Pending home sales rise in new month-over-month data

Couple shopping for a home with a real estate agent

Pending home sales rise according to recent data

The National Association of Realtors released pending home sales for June 2023. The numbers showed that pending home sales increased nationally by 0.3% from May 2023. The U.S. pending homes sales index level for June 2023 was at 76.8/100, up from May 2023’s 76.6/100.

While homes sales data is still down from where it was a year ago, even a modest increase is seen as good news. More pending sales indicates that the housing market could be starting to thaw.

Who isn’t buying homes in the current housing market?

According to another recent report, foreign nationals aren’t buying up property in the U.S. at the same rate that they used to. In fact, foreign purchase of real estate is at an all-time low.

Over the past year, foreign purchase of U.S. homes is down 7.9%. Buyers outside the U.S. still bought 84,600 existing homes, but that’s the lowest number since tracking started in 2009. Foreign buyers were only 1.8% of total U.S. home sales from April 2022 to March 2023.

Of the few foreign nationals who have been buying, the locations that have attracted their attention should come as no surprise to folks who follow the housing market. Florida, Texas, and California, in that order were their top destinations of choice. North Carolina came in fourth place in popularity for foreign nationals buying property in the U.S., with nearly half of the non-American buyers coming from Oceania.

Is it a good idea to buy points on a mortgage?

Most homebuyers will encounter the term mortgage points at some point during their journey to a new home. Mortgage points are fees paid to the lender in exchange for a lower interest rate on a loan. It’s possible to buy points when you take out a new mortgage or refinance an existing one.

It’s also important to remember that one mortgage point is the same as 1% of your mortgage amount. In exchange for paying this fee, your lender agrees to lower your mortgage rate by a certain amount, typically 0.25%.

Buying mortgage points can help you save over the life of a loan, but is it a good idea? According to CBS News, it depends on your financial situation.

Mortgage points allow you to have a lower interest rate on your loan, and a lower monthly payment than if you didn’t buy points. They’re also tax deductible if you meet certain criteria.*

However, buying points may be a strain on your budget. It’s also a good idea to conserve cash in case you need to make repairs or improvements.

* Guaranteed Rate does not provide tax advice. The consumer should always consult a tax advisor for information regarding the deductibility of interest and other charges in their particular situation.

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