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Look Past the Headlines

Earlier this week, Trulia and RealtyTrac issued a press release regarding a survey completed for the two companies by Harris Interactive. The press release, American Expectations for Housing Market Recovery Falters , reported:

“As more cities across the nation experience double dips in home prices, more than half (54%) of U.S. adults believe recovery in the housing market will not happen until 2014 or later, according to the survey released today.”

And both organizations that commissioned the survey addressed the reasons Americans may feel this way:

Rick Sharga, SVP of RealtyTrac

“Our survey reflects a growing perception among potential homebuyers that the housing recovery is still a long way off. Demand remains weak, loans are increasingly difficult to qualify for, and the shadow inventory of several million distressed properties is weighing down the market. All of these things need to improve before housing can recover.”

Pete Flint,  CEO of Trulia

“Most Americans, as our latest survey revealed, overestimated how quickly the housing market would bounce back, but when it does, it will likely be a long and gradual process. Looking at the recent double dips in home prices, I expect the rest of 2011 to be volatile for real estate… In my eyes, we have another 18 months until we start to see signs of price stability in the housing market.”

These findings created a rash of sensational headlines declaring the housing market’s further decline.

While we are not sure how people defined ‘recovery’, we don’t disagree that the housing market still needs time to heal. How much time? What do other experts predict? We’ll leave that to another time.

Today, we want to mention other parts of the press release that didn’t receive the same coverage as the the parts that created those strong headlines. Mr. Flint addressed the nation’s concerns (above) but also said:

“On the flip side, mortgage rates won’t stay low forever and even if home prices continue to fall for a bit, now is still a good time to enter the housing market.”

And Ken Shuman, a Trulia spokesperson said:

“According to our latest data, it is more affordable to buy a home than to rent in 78 percent of major U.S. cities. With concerns of rising inflation and the potential for rising interest rates, now is a good time for people to buy and we may not be in this environment for much longer.”

Bottom Line

There is great data about today’s housing market being released almost every day. Let’s make sure that we read not only the headlines but instead study the entirety of the information.


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1 reply
  1. Tom Cryer
    Tom Cryer says:

    Steve,
    I loved your analogy of the market moving from a two dimensional platform of just supply and demand to a multi-dimensional “Rubric’s Cube” which includes many more variables. Good job in Vegas today!

    Reply

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