Pending home sales jump in February

From Reuters:

U.S. pending home sales hit seven-month high in February

Contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes rose sharply in February, reversing the previous month’s deep decline, as the volatility of the data continues to make it difficult to parse the strength of the housing market.

The National Association of Realtors said its pending home sales index rose 3.5 percent to 109.1 last month, the highest level in seven months. January’s reading was revised to show a 3.0 percent decline, which was deeper than initially reported.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast contracts rising 1.2 percent last month. Contracts were up 0.7 percent from a year ago.

Regionally, signed contracts climbed 11.4 percent in the Midwest, with more modest gains in the South and West., the Associated Press reported. In the Northeast, the number of contracts dipped 0.2 percent, according to the AP.

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44 Responses to Pending home sales jump in February

  1. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  2. grim says:

    Stu – Good luck today

  3. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Death of the starter home

    Millennials and others looking to buy a first — or “starter” — home are struggling to find ones they can afford, a new research report says.

    There are fewer affordable starter homes in 95 of the 100 largest U.S. markets now compared with 2012, according to the San Francisco-based real estate research company Trulia defines a starter as a home that is in the lower third of a market’s valuation and affordable to those making the median income in that market.

    “Not only are there fewer homes available to buyers of all income levels, those just starting out or making their first foray into home ownership are worse off than they’ve been in years,” said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist with

    Why the inventory shortage? Investors bought many foreclosed homes that were likely starter homes during the recession and turned them into rentals, thus keeping them off the sales market, McLaughlin said. In addition, a large share of lower-priced homes are still underwater compared with premium homes, which Trulia defines as the upper third of the market, he added.”These (underwater) homeowners are unlikely to sell and take a loss,” he said.

    By 2016, about 238,000 homes or 28% of the total available inventory of 860,000 in those markets surveyed were considered starter homes, down from 425,000 homes or 30% of all homes in 2012, out of a total of 1.4 million that year the report found.

    In 2016, the median starter home list price was $154,156, and a buyer would need to dedicate 37% of his income just to afford it, compared with 32% in 2012, Trulia said.

  4. D-FENS says:

    Starter homes are still there. Plenty of them too. They’re just in NW NJ. Can’t expect to find a starter home in Bergen County.

    The idea of a starter home is stupid anyway. I think a new family is better off saving for a few more years and buying the house they plan to live in until they retire.

  5. Outofststater says:

    #3 Same from here, Lib and Gator.

  6. GOP's broken (the good one) says:


    When a reporter asked Cypriot president if the hijacking had something to do with a woman,
    he replied, “Always, there is a woman.”


  7. Essex says:

    Stu, Gator & Co. thinking of you.

  8. Alex says:

    Good luck Stu-family.

  9. Only old people buy houses.

  10. walking bye says:

    Im hearing Suffern Novartis site was bought by Hasid. It was going to be a Lego land, but deal fell through.

  11. Outofstater says:

    Thinking of Stu and Gator reminded me of a story I heard many times while growing up. When my mother was a very young child, about 1919 or 1920, she developed tubercular tumors in her neck (at least, that’s how the story went). Her parents were told it was hopeless and they were advised to find a pleasant institution where she could live out her few remaining months. My grandfather refused and took her to a Dr Jopson at what is now CHOP. He performed surgery and Mom went on to live another 85 years.

  12. yome says:

    Stu and Family, Praying all goes well

  13. grim says:

    Legoland in Suffern? What sense does that make?

  14. 3b says:

    #5 dfens: there are plenty of starter homes in Bergen country but a lot of buyers won’t buy there because they perceive the schools to be inferior which is more then debatable to say the least or because the demographics are changing. Bogota Bergenfield Dumont new Milford Maywood Ridgefield Fairlawn. All these towns have plenty of houses with a 2 handle and many under 200k.

  15. 3b says:

    #5 d fens there are plenty of starter houses in Bergen county. But many buyers perceive the schools to be inferior which is debatable to say the least or they won’t buy because of changing demographics in these towns. Bogota Bergenfield Dumont new Milford Fairlawn Maywood the Ridgefields all have houses available with a 2 handle and in many cases houses asking below 200k.

  16. grim says:

    Should build Legoland in Atlantic City.

  17. Comrade Nom Deplume, screwing around at work says:

    The Gator Clan is about to leave the NJ bldg and should be at CHoP soon. Looking forward to welcoming them to the City of Brotherly Love for some steaks and libations, and perhaps a trip to sylvan ChesCo as well.

    Mrs. Deplume is well–versed in this area and has high hopes.

    Both of the little Deplumes are keeping all their little fingers and toes crossed.

  18. Comrade Nom Deplume, screwing around at work says:

    [12] outofstater


  19. walking bye says:

    If you thought taxes were high in suffern this will really drive them up. Remember looking at $500-600k range 1 acre with 5 bedroom l<10 year old homes. Taxes were already north of $30k

  20. grim says:


    What do you get for $30k up in those parts? Not much.

  21. Bonjour, j’adore vraiment ce que vous faites je me demande comment j’ai pu rater votre blog

  22. walking bye says:

    You get 70% of the population on the gov’t dime, and a school system where half the classes are home room due to lack of school funding. From what I hear.

  23. grim says:

    Oy vey!

  24. Comrade Nom Deplume, Right Wing Extremist (per anon) says:

    Stu, gator, and littlest gator safely at CHoP.

  25. grim says:

    Why bother making a robot look like a human?

    Research shows poorly executed attempts at being human are not accepted by viewers. Generally people are more willing to adopt AI/machine assistance from robots that look or act nothing like fake humans. Pretending to be human almost always backfires – it also creates technology hurdles that have nothing to do with the task being automated.

    I’d much rather use a kiosk that lets me get my task accomplished in a minute than have to deal with a humanoid robot – what value does the representation bring?

  26. grim says:

    In fact – I would argue that the best approach is to use a cartoony caricature of a robot as the design, like something you would see out of Pixar. Even build in a few anthropomorphic cutesy behaviors. Even better, program in some behavioral tics, so people feel bad for it. A stutter, a jerky movement.

    Who could get mad at something like that?

  27. Comrade Nom Deplume, Recovering From The Slopes says:

    Not the expert grim. Just pointing to the trend, not the packaging.

  28. Anon E. Moose says:

    Nom [25];

    Silly boy; A-none and his ilk will just agitate to grant the machines “rights” (a la animal rights, plant rights, etc.). From there its just a hop skip and a jump to unionize the machines, and demand a cut of the production for the trouble. The rank-and-file will find out just how little the unions care about the workers. What could be better for the union than members who never complain?

  29. The Great Pumpkin says:

    “Education has lost its way, lost its purpose, lost its definition. Where once it was about enlightening and empowering young minds with knowledge, exploring new worlds, learning about science and history, and unleashing the imagination of each child, it has become a scripted process of producing test scores that can supply data.”

  30. Alex says:


    Pumps, it’s worse than that. The educational system has become nothing more than liberal indoctrination camps from say 5th grade through college with a little reading, writing and math on the side.

  31. Essex says:

    LegoLand? Step on one of those little square ones and you know suff’rin!

    BadaBing! I’m here all week.

  32. grim says:

    32 – your microagressions are invading my safe space

  33. The Great Pumpkin says:


    Alex says:
    March 29, 2016 at 5:37 pm

    Pumps, it’s worse than that. The educational system has become nothing more than liberal indoctrination camps from say 5th grade through college with a little reading, writing and math on the side.

  34. The Great Pumpkin says:

    As Millennials get older and start families, they’re giving another area a demographic boost: suburbs.

    Many suburbs are now growing more quickly than far-flung “exurbs,” the new data show. Urban core areas, which as a group saw their populations balloon until 2012, are flattening as Millennials move out.

    “Young people are what make suburban areas grow,” Frey said. “Young adults, as they move there, as they start having kids, as they start wanting to be in a more spacious place — that’s the traditional rise of the suburbs.”

    Check out this article from USA TODAY:

    This is where Americans are moving

  35. Hughesrep says:


    I wouldn’t discount indoctrination, but I’d question liberal. Unless it’s the liberal use of Jesus riding a dinosaur.

    It’s from an old female liberal from the NYT, but she’s right. It’s all about effiency and corporate synergy.

  36. Libturd at home for one more night before CHOP says:


    Drove down to CHOP, found out they had nothing for us to do until Thursday and drove back home. Chemo starts Friday, exactly 4 weeks after the tumor removal. Wish me luck again then. :P

  37. Outofstater says:

    Lib – You guys must be absolutely exhausted. Hope you get some good sleep tonight.

  38. Grim says:

    That’s a hassle you guys didn’t need…

  39. Libturd at home for one more night before CHOP says:

    True…but one we will gladly take. Home is so much more pleasant than any hospital. Daniel is absolutely loving his time with us!

  40. Comrade Nom Deplume, Recovering From The Slopes says:

    Stu, Lib. Sorry to hear it. I was wondering what happened.

    Call the missus. She will make sure you get A list treatment.

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