Existing Homes Sales: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

The Good

Sales are increasing in Some Areas

According to Lawrence Yun the NAR senior economist, Home sales probably would be rising in the absence of the mortgage liquidity issues of the past two months. So if we hadnt had the bubble excesses of the sub prime meltdown we would see some increase in sales.

The NAR economist goes on to say: “The rise in sales and prices in the Northeast region on a fairly consistent basis in recent months is promising because this was the first region that underwent sales and price weakness after the boom. Now, it appears that it will be the first region to climb back, indicating that other regions could follow a similar path.”

Now we all know that NAR is the rosy picture, but still it is notable that the downtrend is not consistently gloomy and that there are bright spots....When trends are choppy and some areas are doing better and some of the reasons for the downturn are changing (mortgage money is now available), its is easier to see that its not all hell in a hand basket.

The Bad

According to Freddie Mac, The existing home median price was down only .06% in July 2007 relative to July 2006. Seems to me a livable drop....that would be about 7.2% annual annualized drop in price, nationally.

The Ugly

Housing Starts: NAR slashes forecasts for home sales and construction. Tighter credit conditions, results of the mortgage industries loose loan policy, will certainly put off any speedy recovery, according Lawrence Yun, senior economist for the real estate trade group. Housing starts are expected to fall 24% this year and an additional 8% next year to 1.26 million.

In summary,

1. Some areas appear to be in a partial recovery

2. Tight credit will slow this recovery at least into 2008

3. New homes seem to be suffering the most

4. As I mentioned in my last blog, the apartment sector is doing well due to increased rents

Thanks for Reading

Howard Bell for yourpropertypath.com

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