Pending Home Sales Slows, But Remains Above 2008 Levels

My blog readers may recall this expected market action from earlier news reports out of the National Association of Realtors in Washington, D.C., NAR chief economist, Lawrence Yun reaffirmed that the drop in the Pending Home Sales Index was anticipated. Home buyers scrambling to beat the initial deadline for the tax credit caused a wave of activity that crested with the origional deadline for the tax credit. Many analysts at the NAR predicted that the rise in the PHSI would halt as the old tax credit ended and its’ new expanded replacement builds momentum. Yun is optimistic that another surge of new home buyers will enter the market this spring. Although Pending Home Sales backed off its streak of consecutive increases, the Index remains above last year’s levels. NAR’s chief economist thinks the U.S. home market is building momentum on its own, but expects another 900,000 first-time home buyers to utilize the extended tax credit along with 1.5 million repeat buyers. Yun feels that low mortgage rates and increases in job growth will help the real estate market. Excess housing inventory will continue to decrease. All this should help in stabilizing home prices in 2010.
                                                   Pending Home Sales Index

The Pending Home Sales Index fell in all 4 regions of the country. Home sales in the West fell the least. Next in line is in the South, where the Index fell 15.0% to a reading of 97.8, but stayed 14.7% above 2008’s levels. An index level of 100 is equal to the average level of contract activity on homes in 2001. This was the first year the index was used.

If you are considering a real estate purchase in the Smokies, now is a great time. Mortgage interest rates are at historically low levels and will probably increase. Inventory of properties for sale is up, so selection is good. The tax credit is in effect through April 30th and it could put $6,500-$8,000 in your pocket, if you qualify. So if you are seriously thinking about buying or selling  Smokies real estate in 2010, contact the Jason White Team. Our expertise and knowledge of the area has made us a leader in helping people buy or sell property in the Great Smoky Mountains. Contact us online or by phone to get started today.

                      Here are a Couple of My Latest Listings:

Incredible Smoky Mountain/Valley Views!
This home is truly Above and Beyond. Even has an elevator! The mountain and valley views are worth viewing this home! Incredible log details throughout.
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Wears Valley
Price: $699,900
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Lots of Windows to Enjoy Mountain View!
Beautiful views from this contemporary home. Lots of windows bring the outside in. If you need storage this home is for you with plenty of closet space and even a separate living space in the lower level with it’s own entrance. Great in-law quarter!
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Gatlinburg ,Tennessee
Price: $135,000
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Year-To-Date Figures Continue to Show Improvement in the U.S. Real Estate Market

As we approach the end of the calender year, a better picture emerges in the direction of the country’s real estate market. The overall view of the nation’s home prices continues to show improvement toward stabilization. My news sources out of New York released their story on November 24th, 2009. The data was based on findings from the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices. This model from S&P/Case-Shiller is widely used in the housing industry to measure U.S. home prices. They utilize three views in the indices. There is a U.S. National, a 10-city, and a 20-city composite version in their analysis of data. The decline in the indices was dropping as we proceeded through the year.

 Case-Shiller Home Price Indices

Chairman of the S&P Index Committee, David M. Blitzer reports broad improvement in home prices for most of the past six months. Recent gains have been more modest than typically strong summer months. Previous concerns were focused on the drop due to an end to the first-time homebuyer tax credit. Housing starts did back off in October, but the government extended and expanded the tax credit for first-time homebuyers. This extension should bring in additional homebuyers that have been uncommitted at this point.

With home prices approaching stabilization, now could be the right time to purchase your property in the Smokies. Housing affordability is good. The inventory of active listings for sale is high. Mortgage rates are historically quite low. Surf our website for possible purchases. With the homebuyer tax credit recently extended, check with your legal and financial advisors to see if you qualify. In any case, the year-end holiday season is a fun time in the Smokies. If real estate is on your holiday wish list, contact The Jason White Team. We have the knowledge and expertise to fill your holiday property wish.

                                   Here are a couple of my current listings 

Stunning 4 Levels w/ Great Mtn View!!
Four level log cabin style overlooks nearby ridges and valley with great night views and lights. Large suites with whirlpools, large great room and media room with projection theater style TV and lots of windows to enjoy the Smoky Mountain views.
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Gatlinburg ,Tennessee
Price: $549,500
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Gatlinburg Home with River !!
Get lost in the sounds of the flowing river just outside the door of this 1BD/1BA cottage offering all the amenities plus a soothing hot tub designed for perfect placement on the private stone patio.Within walking distance to attractions of Downtown!
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Gatlinburg,Tennessee
Price: $339,900
Get more information >


Call me today for more information on these properties!  865-436-2121

New Historical Record-Nine Consecutive Monthly Gains for Pending Home Sales

This is a unique event in the history of the Pending Home Sales Index. This index for measuring the strength of U.S. home sales was first utilized in 2001. The National Association of Realtors in Washington, DC meticulously tracks this data to predict trends in the country’s real estate. For new blog readers, the Pending Home Sales Index is a future-oriented indicator based on home contracts signed, but not officially closed. Generally, these contracts officially close in 1-2 months after signing. The Index utilizes a large sample (approx. 20% of the nation) of existing home sales. Monthly comparisons often are not as accurate as comparing months of 2 different years or cumulative results year to year.  An index reading of 100 equals the average level of contract activity that occurred in 2001. This was the first year it was used and coincidentally was the first of 5 consecutive record years in existing home sales. The index reading for October 2009 was 114.1 or 3.7% above the September ’09 index of 110. This is 31.8% above October of 2008’s index at 86.6. This rise from October ’08 is the largest increase recorded and the current October level is closing in on an all time high.  March 2006 holds the record so far at an index level of 115.2 and current readings are as follows:Chart

Let us carefully look into this good news and analyze it in more detail. Lawrence Yun, the NAR chief economist gives us some perspective. Yun feels that real estate in 2008 under performed. Typical activity based on the population growth lagged the market. He feels that the current tax credit for new home buyers is helping qualified renters to purchase new homes.  However, Yun thinks home sales could drop in the future, as  the demand for new homes backs off due to the end of economic stimulus in real estate. Current market activity is helping high home inventories to decline. This favors price stabilization for real estate across the country.

If you are considering real estate in the Great Smoky Mountains Area, several factors are favorable.  First, the inventory for various properties from; homes to rental chalets, and cabins is up, giving buyers a great selection.  Another favorable condition is the low mortgage interest rates available for qualified buyers. Locking in a low rate could be a bonus, if inflation drives rates higher in the future. Real estate can be a hard asset that retains it’s value in times of inflation, protecting some of your life savings from getting inflated away.  As leaders in Smokies area real estate, the Jason White Team has years of professional expertise and in- depth knowledge of the region to find you the property, that fits your needs. Call or contact us online to  get started helping you today. Click here to view my featured listings. Click here to select all local listings.

                        Here are a couple of my listings  



Extra Large Private Lot w/Great View
This updated, immaculately maintained home is a must see! The spacious decking overlooks the beautiful mountain views as well as the extra large lot that is well manicured. The community pool and club house amenities are a bonus.
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Gatlinburg ,Tennessee
Price: $199,900
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Gatlinburg Home is Close to Town!!
This home has room for everyone! With the fantastic views and outdoor spa it is perfect for families and large groups.
Type: Single Family Home
Location: Gatlinburg ,Tennessee
Price: $379,900
Get more information >