Homes For Sale In The Central Valley: 2016 By The Numbers

House vector on a graph

Trying to understand how the real estate market works can be a daunting task. Things as unrelated as the California economy, interest rates, and the local job market make the housing market rise and fall. One way to get a handle on what happens to homes for sale in the Central Valley is to look at some of the numbers for 2016.

4.124 Percent
Mortgage interest rates showed a jump from 3.5 to 4.124 percent in the week ending December 9, according to the Visalia Times-Delta. This is the highest level that 30-year fixed-rate loans have been in over a year and could mean a $50 increase in monthly payments. While such a difference may not affect those with good jobs, it may prevent some buyers from qualifying for the strict debt-to-income rations that are now required by lenders. In addition, the Federal Reserve Bank is expected to raise the lending rate further this year. Your best defense against all these potential rate increases is to get pre-qualified for a specific loan as soon as possible, so you can lock in a lower rate.

The $275,665 floor
In the Southern San Joaquin Valley, the Federal Housing Administration will be increasing its floor on home loans from $271,050 to $275,665. This is mostly due to increases in area housing prices. This increase helps to balance out the increase in mortgage rates since it allows buyers to obtain loans on slightly more expensive homes. Contact your lender and see how this increase affects your pre-qualification or pre-approval price.

154.8 percent
You may stay in your new San Joaquin Valley home forever. But if you plan on selling it in future, then you may want to know which of the extra-cost upgrades that you spring for will actually pay you back in added value. The “2016 Cost vs Value Report”for Fresno from Remodeling magazine can guide you.

It reveals that for mid-range upgrades, an entry door replacement to steel gets 154.8 percent return on original cost while a fiberglass option gets you back 118.2 percent. A fancier garage door gives back 123.7 percent while a manufactured stone veneer in the front of the house equals a 107.7 percent return.

Keep in mind that these numbers refer to renovations in older homes, so choosing similar options for your new home won’t necessarily provide the same increases.

$217,500 median
The median price for a home in Tulare County reached $217,500 in November, according to the California Association of Retailers. This represents a 6.1 percent increase over the month and an astounding jump of 24.4 percent over the year. Sales also went up by 4.3 percent over the month and by 41.6 percent over the year.

Compare these amounts to a decrease in the median price for the entire state, which was down by 2.3 percent in November to $501,710, compared to $513,520 for October. The Central Valley is a far more affordable region than the rest of California.

Need more information on the housing market or want to tour one of our models? Then please contact us.

Lisa Walker