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Skyrocketing Real Estate Sales Hit an Historical Benchmark

Real Estate Prices Are the Highest They Have Ever Been and Home Sales Stand Just One Notch Below April's High Point

By the Mortgage Guy /

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Day after day, the chatter that is heard is all about the rising cost of homes, record low interest rates, refinancing through hybrid amortization plans and home sales remaining unabated. Despite all the talk and speculation of a bubble that's going to burst, April of this year was the highest month on record for sales of existing homes. May is virtually in the same category. While the median cost of homes continues to rise, and the demand for housing does nothing to stifle these price increases, the most basic rules of supply and demand have gripped the nation.

Risky interest-only mortgage plans, little or no money down, and lenders jumping over each other to qualify and approve loans for prospective home buyers has brought us to the point where the total sales of previously owned homes and condos stood at 7.13 million for the month of May. This figure is not much off from April's 7.18 million homes, which was the all time record. Not to be out classed, the price of homes continues to rise with the new median cost for a home coming in at $207,000.

All of this continues to stimulate conversation and speculation about the housing bubble, that many say exists and others relegate to a "frothing". Even after Federal Reserve Board Chairman, Alan Greenspan, talked of "froth" in the market and the "conundrum" of interest rates, investors still fight over the few available properties left on the market. Financial experts worry about homeowners who have strayed into deeper waters with their unconventional loans and over extended budgets. The housing sector is what is keeping the U.S. and world economies afloat. Currently, there is widespread chatter of a domino effect in the near future if too many people lose their footing, including the well known Fannie Mae and Freddi Mac, the two secondary loan giants.

The Federal Reserve has worked hard at trying to get the short-term interest rates to climb and thus quell inflation to a degree, but this effort has seen little or no result. Mortgage rates keep going lower and lower, breaking every record that anyone could have sighted from the past. All of this has been occurring as the property industry continues to shatter previous sales and price levels day after day, for every imaginable type of home on the market.

Not all regions have seen these historic highs, but none are truly suffering or in desperate need of sales either. While the Northeast remains stagnant, the Western region of America has seen an increase of 1.9 %, the Midwest a drop of 3.0 % and the South a nominal drop of .07 percent.

While Greenspan waxes on about a stable economy with a "reasonably firm footing" and inflation seemingly under control, experts are predicting that the Fed will continue raising interest rates until at least summer's end. The only thing that could really throw this all into a tailspin would be a sudden upward fluctuation in the price of oil, which we are already beginning to see signs of due to speculation of increased demand, and a shortage availability. However, none of this is stopping people form buying homes and property at an increasing rate.

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