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Fed Beige Book Shows Increase in Home Sales, Decrease in Commercial Activity

Home sales increased moderately across most Fed districts, but commercial activity remained at a low level, with reports of mixed or deteriorating conditions — although most tenants reportedly paid rent in June, according to the Federal Reserve's latest Beige Book released July 15. Investment activity was slow to nonexistent across the board.

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CRE, Multifamily Lending Down this Year; Partial Rebound Expected Next Year: MBA

Commercial and multifamily mortgage bankers are expected to close $248 billion in loans backed by income-producing properties this year, a 59 percent decline from 2019’s record volume of $601 billion, a new Mortgage Bankers Association forecast said.

Total multifamily lending alone, which includes some loans made by small and midsize banks not captured in the overall total, is forecast to fall by 42 percent to $213 billion in 2020 from last year’s record total of $364 billion. MBA anticipates a partial rebound in lending volumes in 2021, with activity rising to $390 billion in commercial/multifamily mortgage bankers originations and $308 billion in total multifamily lending.

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Appraisal Institute Opens Registration for 2021 VP Presentations and Board Meeting

The Appraisal Institute Board of Directors will hold an election for the 2021 vice president during the morning session of its third quarter meeting Aug. 6 and host a general open session in the afternoon. Registration is open for both meetings. 
 
The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. CDT, and the vice president nominees will make their presentations to the Board at the start. Once the presentations have concluded, the Board will go into Executive Session. AI professionals who have registered to attend this meeting will be able to rejoin it at approximately noon CDT for the election of the vice president.
 
AI professionals must register for all meetings they wish to attend. If you wish to attend the vice president presentations and election beginning at 9 a.m. CDT and the general open session beginning at approximately 1 p.m. CDT, you will need to register for both. Please note that space is limited.
 
 
 
You will receive a confirmation email with your own unique link to join a session once you have registered.
 

Federal Reserve Expects Recession Despite Initial Optimism

By Pedro Nicolaci da Costa

Policymakers at the Federal Reserve, after some initial optimism that the Covid-19 slump would be deep but confined to the second quarter of this year, now seem braced for a more prolonged recession marked by high unemployment and a rising risk of corporate bankruptcies.

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AI Urges Swift Passage of Appraisal Portal Legislation

The Appraisal Institute sent a letter urging swift passage of the Portal for Appraisal Licensing Act of 2020 in the 116th Congress, which would amend the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 to establish a portal for appraisal credentialing and AMC registration information, and for other purposes.

“Appraisers need help reducing their administrative burdens and servicing clients, particularly in a socially distant workplace where clients may be located in other states,” said Appraisal Institute President Jefferson L. Sherman, MAI, AI-GRS.

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Office Demand Expected to be Favorable as Workers, Businesses Seek Normality: JLL

Demand for office space is intrinsically linked to the economy; generally in a downturn, office demand drops off as employment levels fall and corporates move into cash preservation mode. The global pandemic has undoubtedly pushed us into a global recession and in the short term this will have a direct impact on office demand. However, in light of the success of wholescale working from home, the question is now being asked – over the longer term, will this be the catalyst for the end of the office? 

This is not the straightforward equation it is often portrayed as; increased working from home does not directly equal less demand for office space. There are a myriad of other factors which need to be looked at, including density, financial returns, productivity and technology. Before examining these factors, it is worth taking a step back to look at the function and purpose of the office from both the employer and employee perspective.

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Recap: NCAI Connect - Update from AI Leadership

Last week, NCAI was joined by Appraisal Institute President Jefferson L. Sherman, MAI, AI-GRS, and Chief Executive Officer Jim Amorin, CAE, MAI, SRA, AI-GRS who spoke with members about the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on the Appraisal Institute, individual appraisers, and the valuation profession, how AI is facing these issues, and projected what the future of the industry looks like. Click here or on the image below to view the recording.

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NCAI Member Cal Morgan Appointed to NCAB

The North Carolina Chapter of the Appraisal Institute (NCAI) has been informed that Jack C. (Cal) Morgan III, MAI, SRA, AI-GRS, has been appointed to the North Carolina Appraisal Board (NCAB) by Tim Moore, NC House Speaker. We congratulate Cal on his appointment, and we thank him for his willingness to be a leader in the appraisal industry. We wish you well in this endeavor, and we know you will continue to promote the highest standards for real estate appraisal practice in the protection of the public trust. 

Cal is a graduate of the College of Charleston, in Charleston, SC. He has over 20 years of experience in real estate appraisal, construction, and investment analysis. He is the owner of JC Morgan Company in Wilmington, NC, which provides appraisal services as well as consulting and litigation support services. Cal is also a NC licensed general contractor and NC real estate broker. He served on the NC Property Tax Commission from 2013 to 2017 and currently serves as the Chairman of the Wilmington Zoning Board of Adjustment. Cal lives in Wilmington with his wife Seanna and their three children.

Congratulations Cal!

Housing is Recovering, but Economic Outlook Uncertain: Freddie Mac

According to Freddie Mac’s Quarterly Forecast, housing markets have been affected by the pandemic with both home sales and house price growth declining.

“While the housing market undoubtedly has felt the effects of COVID-19, we are encouraged by recent homebuyer demand as well as mortgage rates that should remain at record lows for the foreseeable future.” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “However, beyond the initial rebound in the housing market, the economic and housing outlook will be heavily impacted by the prospects for a vaccine, fiscal policy and the underlying organic recovery of the economy which, in combination, make the outlook highly uncertain.”

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North Carolina Phase 2 Extended Three Weeks; Statewide Requirement for Face Coverings Added

Governor Roy Cooper announced yesterday that as trends move in the wrong direction, North Carolina will remain in Phase 2 for three more weeks. Executive Order 147 also requires face coverings in public and at various business settings where individuals cannot maintain a physical distance of six feet from others.

Construction sites are specifically included:

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Consumer Confidence in Housing Market Up: Fannie Mae

The Fannie Mae (FNMA/OTCQB) Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) increased 4.5 points in May to 67.5, building slightly after nearing its all-time survey low in April. Four of the six HPSI components increased month over month, with consumers reporting a somewhat more optimistic view of homebuying conditions and, to a lesser extent, home-selling conditions. Moreover, fewer consumers reported expectations that mortgage rates will go up over the next 12 months. Year over year, the HPSI is down 24.5 points.

“Although the HPSI’s precipitous declines of March and April did not continue in May, Americans’ financial, economic, and housing market concerns remain substantially elevated compared to survey history,” said Doug Duncan, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist. “Low mortgage rates have helped cushion some of the impact of the pandemic on consumer sentiment regarding whether it’s a good time to buy a home, which picked back up this month to late-2018 levels. Although weakened income perceptions and continuing job loss concerns, particularly among renters, are likely weighing on many would-be buyers, purchase mortgage applications have returned to mid-March levels when pandemic response measures began ramping up. Home-selling sentiment remains severely dampened due primarily to economic concerns, though increased purchase activity may improve the confidence of some potential sellers. As lockdown restrictions begin to ease across the country, we expect economic recovery to be largely shaped by consumers’ decisions regarding when and how to reengage in the economy. We believe this month's HPSI results and Friday's unexpectedly favorable labor market report to be encouraging signs for the months ahead.”

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FHFA Extends Appraisal Loan Processing Flexibilities

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is extending several loan origination flexibilities currently offered by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) designed to help borrowers during the COVID-19 national emergency. Flexibilities extended until at least July 31st include:

  • Alternative appraisals on purchase and rate term refinance loans;
  • Alternative methods for verifying employment before loan closing;
  • Expanding the use of power of attorney and remote online notarizations to assist with loan closings; and
  • Authority to purchase mortgages in forbearance. 
View release.

2021 Slate of Officers Elected

The below slate was presented by the North Carolina Chapter’s 2020 Nominating Committee comprised of: Sheri Colvin, MAI (Chair); Joel Tate, SRA; Don Read, MAI; Chesney Baker, MAI, AI-GRS; and David Pope, MAI, SRA.

It was approved as per regulation at the 2nd Quarter 2020 Chapter Business Meeting held on June 11, 2020. 

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Office Market Sector Expected to See Negative Absorption Rates Until Late 2021: NAIOP

By Scott Baltic

National economic upheaval and surging unemployment will push U.S. office market absorption into negative territory through the second quarter of next year. That’s according to the NAIOP Research Foundation’s Office Space Demand Forecast for the second quarter.

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Recap: NCAI Connect - A Conversation with NCAB

North Carolina Appraisal Board’s (NCAB) Executive Director, Don Rodgers, and Deputy Director, Tom Lewis joined us on our NCAI Connect Webinar Series yesterday.

Don Rodgers gave an update on the changes to the leadership of the board, with Charles McGill stepping down as chairman and David Reitzel voted in as chairman. The board recently transitioned to the new appraiser standards and qualifications based on the AQB Standards, which are already having a positive impact on licensing. Highlighting the new online renewal system, Don commented that NCAB was pleased with the success of the new process and that most appraisers have utilized the process for renewal. NCAB is very supportive of the virtual learning platform (zoom, blue jeans, etc.) that has been utilized for USPAP courses and CE due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This hybrid classroom experience had not been contemplated by ASC or NCAB prior to the crisis, but with positive reactions from attendees, NCAB is supportive of considering its adoption. However, such adoption will first require approval from ASC, with a formal hearing and public commenting period, so it may be a while before it is adopted permanently. For now, it can be used until September 30, 2020.

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FHFA Final Rule to Provide Increased Mortgage Financing for Underserved Borrowers

To help underserved borrowers, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) sent to the Federal Register for publication a final rule on the Federal Home Loan Banks’ (FHLBanks) Housing Goals. The new goals take effect in 2021 and enforcement of the rule will be phased in over three years. 

“By creating housing goal targets that are achievable for the Federal Home Loan Banks, the final rule helps ensure they make meaningful contributions to affordable homeownership,” said Director Mark Calabria. “This rule will expand responsible homeownership opportunities for underserved communities across the country.”

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Mortgage Rates Up as Homebuyers Re-enter Market; Selection Still Limited: Freddie Mac

Mortgage rates moved up slightly during the past week as prospective homebuyers re-entered the market, Freddie Mac reported June 4 in its Primary Mortgage Market Survey. While the economy slowly rebounds, signs indicate that home sales are picking up nicely even as the supply of available homes remains limited.

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US Economy Expected to Begin Recovery in Q3: ABA Forecast

The U.S. economy will experience about a 6% contraction this year, but will begin to recover from a severe second-quarter downturn in the third quarter, according to the latest forecast of the American Bankers Association’s Economic Advisory Committee.

While the group, made up of 16 chief economists from some of the North America’s largest banks, is unanimous that the economy will expand in the third quarter, there are a wide range of views as to the damage caused by the COVID-19 shock. Four committee members believe the economy will shrink less than 5% in 2020 while just as many see a greater than 8% contraction. The committee members were divided on when they expect economic output to recover to the pre-pandemic level, with the largest number of committee members forecasting it will happen in 2022.

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Don't Miss the Q2 Chapter Business Meeting on Thursday!

Join us Thursday to elect the 2021 Slate of Nominees for Officers, Directors, Regional Representative, & Alternate Regional Representatives, hear updates about what the Chapter has been doing, and congratulate our newly designated members!

Please make sure to register prior to joining the meeting in order to receive the 2 AI credits.

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AI Webinar - Is it Too Early to Evaluate Pandemic Impact on Real Estate Valuation?

The Appraisal Institute has assembled a stellar lineup of appraisers from the Top 10 Metropolitan Statistical Areas to help investors, developers, brokers, and other industry stakeholders understand initial buyer and seller reaction to COVID-19.

Residential real estate appraisers from across the country will summarize initial observations and identify considerations that appraisers will evaluate in the near and long term. We will also discuss trends in rural markets, appraiser reaction to policy changes of the GSEs, FHA and VA, and the dynamics with employee relocation appraisals, which require forecasting.

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