Freddie Mac Releases Housing Market Report

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housing-market-2013-v2With a little over two weeks left until we ring in the New Year, Freddie Mac is already bidding ‘Farewell to 2012, and saying Hello to 2013.’

Earlier this week, Freddie released its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for December (think of it as a roadmap as to how things will play out in 2013).

After combing through the cold hard facts, the report forecasts a pretty good year for homeowners looking to refinance and some decent news for people in the home-buying spectrum.

To make it simple, rates are expected to stay low for at least the first half of 2013, but home prices are expected to rise.

[Mortgage Help: Get your free credit report and see if your credit score is mortgage qualified]

Freddie Mac’s highlights of the report:

  • Look for long-term mortgage rates to remain near their record lows for the first half of 2013, then rising gradually during the second half of the year, but remaining below 4 percent
  • Expect property values to continue to strengthen with most U.S. house price indexes likely rising by 2 to 3 percent in 2013
  • Household formation should step up further to a net 1.20 to 1.25 million household increase in 2013 with housing starts up around the 1 million annualized pace by the fourth quarter
  • Vacancy rates for both apartments and the single-family for-sale market could bring aggregate vacancy rates down to 2002-2003 levels as household formation outpaces new construction
  • While the refinance boom will continue into early 2013, it will be less compared to 2012 so look for single-family mortgage originations to decline by 15 percent, conversely, expect multifamily lending to rise approximately 5 percent

Quizzle Community Builder, Katie Bushor, is in the market for a new home.

“My husband and I have been looking at homes for at least a month now. We’ve checked out about ten so far, but the pressure is on now that prices could climb in the next few months,” she said.

One thing is for certain if you’re looking to refinance or buy a home in 2013, you need to have good credit. The better your credit, the better your chance of qualifying for a lower rate.

We all come up with one or two New Year’s Resolutions in which we swear that ‘This is the year,’ knowing darn well that our resolutions never last more than a week or so before we cave and say ‘Nope, next year is the year.’

I don’t want to sound like one of those nagging writers who begs and pleads for readers to make a change, but for the love of everything chocolate make 2013 the year to get your credit and finances in check. Think of it as a huge favor to yourself, a way to keep more of your hard-earned cash in your pocket for fun things like a family vacation.

[Mortgage Help: Get your free credit report and see if your credit score is mortgage qualified]

Head to to get a jump-start on improving your financial situation for 2013.

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Krystal lives, works, and plays in the Detroit area and loves covering a variety of personal finance topics for the Quizzle Wire.