Despite the gloom and doom we hear about how fragile our overall economy is, the housing market is virtually walking on sunshine. That’s excellent news for all of us here in Elmhurst whether you’re considering entering the market for the first time, or you’re a veteran homeowner.

January’s market statistics showed that new home sales surged ahead to their highest level in more than four years, while continuing low mortgage interest rates and a recovering jobs market kept the momentum going. Looking a bit further back, 2012 held the largest annual gain in home sale prices in the past six years. "Home prices ended 2012 with solid gains," David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement. "Housing and residential construction (led) the economy in the 2012 fourth quarter."

Part of what’s driving the surge in new home sales is a 13-year low in the number of previously occupied homes available for sale. Buyers are ready to purchase, and if they’re not able to find an existing home that meets their needs, builders are ready to provide it for them. In 2012, construction starts were the best they’ve been in the past four years.

What we may not realize is the impact these new home sales have on our overall economy. As a whole, new homes only comprise less than 20 per cent of all housing sales, but each home built creates on average three jobs for an entire year, and generates nearly $90,000 in tax revenue. Nationwide, the industry has created 98,000 jobs since September, the best we’ve seen since the spring of 2006. Despite all of this promising news, however, these increases are based upon dramatically depressed levels in the years prior to 2012. For example, in 2011 new home sales were at a record low, and today they still continue to be well below the 700,000 annual level that economists consider to be a healthy rate.

If you’re a current homeowner considering selling, now is an excellent time to get into the market. Inventories of existing homes are low, and there are buyers ready to spend. If you’re a prospective buyer, you’ll never get a better mortgage interest rate than what’s available today. It’s virtually a win-win market for everyone. Visit us today at The Gracik Makinney Group at 190 North York Road here in Elmhurst, or give us a call at 630-441-5570, and let us help you make the most of this great real estate opportunity.