GNAR News – 7/20/11

No Caravan or Weekly Meeting this week,
the next Caravan is Thursday, July 28

From Housing Wire —

Mortgage applications rose 15.5% last week as refinancing activity surges

Mortgage applications rose 15.5% last week as refinancing activity surged, according to a leading trade association. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its market composite index on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ended July 15 climbed 15.5% from the prior week, which included the July 4 holiday. The index rose 44% on an unadjusted basis. The […]

Still time to register for National Housing Conference in Boston on July 28
The National Association of REALTORS® and the National Housing Conference selected Boston to host one of its three 2011 Bring Workers Home regional forums and it is taking place on Thursday, July 28 at the Hyatt Regency Boston. If you’d like to attend there is still time to register. The deadline is Friday, July 22.

Click this link to register online: and, to obtain additional information regarding the stipend offered by NAR, click

This forum is designed for employers and HR professionals, REALTORS®, urban and regional planners, housing and community development leaders, local elected and appointed officials, state HFA representatives, and anyone interested in workforce housing.

We are pleased to report that the House of Representatives passed a five year reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program by a vote of 406-22 (HR 1309) late Tuesday night. This major step forward was due in great part to REALTORS® like you being heard on this issue and sending a letter to your U.S. Representative. You can check how your Representative voted here.

We still have a ways to go before we are finished on this issue, as the Senate has not yet acted.  So please  take action if you have not yet done so as the Call for Action is still active for the U.S. Senate. Just visit to take action.

We will keep you informed on any future steps if they are needed in the Senate. Thank you again for your participation and support of our efforts on your behalf.

With much appreciation,
NAR Government Affairs and NAR Community and Political Affairs

NAR Disputes WSJ Op-Ed on Value of Homes
In response to an opinion piece that ran in The Wall Street Journal (“A Home is a Lousy Investment,” July 11, 2011), NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun wrote a letter to the editor defending houses as a financial investment. Yun cited the author’s own hypothetical, in which aCalifornia resident buys a home in 1980 for $99,550 with a 20 percent down payment of $19,910. According to Yun, this buyer would see that investment grow to $296,820 when the home was fully paid off in 2010. “Investing the same $19,910 in the Dow-Jones Industrial Index in 1980 would result in a balance of just over $238,000 in 2010 and be subject to taxes on the investment gains along the way,” Yun wrote. He also pointed out that the Federal Reserve’s 2009 Survey of Consumer Finances showed that the median net worth of the typical home owner exceeds $190,000 but is less than $4,000 for the typical renter.


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