Home Buying Spring 2016: Housing Market Outlook & Hottest Real Estate Markets

Spring is here, and we all know what that means, the days get longer and warmer, the big egg hunt takes place, April showers arrive to produce May flowers, and of course, it’s open season on the home buying market!

Ask most real estate agents, sellers, and homebuyers, and they’ll tell you, spring is traditionally considered prime home buying season, beginning in April and reaching its peak in June.

So what will the spring home buying season bring? And what are the hottest markets? Read on to learn more!

Real Estate Housing Market 2016 Outlook

The latest rage has been all about the millennials, and with the steady job growth, low mortgage rates (despite Fed hikes) and apartment rents splurging out of control, many this spring will consider buying a home. However, according to Doug Duncan, Chief Economist of Fannie Mae, he estimates that home prices will climb 5% this year, twinning itself up to 2015 stats, while sales will increase just 3%, a step down from the 7% sales increase the market experienced in 2015.

So home prices will continue to climb at a steady rate, due to limited inventory, but home sales, despite the growing interest to buy a home, not so much. What does that mean to a seller? If you attract the right crowd, selling your home will be easier, and you may even have some competing offers! The beauty of supply and demand…

It’s interesting to note that first time homebuyers 35 years of age or younger, make up the largest segment in housing, accounting for 35% of buyers from June 2014 through last year’s Spring home buying season. In my 2015 dictionary, millennials were those 34 years of age or younger, so this year it’s up to age 35. Finally they’re moving out of their parents’ homes! #nojoke #freedom

Did you know? Spring may NOT be the best time if you’re a buyer…

Recent stats revealed late last year that the best month for homebuyers is October, and the best day of the week is Monday. Go figure, skip the Monday blues and just go house shopping. According to research by RealtyTrac, upon examining 32 million home and condo sales over the past 15 years, those that purchased a home in October experienced a 2.6% discount on their home purchase when compared to the fair market value. But, October accounted for only 8.4% of home closing transactions! They further went on to find that the worst time to buy was in April, when homebuyers paid 1.2% more than the market value. So it doesn’t pay to be trendy, but it’s so much more fun to buy in season!

Hottest Markets for Spring 2016

So, if you’ve been apartment living, you’re likely wondering, where do I actually buy a home? Realtor.com lists the 10 hottest markets in the country for 2016, looking at factors such as housing demand, job growth, and large populations of key demographics (oh millennials, you). Surprise, surprise, you won’t see San Francisco, Denver or Dallas on this list!

  1. Providence, RI

    • City Population as of 2013: 177,994
    • Median resident age: 29
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $171,800
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $229,242
    • Is the capital of Rhode Island
    • Known as the “Creative Capital” for its arts community
    • Boasts the Rhode Island motto: “What Cheer”
  2. St. Louis, MO

    • City Population as of 2013: 318,416
    • Median resident age: 35
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $108,100
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $148,107
    • The signature attraction is the Gateway Arch, a monument to honor President Thomas Jefferson
    • Check out the city on Facebook!
  3. San Diego, CA

    • City Population as of 2013: 1,355,896
    • Median resident age: 33
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $542,854
    • The average beachy temperature is 70 degrees
    • How many miles of beaches? 70
    • Arriba! Only 20 miles north of the Tijuana border
  4. Sacramento, CA

    • City Population as of 2013: 479,686
    • Median resident age: 34
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $228,200
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $262,087
    • Is the capital state of California
    • Becoming a hot spot for urban nightlife
    • Boasts an amazing art scene
  5. Atlanta, GA

    • City Population as of 2013: 447,841
    • Median resident age: 33
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $ 200,900
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $ 332,012
    • There are more than 65 streets with the word Peachtree in Atlanta.
    • Atlanta is home to two Nobel Peace Prize winners: Martin Luther King Jr. & President Jimmy Carter.
    • After Chicago, the city of Atlanta has more shopping center space per capita than any other city.
  6. New Orleans, LA

    • City Population as of 2013: 378,715
    • Median resident age: 35
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $183,100
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $261,993
    • There are no laws against walking around with open containers (alcohol).
    • They prefer their local coffee shops to that other big brand
    • Known as the “Crescent City” for its moon-like shape hugging the Mississippi River
  7. Memphis, TN

    • City Population as of 2013: 653,450
    • Median resident age: 33
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $89,400
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $145,577
    • Average temperature is about 89 degrees, and an average of 238 sunny days annually
    • Its suburbs include Arlington, Bartlett, Collierville, Lakeland, Southaven, Whitehaven, Millington and Germantown, and West Memphis, Arkansas
    • Is a leading commercial and industrial city
  8. Charlotte, NC

    • City Population as of 2013: 792,862
    • Median resident age: 33
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $165,900
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $254,296
    • The largest city in North Carolina
    • Nicknamed the Queen City in honor of the German Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
    • Sports life: Charlotte has it all – football, basketball, NASCAR, golf, etc.
  9. Virginia Beach, VA

    • City Population as of 2013: 448,479
    • Median resident age: 35
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $259,200
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $314,110
    • Very close to the Virginia-North Carolina state line, and is actually closer to cities in North Carolina than other Virginia cities
    • Home to 3.5 military bases
    • Average temperature is 60 degrees
    • Known for its beautiful, and awesomely long beach
  10. Boston, MA

    • City Population as of 2013: 645,966
    • Median resident age: 32
    • Estimated median house or condo value in 2013: $381,700
    • Estimated mean housing prices in 2013 (all housing units): $478,733
    • At 90 feet below the surface, the Ted Williams Tunnel is the deepest tunnel in North America.
    • Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, is the oldest original Major League Baseball Park still in use.
    • Harvard was founded in 1636 and was the first college established in North America. Matt Damon also went to Harvard, but didn’t quite make it to graduation before his acting career took off.

So what are you waiting for? It’s open season! Good luck home hunting, and don’t forget to get pre-approved first!

City statistics came from: http://www.city-data.com/

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