Monthly Mortgage Market Trends

January 2019

January Mortgage Trends Insight


Producing Branch Manager

Going into the new year, just about everyone understands that real estate market is slowing down. The 2nd half of the year brought waning annual price spikes, more properties hitting the market, and fewer buyers to compete with. Everyone has to be wondering what that means for 2019. 

1 year ago the Denver market desperately needed two things… more inventory and prices to slow down. In December 2017 we had hit a record low of a 3854 homes for sale, both detached and attached. For the last 30 years, our December inventory averages 13,403 units, 4 times December 2017s number. Thru June 2018 our YTD median home increased in value 10.29%; great for home owners.

Then the market started to shift. June saw increases in inventory, days on market and months of inventory, all good news for buyers. Yet buyer activity slowed considerably as affordability and rising interest rates were taking their toll. Market volatility started to dominate conversations when the Central Bank stopped buying mortgage back securities in the US and slowed down in Europe in October.    

But this is not a time of doom and gloom but only reflection as we head into what everyone believes will be another hot spring market, taking off as early as February.  Move up buyers have incredible opportunity to cash in on their equity rich positions to pay off credit card debt, student loans and car loans and still make the move to purchase a new home. Entry level buyers also have hope as appreciation starts to return to Denver Metro’s 30 year average of 6% and a reprieve from mortgage rates peak in November.  

Low supply of inventory will continue drive our market in 2019 and push prices up as we remain a hot destination. Add to this the pure math of demographics… the largest swell of millennials turns 29 this year (peak homebuying age). Buyer demand is expected to return as both inventory, appreciation and rates return to normal. In fact, the National Association of Realtors’ predicts the Denver metro area market will stabilize in 2019; forecasting inventory to increase 7%, prices going up 6.8 percent, and rates ending at 5.5% .

I for one am looking forward to 2019 where we focus not on in-affordability and housing bubbles but long-term investment strategies and equity growth. 

Nicole Rueth with The Rueth Team of Fairway Mortgage.

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