Now that the government is finally back in business, all those potential home buyers who were stuck during the shutdown can get busy again filling out mortgage papers, or applying for refinancing or shopping for a new home.
And it means housing market momentum could return to its earlier pace. According to the REAL Trends Housing Market Report, the rate of housing sales increased 20.9% in September 2013 over a year ago. New and existing home sales grew from 5.2 million in September 2012 to 6.2 million in September 2013. Home prices have increased 5.5% compared to a year ago.
Now that popular opinion predicts that interest rates will stay low through the year and into 2014, the housing market momentum should keep building through what might otherwise have been a sluggish winter.
FBR Investment Bank continues to stand by its forecast of $1.4 trillion in original loans for 2014, due to a vibrant spring selling season. Plus, it anticipates a rebirth in refinances under the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP).
Another sign that housing remains on track is that September was the 36th consecutive month with an annual decrease in U.S. foreclosures. The total number of total of U.S. properties that started the foreclosure process for the first time during the third quarter dropped 13% from the previous quarter and 39% from a year ago.
All of the above should translate into a nice uptick in business for mortgage lenders and real estate brokers who no doubt are partying like it’s 1999.
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