, ,

Homeownership: Still the American Dream

There seems to be a long held American belief currently under attack. For over two hundred years, homeownership in this country was a desire of almost every American family.  Recently however, more and more people have been pontificating on the fact that owning your own home should never have been held in such high regard. […]

Let’s Look Past the Headline

Some Hopeful Signs in Home Prices NPR – January 26, 2010 Reports Suggest Housing Market Stabilizing Philadelphia Inquirer – January 27, 2010 U.S. Economy: Home Prices, Confidence Climb Further From Abyss Business Week – January 26, 2010 If you read today’s headlines, you might believe that house prices in this country are stabilizing. As usual, […]

,

Challenges and Opportunities in Housing

A quote from Housing in America: The Next Decade. “Sooner or later, something fundamental in your business world will change… strategic inflection points do not always lead to disaster. When the way business is being conducted changes, it creates opportunities for players who are adept at operating in the new way. This can apply to newcomers […]

Built on Jenga Blocks, Home Prices Look Shaky

The Homebuyers’ Tax Credit, in many ways, has done exactly what it was suppose to do – stimulate the economy. Notice I didn’t say increase home ownership. The tax credit was never really about buyers. It was about keeping home values stable so the housing sector would not have another wave of foreclosures that would […]

Moving on Up! Explaining Today’s Home Prices.

There are hundreds of news articles and blog posts each day pontificating on the current housing market. Many of these stories try to examine pricing to help determine whether home values are appreciating or depreciating. The authors want to try their best to call the ‘bottom’ of the market based on the data available. However, there […]

, ,

What Happens When the Fed Exits the Market?

The Fed is scheduled to exit the housing market this spring. The Home Buyer Tax Credit ends on April 30, 2010 (the date the house must be in contract). The Fed has already announced that their program purchasing mortgage-backed securities will expire on March 31, 2010. Most anticipate a quick and dramatic rise in interest […]

, ,

Delinquencies: Roadblock to a Housing Recovery?

The current economy has devastated the finances of so many families in every income bracket and in almost every neighborhood in this country. More and more people are falling further and further behind in their mortgage payments. In the past people would take a second job or borrow money from family to catch up. Today, […]

, ,

Are Foreclosures Coming to the Luxury Market?

There is no doubt that prices in the lower end of the market have fallen rather dramatically over the last several years. Much of this loss in equity occurred as people were unable to pay their mortgages, and the homes went to foreclosure. Many were quick to dismiss this dilemma as the result of questionable […]

,

One more time: IT’S ABOUT SUPPLY AND DEMAND!

Coming into 2010, there are many people trying to decipher all the data that is being reported regarding the housing industry. The main goal is to try and bring clarity to a market that has been clouded with confusion for the last two years. We must prevent ourselves from looking for a simple solution that will justify […]

, , ,

Looking Back: Top 10 Real Estate Stories of 2009

The last week of December is always an interesting time. As we plan for the next year, we like to look back on all the important stories and events of the last year. We will gather around the television or paper and endlessly quiz each other on the multitude of Top 10 Lists that inevitably appear. Here […]

, ,

OMG! Is that a Luxury Home Buyer I See?

Yesterday, we reported on the differences between two major housing reports that were released last week. Today, I want to comment on something both reports had in common but has been vastly under-reported: the sudden increase in sales of luxury homes. The past several months have shown a tremendous uptick in buyer activity. And, though […]

, ,

Home Sales: UP…no wait…DOWN…no wait…

This past week there were two different housing reports released. The first was the National Association of Realtors’ ‘Existing-Home Sales Report’ and the other was the U.S. Census Bureau’s ‘New Construction Report’. The most confusing part of the news is how divergent the data on the reports was. The Existing-Home Sales Report showed a month-over-month […]

, ,

Strategic Defaults: Naughty or Nice?

You can’t pick up a paper or turn on a television today without hearing about the foreclosure situation in this country. There is no doubt the current economy and unemployment numbers have devastated the finances of many families and thus made it impossible for them to pay their mortgage. However, what many don’t realize is that […]

,

Should You Be Afraid of Shadows?

The two most important factors whenever you price anything is the demand for that item and the current supply of that item. It is well known as the supply and demand curve. Real estate is no different.  So, as we are about to head into 2010, let’s look at the potential demand for residential housing […]

,

Sell Now or Wait?

This past week, we have discussed how the current economy is wreaking havoc on our housing industry, how many homeowners can no longer make their mortgage payments and can’t qualify for a loan modification. We reported that millions of these homes will eventually become foreclosures or, in a best case scenario, a short sale. You […]

,

Foreclosures Force Values Down

In our last post, we discussed that, though the modification process has helped hundreds of thousands families keep their homes, there still will be millions of people who will still be faced with foreclosure. There is no avoiding this. And even though the administration is trying to get banks to be more flexible, the fact […]

, ,

Modifications: is it really the Magic Pill?

I want to begin by saying that modifications have saved hundreds of thousands of families from being forced from their homes. We should be thankful the process exists. If anyone is having trouble with their mortgage and thinks they may be eligible for a loan modification, call 888-995-HOPE or go to http://makinghomeaffordable.gov/. That being said, […]

, ,

Families Fall Behind on their Mortgage. What’s next?

In our last post, we discussed the possible impact distressed properties might have on the values of homes in the surrounding area. We documented how the current economy has devastated the finances of so many families in every income bracket and in almost every neighborhood in this country. In order to bring some insight to the […]

,

How will the value of YOUR home be impacted by the current economy?

Our current economic difficulties have wreaked havoc on millions of households across this country. We all have either heard or read about families losing their homes to foreclosure. Obviously, that is a critical challenge at this time in history. However, I am not sure we realize that these tales of heartache not only effect the home that […]

Pricing – what actually is happening?

Today’s Talking Point 11/25/09 The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) just came out with their 3rd Quarter Pricing Report (which covers the previous four quarters). If you go to the bottom of the home page, they have an interactive map where you can see how prices have changed in your state over the last year. […]

Delinquencies Rise, Casting Cloud Over Recovery

Today’s Talking Point 11/23/09 Fear of Double Dip in Housing – Home Starts Tumble and Mortgage Delinquencies Rise, Casting Cloud Over Recovery That was the front page headline last Thursday in the Wall Street Journal. The article discussed what we have been addressing for several months now. The article highlighted a growing problem in housing […]

Today’s Talking Point 11/11/09

Supply and Demand What will happen in the real estate market over the next six months? I believe the quote below does a great job of explaining it. From the Zillow News Release Issued: November 9, 2009: “The next several months will be critical to the housing market. Previously, we’d been expecting to see increasing […]

,

Today’s Talking Point 11/09/09

What is the definition of ‘Accumulation’ rate? ‘Accumulation’ rate talks to the point of future inventory coming to the market. An example of this is Zillow ‘s recent report suggesting an additional 7 million homeowners are ‘very likely’ to put their homes up for sale if they see the market getting better. Another example is […]

Today’s Talking Point 11/04/09

Pricing Though sales are strong and it seems as though the tax credit will be extended AND expanded, we must realize that pricing is still crucial. Two points on the subject: From The Wall Street Journal: By slowing mortgage foreclosures and giving a first-time home buyer tax credit, the U.S. government has driven up home […]

Today’s Talking Point 10/23/09

Where Are Prices Actually Headed? From Yahoo Finance: According to Fiserv, a financial information and analysis firm, home prices are predicted to drop in 342 out of 381 markets during the next year. Overall, the national median home price is predicted to drop 11.3% by June 30, 2010. Fiserv has a history of making bold […]