities that can create hazardous lead dust when surfaces with lead-based paint are disturbed. The Disclosure Rule requires those who sell or rent housing built before 1978 to provide an EPA-approved lead hazard information pamphlet, include lead notification language in sales and rental forms, disclose any known lead-based paint hazards and provide reports to buyers or renters, allow a lead inspection or risk assessment by home buyers and maintain records certifying compliance with applicable federal requirements for three years.

 

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https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/us-epa-settles-anaheim-home-improvement-firm-failure-protect-residents-lead-based-paint

Housing Affordability Edges Lower in Third Quarter | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Ongoing home price appreciation offset a small decline in mortgage interest rates to move housing affordability slightly lower in the third quarter of 2016, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI).

In all, 61.4 percent of new and existing homes sold between the beginning of July and end of September were affordable to families earning the U.S. median income of $65,700. This is down from the 62.0 percent of homes sold that were affordable to median-income earners in the first quarter.

hoi-ppt-q316

The national median home price increased from $240,000 in the second quarter to $247,000 in the third quarter. Meanwhile, average mortgage rates edged lower from 3.88 percent to 3.76 percent in the same period.

Elgin, Ill., was rated the nation’s most affordable major housing market, where 94.3 percent of all new and existing homes sold in this year’s third quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $82,500. Meanwhile, Fairbanks, Alaska, was rated the nation’s most affordable smaller market, with 97.7 percent of homes sold in the third quarter being affordable to families earning the median income of $93,800.

For the 16th consecutive quarter, San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, Calif., was the nation’s least affordable major housing market. There, just 9.7 percent of homes sold in the third quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $104,700.

 

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http://eyeonhousing.org/2016/11/housing-affordability-edges-lower-in-third-quarter/

British house prices flat in October | Bedford Corners Real Estate

British house prices were unchanged in October after rising in monthly terms each of the previous 15 months, mortgage lender Nationwide said on Wednesday, a new sign of the market cooling after the Brexit vote.

House prices were flat last month, compared with a monthly increase of 0.3 percent in September and a median forecast for a rise of 0.2 percent in a Reuters poll of economists.

Compared with October last year, prices rose by 4.6 percent, slower than September’s increase of 5.3 percent and below a median forecast of 5.0 percent in the Reuters poll.

It was the slowest annual price growth since January, but Nationwide economist Robert Gardiner said it was still in line with rates since early 2015.

He said a 10 percent fall in housing market activity in recent months might be a lingering after-effect of April’s introduction of a higher level of tax on properties bought by landlords and second homes.

Howard Archer, an economist with Markit HIS, said he expected house prices to fall by about 3 percent next year when Britain launches its negotiations to leave the European Union, probably adding to uncertainty about the economy.

Another mortgage lender, Halifax, said last month that British house prices rose at their slowest pace in more than three years in the three months to September.

But there have been other signs recently that the housing market slowdown might be bottoming out

 

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http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-houseprices-nationwide-idUKKBN12X0LH

Builders see gradual improvement | Bedford Corners Real Estate

A gauge of home builder sentiment remained steady at 60 in January, the National Association of Home Builders said Tuesday.

That was unchanged from a downwardly-revised reading in December. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected a reading of 62.

Readings over 50 signal improvement, and readings in the low 60s show “a gradual improvement, which should bode well for future home sales in the year ahead,” NAHB Chairman Tom Woods said in a statement.

The index is down from a 10-year high of 65 in October, but still higher than the overall 2015 average of 59.

The sub-gauge that tracks current sales conditions rose 2 points to 67 in January, but the future sales component dipped 3 points to 63. The traffic gauge slid 2 points to 44. It hasn’t been above the neutral 50 mark since 2005.

Builders have gained confidence as the improving economy tugged the jobless rate to a 7-year low and started to nudge wages higher. Sales of new homes were stronger in 2015 than 2014. But builder still face headwinds, including pricier lots and scarcer labor.

That’s made many investors wary of builder stocks. KB Home shares slid earlier this month when fiscal fourth quarter earnings missed forecasts, even though orders and revenue both grew by double digits.

 

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http://www.marketwatch.com/story/home-builder-confidence-stays-steady-in-january-2016-01-19

Existing Home Sales fall 4.8% | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Existing Home Sales in the United States fell 4.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5310 Thousand in August from a downwardly revised 5580 Thousand in July of 2015. It is the lowest figure since April, below market expectations. The median sale price went up 4.7% yoy and the months’ worth of supply rose 0.3 to 5.2. Existing Home Sales in the United States averaged 3842.52 Thousand from 1968 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 7250 Thousand in September of 2005 and a record low of 1370 Thousand in March of 1970. Existing Home Sales in the United States is reported by the National Association of Realtors.

United States Existing Home Sales

 

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
5310.00 5480.00 7250.00 1370.00 1968 – 2015 Thousand Monthly
SA
Existing Home Sales occurs when the mortgage is closed. Mortgage closing usually takes place 30-60 days after the sales contract is closed. . This page provides the latest reported value for – United States Existing Home Sales – plus previous releases, historical high and low, short-term forecast and long-term prediction, economic calendar, survey consensus and news. Content for – United States Existing Home Sales – was last refreshed on Monday, September 21, 2015.

 

Calendar GMT Reference Actual Previous Consensus Forecast (i)
2015-07-22 03:00 PM Jun 5.49M 5.32M(R) 5.4M 5.2M
2015-08-20 03:00 PM Jul 5.59M 5.48M 5.44M 5.4M
2015-09-21 03:00 PM Aug 5.31M 5.58M 5.53M 5.4M
2015-10-22 03:00 PM Sep 5.6M
2015-11-23 03:00 PM Oct 5.6M
2015-12-22 03:00 PM Nov 5.5M

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http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/existing-home-sales

 

Exterior Home Improvements That Increase Value | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Yesterday on Housecall, we discussed ways to increase your home value with indoor décor. Today, we’re focusing on what you can do outside the home to give it an added monetary boost.

Curb appeal is everything when it comes to selling your home, and that means your home’s exterior needs to be in optimal condition. In fact, 71 percent of prospective home buyers say that a home’s curb appeal is an important factor in their buying decision. This infographic fromLawnStarter shows seven exterior home improvements that can increase resale value and help sell your home even faster:

LawnStarterIG

Replace Your Front Door

Believe it or not, a front door says a lot about you and your home. A quality front door can be a huge asset for your home’s value, and how secure your home feels upon entrance. Kelly Fallis of Remote Stylist says, “It’s the first thing a buyer walks through. Repaint or replace; their first impression rests on it.” According to House Logic, a standard 20-gauge steel door can cost around $1,230, but that investment can more than pay for itself with the amount of value it adds to your home. A quality front door replacement can bring you a return of around 102 percent, which makes it a great bang for your buck.

Updated Landscaping

Over 92 percent of prospective home buyers use the Internet at some point during their search process, meaning a lot of eyes are going to be looking for pictures of your home. You want to be able to showcase your property in the best light possible to drive interested parties in for a closer look. According to Bankrate, a quality landscaping job has the potential to net you a whopping 252 percent return in increased home value. John Harris, a landscape economist, has stated that updated landscaping can increase a home’s value by 28 percent and have it sold 10-15 percent quicker.

New Paint

Most prospective homeowners tend to look at what they need to update or work on in the homes that they look at. Repainting your home can cause less stress on the buyer since they know that the job is fresh and adds to the look of the home. That being said, don’t go overboard with color choices. Choose warm and inviting colors, such as taupe, tan or white. “Individuals too often minimize the impact of a first impression,” says James Alisch, managing director of WOW 1 DAY PAINTING. “The exterior paint job of a home greatly impacts how potential buyers feel about a place.” You want to make sure that potential buyers can envision themselves inside your home, and having a neutral exterior color is appealing to a larger pool of buyers. If you do feel the need to add some brighter colors, make sure that they aren’t overpowering and can work well with the neutral base. It’s best to consult your local home improvement store to discuss your options and budget.

 

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http://blog.rismedia.com/2015/7-exterior-home-improvements-that-increase-resale-value/

The color Watery Blue Is Summer’s Best Hue | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Summer’s in full swing, which hopefully means plenty of pool and beach time for many of you. Whenever I’m working with a homeowner who wants to add some color to their home, but doesn’t necessarily want to travel down the bold road, I recommend watery blue hues — colors inspired by summertime spent by the sea.

These soft, muted greenish-blue hues work especially well for bedrooms and bathrooms, where they offer a calming, spa-inspired vibe. I’ve gathered together some paint color options as well as examples of how to work with this pleasing, ocean-inspired hue.

New-home sales rise 2.2% in May to fastest pace in more than 7 years | Bedford Corners Homes

New single-family homes in the U.S. sold at an annual rate of 546,000 in May, hitting the fastest pace since February 2008, with growth in two of four regions, the government reported Tuesday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected a sales rate of 525,000 in May, compared with a prior estimate of 517,000 for April. On Tuesday the U.S. Commerce Department revised April’s rate to 534,000. May’s pace was up 19.5% from a year earlier, signaling a healthy pick up, though recent sales rates remain below long-term averages. The median price of new homes, meanwhile, fell 1% to $282,800 compared with May 2014. The supply of new homes was 4.5 months at May’s sales pace, down from 4.6 months in April. Economists caution over reading too much into a single monthly report. A confidence interval of plus-or-minus 16.7% for May’s growth of 2.2% shows that the government isn’t sure whether the sales pace rose or fell last month.

 

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http://www.marketwatch.com/story/new-home-sales-rise-22-in-may-to-fastest-pace-in-more-than-7-years-2015-06-23

11 Things You Need to Know When You’re About to… Buy a House | Bedford Corners Homes

Buying a home can be a stressful, complicated process—even if it’s not your first time. To help you take stock and get ready to find your way into a new home, here are some key things you need to know:

1. Know your goals.

This should go without saying, but house-hunting can make even the most practical of people lose sight of what’s really important.  Homeowners may dream of settling in, customizing and forgetting about yearly rent increases. Even so, there are trade-offs: decreased mobility, increased debt and more responsibility (there’s no super to call when the toilet springs a leak). Doing a quick pro and con of rent v. buy helps you make sense of your decision, given your lifestyle goals.

2. Have a five (or seven) year plan.

Staying put for five to seven years is a good rule of thumb for homebuyers but factors such as closing costs, market fluctuations and expenses like maintenance fees could mean it’ll take even longer to break even.

3. Bring 20 percent (or more) to the table.

Some lenders offer low- or no-down payment options for cash-strapped buyers but the terms are typically less attractive than for those with 20 percent. A 20 percent down payment also means avoiding Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which can cost an annual 0.3 to 1.15 percent of the original loan balance.

4. Make your own budget.

A mortgage lender may qualify you for more than you actually want to pay each month. Do your own budget analysis to figure out how much you’re comfortable shelling out for housing each and every month. And don’t forget extras like real estate taxes.

5. Check the score.

Higher credit score can add up to tens of thousands of dollars in savings over the life of a mortgage. Get a free copy of your credit report (available once per year) and look for ways to improve your score.

6. Find a real estate agent who fits your profile.

Typically, you start with recommendations from friends or financial professionals, like your CPA. But don’t stop there. Interview three or four agents with a keen eye for one with aspecific knowledge of your desired neighborhood, price range and property type. Then figure out if your personalities will work together—or against each other.

7. Don’t forget the emergency fund.

A house is the most expensive thing most people will ever buy. But costs go well beyond the purchase price. Routine maintenance, landscaping or pool care fees and unexpected repair bills can catch a new homeowner off guard. Upfront budgeting for these annual costs can save a lot of frustration when the HVAC unit needs to be serviced.

8. Location, location, location.

It’s hard to predict the future, but long-term neighborhood changes can have a dramatic effect on property costs. Homes within desirable school districts tend to be more expensive up front, but they’re also more likely to maintain property value.

9. Don’t scrimp on insurance.

A typical homeowners insurance policy will cover many different types of damage to your home—but be sure that it covers the full cost to rebuild the home. Your coverage should include replacing the structure and your personal possessions, the cost of living expenses if you have to live elsewhere while your house is repaired, plus your liability to others—otherwise, in the event of a loss, you may discover gaps in your coverage.

 

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http://bridgingthegaps.yahoo.com/post/119298350072/