Category: Columbus and Central Ohio Market Update

FHA to Cut Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) Starting This Year

 

Low- to moderate-income homebuyers will get a boost in 2017, with the FHA to Cut Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) Starting This Year.

The move “will mean a whole lot more responsible borrowers are suddenly eligible to purchase a home through FHA,” said National Association of Realtors President William E. Brown in a statement.

Annual premiums going down

The FHA will reduce the annual mortgage insurance premium most FHA borrowers pay by a quarter of a percentage point starting January 27. Annual premiums will drop to 0.6 percent from 0.85 percent, according to NAR.

“Every time we cut the cost of mortgage insurance it means more borrowers meet the debt-to-income ratio required to purchase a home,” said Brown, explaining why the move should lead more aspiring homebuyers to pull the trigger.

The rate cut means new borrowers who take out mortgages insured by the FHA will save an average of $500 this year, according to HUD.

The action “comes at the right time for consumers who are facing higher credit costs as mortgage interest rates are increasing,” according to Julián Castro, the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary, which oversees the FHA.

Why this is good news

The FHA makes it possible for banks to lend to borrowers who might not qualify for conventional mortgages, serving as a wellspring of credit for those buyers.

FHA borrowers pay both an insurance premium to the FHA and higher interest rates in return for a mortgage that requires as little as a 3.5 percent down payment.

“FHA mortgage products exist to serve an important mission: providing homeownership opportunities to creditworthy borrowers who are overlooked by conventional lenders,” said NAR President William E. Brown in a statement.

“The high cost of mortgage insurance has unfortunately put those opportunities out of reach for many young, first-time- and lower-income borrowers. Now, we have a real opportunity to get back on track.”

“After four straight years of growth and with sufficient reserves on hand to meet future claims, it’s time for FHA to pass along some modest savings to working families,” Castro said in a statement. FFHA to Cut Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) Starting This YearHA to Cut Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) Starting This Year

“This is a fiscally responsible measure to price our mortgage insurance in a way that protects our insurance fund while preserving the dream of homeownership for credit-qualified borrowers.”

According to Guy Cecala, CEO and publisher of Inside Mortgage Finance, FHA’s share of the home purchase market in first three quarters of 2016 was 16.6 percent.

“That was way down from the 33.8 percent market share seen as recently as 2010, but up from the 13.5 percent share seen right before FHA first lowered its annual MIP in early 2015,” Cecala told Inman via email. FHA to Cut Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) Starting This Year

The WheelHouse Team of MCS Mortgage Bankers, Inc. teamed up with local Columbus area Realtors to organize a Toys for Tots Columbus, Ohio Toy Drive Contest. With the help of local realtors, the WheelHouse Team donated over 100 toys for children and families in need this holiday season.

“We’re extremely proud to organize a toy drive contest and we’re grateful for the huge turnout in this year’s participation from the Central Ohio Realtors. As industry professionals, we love every opportunity to give back to our community,” said Robert Livingston, Sales Manager at MCS Mortgage Bankers, Inc.

This year, Real Estate Technology Partners (RETP), Opland Group of Better Homes & Garden Big Hill, REllis Group at Key Realty, and the WheelHouse team came together to increase toy donation and awareness through the toy drive contest.

Altogether, over one hundred toys were dropped off at Mikey’s Late Night Slice (see complete list of Toys for Tots Drop Off locations here) on December 15, 2016 (Watch the video: https://goo.gl/L7eLej). Out of all the Realtors who participated, the winner of the 2016 Toy Drive Contest for Toys for Tots was Sam Miller of the Opland Group of Better Homes & Garden Big Hill, who donated over 50 new, unwrapped toys.

Sam Miller, Realtor with the Opland Group of Better Homes & Garden Big Hill stated, “As a reservist for the U.S. Army, this organization hits home for me. It’s very important for me to give back to the local community every chance I get, and I was thrilled to participate in the Toy Drive Contest. I reached out to all of my friends, family, and co-workers to help donate as many toys as possible!”

The team is hopeful that next year’s participation will be even greater and has a goal to break this year’s record of 112 toys.

To watch the Toys for Tots Toy Drive Contest video below or, click here.

About Toys for Tots 

U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program provides new, unwrapped toys as Christmas presents to children who are less fortunate in the community. The organization aims to bring joy of Christmas and a message of hope to kids that will assist them in becoming responsible, productive, patriotic citizens. For more information, visit www.toysfortots.org.

Columbus Underground just posted the following article below: It is the Top 10 Fashion & Apparel Stores in Columbus for 2016.

Since 2011, Tigertree has topped our annual list of the best local fashion and apparel shops until they were dethroned by HOMAGE last year. In 2016, our readers and editors voted to return the title to Tigertree, picking the Short North boutique for the top spot in our annual Best of listing.

In addition to men’s and women’s fashion and apparel, Tigertree sells a wide assortment of accessories, home decor items and gifts for any occasion. Owners Josh and Niki Quinn launched a separate shop for children called Cubshrub at the tail end of 2015, bringing more options to customers who are looking for unique items for little ones as well.

Top 10 Fashion & Apparel Stores in Columbus of 2016:

  1. Tigertree
  2. Vernacular
  3. Pursuit
  4. Homage
  5. Rowe Boutique
  6. Thread
  7. Bend Active
  8. Samson Men’s Emporium
  9. Ladybird
  10. Royal Factory Atelier

References: Columbus Underground

Gazing into a crystal ball requires a leap of faith, but if you’re willing to take a look, you might find a few insightful nuggets that could help you and your clients make more informed decisions. Zillow’s predictions for 2017 include a change in course for the housing market as it continues to reflect the nation’s economic recovery. These are 5 Real Estate Trends to Expect for 2017.

Cities will get cozier

Smaller homes will crowd each other in new, denser developments, and they will be closer to public transit and urban centers. Knowing that square footage is off the table, your buyer clients might ask you to focus more on finding homes with upscale features or green technology.

Millennials will move out of the nest

No surprise here if you’ve read the Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends. In 2017, millennials will continue to drive up the homeownership rate by finally buying homes of their own. As millennials are the most racially diverse cohort, it also means more people of color will become homeowners. Your marketing efforts might include updated strategies to attract this new generation of buyers.

New construction buyers will pony up

Labor shortages in the construction industry — possibly compounded by the President-elect’s proposed immigration policy crackdown — have resulted in rising construction wages, which will be passed on to buyers who choose new construction homes. It will be vital to let buyers know they can negotiate for upgrade credits, floor plan options or reduced closing costs to recoup some value when they choose a new construction home.

Commuters will get comfortable

In their cars, that is. As homeowners move deeper into the suburbs — and farther away from viable public transportation — in search of affordable housing, the percentage of people who drive to work will increase. Although inventory remains low, farming local suburban homeowners might help you drum up some listings.

Current homeowners will continue to prosper

National home values rose 4.8 percent between December 2015 and 2016, and the trend is likely to continue past the New Year’s celebrations. In 2017, Zillow predicts home values will grow 3.6 percent. It’s an opportunity to check in with homeowners who might have been waiting for a better list price.

Ohio State's New North Residential District

Ohio State’s New North Residential District

Students moved into the first new buildings in OSU’s North Residential District in the fall of 2015. Construction of the remaining buildings – all located west of High Street, between Lane and Woodruff avenues – continued until right before move-in this past August. This semester, the first in which sophomores are required to live on campus, marks the first time that the new district is being used to its full capacity. Ohio State’s New North Residential District is definitely starting to look amazing!

OSU Associate Vice President of Student Life Molly Calhoun recently gave Columbus Underground a tour of the new district, including the new dorms, the new North Recreation Center, a multitude of event and study spaces, and the two-story cafeteria, which seats 920 and is larger than any restaurant in Central Ohio.

Calhoun emphasized the importance of outdoor space to the project, including the long brick pathway leading from High Street west through the heart of the district, following the route of what used to be West Frambes Avenue.

Ohio State's New North Residential District

[CLICK HERE FOR MORE PHOTOS]

The path ends at what has been dubbed Town Square, a large open space framed by the new, three-story recreation center and the new buildings Noskar House, Scott House and Blackburn House.

“Early on in the planning process, we said, ‘think about the spaces between the buildings as much as you’re thinking about the spaces in the buildings,’” said Calhoun. “We’ve historically done a really good job relative to indoor programming space, but we wanted to emphasize the programmatic aspects spilling out into the green spaces.”

Space was created for the many large plazas, courtyards and greens by tearing down a number of low-rise buildings. Twenty of 22 large trees identified as “heritage trees” on the site were able to be saved, and 225 new trees were planted.

A rotating cast of student volunteers provided input from the very beginning of the planning process, which started in earnest in 2010.

“I tell the incoming students, when you guys were in the fifth grade we were thinking about where you would be living when you came to school,” said Calhoun.

Other highlights of the new district:

  • Each residential building contains common areas accessible to all students living in the dorms, complete with billiard and ping pong tables, video game stations, and party/event rooms.
  • Dining options include a made-to-order breakfast station (open all day), gluten-free options, a Mongolian grill, and booths designed for large groups of students.
  • The basketball courts located on Lane Avenue outside of the new recreation center are now only accessible to students. They’ve also been designed so that they can be covered at some point in the future, with outdoor courts placed on top of the new building (that’s in anticipation of Jessie Owens North, which currently contains indoor courts, eventually being replaced with an academic building).
  • The new trees planted in the district all have a trunk diameter of six inches or more, “so that they are substantial, and it wouldn’t be 60 years until you had a tree canopy,” according to Calhoun.
  • In response to student input, all laundry rooms are designed to be open, well-lit spaces. They are located on the first floor of each residential building.
  • The new dorm buildings all feature a similar layout, with two, 40-person communities on each floor (and one Resident Advisor for every 40 students). The rooms are mostly two-person suites with quarter-baths, but larger suites at the end of each hall – with full bathrooms and private living areas – are available for second-, third-, and fourth-year students.

Ohio State’s New North Residential District

Central Ohio Home Sales Remain Strong Headed Into Fall

There were 3,116 central Ohio homes and condos sold during the month of August, a 4.8 percent increase over the previous year and a 1.5 percent increase over July. This was the highest number of closed sales for the month of August ever recorded and the second highest month for 2016, according to the Columbus REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service.

“Central Ohio home buyers are still being very aggressive in their decisions to purchase homes” said 2016 Columbus REALTORS® President John Royer. “Since demand for homes continues to be so high, potential sellers are encouraged to get their home on the market – they don’t have anything to lose”!

The average sales price of a home in central Ohio during the month of August was $204,629, a 3.3 percent increase over August 2015. The median price of a home sold in August was $174,000, up 5.5 percent from one year ago. Year to date (January through August), both the average and median sale prices are up 5.1 percent and 5.6 percent, respectively, from last year.

The average sales price is the total volume divided by the number of homes sold. The median is the midpoint — half the homes sell for less, while half sell for more.

The number of homes for sale in central Ohio during the month of August was 6,270, a 2.1 percent decrease from the previous month and a 21 percent decrease from August 2015.
There were 3,389 central Ohio homes and condos added to the market during August, a 2.6 percent drop from the same month one year ago and a 12.3 percent decrease from July.

“Inventory and new listings are beginning to taper, but this is to be expected as we head into the fall selling season” Royer said. “However it’s still a terrific time to list your home as buyers remain eager for inventory and home values remain high!”

During the month of August, central Ohio homes and condos spent an average of 34 days on the market, which is 29.2 percent (14 days) shorter than last year and just 1 day longer than July.

“Homes are continuing to fly off the market, even as inventory begins to dwindle,” Royer said.”

According to the latest Housing Market Confidence Index by the Ohio Association of REALTORS®, 98 percent of central Ohio REALTORS® would describe the current housing market as moderate to strong.

When asked what the single most important factor that they believed limited their buyers from purchasing a property so far this year, 92 percent said difficulty finding the right property (low inventory), four percent said ability to sell existing their home, two percent said low consumer confidence and 2 percent said no factor limited buyers.

Central Ohio Home Sales Remain Strong Headed Into Fall

Fed Leaves Rates Unchanged

Fed Leaves Rates Unchanged

Federal Reserve officials lowered their expectations for rate hikes in the years ahead Wednesday but teed up a likely move before the end of 2016.

 In a statement from the Federal Open Market Committee after this week’s meeting, the central bank expressed confidence in economic growth, but not enough to make a move this month.

“The committee judges that the case for an increase in the federal funds rate has strengthened but decided, for the time being, to wait for further evidence of continued progress toward its objectives,” the statement said.

Stock prices initially extended their gains after the Fed announcement but then lost some ground.

The tipoff for what could be a December move came at what appeared to be a remarkably divisive FOMC meeting, judging by the statement and an accompanying summary of economic projections.

Three members from the hawkish Fed bloc — Esther George, Loretta Mester and Eric Rosengren — dissented from the statement, an unusual split considering Chair Janet Yellen‘s adeptness at keeping the committee united. It was the most “no” votes since the December 2014 meeting.

Indeed, the so-called dot plot that shows individual members’ expectations indicated notably wider dispersion than the June meeting. While most Fed officials foresee a gradual increase of rates, one member expected the rate to be little changed from the 0.65 percent level all the way through 2019. Another member, meanwhile, put the rate expectation at 3.75 percent by 2019, more than a percentage point above the consensus.

Three members also indicated they do not want any hikes this year.

“The solid coalition is still going to be there with Yellen, (William) Dudley, (Stanley) Fischer and a handful of others. I think they’re still all in agreement,” said Kathy Jones, chief fixed income strategist at Charles Schwab. “I can only surmise there’s a division between those who think that we are in this secular stagnation world — slow growth for a longer time — vs. those who think it’s a cyclical issue that’s taking a very long time to play out.”

The increase likely would come at the Dec. 13 and 14 meeting, considering the Nov. 1 and 2 session comes just ahead of the presidential election and there is no post-meeting news conference scheduled.

“Most people were expecting some version of this, the idea that they weren’t actually going to hike rates but they didn’t want the notion that the Fed is never going to hike,” said Lewis Alexander, the chief U.S. economist at Nomura. “This pretty much met those expectations.” Fed Leaves Rates Unchanged.

It’s well known that homes in good school districts sell for a premium—and are a good investment for buyers with or without children. But just how much can you expect to top up that listing price or bid? And what are the top school districts where people  are rushing to buy homes—regardless of the cost?

The economic research team at realtor.com® took up the challenge and dived into the data. The team compared homes in school districts rated 9 or 10, the highest score, by GreatSchools.org with homes in nearby districts rated 6 or less.

“It’s common knowledge that buyers are often willing to pay a premium for a home in a strong school district,” says Javier Vivas, research analyst for realtor.com. “Our analysis quantifies just how good it is to be a seller in these areas.”

It turns out, homes in the higher-rated public school districts are, on average, 49% more expensive—at $400,000—than the national median of $269,000, and 77% more expensive than schools located in lower-ranked districts in their own area, with a median of $225,000.

Plus, homes in higher-rated school districts sell an average of eight days faster than homes in below-average school districts, and four days faster than the national average.

People are more interested in homes in good school districts, too—they’re viewed 26% more, on average, than the average home on realtor.com, and 42% more than homes in areas with below-average schools.

Let’s check out the schools where you’ll shell out the most extra (or profit the most) for a quality public school education.

Top 10 school districts with the highest premium

1. Beverly Hills Unified School District, Los Angeles County, CA

Sixteen years after the hit teen show “Beverly Hills 90210” went off the air, the coveted ZIP code still has cachet. Homes in the top-rated Beverly Hills Unified School District (GreatSchools rating: 9) sell for an average 689% more (that’s $3.8 million) than other homes in Los Angeles County (a far more reasonable $550,000). BHUSD homes beat out those in nearby Santa Monica–Malibu Unified School District, which is rated 9 and has a median list price of $2.5 million, and more recently hip Culver City Unified School District, with a rating of 8 and a median list price of $975,000.

Beverly Hills High School, home of the BHHS Normans.

Beverly Hills High School, home of the BHHS Normans

Michael Tran/FilmMagic

2. Highland Park Independent School District, Dallas County, TX

Homes in the Dallas-area Highland Park Independent School District (rated 10) carry an average 632% premium, at $1.8 million, over the median-price home in Dallas County (a mere $277,000). Buyers would get a relative bargain in the neighboring Coppell Independent School District, which has a rating of 9 and a median home price of $470,000.

3. Kenilworth School District No. 38, Cook County, IL

The Chicago area’s Kenilworth School District No. 38 ranked third in the nation with a home price premium of 606% compared with greater Cook County. Homes in the district alongside Lake Michigan (rating: 10) go for a median list price of $1.6 million. But just a bit southwest, Wilmette Public Schools District 39 has a rating of 10 and homes that go for $780,000.

Rounding out the top 10 school districts with the highest price premiums are:

4. Indian Hill Exempted Village School District, Hamilton County, OH

5. Winnetka School District 36, Cook County, IL

6. Manhattan Beach Unified School District, Los Angeles County, CA

7. Scarsdale Union Free School District, Westchester County, NY

8. Saddle River School District, Bergen County, NJ

9. San Marino Unified School District, Los Angeles County, CA

10. Mariemont City School District, Hamilton County, OH

3d-printing-house-countour-crafting

Printers have come a long way from simply churning out reams of spreadsheets, high school history reports, and cute cat photos. In case you haven’t heard, 3-D printing is rapidly changing, well, everything. The technology is making the unimaginable real, already producing everything from simple plastic toys to edible pizza and even human tissue and body parts (an ear!). Additive technology, as it’s also called, promises to revolutionize the world as we know it.

And the greatest potential for transformation and disruption, some believe, may be in housing. If “printed homes” seem like a distant fantasy, you’d better buckle your seat belts. You’re in for quite a ride.

So how exactly is 3-D printing poised to reshape the housing market?

Well, let’s start with price. Three-dimensional printers don’t require laborers, produce much less waste (as materials are fed into the machines), and will be able to erect homes in days instead of months—making them substantially cheaper to build. And that’s expected to extend the American dream to a whole new group of buyers who would otherwise never be able to afford their own abodes.

Gone will be the problems caused by a shortage of highly skilled construction workers, long building times, and wasted materials such as lumber.

And let’s touch on dreams. Three-dimensional printing will eventually help facilitate the creation of radical new housing designs, new shapes, and brand-new architectural ideas. The road from fanciful concept to livable reality will become shorter and more traversable than ever.

This is exciting stuff—and not just for those who are currently priced out of homeownership. Imagine your average accountant or Chipotle manager being able to design their own Frank Gehry–styled, uniquely shaped home on a computer— and a specialized, industrial-size 3-D printer bringing it into existence in a matter of hours or days for just a fraction of the usual price. Then think of what the technology could mean for storm-ravaged communities if residents who lost their homes could have identical replacements easily printed, complete with furniture.

And we’re not talking about a far-distant future. Rudimentary printed structures, mostly made of concrete and resembling stark gray boxes, are already sprouting up around the globe. Now a handful of cutting-edge construction companies are engaged in something like a 3-D printing arms race—each striving to be the first to refine the technology.

A Chinese company even recently printed a two-story, 4,305-square-foot building on-site in just 45 days.

And while such current buildings may not exactly be the “dream home” of your average buyer, experts predict that within five to 25 years (depending on whom you’re talking to), the technology will be advanced enough to print sophisticated and easily customizable dwellings out of wood, metal, and stone. These are places that buyers would be proud to call their own.

How to print a home

3D printers are expected to transform the how homes are built and could lead to lower real estate prices.

Three-dimensional printers are expected to transform how homes are built and could lead to lower real estate prices.

Branch Technology

Here’s how it works: Building designs are created in a computer just like in a computer-aided design, or CAD, program and then transmitted to a large, specially made industrial printer, like the one above. The devices vary greatly in size and capabilities, depending on who is making them—but all of them are big. The apparatuses usually have one or more robotic arms tipped with a nozzle that spews out construction materials as the arms make their computer-programmed rotations around the base of the building. (Think of cake icing being squeezed through a piping bag.)

Those liquidlike materials, similar to molten lava, are layered on top of one another to form the walls of the structure. These materials can vary from fiber-reinforced concrete, which doesn’t require steel rebars for support, to steel and even wood, which would require reinforcements.

And eventually, experts predict the technology will print modern-day necessities such as electricity and plumbing at the same time as the home is being constructed.

“It’s still very early,” says Aric Rindfleisch, executive director of the Illinois MakerLab, a 3-D printing lab at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. “We’re probably back to where the computer industry was in 1982.”

The challenges to 3-D printing

So when is it coming, for real?

Opinions vary. Rindfleisch believes the technology is still about 25 years away from creating sophisticated homes that buyers would be vying to live in. Other experts have pegged the timeline closer to just a decade—or even half that.

The challenges lie mostly with the materials fed into the devices—and working around their current-day limitations. Scientists are closely tracking the materials used for construction and how long they take to dry before a new layer can be added, Rindfleisch says.

He says progress is coming at a rapid clip. “About two years ago, all we could print was hard plastic,” he says. “Now we can print soft plastics. We can print wood.” The wood is basically a pulp mixed with plastic that can be fed into the printer.

Home buyers could become home designers

Customizable and one-of-a-kind homes are expected to become cheaper thanks to 3D printing technology.

WATG Urban Architecture Studio won a 3-D home printing competition with this Curve Appeal design. The home is slated to be printed later this year.

Daniel Caven/WATG Chicago Urban Architecture Studio

The printing process is likely to eventually empower more everyday home buyers without fancy architecture degrees to design their own perfect pad on a computer—and then print it out on a plot of land.

“You can have high design on a budget,” says architect Christopher Hurst at WATG Urban Architecture Studio. “You don’t have to go to a builder and get the same cookie-cutter house next door. … Now you can go to a contractor, and you have a highly customizable house that’s indicative of you and that way you can express yourself in how you live.”

In April, Hurst’s Chicago-based firm won the Freeform House Design Challenge with its sleek Curve Appeal home. Construction on the winning design, which will, of course, be printed three-dimensionally, is slated to begin in November by Branch Technology, the Chattanooga, TN–based builder that sponsored the contest.

The home would go for about $900,000 on the market if it were conventionally built, Hurst says. But he hopes to print the carbon fiber structure at a Chattanooga site at a fraction of the cost.

“The limitations are [that] the arm [of the printer] can only reach so far,” he says of the 15-foot appendage. “If you print large structures, you’d need a much bigger machine. … Eventually, we’ll have multiple arms printing simultaneously.”

Once the technical challenges are solved, a 2,500-square-foot home could go up in less than 24 hours instead of months, predicts 3-D home building pioneer Behrokh Khoshnevis, an engineering professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. He gave a TED Talk on the subject.

And the buildings could be more attractive to buyers than those constructed by human hands, he says.

“In stick frame [i.e., traditional] construction, it’s very hard to use curvature. It’s very hard to bend lumber. It’s very hard to bend drywall,” says Khoshnevis, whose 3-D printer company Contour Crafting has a contract with NASA. But “a computer can build any shape.”

A boon to cities?

The new technology could make its biggest mark, at least initially, in the nation’s urban areas.

Three-dimensional printing will enable developers to put up buildings on previously “unbuildable” sites—such as smaller city plots where it would be near impossible to fit a crane, says K.C. Conway, head of market intelligence for commercial real estate lending at SunTrust Bank in Atlanta. It could turn costly and time-consuming regulatory problems into no big deal as building plans will be redesigned by computers—instead of flesh-and-blood architects.

“It will bring affordability back to urban housing,” says Conway, also a member of Counselors of Real Estate, a Chicago-based group of industry professionals who provide real estate advice. “The later adoption will be in the suburbs.”

Another bonus is that homes will eventually be able to go up a lot quicker—that’s particularly important in natural disaster–ravaged areas, points out Alex Le Roux.

He began designing a 3-D printer while he was still a mechanical engineering major at Baylor University in Waco, TX. Now the 23-year-old is CEO of Vesta Printer, which printed a rudimentary, 120-square-foot building in June in Katy, TX. He’s hoping to soon print larger ones.

His company has received funding from ModEco Development, a Rochester, MI–based builder that has been experimenting with the technology.

“This is where we see the business going,” says ModEco owner Drake Boroja. “The American dream is getting harder and harder to get [as the prices of homes are soaring]. We see these tools as a way to keep this dream going for the next generation.”

Realtor.com announced today that data from August revealed that the national housing market was “hotter” than it has been in the past decade with fast moving inventory and record-high prices for the residential real estate market. When breaking down the information on a regional basis, the Columbus metro area landed in 7th place on their list of hot markets with houses only sitting available for a median of 46 days.

“Summer 2016 was one of most competitive buying seasons that we have ever witnessed, fueled by historically low mortgage rates and inventory shortages that resulted in record-high prices,” said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist for realtor.com. “With the school year starting now in most of the country, we’re seeing some drop-off in demand, which may provide some relief for buyers weary from battling it out against other buyers all summer.”

The national average for listings is 72 days with a median price of $250,000, which is eight percent higher it was a year ago.

The six regions to top Columbus on the list of hot housing markets are Vallejo-Fairfield (California), Dallas, Denver, San Francisco, Stockton (California) and San Diego. The only other midwestern cities to make the list were Detroit (9th place) and Fort Wayne (11th place).

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