Home Sales Hit a Record-Setting Rebound

Home Sales Hit a Record-Setting Rebound

Home Sales Hit a Record-Setting Rebound

Article Sourced and Written by Keeping Current Matters

With a worldwide health crisis that drove a pause in the economy this year, the housing market was greatly impacted. Many have been eagerly awaiting some bright signs of a recovery. Based on the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), June hit a much-anticipated record-setting rebound to ignite that spark.

According to NARhome sales jumped 20.7% from May to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 4.72 million in June: 

“Existing-home sales rebounded at a record pace in June, showing strong signs of a market turnaround after three straight months of sales declines caused by the ongoing pandemic…Each of the four major regions achieved month-over-month growth.”

This significant rebound is a major boost for the housing market and the U.S. economy. According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for NAR, the momentum has the potential to continue on, too:

“The sales recovery is strong, as buyers were eager to purchase homes and properties that they had been eyeing during the shutdown…This revitalization looks to be sustainable for many months ahead as long as mortgage rates remain low and job gains continue.”

With mortgage rates hitting an all-time low, dropping below 3% for the first time last week, potential homebuyers are poised to continue taking advantage of this historic opportunity to buy. This fierce competition among buyers is contributing to home price increases as well, as more buyers are finding themselves in bidding wars in this environment. The report also notes:

“The median existing-home price for all housing types in June was $295,300, up 3.5% from June 2019 ($285,400), as prices rose in every region. June’s national price increase marks 100 straight months of year-over-year gains.”

The graph below shows home price increases by region, powered by low interest rates, pent-up demand, and a decline in inventory on the market:

 

Yun also indicates:

“Home prices rose during the lockdown and could rise even further due to heavy buyer competition and a significant shortage of supply.”

Bottom Line

Buyers returning to the market is a great sign for the economy, as housing is still leading the way toward a recovery. If you’re ready to buy a home this year, let’s connect to make sure you have the best possible guide with you each step of the way.

Article Sourced and Written by Keeping Current Matters

 

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DOL Releases New Guidance on Employee Leaves

DOL Releases New Guidance on Employee Leaves

DOL Releases New Guidance on Employee Leaves

Article Written & Sourced by Home Actions

The pandemic has affected both employers and employees, and everyone is trying to figure out how to work under new situations and new rules. The Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act are all governing workplace rights and responsibilities, and the new DOL guidance will help everyone understand them.

Here is a summary of the key provisions. Fact sheets for employers and employees are available on the DOL website

Employee leaves: An introduction

These are the basic provisions of employee leaves:

  • Two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at the employee’s regular rate of pay in situations where the employee is unable to work because the employee is quarantined.
  • Two weeks (up to 80 hours) of paid sick leave at two-thirds the employee’s regular rate of pay if the employee is unable to work because of a bona fide need to care for an individual subject to quarantine or to care for a child (under 18 years of age) whose school or child care provider is closed or unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19.
  • Up to an additional 10 weeks of paid expanded family and medical leave at two-thirds the employee’s regular rate of pay in scenarios in which an employee, who has been employed for at least 30 calendar days, is unable to work due to a bona fide need for leave to care for a child whose school or child care provider is closed or unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19.

The big questions

The DOL also answered nearly 100 important questions that have been coming in from companies and employees. Here are a few of them:

 When can employees telework under the FFCRA?

They may telework when their employer permits them to perform work while they are at home or at a location other than the normal workplace. Telework is work for which normal wages must be paid and that is not compensated under the paid leave provisions of the FFCRA.

If an employee elects to take paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave, must the employer continue health coverage? If the employee remains on leave beyond the maximum period of expanded family and medical leave, does the employee have a right to keep health coverage?

If an employer provides group health coverage that the employee has elected, the employee is entitled to continue group health coverage during the expanded family and medical leave on the same terms as if the employee continued to work.

Can an employee take expanded family and medical leave intermittently while a child’s school or place of care is closed, or child care provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19-related reasons, if the employee is not teleworking?

Yes, but only with the employer’s permission. Intermittent expanded family and medical leave should be permitted only when the worker and the company agree upon such a schedule. The DOL encourages employers and employees to collaborate to achieve flexibility. Therefore, if employers and employees agree to intermittent leave on a day-by-day basis, the department supports such voluntary arrangements.

These are just introductions to complex provisions, and there are many exceptions and exclusions regarding employee leaves. Both employers and employees are encouraged to review the complete DOL guidance before drawing any conclusions, and to consult a professional for advice.

 

Article sourced and written by Home Actions

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