Orange County Real Estate Market Update 7/6/16

Great news to begin your holiday weekend, soon you’ll be able to finance or refinance your love shack with a 30-year fixed for under 3 percent! Thirty-year mortgage rates have never been that low in the 45 years since Freddie Mac began tracking them in 1971. It appears that the economic fallout from ‘Brexit’ will at least have one upside for American home owners and for home buyers requiring financing.

This week the 30-year fixed averaged 3.48 percent, a whopping 8 basis points lower than last week’s 3.56 percent. That’s the lowest rate since May 9, 2013. The 15-year fixed settled in at 2.78 percent, 5 basis points better than last week’s 2.83 percent, and the five-year ARM (an adjustable-rate mortgage that’s fixed for the first five years) fell to 2.70 percent. Both also are at three-year lows!

The recent economic turmoil has left many wondering if the housing market will soon decline. The chance of a widespread drop in local or statewide home prices in the next two years is practically nil, according to a new forecast from a private mortgage insurer. Arch MI’s quarterly housing reports pegs the risk of a price drop based on a host of real estate trends, credit market factors and economic patterns. Recent economic turbulence has raised questions about the durability of housing’s rebound from its collapse and the Great Recession.

Based on first-quarter data, Arch calculated the risk of price drops in all of California – as well as in Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside or San Bernardino counties – at a “minimal” 2 percent vs. 5 percent nationwide. A year ago, California’s price-drop risk was 8 percent, equal to the national risk level in 2015’s first quarter. “We see no housing bubble in Southern California,” says Ralph DeFranco, chief economist for Arch MI’s owner, Arch Capital. “Even though homes feel expensive, they are supported by the amount of income people have.”

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