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Further Proof This Isn’t a Housing Bubble

by Mayes Harris Team

Two weeks ago, we posted a blog which explained that current increases in home prices were the result of the well-known concept of supply & demand and should not lead to conversations of a new housing bubble. Today, we want to look at home prices as compared to current incomes.

Here is a graph showing the monthly mortgage payment on a median priced home in the U.S. over the last 25 years:


Mortgage payments are currently well below the historic average over that time period. Purchasers are not overextending themselves to buy a home like they did on the run-up to the housing crash.

Lawrence Yun, the Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors, recently explained in a Forbes article:

Even though home prices are climbing far above people’s income, exceptionally low mortgage rates have permitted people to buy a home without overstretching their budget. For someone making a 20% down payment, the monthly mortgage payment at today’s mortgage rates would take up 15% of a person’s gross income. During the bubble years, it was reaching 25% of income. The long-term historical average is around 20%. Therefore, a middle-income household does not need to overstretch their budget much if at all to buy a typical home.

Bottom Line

Due to low interest rates, demand for housing has dramatically increased. This has caused a jump in home prices. However, low interest rates have also allowed the monthly cost of buying a home to remain well below historic norms. We are in a strong housing market, not a housing bubble.

Home Sales Up Year-Over-Year

by Mayes Harris Team


Some Highlights

  • This is the 48th consecutive month with year-over-year price gains.
  • Lawrence Yun, NAR's Chief Economist says that, "The main issue continues to be a supply & affordability problem. Finding the right property at an affordable price is burdening many potential buyers."
  • Inventory is still below historic norms at a 4.4 month supply.

91.5% of Homes in the US have Positive Equity

by Mayes Harris Team

CoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that one million borrowers regained equity in their homes in 2015. The outlook for 2016 remains positive as well, as an additional 850,000 properties would regain equity if home prices rose another 5% this year. 

The study also revealed:

  • 95% of homes valued over $200,000 now have a positive equity position
  • 87% of homes valued under $200,000 have entered a positive position
  • The 11.5% growth in home equity in Q4 marked the 13th consecutive quarter of double digit gains

Below is a map showing the percentage of homes with a mortgage, in each state, that have positive equity. (The states in gray have insufficient data to report.)

Significant Equity Is On The Rise

Anand Nallathambi, President & CEO of CoreLogic, believes this is great news for the “long-term health of the U.S. economy.” He went on to say:

The number of homeowners with more than 20% equity is rising rapidly. Higher prices driven largely by tight supply are certainly a big reason for the rise, but continued population growth, household formation and ultra low interest rates are also factors.

Of the 91.5% of homeowners with positive equity in the US, 72.6% have significant equity (defined as more than 20%). This means that nearly three out of four homeowners with a mortgage could use the equity in their current home to purchase a new home now.

The map below shows the percentage of homes with a mortgage, in each state, with significant equity.

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many homeowners who is unsure of how much equity you have in your home and are curious about your ability to move, meet with a local real estate professional who can help evaluate your situation.

Lake Norman Real Estate Market Update

by Mayes Harris Team

With $116,000 being the median sales price in Catawba County, homes are more affordable than ever and that's great news for Buyers. Good news for Sellers is that the home values are predicted to grow within 1 year 3.20 percent. If you are interested in seeing any of the homes in the Lake Norman area, please contact me as I'd love to show you around.  If you are contemplating on whether this is a good time to sell your home, I'd like to talk with you as well.  

Please feel free to take a look at my featured properties or sign up for listings alert. There's no need for you to scour the internet every day.  We'll alert you to any new Listings that fit your criteria.

I realize the home search begins online and my website is just for that purpose.  You'll find resources for the Lake Norman communities, featured homes for sale, Buyers and Sellers information and also our monthly newsletter.  

Thank you for taking time to visit our blog and I hope you'll sign up to receive further information via email.Lake Norman of Catawba, NC Real Estate Market Trends | FindTheHome



Owning a home or property is a great thing, but selling it can be another story. It requires a good deal of effort and careful planning. Most have heard examples of a property owner trying to sell their own property by themselves and giving up.  Instead, they turn to a Realtor because of their frustration. Now, I am not saying that it can’t be done; simply that, it’s far from easy, especially if you aren’t aware of what’s involved.  And thus the reason for this blog.

Here is a list of tips and instructions to go through, before you mount that "For Sale" sign post on your front lawn. 


Inspect your house 

It’s difficult to turn a critical eye towards your own home.  If you cannot manage it then maybe have someone you know walk through and try to give you feedback on what should be done before listing your home.  Find out what needs to be fixed and what will give you the best value for your money in those fixes. Also, get rid of the clutter. A little investment in the details can go a long way in selling your home quickly and for the most money.  Sometimes it is as simple as a fresh coat of paint and some new hardware such as switch plates, cupboard pulls and door knobs. Other times it may need a little more and really depends on the current local market. 


Identify your niche

Figure out the market value of your home, the area, and the market price. Evaluate any outstanding liens on your property.  Review the recent sales in your area, and then calculate a competitive price for your property. Identify the type of your property and the category (as in commercial or residential) it falls under. Also, identify who the ideal buyer of your home might be.  That will help you know where to advertise your home.



Evaluate the possible marketing options and strategies that you will utilize to make your offer visible to your prospective market. Call for an open house, put up display boards, post online ads, design brochures and also get your property listed online, Reach out to your network and ask them to spread the word or to let you know if they know of anyone looking.


Plan your time

Selling property on your own requires a great deal of time and effort. The deal does not get finalized in a moment or two and can extend over weeks or months.  Also, there will be prospective buyers interested in visiting and inspecting your house in person, and you need to spare sufficient time for this purpose.


Devise a plan 

Determine your requirements and parameters upon which you are going to sell your property. Calculate your break-even amount, and set your negotiation limit, Hopefully, that will be within the range of the local market. You will also need to align your sales plan, pricing, and the requisite criterion in accordance with the real estate laws governing the State of North Carolina. Negotiations in real estate are subject to a number of revisions from the seller and buyer until they form a mutually acceptable sale contract. It is advisable to hire an attorney to assist you with the legalities and negotiations. 

Okay, so, now you are equipped with the basics of selling a property.  

If you should have any questions or decide there is just too much involved in selling your own home or property, please feel free to reach out to me, Gina Harris. I am a lifelong resident of the Lake Norman area and my network of contacts is wide.  Please take a look at the homes I am currently marketing and visit my social media platforms, which you'll find on the home page.  I believe in marketing homes online as well as offline. 

Displaying blog entries 1-5 of 5




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