Today’s topics: Credit Suisse see opportunities in urbanization, the latest Beige Book from the Federal Reserve, and much more
An Urbanizing World
Credit Suisse just released a reportthat sees opportunities in the future:
Drawn by economic, lifestyle and social opportunities of urban dwelling, the world’s population is migrating from rural areas – accounting for 70% of the global population in 1950 – to cities – accounting for 70% of global population by 2050 based on United Nations projections.
Well maybe they are right or maybe they are wrong. Does this mean that rural areas will become abandoned waste lands? I do not think so. I think that people will just be crammed in like sardines in these urban areas. Some people have always wanted to live in the rural areas.
What do you prefer: rural, suburban or urban?
Federal Reserve Beige Book
Last week the Fed released their latest Beige Book. The Fed said that the economy continued to grow at a modest to moderate pace from mid-February 2012 through late March 2012. The Beige Book said that residential real estate activity improved in most Federal Reserve districts.
South Carolina is in the Richmond District so let’s look at what they had to say about real estate in our region:
Bankers reported modest gains in most types of lending; however, other than refinancing, the amount of mortgage lending remained relatively weak. Nonetheless, Realtors noted an increase in sales of existing homes, and contractors reported an uptick in new home construction. Commercial real estate activity also improved moderately across most segments of the market, although contractors reported fewer government-related new construction projects.
Residential real estate activity showed promising signs of recovery since our last report. Moreover, a few contacts noted that housing prices had stabilized and, in some markets, prices were beginning to trend upward. Some agents attributed the rise in sales price to greater buyer traffic as a result of unseasonably warm weather. Several Realtors reported sales of higher priced homes were faring better than other price categories. A number of Realtors held a positive outlook for expected sales.
Both contractors and Realtors reported that access to financing continued to be limited, and the required paperwork was inhibiting completion of loans on a timely basis.
I have to say this does sound like what we are seeing and hearing from other Realtors. And I can tell you that the limited access to financing they mentioned is a big problem. Good people with good jobs are still having problems getting mortgages. Not only that but Lending standards are getting tighter
However, not everyone is having trouble getting a mortgage. But it isn’t like it used to be. Sometimes it seems the banks do NOT want to lend any money…
Foreclosure Filings Down
Foreclosure filings are down 2% from the previous quarter and down 16% from the first quarter of 2011 according to RealtyTrac’s U.S. Foreclosure Market report released late last week. But don’t let that fool you into thinking that suddenly all the foreclosed homes are gone or that the problems in real estate are over…
RealtyTrac is reporting that foreclosure activity in South Carolina is up 26% year-over-year. When I wrote this, there were 278 foreclosed homes in Anderson, Oconee and Pickens County in the WUAR MLS.
Last But Not Least
Wonder why I hate BofA so much? BofA Forecloses on Woman, Daughter With Cerebral Palsy