The New Jersey Association of Realtors® has just released a statement regarding the second-quarter Metropolitan Area Home Prices/State Resale report from the National Association of Realtors®.
The Chief Executive of NJAR®, Jarrod C. Grasso had this to say.
“For the second quarter of 2011, New Jersey’s Metro areas held their own in terms of median home prices, with all areas demonstrating a quarterly price increase. Two bright spots that displayed increases from the second quarter of 2010 were Wayne, N.J./New York and Atlantic City, N.J. Despite minor annual price declines in all the other Garden State metros, all of them outperformed the national price decrease of 10.2%.”
The statement goes on to point out that there is still a high volume of distressed properties on the market, and there are still some in the judicial pipeline, but in spite of this New Jersey’s prices have performed better-than-expected, and prices are expected to strengthen once this surplus is further cleared.
Apparently the drop in the Garden State’s existing home sales was somewhat higher than the national average, but New York, Pennsylvania and the North East region in general also experienced a fall in existing home sales. This is thought to be due to the number of conditions currently affecting consumer confidence which include stricter lending requirements, the volume of foreclosures and unemployment levels. Another factor which has to be taken into account is that during last summer potential purchasers were able to take advantage of the federal homebuyer tax credit.
Looking towards the future it seems likely that jumbo loans from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the FHA will be discontinued at the end of September, and although most states may be unaffected it will probably hit those hoping to purchase or refinance a property with a mortgage in the $300,000-$700,000 range. As New Jersey is a relatively high cost state these new lower limits would make it more difficult for families to raise sufficient finance to buy home here, and it will cost them considerably more.
Jarrod C. Grasso concluded the statement by saying “With an already fragile industry at the whim of external factors, now is not the time for lawmakers to impede the ability of credit where the buyers to enter the market. In addition the National Association of Realtors® estimates that one job is generated for every two home sales. It is time to put housing first.” Hopefully someone will listen.