Bolwoningen Ball Houses

 Excerpt: Bolwoningen consists of 50 sphere houses. The balls are made of cement, reinforced with fiberglass. They are mounted on the base in the form of a cylinder. Each sphere’s diameter is 18 feet and each has 11 round windows. The layout of these structures is quite unusual. In the center of the sphere there is a bathroom and a tiny bedroom, and a living room and kitchen, are located on the second floor-level. The house can be completely disassembled and transported to any other place (the weight of this building is only about 2755 lbs). In addition, this building can be placed not only on the ground, but also on water, on a stationary platform. Bolwoningen Ball Houses – difficult appraisals!

Locals didn’t quite appreciate the vision of the architect, but there are plenty of tourists, who would love to visit or even experience living in these futuristic houses.

My comment: Fascinating!! It was built in 1984 and is surrounded by standard homes. Check out the 2 links above and/or google bolwoningen ball houses

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NOTE: Please scroll down to read the other topics in this long blog post on Appraisal deminimus increase, market changes in 2018 misleading and USPAP, mortgage origination stats, etc.

What Would Happen if There Were No Appraisers?

By Tom Horn
7 Consequences of Eliminating Appraisers From Mortgage Transactions
1) Questionable accuracy due to faulty county records
2) No reconsideration of values
3) No critical thinking that takes into consideration nuances of the market

Click here for more commentary and to see the other 4 reasons.

My comment: Very good analysis!! Needs to be sent to all the people who say appraisals are not needed…


Why the Housing Market Can Thrive at 5 Percent Mortgage Rates

Excerpt: Mortgage rates have adjusted in the past in response to high inflation, a technological revolution, a housing crisis and a financial collapse. However, today’s higher mortgage rates are due to a near record-long economic expansion, and a strong labor market.

My comment: Check out the graph from 1963 to today plus read the analysis of different periods. Remember the 18%+ rates in the early 1980s? When rates started dropping well below 5% I wrote about historic interest rates. No one could find any rates in the past that were that low, mostly because lending was done by small local banks and S&Ls. When the GSEs started buying loans in the 1970s, rates were available and standardized.


Interest Rate Hikes & the 3 Loan Types Impacted

Excerpt: “Higher mortgage rates have led to a slowdown in national home price growth, but the price deceleration has been primarily concentrated in affluent coastal markets such as California and the state of Washington,” Khater said.

“The more affordable interior markets-which have not yet experienced a slowdown home price growth-may see price growth start to moderate and affordability squeezed if mortgage rates continue to march higher,” he added.


Year-end, Time-sensitive 

Topics for Appraisers

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The new boomtowns: Why more people are relocating to ‘secondary’ cities

Excerpt: a wave of people migrating from coastal cities to “secondary” cities – drawn by a lower cost of living, lighter tax burden, job growth and a better chance to buy a home they can afford.

Nashville, Sacramento, Atlanta, Phoenix, Austin and Dallas are among the top-10 cities with the largest influx of new residents, according to new data from the Redfin real estate brokerage.
Not surprisingly, high-cost cities from which people are fleeing include San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Washington.
Click here to read the full article

My comment: I live about 1.5 hour drive from Sacramento. Median home price there is $400,000. In my city (10 miles from San Francisco) it is around $900,000. San Francisco is over $1,300,000. Sacramento mayor and others are very concerned about the commuter traffic and recent price increases.


Is it just me or is the market slowing?

By Ryan Lundquist
Excerpt: The future: Naturally when hearing about momentum slowing in a market it’s easy to start predicting the future as we see price gaps tighten. Many say the market is going to crash, others say it will correct by 10%, and some say it will level off and progress into a state of balance. All three of these ideas have one thing in common. They’re guesses.

My comments: See how Ryan analyzes his local Sacramento market using a few graphs. What is yours like? In my Bay Area market, some cities are very segmented, with dropping prices for low priced home neighborhoods and increasing prices in high priced home. In my city, with relatively little neighborhood differences, the market has been slow for awhile. Few multiple offers.
I always say: If I knew when the market peaked I would be very rich!! We only know when it peaks after it peaks…

What does “Misleading” Mean?

By Tim Andersen, MAI
Excerpt: SR2-1 teaches “…each written or oral appraisal report must…clearly and accurately set forth the appraisal in a manner that will not be misleading” (ibid – emphasis added).

Misleading is not a USPAP-specific term. In other words, USPAP does not define misleading, since the common business definition suffices. One definition of misleading is “giving the wrong idea or impression”. This is not sufficiently specific, however, to communicate what USPAP means by misleading. Therefore, consider this definition specifically in a USPAP context:

An appraiser misleads a client/intended user when s/he leads that client/intended user to a conclusion the facts, reason, logic, evidence, and/or analyses do not support; when s/he fails to lead the client/intended user to a conclusion the facts, reason, logic, evidence, and/or analyses indeed support; and/or by failing to support the facts, reason, logic, evidence, and/or analyses in the report, fails to lead the client/intended user anywhere.

My comment: These darn undefined terms keep coming up in USPAP…
HOW TO USE THE NUMBERS BELOW. Appraisals are ordered after the loan application. These numbers tell you the future for the next few weeks. For more information on how they are compiled, go to 
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Mortgage applications decreased 4.0 percent from one week earlier

WASHINGTON, D.C. (November 7, 2018) – Mortgage applications decreased 4.0 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending November 2, 2018.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 4.0 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier to the lowest level since December 2014. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 2 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 3 percent from the previous week. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 5 percent from one week earlier to the lowest level since November 2016. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 1 percent compared with the previous week and was 0.2 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“Rates increased slightly last week, as various job market indicators showed a bounce back in job gains and an acceleration in wage growth in October. The survey’s 30-year fixed-rate, at 5.15 percent, was the highest since April 2010,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s associate vice president of economic and industry forecasts. “Application activity decreased over the week for both purchase and refinance applications, with the overall market index down to its lowest level since December 2014. The purchase index declined to its lowest level since November 2016, but remained only slightly below the same week a year ago. It’s evident that housing inventory shortages continue to impact prospective homebuyers this fall.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 39.1 percent of total applications from 39.4 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 7.8 percent of total applications.

The FHA share of total applications decreased to 10.1 percent from 10.3 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications increased to 10.1 percent from 9.8 percent the week prior. The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged from 0.7 percent the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($453,100 or less) increased to 5.15 percent from 5.11 percent, with points increasing to 0.51 from 0.50 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $453,100) increased to 4.97 percent from 4.94 percent, with points decreasing to 0.27 from 0.28 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 5.15 percent from 5.08 percent, with points increasing to 0.64 from 0.62 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages remained unchanged at 4.55 percent, with points remaining unchanged at 0.51 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 4.36 percent from 4.33 percent, with points decreasing to 0.35 from 0.42 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate remained unchanged from last week.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.

Ann O’Rourke, MAI, SRA, MBA
Appraiser and Publisher Appraisal Today
2033 Clement Ave. Suite 105
Alameda, CA 94501 Phone 510-865-8041
Fax 510-523-1138

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