What’s the latest from the Federal Reserve?

Luxury Arizona Southwest Home in Desert of North Scottsdale | mortgage rate news

Will the Fed look to cut rates sooner than later?

Federal Reserve Governors and Presidents have been speaking all week after last week’s rate announcement. For the most part, they’ve been in lockstep on the future for interest rates. The short answer is that they won’t be cutting interest rates in the next few months unless there’s a dramatic change in the data.

The overwhelming sentiment from this week’s speakers is that the Fed won’t look to start cutting in March and may not cut rates until the second half of the year.

Inflation is in the 2%-range, and the job market continues to show strength, so why isn’t the Fed moving quicker?

The reason is fairly simple. The economy is growing, the job market is growing, and inflation is cooling off. The Fed wants to see a large sample size of provable data that that inflation is really under control.

Richmond Fed President Tom Barkin said, “History tells many stories of inflation head-fake. The Fed reduced rates, but inflation then escalated again the following year, causing the Fed to reverse course. I would love to avoid that roller-coaster if we can.”

How are new home sales?

According to data released for Q4 2023, new home sales accounted for 32% of all home sales. This was just short of a record high for quarterly share of market for new home sales. The all-time record was 34.5% in Q1 2022.

New home construction has seen a measurable increase over the past year, and the number of existing homes has been decreasing since mortgage rates went from the 4’s and 5’s into the 6’s and 7’s over the past year.

Heather Mahmood-Corley, a Redfin Premier real estate agent in Phoenix, stated, “Newly built homes are selling quickly right now because builders are offering such good discounts. I recently had a buyer who wasn’t interested in a new construction home, but the builder offered such a good rate—5.25%—that they couldn’t afford not to take it. Another one of my buyers got a $10,000 credit for closing costs from a builder.”

Is a minifridge in the bathroom a real design trend?

While it may sound a bit counterintuitive to have a refrigerator in the bathroom, mini fridges are starting to pop up in homes that are going on the market.

This design trend started as part of a skincare ritual for certain products in South Korea. Products that contain vitamin C or A supposedly last longer if kept cool. However, you could also sneak a mini-bottle of wine or a few beers into the bathroom and keep them cool. You could also keep chilled towelettes or eye masks in your bathroom if you add a mini fridge.

in 10 minutes?

The pre-approval process is lightning fast, and can be completed
in under 10 minutes. Grab a few important documents to get started.
  1. Tax Returns
  2. Copies of W-2s (or 1099s for independent contractors,
    freelancers and the self-employed)
  3. A payroll stub
  4. A bank statement
  5. Loan obligation info (student loans,
    auto loans and credit cards)

Applicant subject to credit and underwriting approval. Not all applicants will be approved for financing. Receipt of application does not represent an approval for financing or interest rate guarantee. Restrictions may apply. 

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