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Home Flippers' Caution Raises `Canary in the Coal Mine' Concern

Home flipping returns have declined in recent quarters as a result of rising mortgage rates.

(Bloomberg)—The return on investment for home flippers has fallen in recent quarters as mortgage rates have risen, according to ATTOM Data Solutions.

“Home flipping acts as a canary in the coal mine for a cooling housing market because the high velocity of transactions provides home flippers with some of the best and most real-time data on how the market is trending,” said Daren Blomquist, senior vice president at ATTOM Data Solutions. “We’ve now seen three consecutive quarters with year-over-year decreases in home flips.”

Key Insights

Homes flipped in Q3 2018 on average sold for $63,000 more than what the home flipper purchased them for For flipped homes, the median age structures built was about 40 years Smaller homes were being flipped more. Median square footage of flipped homes in Q3 2018 was 1,408, the smallest size based on available data that dates back 18 years Time takes to complete a flip is now just shy of half a year as the average days went down six days from previous quarter to 179 days.

A home is considered a ‘flip’ if a transaction occurred as where the previous transaction on the same property occurred within the last 12 months.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Tanzi in Washington at [email protected] To contact the editors responsible for this story: Alex Tanzi at [email protected] Wei Lu

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