We’re nearly halfway through January, and blog posts and articles detailing real estate industry experts’ predictions for 2014 continue to proliferate, online and off. So, let me take a moment to climb up onto this bandwagon, and then I’ll try to whittle all the predictions and prognostications we’ll be talking about in 2014 down to three key points.
1. Mortgage Rates
Let’s not even call this one a prediction. It’s essentially a forgone conclusion that mortgage rates will begin inching upward this year. The Fed has already begun tapering it’s bond program, and as the market continues to improve, mortgage have just one way to go…up.
2. Housing Inventory
Inventory levels / housing supply will certainly be a story the first half of the year, if not longer. National inventory levels are just beginning to get back to healthy five or six month supply. On the level, however, housing inventory numbers may not look as robust. Take a look at inventory in three popular Ponte Vedra neighborhoods, for instance:
3. Home Prices
Another home run prediction for real estate prognosticators. But really, in what year, and what universe, are home prices not a central focus of any residential real estate discussion? Home prices are already inching up nationwide. How high and how fast they’ll continue to rise are tied, in large part, to the first two items on the list. A continued lack of inventory could continue to drive prices higher. But rising mortgage rates could provide the ballast that keeps those prices in check.
So, what’s the takeaway from our time peering into the crystal ball? As always in real estate, it depends whether you’re buying or selling, where you live and where you’re going. Regardless, you’ll always be able to find me here, taking the pulse of the real estate market for home buyers and sellers here in northeast Florida.
Have another 2014 housing market prediction for Jacksonville and/or St. John’s County, Florida that I didn’t mention here? Leave it in the comments below, amend we’ll discuss…