Today's the big day for the Citrus Bowl parade in downtown, so plan your travel time in and out accordingly.

Now, let's start this morning with an interesting item from Forbes, which named Orlando as one of the top "Cities Doing the Most to Address the U.S. Housing Shortage."

Forbes notes that nationwide, there is an undersupply of new housing, but some metros are doing better than others at meeting demand.

Orlando is No. 5, with 19,306 permitted multifamily units, trailing only Charlotte, Houston, Raleigh and Austin in the rankings, which were created by looking at the number of building permits for single and multifamily units in the 53 largest U.S. metros from 2011 through 2014 as compared to those metros' existing housing bases.

If you…

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The National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their latest Existing Home Sales Report which covered sales in November. The report revealed that sales:

“…fell 10.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.76 million in November (lowest since April 2014 at 4.75 million)…”

That revelation gave birth to a series of industry articles, some of which quoted pundits questioning whether the housing market was slowing. In actuality, there is one rather simple explanation to much of the falloff in sales last month. It is likely the implementation of the “Know Before You Owe” mortgage rule, commonly known as the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule, which went into effect on October 3. These regulations caused house closings to be…

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In today's market, with homes selling quickly and prices rising, some homeowners might consider trying to sell their home on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons this might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers.

Here are five of those reasons:

1. There Are Too Many People to Negotiate With

Here is a list of some of the people with whom you must be prepared to negotiate if you decide to For Sale By Owner:

  • The buyer who wants the best deal possible
  • The buyer’s agent who solely represents the best interest of the buyer
  • The buyer’s attorney (in some parts of the country)
  • The home inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always, find some…

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In a recent study conducted by Builder.com, researchers determined that nationwide it would take “nearly eight years” for a first-time buyer to save enough for a down payment on their dream home.

Depending on where you live, median rents, incomes and home prices all vary. By determining the percentage a renter spends on housing in each state and the amount needed for a 10% down payment, they were able to establish how long (in years) it would take for an average resident to save.

According to the study, residents in South Dakota are able to save for a down payment the quickest in just under 3.5 years. Below is a map created using the data for each state:

What if you only needed to save 3%?

What if you were able to take advantage of one of…

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The Federal Reserve made the long-awaited, much-anticipated announcement on Wednesday afternoon that federal funds target rate will increase by 25 basis points from its near-zero level where it has been since 2006.

The announcement came as the Fed wrapped its eighth and final Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting of 2015 on Wednesday afternoon. The vote was unanimous.

“The Committee judges that there has been considerable improvement in labor market conditions this year, and it is reasonably confident that inflation will rise, over the medium term, to its 2 percent objective,” the FOMC said in its statement Wednesday. “Given the economic outlook, and recognizing the time it takes for policy actions to affect future economic outcomes, the…

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Speculation was rampant in September that the Fed would raise the short-term interest rates, and they did not. Now, sentiment seems to be leaning heavily in the direction once more that the Fed will announce a rate increase on Wednesday. What is the difference between now and three months ago?

One of the big difference is that we’ve continued to have reasonably solid employment growth. The Fed takes a pretty close look at the monthly job numbers that come out from the labor department. The economy has added close to almost 2.9 million jobs over the last 12 months. The Fed needed to see some further assurance that economic growth is reaching a self-sustaining level, as measured by employment gains. We’ve continued to see those employment gains, and…

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It has been nearly four years since housing prices bottomed out nationwide. Since then, the fortunes of homeowners and renters alike have been mixed across a wide spectrum depending on where they live, according to a report by Trulia on Wednesday. So where are the best and worst markets for buying or renting a home?

Recovery in housing markets across the country has varied widely when other factors enter the equation, such as how much economic growth the area has seen (particularly in employment and wages) and how much housing prices have appreciated. Based on those factors, housing in some metros over the last four years has recovered more quickly driven by substantial economic growth, while housing has been slow to recover in some metros based on…

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Last week, an article in the Washington Post discussed a new ‘threat’ homebuyers will soon be facing: higher mortgage rates. The article revealed:

“The Mortgage Bankers Association expects that rates on 30-year loans could reach 4.8 percent by the end of next year, topping 5 percent in 2017. Rates haven’t been that high since the recession.”

How can this impact the housing market?

The article reported that recent analysis from Realtor.com found that -

“…as many as 7% of people who applied for a mortgage during the first half of the year would have had trouble qualifying if rates rose by half a percentage point.”

This doesn’t necessarily mean that those buyers negatively impacted by a rate increase would not purchase a home.…

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What do the experts predict the Residential Rental Market will be like heading into 2016.  Below are quotes from experts as well as industry reports & articles that cover the residential rental market in the U.S.

The experts…

Zillow Chief Economist Svenja Gudell:

"Make no mistake: Despite this recent slowdown in rental appreciation, the rental affordability crisis we've been enduring for the past few years shows no signs of easing, especially as income growth remains weak. It will take a lot more supply, and a lot more renters-turned-homeowners, to fully reverse this.”

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist of the National Association of Realtors

“Rents and home prices are expected to exceed income growth into next year because of the…

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