Where agents are making the most money
Plus, housing stats we almost couldn’t believe
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Unexpected insights into the real estate market
The recent appraisal report from the Federal Housing Finance Agency offers some surprising insights into the real estate market across the country. Here are some highlights:
Home values are up in unexpected places. For example, Vermont had the highest year-over-year increase in median appraised values, jumping 5.9% in Q2 of 2023.
Other states like Kentucky (up 5.3% YoY), New Mexico (up 4.8%) and West Virginia (up 4.7%) also topped the list
Much of the western part of the U.S. saw appraisal values decline year-over-year, led by Idaho (down 10.5%), Nevada (down 8.1%) and Utah (down 8.1%)
The majority of all U.S. states posted an increase in home appraisal values in Q2. Inventory of homes for sale is going to be lower than previously forecast
Well, this is quite surprising. Home values have gone up in areas that we wouldn’t typically consider hot-market states. This just confirms two facts that we’ve been repeating all year long. First, while a lot of experts said home prices would fall this year, the prices actually grew in markets not even on anyone’s radar. Second, there can be a huge difference between national averages and local market stats. It’s important to remember that when you’re talking to your clients, their perceptions might be based on bits and pieces, but not the whole picture. It’s our job as agents to paint that picture for them.
Mortgage demand drops to lowest level since 1996
The Mortgage Bankers Association reports that total mortgage demand fell 6% compared with the previous week, as mortgage rates continue to climb higher. Here are the key takeaways:
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($726,200 or less) increased from 7.41% to 7.53%
Applications to refinance a home loan dropped 7% for the week and were 11% lower than the same week one year ago
Applications for a mortgage to purchase a home fell 6% for the week and were 22% lower than the same week one year ago
On the whole, mortgage applications dropped to their lowest level since 1996
Well, it doesn’t seem to matter that inflation is actually going down and the economy has actually been growing. Once bond investors realized that the Fed was going to keep interest rates higher for longer, they lost confidence in the 10-year treasury. Yields are now back to levels we haven’t seen in 16 years! Unfortunately, mortgage rates are based on the 10-year treasury yields, so that’s why all the forecasters are raising their projections for mortgage rates in 2024. Basically, this isn’t gonna let up anytime soon!
10 states where real estate agents earn the most money
Source: Data USA
The national average annual wage of a real estate sales agent is $65,850, according to Forbes' analysis of BLS data. That’s slightly higher than the average annual wage for ALL occupations (Forbes lists it as $61,900).
These are the top 10 states where real estate agents have the highest average annual wages:
New Hampshire – $94,810
New York – $82,090
New Jersey – $82,090
Colorado – $79,610
Massachusetts – $79,060
California – $77,430
Texas – $77,430
Wyoming – $74,820
Nevada – $73,990
Mississippi – $72,900
We find this list useful because it gives us a bare minimum barometer to measure our performance. We genuinely believe that real estate can be a vehicle to achieving a successful way of life, and sometimes, a life beyond your wildest dreams. Not only are we proof of that, but so are our partners Vinny and Kris. We had them on our podcast to discuss how they went from $0 to $100 million in annual sales. It can be done. Let that reality sink in and motivate you for 2024.
The news that just missed the cut
Advice from James and David to win the day
They say sports are 90% mental. It’s the same in real estate. There is nothing more important than the mentality you bring to your business. If you don’t have the right approach, everything else will fall by the wayside. Try to avoid these common mistakes:
Assuming success comes easy – There’s a lot of rejection on the road to being a successful agent. You have to get out there, knock on doors, and generate leads. Successful agents know that every “no” is a potential “yes” in the future. Your success depends on how hard you’re willing to work for it and how much rejection you’re willing to take.
Thinking of real estate as your “backup” plan – This also ties in with assuming real estate is easy. This business takes work. Lots of it. You have to plan, network, grind, and most importantly, compete against others who are hungry for success too. Treat your real estate business like a career instead of a hobby, and you’ll be on your way to closing deals.
Sticking to your personal network – Your personal connections are definitely important, but as a new agent, you’ve got to branch out. Networking, using referrals, lead generators, expired listings, and (of course) door-knocking are just some of the most important things a new agent can do to generate new opportunities and expand their list of potential clients!
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Just in Case
Keep the latest industry data in your back pocket with today’s mortgage rates:
Source: Mortgage News Daily
That’s a wrap on this edition of The Blueprint!
Remember: each day is a gift and a new opportunity to lead the life you want and to become the person you want to be. The mistakes and missteps you’ve made in the past don’t define you. Live as intentionally as you can and be ruthlessly focused on the goals you’ve set out to achieve. You can do it!
Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you back here on Tuesday!
- James and David