Tax Reform Could Deliver a Tax Hike for Homeowners: New Research

Washington, D.C. – May 18, 2017 (PRNewswire) While tax reform proposals swirling around Washington, D.C., promise lower tax bills for American families, new estimates indicate that many middle-income homeowners may actually see a tax increase if those proposals go through.

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The study, “Impact of Tax Reform Options on Owner-Occupied Housing,” illustrates the effects of a tax plan that echoes certain elements of the “Better Way for Tax Reform” or “Blueprint” proposal released last year, as well as the White House tax reform outline released in April, to which the National Association of Realtors® responded.

While most individuals would see a tax decrease under such a proposal, the study estimates that many middle-class homeowners could in fact see a net average tax increase. Homeowners with adjusted gross incomes between $50,000 and $200,000 would see their taxes rise by an average of $815. The study also estimates that combined tax savings from claiming the mortgage interest deduction and real estate property tax deductions would drop 82 percent between the 2018 and 2027 period.

“Tax reform and lower rates are worthy goals, but only if we can achieve them in a fiscally responsible way,” said NAR president William E. Brown, a second-generation Realtor® from Alamo, California and founder of Investment Properties. “Balancing tax reform on the backs of homeowners isn’t an option.”

The study, which was commissioned by NAR and prepared by PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers), estimates that this tax increase would result from the interaction of several provisions in the reforms under consideration. For many homeowners that currently benefit from the mortgage interest deduction, the elimination of other itemized deductions and personal exemptions would cause their taxes to rise, even if they elected to take the increased standard deduction. For others, the elimination of the state and local tax deduction alone would result in higher federal income taxes.

In addition to increasing taxes on many middle-income homeowners, the report finds that such a proposal could cause home values to fall by an average of more than 10 percent in the near term. In areas with higher property taxes or state income taxes, the drop could be even greater. Although the study doesn’t directly analyze the “Better Way for Tax Reform” plan or the recent White House outline, it examines a proposal with many similar elements.

Those elements include lowering and consolidating marginal tax rates to only three rates, setting a top income tax rate of 33 percent, doubling the standard deduction, eliminating all itemized deductions (other than charitable contributions and mortgage interest) and personal exemptions, eliminating the alternative minimum tax, and capping the tax rate on pass-through business income at 25 percent.

PwC estimated that roughly 35 million households will claim the mortgage interest deduction in 2018, three quarters of which have incomes between $50,000 and $200,000. According to NAR, roughly 70 percent of those eligible for the MID claim it in a given tax year.

“A tax reform proposal that hikes taxes for homeowners is a raw deal, and consumers know it,” said Brown. “Leaders in Washington who are driving tax reform have shown every indication that they have the best of intentions, and we’re hopeful they’ll consider our study as this process plays out in the months ahead.”

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

Information about NAR is available at www.realtor.org. This and other news releases are posted in the “News, Blogs and Video” tab on the website.

Appraisal Values Lag Homeowner Expectations, Quicken Loans Study Shows

– Quicken Loans’ National HPPI shows appraised values were 1.90% lower than homeowners estimated in April

– Home values rose 1.06% nationally in April, with a 5.08% year-over-year increase, according to the Quicken Loans HVI

Detroit, MI – May 9, 2017 (PRNewswire) Homeowner and appraiser views of home values are diverging more each month. In April, appraisals were an average of 1.90 percent lower than what the owner expected, according to the National Quicken Loans Home Price Perception Index (HPPI). This is the fifth consecutive month the gap between appraiser opinions and homeowner estimates of home value widened.

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While the HPPI shows a widening perception gap, appraised values continue to rise at a steady pace. The National Home Value Index (HVI), the only measure of home value change based solely on appraisals, showed values rose 1.06 percent in April. Home values also increased when viewed annually, rising 5.08 percent year-over-year.

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Home Price Perception Index (HPPI)
Owner estimates of home values were higher than appraiser opinions by 1.90 percent, as reported by the national HPPI. This is compared to a 1.77 percent disparity between home value opinions in March. April marks the fourth month the spread between home value opinions widened nationally. A wide range of perceptions persists across the country, but month-to-month change in most metros was minor. The study continues to find appraised values higher than expected in the West, while it was more likely to have appraisals lower than owners estimated in the Midwest and East.

“The appraisal is one of the most important data points in a mortgage transaction. This single number can impact how much money a buyer needs to bring to closing, or the equity that is available to the homeowner on a refinance,” said Quicken Loans Vice President of Capital Markets, Bill Banfield. “If homeowners have a grasp on home value differences throughout their local area, it can lead to a smoother mortgage process.”

Home Value Index (HVI)
Home value growth not only continued, but accelerated in April. The National HVI showed appraisal values rose 1.06 percent from the previous month and increased 5.08 percent since April 2016. This is compared to 3.30 percent year-over-year growth in March. All regions measured by the HVI show positive momentum, ranging from 3.54 percent annual growth in the Northeast to a 6.52 percent year-over-year increase in the West.

“Home values were pushed higher once again by the demand for housing outpacing the stock of available homes. This effect is intensified by the start of the spring buying season,” Banfield said. “While sellers are obviously thrilled as their investment continues to grow in value, this trend could make homebuyers set their sights on smaller homes or less pricey neighborhoods. I would encourage homeowners who are considering listing their home to take advantage of the opportunity they have in this sellers’ market.”

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*A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

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*A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

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*A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

About the HPPI & HVI
The Quicken Loans HPPI represents the difference between appraisers’ and homeowners’ opinions of home values. The index compares the estimate that the homeowner supplies on a refinance mortgage application to the appraisal that is performed later in the mortgage process. This is an unprecedented report that gives a never-before-seen analysis of how homeowners are viewing the housing market. The HPPI national composite is determined by analyzing appraisal and homeowner estimates throughout the entire country, including data points from both inside and outside the metro areas specifically called out in the above report.

The Quicken Loans HVI is the only view of home value trends based solely on appraisal data from home purchases and mortgage refinances. This produces a wide data set and is focused on appraisals, one of the most important pieces of information to the mortgage process.

The HPPI and HVI are released on the second Tuesday of every month. Both of the reports are created with Quicken Loans’ propriety mortgage data from the 50-state lenders’ mortgage activity across all 3,000+ counties. The indexes are examined nationally, in four geographic regions and the HPPI is reported for 27 major metropolitan areas. All indexes, along with downloadable tables and graphs can be found at QuickenLoans.com/Indexes.

About Quicken Loans
Detroit-based Quicken Loans Inc. is the nation’s second largest retail home mortgage lender. The company has closed more than $300 billion of mortgage volume across all 50 states between 2013 and 2016. Quicken Loans moved its headquarters to downtown Detroit in 2010, and now more than 13,500 of its 16,000 team members work in the city’s urban core. The company generates loan production from web centers located in Detroit, Cleveland and Scottsdale, Arizona. The company also operates a centralized loan processing facility in Detroit, as well as its San Diego-based One Reverse Mortgage unit.

Quicken Loans ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Primary Mortgage Origination” in the United States by J.D. Power for the past seven consecutive years, 2010 – 2016, and highest in customer satisfaction among all mortgage servicers the past three years, 2014 – 2016. The company is owned by Rock Holdings, Inc., parent company of several FinTech businesses. Quicken Loans is also part of a Family of Companies comprising nearly 100 affiliated business spanning multiple industries. For more information, please visit QuickenLoans.com.

Homeowner Value Estimates Continue to Outpace Appraisals by a Widening Spread

– Quicken Loans’ National HPPI shows appraised values were 1.77% lower than homeowners estimated in March

– Home values rose 0.63% nationally in March, with a 3.30% year-over-year increase, according to the Quicken Loans HVI

Detroit, MI – April 11, 2017 (PRNewswire) Home values continued to rise in March, but not at the pace homeowners estimated across much of the country. On average appraisals were 1.77 percent lower than what homeowners expected, according to the Quicken Loans Home Price Perception Index (HPPI). This marks the fourth consecutive month the gap between homeowner estimates and appraiser opinions of value widened.

Quicken Loans Logo

Home values continued the upward movement of the last few months and maintained its positive trend which began in early 2012. Appraisals rose 0.63 percent from February to March, but showed strong growth of 3.30 percent year-over-year, according to Quicken Loans’ National Home Value Index (HVI).

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Home Price Perception Index (HPPI)

While home value perception varies across the country, The National HPPI shows a widening gap between what homeowners think their home is worth and the value appraisers assign. March is the fourth consecutive month of this growing trend, with appraisals 1.77 percent lower than homeowners’ estimates. On the other hand, appraisals are showing higher values than homeowners expected in some of the hottest housing markets, many of those on the West Coast.

“The national average shows appraisals lower than homeowner expectations, but some cities are bucking that trend,” said Quicken Loans Vice President of Capital Markets, Bill Banfield. “With prices sprinting forward in many of the booming housing markets in the West, it can be difficult for homeowners to keep up with appraisers, who are on the ground, examining real estate price changes every day. This study is one more reminder for consumers to keep an eye on their local market before selling or refinancing. The state of their local market could affect their home’s value – on either end of the spectrum.”

Home Value Index (HVI)

Quicken Loans’ HVI, the only measure of home value change based solely on appraisal data, showed another month of growth in March. Nationally, home values rose 0.63 percent from the previous month. When viewed annually, appraised values increase an average of 3.30 percent. The study showed the strongest monthly growth in the Northeast, with a 1.78 percent increase. However, the South had the fastest annual increase with a 4.67 percent rise in home values.

“Real estate signs are beginning to pop up, even before leaves appear on the neighborhood trees. As home selling season gets started across the country, enthusiastic buyers are battling for available homes,” said Banfield. “The increased attention to home sales has led to more competition for a relatively small inventory of homes, continuing to fuel the rising prices.”

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* A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

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* A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

Chart

* A positive value represents appraiser opinions that are higher than homeowner perceptions. A negative value represents appraiser opinions that are lower than homeowner perceptions.

About the HPPI & HVI

The Quicken Loans HPPI represents the difference between appraisers’ and homeowners’ opinions of home values. The index compares the estimate that the homeowner supplies on a refinance mortgage application to the appraisal that is performed later in the mortgage process. This is an unprecedented report that gives a never-before-seen analysis of how homeowners are viewing the housing market. The HPPI national composite is determined by analyzing appraisal and homeowner estimates throughout the entire country, including data points from both inside and outside the metro areas specifically called out in the above report.

The Quicken Loans HVI is the only view of home value trends based solely on appraisal data from home purchases and mortgage refinances. This produces a wide data set and is focused on appraisals, one of the most important pieces of information to the mortgage process.

The HPPI and HVI are released on the second Tuesday of every month. Both of the reports are created with Quicken Loans’ propriety mortgage data from the 50-state lenders’ mortgage activity across all 3,000+ counties. The indexes are examined nationally, in four geographic regions and the HPPI is reported for 27 major metropolitan areas. All indexes, along with downloadable tables and graphs can be found at QuickenLoans.com/Indexes.

About Quicken Loans

Detroit-based Quicken Loans Inc. is the nation’s second largest retail home mortgage lender. The company has closed more than $300 billion of mortgage volume across all 50 states between 2013 and 2016. Quicken Loans moved its headquarters to downtown Detroit in 2010, and now more than 13,500 of its 16,000 team members work in the city’s urban core. The company generates loan production from web centers located in Detroit, Cleveland and Scottsdale, Arizona. The company also operates a centralized loan processing facility in Detroit, as well as its San Diego-based One Reverse Mortgage unit. Quicken Loans ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Primary Mortgage Origination” in the United States by J.D. Power for the past seven consecutive years, 2010 – 2016, and highest in customer satisfaction among all mortgage servicers the past three years, 2014 – 2016.

Quicken Loans was ranked #10 on FORTUNE magazine’s annual “100 Best Companies to Work For” list in 2017, and has been among the top-30 companies for the last 14 years. It has been recognized as one of Computerworld magazine’s ‘100 Best Places to Work in IT’ the past 12 years, ranking #1 for seven of the past eleven years including 2016. For more information, please visit QuickenLoans.com.

U.S. Homeowners Give Record High Satisfaction Scores To Their Insurers

New York, NY – March 13, 2017 (PRNewswire-USNewswire) About one of every 15 U.S. homeowners insurance policyholders files a claim each year and these claimants are now giving insurers their highest ever satisfaction ratings, according to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.).

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The J.D. Power 2017 U.S. Property Claims Satisfaction Study gives U.S. home insurers a record score of 859 (on a 1,000-point scale). The industry’s cumulative score stood at 846 in 2016. Five factors are considered when assessing policyholder satisfaction: settlement; first notice of loss; estimation process; service interaction; and repair process.

“Insurers are the nation’s economic first responders and, as such, are continually working to improve how they help Americans recover their lives and businesses in the wake of tragedy and catastrophe,” said Sean Kevelighan, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). “This year’s J.D. Power and Associates survey results are a clear reflection that the industry’s hard work and dedication are delivering the intended results.”

These all-time high claims satisfaction scores are even more remarkable given that incurred losses and loss-adjustment expenses for U.S. property/casualty (P/C) insurers grew by 7.6 percent year-over-year when comparing the first nine months of 2016 to the first nine months of 2015, according to an analysis developed by Dr. Steven Weisbart, the I.I.I.’s chief economist.

Incurred losses reflect the dollar amount of a home insurer’s claim payout whereas a loss adjustment expense is the sum an insurer pays for investigating and settling claims, including the cost of defending a lawsuit in court.

Moreover, Dr. Weisbart noted, catastrophe-related claims through the first nine months of 2016 were already at their highest level since 2012—the year of Superstorm Sandy—and the fourth quarter of 2016 pushed those numbers even higher after insured claim payouts from October 2016’s Hurricane Matthew.

The federal government agreed that 2016 was a volatile, and costly one, estimating 15 separate weather and climate events last year caused more than $1 billion in economic losses, not all of them insured, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

“Property and casualty insurers have redoubled their efforts to improve the settlement process and fine-tune their customer interactions, efforts that have been clearly recognized and appreciated by homeowners who experienced significant losses this past year,” J.D. Power said.

The study also noted opportunities for improvement, most notably in water-related and other complex claims that take a long time to settle and that cause significant lifestyle disruption. J.D. Power noted, “Insurers that manage to get the settlement process and customer interaction equation right in these types of disruptive and often catastrophic scenarios are those that raise the bar for the industry.”

The study is based on more than 6,600 responses from homeowner’s insurance customers, and was fielded between January and November 2016.

The I.I.I. has a full library of educational videos on its YouTube Channel. Information about I.I.I. mobile apps can be found here.

THE I.I.I. IS A NONPROFIT, COMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATION SUPPORTED BY THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY.

Insurance Information Institute,
110 William Street,
New York, NY 10038
(212) 346-5500
www.iii.org

HouseLogic Shows Homeowners How to Organize Every Square Inch of Their Home

Washington, D.C. – Nov. 17, 2016 (PRNewswire-USNewswire) Everyone has that one drawer in their home that serves as a catchall: the junk drawer. But what if you have a junk cabinet? Or a junk room? Or what if you just can’t find space in your home to keep everything as neat and tidy as you would like? This month’s Every Square Inch! spotlight from Houselogic.com, the comprehensive website for homeowners from the National Association of Realtors®, features five articles offing advice on how to organize your home and creative ways to take advantage of underused or misused space.

HouseLogic

Here are a few tips from HouseLogic on how to make sure not a single inch of space in your home is wasted.

7 Sneaky Storage Ideas to Hide Your Clutter in Plain Sight. Even after you’ve purged your home of everything that you don’t need, want or use, somehow you still have items that don’t have an obvious storage space. Follow HouseLogic’s steps on how to get your clutter out of sight, including creating new storage under stairwells or replacing a bed’s box spring with drawers or a lift-up mattress.

When Getting Organized Goes Wrong. You want to get your house in order, but everything you do to get organized just doesn’t seem to work or stick. HouseLogic explains the most common pitfalls in which would-be organizers find themselves, such as trying to buy their way into organization by relying on expensive storage units and containers instead of taking the time to sort and discard clutter.

6 Small-Space Storage Hacks from Desperate New Yorkers. No one knows how to get the most space out of a tiny room than studio apartment dwellers. HouseLogic spoke with a Brooklynite apartment dweller for tips to banish clutter, including thinking like a spy to find secret hiding spots in your home’s nooks and crannies to store belongings.

get-organized-infographic

Now-You-See-It, Now-You-Don’t Pantry. Finding extra space in your kitchen can seem impossible, but sometimes you just need to figure out how to make use of the space that that doesn’t seem usable. Check out HouseLogic’s DIYable pull-out pantry, which can let you store canned foods and spices in the space between your refrigerator and the wall.

6 Creative Ways to Put a Shoe Organizer to Work. Of course, you can use a shoe organizer to store your flats and sandals, but did you know that they are also perfect for keeping all of your odds and ends in order? HouseLogic suggests six ways to repurpose a hanging shoe organizer, including storing and sorting computer cables, chargers and accessories, as well as creating a gift wrap storage station.

For more information on how to make your space as organized and efficient as possible, visit HouseLogic.com.

HouseLogic is a free source of information that helps consumers make smart, confident decisions about all aspects of home ownership. Made possible by Realtors®, the site helps owners get the most value and enjoyment from their existing home and helps buyers and sellers make the best deal possible.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing more than 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

Information about NAR is available at www.realtor.org. This and other news releases are posted in the “News, Blogs and Videos” tab on the website.

For further information contact:

Jane Dollinger
(202) 383-1042
jdollinger@realtors.org