Thursday, January 11, 2007

December 2006 MRIS Numbers

The new monthly numbers for December 2006 are out from the MRIS (Metropolitan Regional Information Systems) the multiple listing service for the area. YoY = Year over Year, that is the comparison between December 2006 and December 2005. These numbers include all housing units ( not just single family residences but also condos and co-ops).

The housing market in the Washington and Baltimore area had already started declining in fall 2005. Thus the year over year comparisons only represent a portion of the declining housing market.


Northern Virginia (Fairfax County, Fairfax City, Arlington County, Alexandria City, & Falls Church City, VA (NVAR))
  • Median Price: $451K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -5.7%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: -2.9%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -19%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 139%
  • Active Listings YoY: 27%
Baltimore City Area (Anne Arundel, Baltimore City/County, Carroll, Harford, Howard (BALT AREA) )
  • Median Price: $265k
  • Median Sales Price YoY: 3.9%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: 1.0%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -17%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 93%
  • Active Listings YoY: 45%
Washington, DC (just the District of Columbia, no suburbs)

  • Median Price: $388k
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -2.9%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: -13.0%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -15%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 92%
  • Active Listings YoY: 36%
Prince George's County, MD
  • Median Price: $330K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: 4.8%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: 5.5%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -32%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 128%
  • Active Listings YoY: 85%

Montgomery County, MD
  • Median Price: $435K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -3.0%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: -5.3%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -13%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 118%
  • Active Listings YoY: 47%

Loudoun County, VA
  • Median Price: $440K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -13.7%
  • Average Sales Price YoY:-11.2%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -34%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 173%
  • Active Listings YoY: 13%
Arlington County, VA
  • Median Price: $500K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: .2%
  • Average Sales Price YoY:-2.2%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: 15%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 100%
  • Active Listings YoY: 14%
Frederick County, MD
  • Median Price: $301K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -6.4%
  • Average Sales Price YoY: -4.1%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: - 30%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 100%
  • Active Listings YoY: 44%
Fairfax County, VA
  • Median Price: $450K
  • Median Sales Price YoY: -7.0%
  • Average Sales Price YoY:-3.9%
  • Total Units Sold YoY: -25%
  • Average Days on Market YoY: 155%
  • Active Listings YoY: 28%
For more numbers on jurisdictions not mentioned here please go to MRIS Market Statistics.

These numbers are in sharp contrast to what occured between December 2004 to December 2005. For example in Loudoun County:

December 05 YoY Median Sales Price: 17.7
December 06 YoY Median Sales Price: -13.7

That is a turnaround of greater then 30% which goes to show just how fast this market has changed.

These numbers clearly showing a declining housing market in the Washington - Baltimore area. The housing market in the Washington, DC area is experiencing a significant decline. The above numbers are nominal dollars, looking at real dollars (inflation adjusted) the declines are even greater.

The Washington - Baltimore area will not have a spring bounce that will save the housing market from further declines in 2007. In the metropolitan area a declining housing market is reality.

54 comments:

  1. David,

    Thank you. Its very difficult getting numbers on the DC area.

    I'm very interested in Arlington country... Median was basically flat while the average sales price dropped. Its also rare in that it had a sales increase. Is there a weather reason to explain the increase in #units sold? Or is this a condo artifact? I must say, I LOVED Arlinton when I stayed there during a visit to DC. The Westin is very nice. :) Quite affordable on Priceline too. ;)

    If there are any charts trending DC, NoVa, etc., please direct me to those links.

    Neil

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  2. Pretty amazing stuff...hard to spin much of this data.

    David, I believe the average sales price in DC is down 13%, not up 13%.

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  3. chris g,

    Hard to spin. I'm sure Lance is busy putting the numbers into his spinner machine.

    I fixed the 13% as it should be a neagtive number. Thanks.

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  4. Hhahahah! Nice collapse. Some up, some down. Big deal. Hot market? Of course not. but you should quit this blog, it's nonsense.

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  5. "
    The Washington - Baltimore area will not have a spring bounce that will save the housing market from further declines in 2007. "

    Your conclusory assertions are SO impressive!

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  6. There's nothing to spin David. This is in line with what I predicted last summer. average price drops in the vicinity of 15% in DC (higher for condos, less for houses) with higher out in the far flung suburbs. And my prediction was from last summer ... THIS goes back to last December (i.e., December 2005). This doesn't change the fact that you shouldn't expect prices to fall muck further ... as you yourself basically admitted to in your predictions of "from 0% - 12%" ...

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  7. VA_Speulator-

    Didn't you say you doubled down in Loudon County last year. ouch...

    ReplyDelete
  8. Why do you leave out Alexandria City in your breakdown? Seems like some positive things happening there--or at least it's not a wasteland where everyone's going bankrupt. Average price up 1.6%, median price up 5.35%.

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  9. Some up, some down? In real prices, Baltimore and Prince George's are slightly up, but with severe drops in sales (vastly less people willing to pay last year's prices for houses); and everywhere else is down. (Alexandria City falls into the same category as Baltimore and Prince George's.)

    I've wanted to buy a house very badly for years, but couldn't afford it, due to the extreme speculative bubble. Now I have to spend years waiting in apartment hell for prices to become semi-reasonable again.

    David, great blog. Most of the stuff I'm seeing here is very similar to the conclusions I came to via my own research.


    -- a new anonymous

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  10. Those numbers are a joke and here's why, if a house is listed for $400k and then the price is gradually lowered to $330k, and then it gets a contract for $325k, they use the $330k as the sales price to list price average, and $70k of statistics disappears.

    Same goes for the median price, because all they have to do is sell some expensive homes, and that figure goes totally out the window, because it skews the lower priced home prices.

    If someone would write a story about how each of these stats is compiled, nobody would even look at this data any longer.

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  11. Well... I can already tell this is going to be a busy discussion thread...

    Before Lance or VA_Investor even bother... no, this isn't the bubble "bursting." The drops aren't done yet... what you see over the next 18 months will be the bubble bursting.

    RE markets move slowly... this large a drop this quickly is a fast drop... but it is just getting started.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Are these numbers adjusted for cancellations? Wonder if that is taken into account. According to WSJ, Reuters, and Marketwatch.com articles I've read the past two weeks, cancellations are killing home builders in Q3 and Q4 of 2006.

    Lance - How goes your work in the real estate business? Any luck seeling homes this time of year?

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  13. "Same goes for the median price, because all they have to do is sell some expensive homes, and that figure goes totally out the window, because it skews the lower priced home prices."


    Well, I'm just speechless.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Michael asked:
    "Lance - How goes your work in the real estate business? Any luck seeling homes this time of year?"

    Michael, thanks for assuming that because of the wealth of my knowledge that I must be in real estate. I am not. I am simply a satsified --- and successful --- homeowner with experience which I hope to share with you to counter the non-justified fear and hysteria that the BHs are preaching. Like Va_Investor, I've been around long enough to know that everything in life "is a circle". There's nothing new out there. When I was a twenty-something I too thought that prices had risen so high and so fast that I would NEVER be a homeowner. Looking back it's almost commical how my misperception was really only because I could only see the world through my eyes and experience and assumed that my experience was everyone else's shared experienced. Little did I know that I and my circumstances would gradually change and those goals that seemed impossibilities (such as homeownership) were in fact possible. My only fear is that like some of my contempararies, some of you will be influenced by the grumugeons of the world ... and like them ... become bitter 40-something year old renters still afraid to make the committments that moving forward in life requires. Good luck to you ... and thanks for the compliment!

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  15. Lance doesn't work in the RE business--his interest is purely personal, since he plunked down nearly 7 figures on a place in NW DC at the peak of the bubble last year. He is the Greater Fool.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Bakersfield said:

    "didn't you double-down in Loudoun last year"

    Ah...no. I've never even owned in Loudoun. More misrepresentation. Just to remind those of you with short, or false, memories, I predicted a price correction of up to 25% for single family and up to 40% for condo's. This was in the fall of 2005. At that time I said that the peak had occured in June or July of 05. Yes, I know. I am one of those uneducated Housing Heads. btw - I also said that I had not put "new money" in the market since 2002. I've 1031'd (traded tax-deferred) out of some underperforming properties into some fabulous bargains since 2002, but no "new" money.

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  17. i'm sure Lance is still very busy selling houses... DC is RIFE w/ greater fools w/ money to burn. it sucks for me but that's life. still looking to move to Denver.

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  18. The two things to watch in 2007 will be:

    1) The subprime market. Are subprime lenders able to continue to sell their loans to wallstreet? Currently, a lot of these lenders are struggling. And quite a few have gone bankrupt. 2007 could be a make or break year for them.

    2) Inventory. Does inventory significatly increase over the next four or five months? If it does, sellers are in trouble. If not, then we may see a plateau in prices.

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  19. I'm on the fence as to what will happen in DC housing in '07. In the DC area, according to Housing Tracker, inventories rose during August-November 05, but fell during August-November 06. So it looks like inventories are getting fairly tight, at least close in and around DC. The outer aras like Loudon are still doomed up.

    The big X factor is in the ARM readjustments. Will those readjustments force a lot more selling and inventory?

    I think it's worth noting that the DC area doesn't have the same concentration of payment option loans as many other bubble areas. San Diego is at 35% while DC is between 5% and 10%. So it looks like the disaster scenario that could play out in many areas in California and Florida would be less likely to play out around here.

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  20. As I mentioned before in this blog, the price drops largely depend on the zip codes. Loudon county price drop was huge (more than 25% from peak) and Vienna/Tysons area is relatively small (limited within 10%).

    Condo price drop was much worse than SFH and will pick up much slower than SFH.

    So I agree with Lance regarding this.

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  21. keith said "DC area doesn't have the same concentration of payment option loans as many other bubble areas. San Diego is at 35% while DC is between 5% and 10%."

    check out this link...

    http://bwnt.businessweek.com/housing/2006/index.asp

    see the column labeled "PURCHASE LOANS REQUIRING INTEREST ONLY"

    55% for DC, 54% for San Diego.

    as David says, we will not be saved.

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  22. Yeah, John, I looked.

    I don't think interest-only introduces as much short-term volatility as the option instruments. I do think interest-only loans produce a greater joint probability of an excessive runup with a longer run slow slide, since you'll have a lot of homeowners underwater and facing higher payments, but the higher payment won't be as high and will be farther out, so fewer homeowners will be under duress.

    So the nasty self-reinforcing downward cycle won't be as sharp or os steep as with the pay-option instruments.

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  23. fontain,

    that's just 2005. height of the frenzy - and years until they reset. yawn.

    ReplyDelete
  24. va investor said:

    "I predicted a price correction of up to 25% for single family and up to 40% for condo's. This was in the fall of 2005. At that time I said that the peak had occured in June or July of 05."

    If there is a drop of 25% to 40%, whether you call it a "correction" (and not a minor one) or a "bubble", if you say it calmly or exitedly, the market was fundamentally out of whack. Thanks for that acknowledgment.

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  25. Regarding the build-up of inventory from August-November 2005, versus the decline in August-November 2006: I'd hazard a guess that this is due in part to the fact that homeowners were still largely able to get their target prices at that point in the cycle, so they had impetus to put their place up for sale and keep them there, whereas more recently they have been left to twist in the wind with high DOMs as buyers deserted the market and subsequently decided to pull their listings.

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  26. It has been proposed by lots of people that there will be a return to a more normal market. Not trying to be a smart arse, but could someone please explain to me what a more normal market means? Especially after price gains of 20% or more than been achieved? Does "more normal" mean going forward homes will appreciate around 5% per years? (Which if you can't afford the price now you aren't really being helped)...or does this mean prices will dip and then begin to appreciate at slightly above inflation say...5%? I appreciate the feedback and the ability to look at the different points of view.

    I'd also be interested in what people think the possiblity of a Redskin return to the RFK site would have on property values in that area..this may change things dramatically..

    ReplyDelete
  27. Has everybody noticed the MSM cheerleading of a housing bounce coming this spring? Probably will entice quite a few suckers into buying, but the reality of prices down only 10% from summer 2005 peak means devastation for the eager-renters and bubble-standers who jump in.
    NVAR June2005 median was $500k, Dec2006 was $450, Start making low-ball offers when the median hits 400.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I predicted a price correction of up to 25% for single family and up to 40% for condo's .... btw - I also said that I had not put "new money" in the market since 2002

    When you say things like this sometimes I wonder why you're here arguing with us.

    As I've said before, it's great you can find RE on the cheap.

    So why exactly were you telling us to pay market value a year and a half ago when you thought it would drop 25-40%?

    And, again, if you aren't telling us to pay market value then why are you on a blog where the premise is that market value is too high?

    ReplyDelete
  29. Anon 1:22,

    I'm here because this "sky is falling", "Great Depression II" nonsense is ridiculous. I made a guess on this market cycle based on my past experience. I do believe that it may be time to buy and I do believe that effort can produce a bargain (in ANY MARKET). I abhor the simpletons on here who see a house listed at 400 and say it's worth 160.

    I also detest endless debate about a future that NO ONE can predict and the stupidity of people who waste time engaging in such nonsense when they could be out there actually learning the market first hand instead of decrying a lobbyist like Lereah - who only a true moron would listen to.

    ReplyDelete
  30. John Fontain said...
    "keith said "DC area doesn't have the same concentration of payment option loans as many other bubble areas. San Diego is at 35% while DC is between 5% and 10%."

    check out this link...

    http://bwnt.businessweek.com/housing/2006/index.asp

    see the column labeled "PURCHASE LOANS REQUIRING INTEREST ONLY"

    55% for DC, 54% for San Diego.

    as David says, we will not be saved."

    John, Keith was referring to loans that permit negative amortization (payment option) loans and not interest-only loans. Not the same thing. The ones Keith was referring to are the kind that you end up owing more than you borrowed. The kind you are referring to don't increase the amount owed. The second type (interest only) is for most individuals not anymore risky than a fully amortizing loan. Negative amortization loans can be risky because you end up owing more than you borrowed. Put in simpler terms, unlike an interest only where you are paying for your use as you go along, with a neg amort loan you keep borrowing more and more and NOT paying what you are incurring.

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  31. anon said:
    "NVAR June2005 median was $500k, Dec2006 was $450, Start making low-ball offers when the median hits 400."

    Yep, that is what will happen ... and is why prices will rise back up. Those out there waiting to be handed a bargain will jump in all at once and thereby quicky push prices back up before most of those "willing and able" at the sidelines can get in at the "400" ... Of course, if enough prospective "competitors" can be convinced to wait until they can buy using 20% down on a 30 yr loan, there will be less competition for those BHs intelligent enough to know that newer financing mechanisms are out there and available.

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  32. Lance,

    I missed your prediction of a drop of 15%. Do you have a link to that thread... A $705k home is now a $600k home... ouch!

    To think this really hasn't started. It won't be until May that things get interesting in the RE market. So Yawn.

    Most people are not good enough negotiators to get much below market. (Hence, the market price.) I wait... I watch the homes I get become more affordable. One year ago, I couldn't afford a single home I liked. Not one. Now? Taking a slightly lower price range (due to interest rates increases), there are dozens I could afford. Yet... Its obvious that if I wait another year I'll be able to buy a home I really like. In two? I'll buy a home I love. :) Yes, that probably won't be the bottom in nominal prices and certainly not the bottom in real prices. But hey, I've posted before that there is a utilization value to a home.

    Now to wonder where that home will be. As I noted, it looks like my company will listen to the demands of their employees and move a few thousand out of state. The loudest voices? Near retirement age employees who have most of their savings in their houses. It appears we're almost at the point where the masses know we won't see these prices again for a while. (I work in an engineering firm, so you tend to have more people predicting the trends than accurately than say... a realtor (tm) or lawyer.) Let's put it this way, most of us were out of the dotbombs before they plunged. :) Now when my hair stylist is suggesting get out of real estate... then we're near the bottom.

    Oh, do look at CR's blog. I love the bit on short term bear and long term bull. Some of the best advice I've read in a long time.

    Have a great weekend everyone!
    Neil

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  33. David this article in the WaPo describes the percentage of ARMS issued last year in DC. Something that has been debated here...

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/01/12/AR2007011201135.html

    I haven't seen anything yet that says how many of these kinds of loans are outstanding (collectively) and the amount they represent to be able to say how big a deal this reset thing may be

    ReplyDelete
  34. wannabuy said:
    "To think this really hasn't started. It won't be until May that things get interesting in the RE market. So Yawn."

    I agree. That's just about when a lot of bubbleheads will be coming to the realization that missed the bottom and will be fighting each other to buy at prices higher than current prices. Ouch!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Annon said.
    "Those numbers are a joke and here's why, if a house is listed for $400k and then the price is gradually lowered to $330k, and then it gets a contract for $325k, they use the $330k as the sales price to list price average, and $70k of statistics disappears.

    Same goes for the median price, because all they have to do is sell some expensive homes, and that figure goes totally out the window, because it skews the lower priced home prices."

    We all know that the official numbers will always be massaged, in order to give the best result possible, so the financial markets don't have a cow. This has no affect on the amount of money that is truly being lost by the wealth destruction, in reality. The effect of this will filter through the economy eventually, and it's true impact will be felt by all, regardless of the reported numbers.

    Take a look at the total dollar value of transactions, recorded by municipalities, to get a better feel of the economic reality, and it's implications. Or are you too scared to do that?

    ReplyDelete
  36. Lance said...
    “I agree. That's just about when a lot of bubbleheads will be coming to the realization that missed the bottom and will be fighting each other to buy at prices higher than current prices. Ouch!”

    Lance, you’re calling for more biding wars? What type of inventory numbers have you been looking at? Oh yea, that’s right. No need for cold hard numbers when a gut feeling will do right?

    ReplyDelete
  37. David J's market "predictions" are just as reckless as the big, bad, Lereah. If it's such a sure thing, both should spend their time in Vegas - sports betting.

    It is just as "criminal" to advise people that the market will crash as it is to advise that the market will increase. No one knows.

    ReplyDelete
  38. So now VA (the lawyer) becomes VA the thought police. It had to happen. Now it is "criminal" to advise people as to market direction. MESSAGE to VA this blog is all about price direction. Just stick to the topic and stop moralizing!!!

    ReplyDelete
  39. I agree. That's just about when a lot of bubbleheads will be coming to the realization that missed the bottom and will be fighting each other to buy at prices higher than current prices. Ouch!

    Let's see. I'm saving this thread. Let's see who predicts the market better. You predicted "bubbleheads" will have missed the bottom. I predict loan resets, inventory, tightening credit (sub-prime loans, etc.) will have prices dropping. When the statistics come out on May sales... we'll discuss.

    But the statistical sites have already noted, DP/Dt and D2P/Dt2 are both negative. Yes, D3P/Dt3 has gone positive... but that is something Joe and Jane sixpack seem to ignore.

    I just found a statistic that shows 60% of the households in my community rent. Hmmmm... 60% of the housing isn't what is normally rented... Hmmmm... I wonder in this buying mania how many people did sell and started renting? That implies the bottom won't be as deep as some suggest. But then again, the majority of renters are paying over half their income to rent too... Ouch. That's not sustainable... :(

    Neil

    ReplyDelete

  40. It is just as "criminal" to advise people that the market will crash as it is to advise that the market will increase. No one knows.


    ???? That I disagree. I've advised people to avoid two of the stock market bear markets.

    Again, if someone believes (right or wrong) that a theater is on fire, its their duty to warn people to get out why they can. The same is true of the housing market.

    And ana anon 12:02 noted, this is a housing blog that has a major focus on the direction of price (and inventory) of the market.

    I think it would be unethical not to warn people. Luckily, we still live in a country that protects freedom of speech. If you don't like what anyone here has to say... its really easy to un-bookmark this site.

    Robert, I do think you're right... more inventory will mean people will laugh at the idea of a bidding war.

    Neil

    ReplyDelete
  41. Neil,

    Don't forget that only Lance and VA Investor have an opinion that is worthy of being posted on this board! ROTHFLMAO!

    ReplyDelete
  42. va_investor said:
    "It is just as "criminal" to advise people that the market will crash as it is to advise that the market will increase. No one knows."

    That's bunk. No we don't know what the future will bring and don't have crystal balls. But analysis is more than a crystal ball.
    1) Home price increases have far outstripped salaries.
    2) Interest rates are near historic lows and will most likely go up in the long-term.
    3) All other things being equal, the interest only and other forms of funky mortgages increased prices beyond what is normally expected.
    4) Expectations in real estate, like in the stock market, got out of whack. People started believing that you couldn't lose on real estate.

    These things point to a reduction in prices and one that's based reasonable facts.

    It may not happen tomorrow, but prices will come down in real terms or something fundamental will have to change to support the high prices. I don't think there have been any fundamental changes.

    ReplyDelete
  43. But they're not making any more land!!!!!
    ROTFLMBO

    ReplyDelete
  44. Anon 1:16

    You may be correct. My point was that when I make comments or predictions, they are responsibly couched in terms such as "based on history", this "would suggest", Harney's article "gives reason for pause", "I have no crystal ball", etc. whereas David J's pronouncements from on high are given as absolutes.

    People reading his statements may to inclined to take what he says as fact. And this is highly irresponsible.

    The reference to "criminal" was in response to some idiot anon who suggested that Lance be indicted.

    ReplyDelete
  45. va_investor said:
    "People reading his statements may to inclined to take what he says as fact. And this is highly irresponsible."

    That was my first tip off that David J. was relatively young and inexperienced. One of the traits of youth is one's belief in absolutues and infalibility. And David's pronouncements are so absolute that I think most readers take it for what it is ... At least the smart ones will ... Just like the smart ones take David L's pronouncements for what they are.

    ReplyDelete
  46. VA is you are telling me that your pronouncements are based on history, please excuse me for a moment while I stop laughing. You know history like a kid knows yesterday. Why don't you tell us the "HISTORY" of Japan and the relentless 16 year real estate price deflation that they have suffered. But then again in "any ten year period" prices only go up. Last time I checked they were not making any more land in Japan..but then again you and Lance know better...

    ReplyDelete
  47. Lance said...
    va_investor said:
    "People reading his statements may to inclined to take what he says as fact. And this is highly irresponsible."

    “That was my first tip off that David J. was relatively young and inexperienced.”

    Humm, interesting coming from two people that have yet to post any facts or address facts posted by other users.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Anon 12:46,

    Either you are slow to understand or just refuse to hear facts. Va_Investor --- and others --- have many time over explained why the real estate market of a nation with a declining birthrate (insufficient to replace its current population) and an economy that hit a speedbump in the 90s is not comparable to the US with its growing population and economy. You've got to look at fundamentals. And the fundamentals aren't the sales price and rents that BHs are so found of spewing out. The fundamentals are the big picture. Housing is a needed commodity for people and simple common sense will tell you that when there are more people and these people are making more money then ever as has been the case in the US, that prices must go up ... Just like when there are less people and these people are earning less than before, prices must go down as they have in Japan. It's really quite a simple concept to understand ...

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  49. Robert, just because you can't understand the facts we've posted doesn't mean they aren't there. BTW, do you still believe that buyers pay the commission in a sale ... or that your cash in your pocket earns interest?

    ReplyDelete
  50. I think this whole site is devoted to people treating the RE market like stocks -- RE = dirt, and some air rights, restricted by the gov't. It is slow, long-term, requires property managment, etc. etc. It is not the stock market. If you are looking for quick gain -- go elsewhere. Don't expect things to have the same value as two years ago --but like any good investment, look 20-30-40- years ahead. They ain't making anymore dirt. Hang on and sell for three-fold what you paid for it and put your grandkids through Harvard. Nevermind, ignore that, get nervous and sell to me at below market. I should charge for this. Seriously.

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  51. Lance said...
    “Robert, just because you can't understand the facts we've posted doesn't mean they aren't there.”

    You know Lance, I think I missed that link. I’d really like to see those numbers, please repost those facts/links so I may make an informed decision. Oh yea, that’s right, you’ve posted no numbers, no data, haven’t even addressed the multiple YOY price declines in DC proper,the rising foreclosure rate, nor the inventory in the area. I think you’re confusing “facts” with gut feelings. But hey, if I ever wonder what the weather will be like tomorrow, I’ll give you a call.

    “BTW, do you still believe that buyers pay the commission in a sale ...”

    Ah, enlighten us Lance with your knowledge on this subject. Please. But I know that when I sold, no money came out of my pocket for a realtor. I knew what I wanted to make on the sale, then just tacked on 5% for the realtor’s commission. After the first 5 offers, it wasn’t an issue. The buyer paid all realtors fees and closing cost.

    “or that your cash in your pocket earns interest?”

    As a matter of fact, I checked the balance just last week. Holy Crap has it grown! I don’t check the balance often, but I do check it regularly, and the only way I can describe it, is that it’s like finding a $20 bill in your pants pocket that you didn’t know you had.

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  52. Don't even trust MRIS's numbers.
    They are very misleading. For one, they conveniently don't include the new phenomenon of an average of 2% seller subsidy which was nearly 0% 2 years ago.

    So when they talk about something being down 4%, it is more like 6%.

    I wrote a whole blog detailing how the data is off and misleading:
    BLOG.FranklyRealty.com

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  53. I guess it isn't different this time. Seeing all those counties that were supposedly exempt from the laws of economics falling because of a multitude of inane reasons is something. A bubble is a bubble. I do hate real estate bubbles. Watching the fall in prices is like watching a man being run over by a glacier. Slow and painful.

    I plan to pick up a nice place in South Florida sometime in 2008. That should be close enough to the bottom.

    This is the third real estate bubble in my lifetime, the 1970s bubble really hardly counts since I wasn't old enough to care. This one will bottom in the next three years followed by a five to seven year period of wound licking and then a period of confidence building before the next bubble starts.

    Maybe it will be different next time. It will be interesting what the blogs are saying in 2022 or so.

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