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Real Estate: When She Speaks, We Should Listen

ZelmanIvy Zelman is an industry expert consistently recognized by Institutional Investor, Greenwich Associates, StarMine and The Wall Street Journal as an industry-leading analyst. What separates her from many other analysts is the fact that she has accurately called the real estate market continuously over the last decade.

Her Position in 2006

She was one of the first to call the burst of the housing bubble. She was nicknamed ‘Poison Ivy’ for the harsh positions she took in combating the overly optimistic views of many in the industry at the time.

What happened next?

Existing home sales plummeted, new construction starts feel to historic lows and prices dropped by 50% in some areas of the country.

Her Position in 2012

Ivy Zelman, in a Wall Street Journal article in March Stunned Home Buyers Find the Bidding Wars Are Back, projected that the real estate market was about to rebound and that home prices would begin to appreciate. She emphatically claimed:

“We very much believe we’ve hit bottom.”

What happened next?

Pending sales (homes going into contract) surged in May and have remained above what is recognized as a healthy market level ever since. Starting in June, home prices began to appreciate on a year-over-year basis. This continued through the rest of the year with yearend appreciation coming in at 6.8%.

Her Position Today

What is Ms. Zelman saying today? In an interview on CNBC, she said:

“I think we are in Nirvana for housing…I’m probably the most bullish I’ve ever been fundamentally…I think home prices could go up for four to six years…Today, the urgency and sentiment toward buying residential real estate is back.”

What will the future bring?

If Ms. Zelman’s past predictions are evidence of her understanding of the housing industry, it seems that real estate is about to make a dramatic comeback.

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2 replies
  1. BoulderCO
    BoulderCO says:

    What happens if we see 100 basis point or more increase in interest rates. Seems like many people will have overpaid for their homes. Rates can’t stay low forever with massive inflation. Seems like we never learn from the past, and that the best way to make poor people feel rich is cheap money…I am not sold.

  2. dave_hanna
    dave_hanna says:

    From her lips to God’s ears…
    I find it hard to share this vision because of all the issues (at least in my Chicago market place) related to lending and access to mortgage dollars by a large enough percentage of all those folks who want to buy.
    If this environment improves, the rest of the pieces are in place to drive home ownership and prices up. A BIG IF.


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