Friday, April 23, 2010

Home sales leap as tax credit nears expiration

Offer potential home buyers other people's money, and they will use it:
New-home sales rose 26.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 411,000 last month, compared to a upwardly revised annual rate of 324,000 in February, the Census Bureau said. ...

New-home sales spiked in every region of the United States. The South saw the biggest jump in new home sales, up a stunning 43.5%, while the Northeast region saw sales climb 35.7%. The West and Midwest regions both saw single-digit growth.

The Census Bureau data followed a report from the National Association of Realtors on Thursday that showed existing home sales soared nearly 7% in March, as new homebuyers raced to buy up properties before a tax credit expires on April 30.
I usually don't like month-over-month numbers, but these are at least seasonally adjusted.

32 comments:

  1. This reminds me last November, sales jumped, then we know what happened.

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  2. And thanks to the tax credit many potential home sellers regained mobility or have been prevented from losing it with the artificial bottoming in the housing market.

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  3. This reminds me last November, sales jumped, then we know what happened.

    Where? Here locally, or nationally? Nationally, I think we did drop, but here most areas were still up YOY.

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  4. Washingtonian has a large segment about the entire bubble decade (2000-2010).

    Best part is the last page where it shows the performance of certain zips from peak til today. Why? Whats this? My zip is up +2 since the peak?

    Theres a word to describe this phenomena. Whats that word again? Ahh yes, IMMUNE.

    I just love that word and the way it rolls off my tounge. IMMUNE, IMMUNE, IMMUNE - such a fun word!

    And to think, people here in 2006 were taunting me, telling me to sell my house now before I was soon 30% or more underwater. Back then, each post would have nearly 100 comments, the vast majority of them telling me my house in the core would be down just as much as the exurbs because "its not different here".

    And yet despite all those taunts, here I sit, as happy and content as ever, as home prices in my special, different, immune zip continue to rise.

    Not many comments here any more. I basically figured this thing was all over but the shoutin back in 2008 and packed it in. But when I saw this article in the washingtonian, I figured I check the site and sure enough, you are still here...

    To those of you who have been civil, and are out shopping for homes, let me wish you good luck. But for the bitter renters who thought if they simply waited long enough, they could move into my special, different, immune neighborhood for a substantial discount (or really any discount as prices continue to go UP), to you I say....

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  5. AnonymousBwahaha,

    Yes, the Immune areas have proven different. Probably for the reasons that were discussed repeatedly.

    1. Low turn over in the 1990's and early 2000's. Most owners had 50% or more equity, some had 100%

    2. A short commute. Mine is 12 miles and 20 minutes, which is just enough to warm up the engine but not so long that I'm wearing out my car.

    3. Access to services, entertainment, interesting restaurants.

    4. Pleasant areas with older trees, not clear-cut.

    My place and my neighbors have fallen less than 5% peak to bottom.

    Given that our $500K-$800K SFHs were $200K-$250 in 2001, this is not bad.

    You are certainly allowed a little glee. I shake my head thinking about Popcorn boy, the wannabuys, and the others.

    Their loss is lost opportunity. They can recover but they are at a disadvantage.

    They were steered wrong by the housing doomers.

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  7. The San Francisco Chronicle has a story about a single guy,"not making much money yet" who bought a $700,000. condo, with 5% down.
    FHA.
    How wonderful for all of us.

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  8. "for the bitter renters who thought if they simply waited long enough, they could move into my special, different, immune neighborhood for a substantial discount (or really any discount as prices continue to go UP), to you I say....

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"

    You are chasing ghosts here. The war is over, turns out that parts of DC really ARE immune. We won, they lost.

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  9. There are those people that actually believe their homes are supported by fundamentals warranting appreciation of 100% in less than a decade. These people are fools.

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  10. Yep - stupid buyers willing to pay 100% appreciation in less than a decade. What fools!

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  11. According to Zillow.com, the typical home price in Arlington, VA has fallen by $55,000 since this blog was created in May 2005. (I say typical because Zillow doesn't say whether it's a mean or a median.) That certainly isn't the kind of fall that most of the U.S. has suffered, but it's not a gain during that time either.

    I'll also point out that according to the poll on the sidebar, only 18% of Bubble Meter readers live inside the beltway, so 4/5 readers probably don't even care about Arlington.

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  12. I'll also point out that according to the poll on the sidebar, only 18% of Bubble Meter readers live inside the beltway, so 4/5 readers probably don't even care about Arlington.

    Which probably explains why there was such a disconnect over the years: Doomers were talking about the exurbs; Bulls were talking about the inner core.

    As I said *many* times, "Of course the exurban housing market is overinflated. I'm shocked you could sell a house in PWC for any price."

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  13. "James said...so 4/5 readers probably don't even care about Arlington."

    Probably true...Which makes you wonder why so many on this blog spent so much of their time and energy toward that an area they didnt care about was going down as well.

    Imagine how different this blog would have been if they looked at the data and accepted an area they dont care about is pretty immune to the correction and moved on.

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  14. Reward bad behavior. This is the country my daddy fought for!!!!

    Fannie Mae will make it easier for some struggling homeowners to buy houses in the future if they avoid foreclosure in the present.

    Under rules released this month that will take effect in July, some troubled borrowers who give up their homes by voluntarily transferring ownership through a "deed in lieu of foreclosure" or by completing a short sale, where a home is sold for less than the amount owed, will be eligible in two years to apply for a new mortgage backed by Fannie.

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  15. The fools who think the housing market has bottomed are in for a little surprise. The impact of rising interest rates later this year and thereafter will certainly temper the fools' enthuisiasm.

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  16. Sure about the impact of rising rates? The reason I ask is because as James spreadsheet clearly shows, rising interest rates coincide with (paradoxically) higher nominal house prices

    http://mysite.verizon.net/vzeqrguz/housingbubble/

    Heres the same thing grapically.

    http://seattlebubble.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/KC-Home-Price_1950-2009-nominal.png

    Its true you can get more bang for your buck because the devalued currency buys more home in a high interest rate environment. Still in nominal terms, prices do continue to rise as rates go up.

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  17. Also, heres how prices did locally during that timeperiod.

    http://www.sungazette.net/articles/2010/02/05/fairfax/real_estate/bareal50a.txt

    As you can see, the high interest rates of the 1980s didnt do jackshit to bring nominal prices down.

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  18. Mr. Graphs,

    I don't think the graphs you have provided support your claims. I also don't think there is a relationship between higher interest rates and lower prices. However, the latest boom was a period that saw prices climb faster than incomes. Do you make 100% more today than you did 8 years ago? If you do, you are part of the minority. You see son, there's a definitive relationship between incomes and home prices. Don't you understand that the primary components of price acceleration during the boom was poor lending standards and the availabilty of cheap money. Those days are gone Buckwheat.

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  19. As you can see, the high interest rates of the 1980s didnt do jackshit to bring nominal prices down.

    Agreed. I used to be the biggest pumpers of higher interest rates = lower prices...til someone pointed out what you said and I did the research myself.

    That graph is exactly what I feared - prices may go down in real terms, but in nominal terms, they continue to go up. I still dont understand it exactly, but im not about to fight the tape.

    No matter I guess as im likely to buy soon no matter what. So if anything its nice to see that I dont have to fear higher interest rates will drive down (nominal) prices.

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  20. Don't fear the reaper!

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  21. James, I think you should conduct a survey on how many homeowners and realtors view this blog. It would be interesting to see how many insecure homeowners are frequenting this blog.

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  22. He did. IIRC it was about 10-20% insecure homeowners and 80-90% bitter renters.

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  23. It has to be the pits to be a homeowner and argue with the bitter renters in this blog. It must be a downer to not have peace with the biggest purchase of your life. So dad....

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  24. I agree with the previous post. Homeowners I know don't go onto bubble blogs. But then again these people purchased their homes before 2003 so they have no worries.

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  25. I think alot of them are moveups also rooting for a decline so they can get their next house cheaper.

    That and a few smug assholes from the immunozone who come here to laugh at us.

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  26. What's there to laugh at Mr. homeowner?

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  27. Look at anon above @ 7:24pm (on April 23). Typical immunozone asshole. I wish that area would tank and wipe that smug attitude right off his face.

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  28. Anonymous said...
    "He did. IIRC it was about 10-20% insecure homeowners and 80-90% bitter renters."

    The poll regarding readers' living situation is on the sidebar. It's roughly 50-50 homeowners and renters.

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  29. "But then again these people purchased their homes before 2003 so they have no worries."

    yeah except the ones who sucked out all the equity of their homes for new toys. They are here posting links to the "immune" blocks/streets too.

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  30. Well we had a lot of calls in November before the credit was extended but our phones were ringing NONSTOP all last week... looks like the extension got more people thinking.

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  31. @6:48

    I wish that area would tank and wipe that smug attitude right off his face.

    Don't let 'em get you down. Nothing you or I can do about the rise of the cities. Just got to accept you missed the boat and move on.

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