Aug. U.S. homebuilder optimism hits 2005 levels

August 18, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) – Aug. 17, 2015 – U.S. homebuilders grew slightly more optimistic about the housing market in August, putting their confidence at levels last seen a decade ago during the debt-fueled housing boom.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Monday rose this month to 61, the highest level since November 2005. The reading was 60 in both June and July. Any reading above 50 indicates more builders view sales conditions as good, rather than poor.

“The fact the builder confidence has been in the low 60s for three straight months shows that single-family housing is making slow but steady progress,” said Tom Woods, a Missouri-based builder and chairman of the National Association of Home Builders.

Through the first half of 2015, the government reported that new-home purchases shot up 21.2 percent to 274,000.

This comes as employers have added 2.9 million workers over the past year and the unemployment rate has dropped to 5.3 percent from 6.2 percent. The hiring has infused the economy with new paychecks that have supported the spending on housing and autos, among other expenses.

And average mortgage rates remain under 4 percent, putting them about two percentage points below this historical average.

Mortgage giant Freddie Mac said the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.94 percent last week.

AP Logo Copyright © 2015 The Associated Press, Josh Boak. All rights reserved. This material may not be


Thank You!

August 12, 2015

Kathy and Bruce….

We got to our room tonight to a wonderful and thoughtful gift from you and Bruce….Thank You doesn’t go far enough in letting you know how much both Lorri and I appreciate your time, advice and your friendship through this whirlwind of a process…..

From the minute we stumbled in to your office Friday evening, you both took so much interest in us, our lives and our lifestyle, that it comes as no surprise why you are the top real estate producer in the area….It’s funny how some things just work out.

Lorri and I both felt in “good hands” with both you and Bruce …..In you and Bruce, Lorri and I found people that define how things should be done in the real estate industry.  Though Lorri and I are a bit “brain dead” after these last three days of decision making, you have been truly a pleasure and a blessing to work with.

We consider you as much more that real estate brokers…..We consider you as friends!

Please accept our sincere thanks for you considerate gift, but even more importantly, thank you for your information, your effort, your patience and your integrity through this process….

You define exactly what Walt Disney would have imagined for Celebration, Florida and the name Imagination Realty certainly couldn’t be more fitting …..

You are more than welcome to use both Lorri and I as a reference, not that you would ever need it….

With Our Most Sincere Respect and Appreciation,

PS…..I thought the horse for our anniversary was a good idea, but, who would have dreamed (besides Walt Disney) that a house would complete our day…..Wow!

Dan Cheresh


Celebration Real Estate Sales Totals – July 2015

August 1, 2015
Imagination Realty is pleased to provide the Celebration Real Estate Sales Totals for July 2015.

Please click the two links below to review the SOLD/CLOSED Single Family and Multifamily (condos, townhouses, villas) properties in Celebration as reported on the MLS.

Click the link below to see details of the 12 Single Family homes reported as SOLD/CLOSED.

http://mfr.mlsmatrix.com/Matrix/Public/Portal.aspx?k=3658417X8M08&p=DE-51341073-811

Click the link below to see details of the 12 Multi Family homes reported as SOLD/CLOSED.

http://mfr.mlsmatrix.com/Matrix/Public/Portal.aspx?k=3658417X8M08&p=DE-51341215-116

Looking Back – MLS Closed Statistics……..

July 2014: 10 Single Family – 16 Multi Family
August 2014: 14 Single Family – 12 Multi Family
September 2014: 16 Single Family – 20 Multi Family
October 2014: 14 Single Family – 9 Multi Family
November 2014: 14 Single Family – 22 Multi Family
December 2014: 12 Single Family – 17 Multi Family
January 2015: 3 Single Family – 15 Multi Family
February 2015: 12 Single Family – 5 Multi Family
March 2015: 14 Single Family – 9 Multi Family
April 2015: 22 Single Family – 8 Multi Family
May 2015: 14 Single Family – 15 Multi Family
June 2015: 19 Single Family – 17 Multi Family
July 2015: 12 Single Family – 12 Multi Family

If you would like us to research other parameters (time periods, specific price ranges, other areas),
please call or email Kathy Carlson at:
Kathy@ImaginationRealty.net
Courtesy of Imagination Realty
617 Celebration Ave
Direct # 407-361-7653

Visit us on our website at http://www.imaginationrealty.net/


FHA fee cut attracts more first-time buyers

July 30, 2015

WASHINGTON – July 29, 2015 – The Federal Housing Administration’s (FHA) reduction in mortgage insurance premiums on FHA loans appears to be having an impact on homeownership.

The cuts – which average $900 per year – may be prompting first-time and millennial buyers to enter the housing market: FHA loans were used in 23 percent of financed home purchases in the second quarter compared to 19 percent during the same period one year earlier, according to RealtyTrac.

“So far, the FHA premium reduction is having a bigger impact on getting millennial first-time buyers and other low down-payment borrowers, such as former homeowners returning to the housing market, off the fence [compared to other federal programs],” says RealtyTrac Vice President Daren Blomquist.

Source: MarketWatch (07/25/15) Goldstein, Daniel

© Copyright 2015 INFORMATION, INC. Bethesda, MD


Why Isn’t the Condo Market Rebounding?

July 24, 2015

NEW YORK – July 23, 2015 – While construction of single-family homes and multifamily rentals is on the rebound, condo construction sunk to new lows. Any rebound in the condo construction market has been delayed by stringent rules on condo mortgages that took effect post-housing crisis, and stronger demand among young people for rentals.

Condo construction in the first quarter comprised only 5.5 percent of all construction of multifamily housing – the lowest ratio since the Commerce Department began tracking the data in 1974. Historically, condo construction falls at a 24 percent average.

Condos traditionally offer higher returns for investors than apartments.

“Many developers would rather be building condominiums,” says Peter Bazeli, senior vice president at New York-based real estate consulting firm Weitzman Group. “With condos, you’re paying down debt with every closing and then putting money in your pocket right away.”

But many factors hamper the condo market’s recovery. For one, economists say young adults have been flocking to rentals instead, and condos typically cater to entry-level buyers. Also, construction loans limit the supply of condos built. Developers say they can get a construction loan for about 75 percent of the cost of building an apartment complex, but only about 50 percent for a condo complex because lenders deem it a higher risk.

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) tightened its lending standards from 2008 to 2012, which has made condo funding even tougher, too. In order for the FHA to insure mortgages in a condo complex, at least half the units must be owner-occupied, and no more than half can be FHA-insured. For condo projects under development, at least 30 percent of units must be under contract for sale before the FHA will start backing mortgages.

Economists say those factors have kept the condo market sluggish and still far from recovery. The median condo resale price in May was $216,400, about $15,400 less than its pre-crisis peak in June 2005. On the other hand, the median resale price for single-family homes in May was $230,300 – only $600 less than its pre-crisis peak in July 2006.

But some developers see glimmers of a condo rebound forming.

“Rising apartment rents provide renters more reason to buy instead of renting,” the Journal reports. “Job growth is improving for young would-be buyers. And real estate lobbyists say they are making inroads in Washington to build support for easing the FHA restrictions on condo mortgages.”

Source: “Condos Left Behind in Housing Rebound,” The Wall Street Journal (July 21, 2015)

© Copyright 2015 INFORMATION, INC. Bethesda, MD (301) 215-4688


Celebration Real Estate Sales Totals for June 2015

July 8, 2015
Imagination Realty is pleased to provide the Celebration Real Estate Sales Totals for June 2015.

Please click the two links below to review the SOLD/CLOSED Single Family and Multifamily (condos, townhouses, villas) properties in Celebration as reported on the MLS.

Click the link below to see details of the 19 Single Family homes reported as SOLD/CLOSED.

http://mfr.mlsmatrix.com/Matrix/Public/Portal.aspx?k=3658417X8M08&p=DE-46503724-23

Click the link below to see details of the 17 Multi Family homes reported as SOLD/CLOSED.

http://mfr.mlsmatrix.com/Matrix/Public/Portal.aspx?k=3658417X8M08&p=DE-46503498-484

Looking Back – MLS Closed Statistics……..

June 2014: 10 Single Family – 12 Multi Family
July 2014: 10 Single Family – 16 Multi Family
August 2014: 14 Single Family – 12 Multi Family
September 2014: 16 Single Family – 20 Multi Family
October 2014: 14 Single Family – 9 Multi Family
November 2014: 14 Single Family – 22 Multi Family
December 2014: 12 Single Family – 17 Multi Family
January 2015: 3 Single Family – 15 Multi Family
February 2015: 12 Single Family – 5 Multi Family
March 2015: 14 Single Family – 9 Multi Family
April 2015: 22 Single Family – 8 Multi Family
May 2015: 14 Single Family – 15 Multi Family
June 2015: 19 Single Family – 17 Multi Family

If you would like us to research other parameters (time periods, specific price ranges, other areas),
please call or email Kathy Carlson at:
Kathy@ImaginationRealty.net
Courtesy of Imagination Realty
617 Celebration Ave
Direct # 407-361-7653

Visit us on our website at http://www.imaginationrealty.net/


2014 Annual Water Quality Reports

June 27, 2015

The federally mandated reports contain important information about the source and quality of your drinking water.

The reports include test results from water quality analyses conducted throughout 2014.

See the reports on the internet by clicking this link: https://www.tohowaterqualityreports.com

To request a paper copy, call 407-944-5000.