The Right Fence Can Enhance your Property

By Taff Weinstein at

The Right Fence Can Enhance your Property

A fence can serve a number of purposes for your home and its surrounding property. Privacy, safety and landscape enhancement are all factors that should weigh into your fencing choice. A fence can do double duty as an attractive feature while also keeping trespassers at bay and children and pets safely enclosed. Fences come in many different sizes, colors and materials, so finding the right fence to fit your home and lifestyle can easily be done on a wide range of budgets.


Good neighbor fence. Allow an unobstructed view of the yard and home with a good neighbor fence. Although not meant for security, a waist-high fence, such as a picket fence, is the perfect decorative addition to your home's exterior. This type of fence has become popular again in recent years because it clearly defines property boundaries, attracts the eye through additional landscaping and updates the look and feel of the home's exterior.

Live fence. A live fence is not made of wood, but instead features trees, shrubs and touches of additional landscaping. Leyland Cyprus and White Pine are trees typically associated with a live fence because they grow tall at a fast rate, about a foot a year. Live fences are easy to maintain, more so than a normal fence, and the color, texture and privacy offered by a live fence can be quite eye-catching to a potential home buyer.


On a Budget: Chain link fencing is an old standby and by far the most popular fencing choice because of its low cost and ease of construction. Although some might find chain link fences to lack in aesthetics, landscaping can really play up a chain link fence and aid in privacy as well.

Mid-Range: The wooden fence is extremely popular and a good choice if you want a variety of style options to choose from without blowing your budget. Wood fences are also very durable and blend in seamlessly with the natural surroundings.

High-End: Vinyl fencing, although more expensive than other options, is extremely durable and will stand the test of time. Unlike other types of fences, vinyl is virtually maintenance free and does not need yearly upkeep. What a vinyl fence costs up front, it makes up for in its long-lasting and worry-free durability.


What Happened to Rates Last Week?

Mortgage backed securities (FNMA 3.000 MBS) lost just -2 basis points (BPS) from last Friday's close which caused fixed mortgage rates to move sideways compared to the prior week.

Overview: The U.S. had a very strong week for economic data with better than expected readings  across the board in Manufacturing, Services and Labor.  This would normally be very negative for mortgage rates but the growing concern over the Coronavirus and the potential hit to the Chinese and global economies more than offset the positive economic data out of the U.S.

Domestic Flavor: 

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: We had our Big Jobs Friday! And the numbers were hot.  You can read the official BLS report here. Tale of the Tape:

Non Farm Payrolls January 225K vs est of 160K
Non Farm Payrolls December revised upward from 145K to 147K
Non Farm Payrolls November revised upward from 256K to 261K
The rolling three month average is now a robust 211K!
The average hourly rate rose by 7 cents to $28.44
The Average Hourly Rate MOM increased by 0.2% vs December's pace of 0.1%
YOY, wages increased by 3.1% vs December's pace of 3.0% (upwardly revised from 2.9%).
The headline Unemployment Rate rose from 3.5% to 3.6%
The U6 Underemployment Rate is 6.9%
The Participation Rate moved higher from 63.2% in December to 63.4% in January.

The Talking Fed: The Federal Reserve gave its semi-annual monetary policy report to Congress Friday.You can read the official release here. The corona virus was featured as the Fed board warning that the coronavirus outbreak "presented a new risk" to the economic outlook for the U.S. and warned of disruptions in global markets. The Fed also pointed out that "in recent weeks, equity and bond markets gave up some of their gains as uncertainty about the economic effects of the coronavirus weighed on investors’ sentiment."

Services: The January ISM Non Manufacturing Report (2/3 of our economic output) was stronger than expected with a 55.5 vs 55.0 estimate.

Manufacturing: Unlike last week's regional Chicago PMI which showed manufacturing contraction, the national ISM Manufacturing Index for January showed expansion and was stronger than market expectations (50.9 vs est of 48.5).  The lower-tier Markit Manufacturing Index also showed expansion (51.9 vs est of 51.7).

What to Watch Out For This Week:

The above are the major economic reports that will hit the market this week. They each have the ability to affect the pricing of Mortgage Backed Securities and therefore, interest rates for Government and Conventional mortgages. I will be watching these reports closely for you and let you know if there are any big surprises.

It is virtually impossible for you to keep track of what is going on with the economy and other events that can impact the housing and mortgage markets.  Just leave it to me, I monitor the live trading of Mortgage Backed Securities which are the only thing government and conventional mortgage rates are based upon.


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