June 2017 Newsletter


Summer is here and the opportunity to capture the boomer market and their families are in play.  What are your amenities…do you offer overnight packages, renowned restaurants, walking and biking trails, historic sites and cultural events.  All are attractive to potential retirees as it gives them a fantastic experience, a feel for your community.  Begin to capture their hearts by showing off your area as a destination, and a place to call home!

Remember to check out our lineup for our annual conference Nov. 15-17 in Wilmington, NC.  Be sure to take advantage of the early-bird registration starting as low as $350 by visiting www.AARCConference.org.  The AARC continues to be your resource in the retiree attraction market!

Baby boomers are planning to travel more than any other generation this summer.  More than three out of five Americans plan at least one leisure trip this summer, and 37% of those travelers will be boomers.  This is a 2% increase over last year in the share of boomers, which is defined as the generation born between 1946 and 1964.  Boomers will also spend more than the average traveler, as will tourists from the previous generation.  Research: DK Shifflet / Source: Hotel News Resource


Andre’ Nabors Chair, The AARC

Registration is Open for the 2017 Annual Conference – Craig Lawn, Judy Randall Headline 2017 Annual AARC Conference In Wilmington November 15-17


WILMINGTON, NC – Two top real estate and travel and tourism consultants will headline the 2017 annual Conference of the American Association of Retirement Communities (AARC) at the Hilton Riverside Hotel in Wilmington, NC on November 15-17, AARC Executive Director Wade Adler has announced.

C.Lawn PicCraig Lawn of Asheville, NC will discuss emerging trends in sales and marketing for golf and resort communities, while Judy Randall of Mooresville, NC will present practical strategies on expanding travel and tourism activity at community and regional levels, Adler said. Both Lawn and Randall are internationally respected consultants, each with more than 25 years experience in their respective fields.J.Randall Pic copy

Lawn has helped more than 250 golf and resort communities maximize sales performance in the U.S., Mexico and Australia, and is the author of the industry’s best-seller, Shut Up & Sell. Randall is president/CEO of Randall Travel Marketing, Inc. and has conducted comprehensive visitor research studies for over 150 small, medium and large destinations. She is the co-author of The Top Ten Trends in Travel and Tourism, published annually since 1995.

This year’s conference – with the theme of ‘Catch the Wave’ – will feature an expanded line-up of educational workshops, panel discussions and research presentations, headed by an all-star team of retiree recruitment experts, economic development professionals, real estate developers, specialized software consultants and publishers of print and digital retirement publications.

Presentations include:

  • Golf Courses: Turning what some consider a liability into an asset
  • The Challenging Club Paradigm: Membership Options for Today’s Retiree Club Member
  • Social Media Marketing: Today, Tomorrow & Beyond
  • 40 Years of Evolution: How One Retiree Home Builder Continues to Evolve
  • Real Estate Tech Briefing: How to Connect to Today’s Retiree Buyer

 Also on the agenda is an off-site visit to the nearby Compass Pointe community, where Legacy Homes by Bill Clark is building the 2017 Ideal Home featured in Ideal Living Magazine, with a reception to follow sponsored by the magazine. “Without question, this is the best and most informative AARC Annual Conference in our 20-plus year history,” Adler said. “Those who make the commitment to attend will be guaranteed a place on the inside track to the future of our industry.”

Early Bird Sign Up starts as low as $350, don’t miss your opportunity to attend at the lowest possible rate.  Visit the Sign Up Page now to assure your spot at the 2017 Annual Conference – Conference Sign Up Page




Existing-Home Sales Rise 1.1 Percent in May; Median Sales Price Ascends to New High

Adam Desanctis, National Association of Realtors | June 21, 2017

Screen Shot 2017-06-28 at 10.44.42 AMWASHINGTON (June 21, 2017) — Existing-home sales rebounded in May following a notable decline in April, and low inventory levels helped propel the median sales price to a new high while pushing down the median days a home is on the market to a new low, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions except for the Midwest saw an increase in sales last month.

Total existing-home sales1, https://www.nar.realtor/topics/existing-home-sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, climbed 1.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.62 million in May from a downwardly revised 5.56 million in April. Last month’s sales pace is 2.7 percent above a year ago and is the third highest over the past year.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says sales activity expanded in May as more buyers overcame the increasingly challenging market conditions prevalent in many areas. “The job market in most of the country is healthy and the recent downward trend in mortgage rates continues to keep buyer interest at a robust level,” he said. “Those able to close on a home last month are probably feeling both happy and relieved. Listings in the affordable price range are scarce, homes are coming off the market at an extremely fast pace and the prevalence of multiple offers in some markets are pushing prices higher.”

The median existing-home price2 for all housing types in May was $252,800. This surpasses last June ($247,600) as the new peak median sales price, is up 5.8 percent from May 2016 ($238,900) and marks the 63rd straight month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory3 at the end of May rose 2.1 percent to 1.96 million existing homes available for sale, but is still 8.4 percent lower than a year ago (2.14 million) and has fallen year-over-year for 24 consecutive months. Unsold inventory is at a 4.2-month supply at the current sales pace, which is down from 4.7 months a year ago.

“Home prices keep chugging along at a pace that is not sustainable in the long run,” added Yun. “Current demand levels indicate sales should be stronger, but it’s clear some would-be buyers are having to delay or postpone their home search because low supply is leading to worsening affordability conditions.”

Properties typically stayed on the market for 27 days in May, which is down from 29 days in April and 32 days a year ago; this is the shortest timeframe since NAR began tracking in May 2011. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 94 days in May, while foreclosures sold in 48 days and non-distressed homes took 27 days. Fifty-five percent of homes sold in May were on the market for less than a month (a new high).

Inventory data from realtor.com® reveals that the metropolitan statistical areas where listings stayed on the market the shortest amount of time in May were Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash., 20 days; San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, Calif., 24 days; San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif., 25 days; and Salt Lake City, Utah and Ogden-Clearfield, Utah, both at 26 days.

“With new and existing supply failing to catch up with demand, several markets this summer will continue to see homes going under contract at this remarkably fast pace of under a month,” said Yun.

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage decreased for the second consecutive month, dipping to 4.01 percent in May from 4.05 percent in April. The average commitment rate for all of 2016 was 3.65 percent.

First-time buyers were 33 percent of sales in May, which is down from 34 percent in April but up from 30 percent a year ago. NAR’s 2016 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellersreleased in late 20164 — revealed that the annual share of first-time buyers was 35 percent.

Earlier this month, NAR hosted the Sustainable Homeownership Conference at University of California’s Memorial Stadium in Berkeley. A white paper titled, “Hurdles to Homeownership: Understanding the Barriers, was released, which honed in on the five main reasons why first-time buyers are failing to make up a greater share of the market.

“Of the barriers analyzed in the white paper, single-family housing shortages will be the biggest challenge for prospective first-time buyers this year,” said President William E. Brown, a Realtor® from Alamo, California. “Those hoping to buy an entry-level, single-family home continue to see minimal choices. The best advice for these home shoppers is to know what you can afford, lean on the guidance of a Realtor® and act fast once an ideal property within the budget is listed.”

All-cash sales were 22 percent of transactions in May, up from 21 percent in April and unchanged from a year ago. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 16 percent of homes in May, up from 15 percent in April and 13 percent a year ago. Sixty-four percent of investors paid in cash in May.

Distressed sales5 — foreclosures and short sales — were 5 percent of sales in May, unchanged from April and down from 6 percent a year ago. Four percent of May sales were foreclosures and 1 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 20 percent below market value in May (18 percent in April), while short sales were discounted 16 percent (12 percent in April).

Single-family and Condo/Co-op Sales

Single-family home sales increased 1.0 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.98 million in May from 4.93 million in April, and are now 2.7 percent above the 4.85 million pace a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $254,600 in May, up 6.0 percent from May 2016.

Existing condominium and co-op sales climbed 1.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 640,000 units in May, and are 3.2 percent higher than a year ago. The median existing condo price was $238,700 in May, which is 4.8 percent above a year ago.

Regional Breakdown

May existing-home sales in the Northeast jumped 6.8 percent to an annual rate of 780,000, and are now 2.6 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $281,300, which is 4.7 percent above May 2016.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales fell 5.9 percent to an annual rate of 1.28 million in May, and are 0.8 percent below a year ago. The median price in the Midwest was $203,900, up 7.3 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South rose 2.2 percent to an annual rate of 2.34 million, and are now 4.5 percent above May 2016. The median price in the South was $221,900, up 5.3 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the West increased 3.4 percent to an annual rate of 1.22 million in May, and are now 3.4 percent above a year ago. The median price in the West was $368,800, up 6.9 percent from May 2016.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.2 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

# # #

NOTE:  For local information, please contact the local association of Realtors® for data from local multiple listing services. Local MLS data is the most accurate source of sales and price information in specific areas, although there may be differences in reporting methodology.

1Existing-home sales, which include single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, are based on transaction closings from Multiple Listing Services. Changes in sales trends outside of MLSs are not captured in the monthly series. NAR rebenchmarks home sales periodically using other sources to assess overall home sales trends, including sales not reported by MLSs.

Existing-home sales, based on closings, differ from the U.S. Census Bureau’s series on new single-family home sales, which are based on contracts or the acceptance of a deposit. Because of these differences, it is not uncommon for each series to move in different directions in the same month. In addition, existing-home sales, which account for more than 90 percent of total home sales, are based on a much larger data sample — about 40 percent of multiple listing service data each month — and typically are not subject to large prior-month revisions.

The annual rate for a particular month represents what the total number of actual sales for a year would be if the relative pace for that month were maintained for 12 consecutive months. Seasonally adjusted annual rates are used in reporting monthly data to factor out seasonal variations in resale activity. For example, home sales volume is normally higher in the summer than in the winter, primarily because of differences in the weather and family buying patterns. However, seasonal factors cannot compensate for abnormal weather patterns.

Single-family data collection began monthly in 1968, while condo data collection began quarterly in 1981; the series were combined in 1999 when monthly collection of condo data began. Prior to this period, single-family homes accounted for more than nine out of 10 purchases. Historic comparisons for total home sales prior to 1999 are based on monthly single-family sales, combined with the corresponding quarterly sales rate for condos.

2The median price is where half sold for more and half sold for less; medians are more typical of market conditions than average prices, which are skewed higher by a relatively small share of upper-end transactions. The only valid comparisons for median prices are with the same period a year earlier due to seasonality in buying patterns. Month-to-month comparisons do not compensate for seasonal changes, especially for the timing of family buying patterns. Changes in the composition of sales can distort median price data. Year-ago median and mean prices sometimes are revised in an automated process if additional data is received.

The national median condo/co-op price often is higher than the median single-family home price because condos are concentrated in higher-cost housing markets. However, in a given area, single-family homes typically sell for more than condos as seen in NAR’s quarterly metro area price reports.

3Total inventory and month’s supply data are available back through 1999, while single-family inventory and month’s supply are available back to 1982 (prior to 1999, single-family sales accounted for more than 90 percent of transactions and condos were measured only on a quarterly basis).

4Survey results represent owner-occupants and differ from separately reported monthly findings from NAR’s Realtors® Confidence Index, which include all types of buyers. Investors are under-represented in the annual study because survey questionnaires are mailed to the addresses of the property purchased and generally are not returned by absentee owners. Results include both new and existing homes.

5Distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales), days on market, first-time buyers, all-cash transactions and investors are from a monthly survey for the NAR’s Realtors® Confidence Index, posted at Realtor.org.

NOTE: NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index for May is scheduled for release on June 28, and Existing-Home Sales for June will be released July 24; release times are 10:00 a.m. ET.

Top Counties For Retirees On the Move

Ideal-Living.com | June, 2017

2017 Executive ReportSometimes numbers do tell the whole story.  With over 43,000 moves within the Ideal-LIVING database during the past 27 months, trends are transformed into facts. These moves are confirmed via the Post Office National Change of Address and updated quarterly to accurately reflect where buyers are moving to and where they’re originating. The full 2017 Executive Summary contains more detailed information about these buyers’ habits and preferences.
Source – 2017 Ideal Living Executive Report

Labor Shortage Squeezes Builders

Peter Grant, FoxBusiness.com, May 16, 2017

teamA growing labor shortage in the commercial real-estate industry is driving up the costs of some projects and could complicate lawmakers’ plans for a $1 trillion infrastructure-spending program, contractors say.

“Ever since we came out of the great recession, many folks in our industry have been saying: it’s coming, it’s coming, it’s coming,” said George Nash Jr., director of preconstruction for Branch and Associates, a Roanoke, Va., contractor. “Today the problem is there.”

Construction businesses, excluding those building single-family homes, employed close to 4.2 million workers in April, up 3,000 from March, according to an analysis by the Associated Builders and Contractors, a trade group. That was the highest employment level since November 2008, though still below the record 4.4 million workers employed in the nonresidential construction segment in February 2008, the analysis said.

Labor pressures are increasing in the construction industry as hiring overall accelerates across the U.S. economy. On Friday, the Labor Department reported that nonfarm payrolls rose by a seasonally adjusted 211,000 in April and the unemployment rate fell to 4.4%, the lowest level in almost a decade.

Among the hot pockets of construction activity are office development in New York and condominium and rental-housing projects in downtown Los Angeles, Boston and Miami. Big infrastructure projects include the modernization of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport and a tunnel in Seattle that will replace a viaduct vulnerable to earthquakes.

Contractors throughout the country said that as the workload grows, they are beginning to see shortages of electricians, carpenters and other subcontractor laborers.

When they bid out jobs two years ago, several contractors said, two or three subcontractors would typically respond for each part of the project. Today they are running into situations in which there is only one bid, making it harder to hold down costs, they said.

Subcontractors said they also are feeling the pinch. Gaylor Electric Inc. of Indianapolis has opted against bidding on some jobs “because we didn’t have the people,” said Chuck Goodrich, the company’s president.

Gaylor has added 70 employees in the last two months but still has about 200 empty positions, Mr. Goodrich said. “The economy is growing, and construction jobs need to be filled,” he said.

Construction labor costs are rising an average of 4% to 5% annually, outpacing inflation, according to Anirban Basu, chief economist of the Associated Builders and Contractors. “The situation is going to get worse,” he said.

Overall, the association said the industry needs 500,000 more workers. The trade group estimates 600,000 additional workers would be needed for the $1 trillion in infrastructure building and improvement for which President Donald Trump has said he would seek funding.

The White House didn’t immediately provide a comment.

Industry executives said the scarcity stems partly from many workers idled by the downturn finding other jobs and retiring. Also, fewer young people are choosing construction as a profession.

Some subcontractors are teaming up and creating joint ventures to cope with the labor scarcity. Marcum LLP, an accounting firm, has structured 40 such ventures this year, more than twice the number for all of 2016, according to Joe Natarelli, who heads the New York firm’s construction practice.

“Typically a contractor wants to keep the whole contract for themselves, ” Mr. Natarelli said. “We’ll [now] see them joint-venture pieces of that contract because they don’t have enough labor.”

Construction companies also are stepping up their recruitment efforts. Wilmer Electric Services, a fourth-generation subcontractor in Lincoln, Neb., recently hired a full-time staff member to search for workers at high schools, trade schools, military bases and other places, according to David Chapin, the firm’s president. The company has about 150 employees.

“We have a lot of people who came out of the [information technology] industry. They just found out they didn’t like working inside and wanted to work with their hands day-to-day,” said Mr. Chapin, who is also chairman of the Associated Builders and Contractors.

Mr. Chapin said the firm has 18 months’ worth of work in its pipeline, the biggest backlog it has experienced in its 97-year history.

“We’ve been unable to fill all our openings,” he said. “We would like to hire more.”

Write to Peter Grant at peter.grant@wsj.com