New Mortgage Rules Expected To Soften

President Obama called for change during his State of the Union address saying that strict mortgage rules are keeping young first-time home buyers from buying a home. The President implored, “let’s streamline the process, and help our economy grow.” Bloomberg News reported that, by the end of summer 2013, banking regulators may be proposing a more attainable set of rules in hopes of attracting a larger number of first-time home buyers. More here

Consumer Debt Decreases

Total consumer debt fell 0.7% from the first quarter of 2013 to the second quarter according to the New York Fed’s quarterly household debt and credit report. Household delinquency rates decreased from 8.1% in the first quarter to 7.6% in the second. Meanwhile, student loan debt and auto loan debt increased for the ninth consecutive quarter. Fed research economist, Andrew Haughwout said, “although overall debt declined in the second quarter, households did increase non-housing debt, led by rising auto loan balances.” More here

Consumer Debt Decreases

Total consumer debt fell 0.7% from the first quarter of 2013 to the second quarter according to the New York Fed’s quarterly household debt and credit report. Household delinquency rates decreased from 8.1% in the first quarter to 7.6% in the second. Meanwhile, student loan debt and auto loan debt increased for the ninth consecutive quarter. Fed research economist, Andrew Haughwout said, “although overall debt declined in the second quarter, households did increase non-housing debt, led by rising auto loan balances.” More here

Mortgage Rates Stabilize

U.S. mortgage rates continue their slow increase helping the economy grow stronger. According to Freddie Mac, the average rate for 30-year fixed mortgages increased to 4.4% last week. Meanwhile, the average 15-year rate remained unchanged at 3.43%. Many experts say that mortgage rates have begun to stabilize and expect them to level out over the coming months. Additionally, Americans seem to have very optimistic opinions about the housing market with many saying they believe now is a great time to buy. More here

Housing Market Heating Up In Many Locations

According to recent information, particular locations are doing better than others when it comes to the housing market. Housing prices have shot up in many areas and are expected to continue to grow over the next year. Locations like San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose, Philadelphia, Phoenix and the state of Texas hold the top positions in the U.S. housing market. Experts are advising that individuals in these areas and other areas showing growth take advantage of the improving market. Experts also say it is a great time to sell as prices are soaring but have not yet reached high levels making it a prime time to buy, as well. More here

Home Prices Continue To Rise

According to a recent report by the National Association of Realtors, the nation’s median home price has continued to grow in many metropolitan areas. 142 metropolitan cities posted  gains in the second quarter of 2013 when compared to 2012. Meanwhile, existing single-family home prices increased 87%. Prices are expected to continue to grow as inventory remains low. NAR chief economist,  Lawrence Yun said, “there continue to be more buyers than sellers, and that is placing pressure on home prices, with multiple bids common in some areas of the country.” More here

Home Builders Notice Positive Gains

U.S. home builders are noticing a large increase in demand. Builders saw a record-breaking second quarter in development and interest in housing for people 55+. The chairman of NAHB’s 50+ Housing Council and member of the Symphony Development Group, Robert Karen said, “Builders and developers for the 55+ housing sector are feeling optimistic as they are seeing more consumers return to the marketplace.”  As existing home prices continue to soar, more consumers are able to sell their homes and build or purchase a new home that will better suit their needs.More here

Mortgage Delinquencies Fall In All States

All signs are pointing toward improvement, as a new report from TransUnion shows that mortgage delinquencies have decreased in all 50 states and the District of Columbia from last year. President Obama recently said that the housing market is “healing” as new foreclosures fell by approximately two-thirds. Group vice president of U.S. housing in TransUnion’s financial services business unit, Tim Martin said, “Improving house prices and low interest rates have helped some homeowners across the country refinance or sell their way out of mortgage payments they were having difficulty affording.” More here

U.S. Trade Gap Falls

Spring of 2013 showed positive results for the growth of the economy. According to the Commerce Department, the U.S. trade gap decreased more than 22%, the lowest level seen since October of 2009. American exports jumped 2.2%, averaging a record high of $191.2 billion. Senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, Jennifer Lee said, “We could see a sizable upward revision.” Many economists are now expecting the government to revise the estimated economic growth for April-June due to the large drop in trade deficit. More here