A Closer Look at Housing

A few additional thoughts on Housing: 

1) The hottest markets are where foreclosures have driven prices down 50% or greater;

2) Inventory remains significantly elevated — its closer to 10 months than historic averages of 5-6 months;

3) Mortgage rates are at unusually low levels — despite this, sales remain generally soft;

4) Prices remain elevated by historic norms;

5) Big increase on the low end — Starter homes and Condos — are moving units; The middle and larger (jumbo mortgages) are a vast wasteland; But for the 16k increase in condo sales in the NorthEast, monthly sales would have been negative;

6) Indeed, on a NON-seasonally – adjusted basis, National existing home sales were up a mere 12k units.

7) Lots of “shadow” inventory is waiting to come on the market once prices improve; These were specs, vacation property, etc that got caught when the market collapsed — they are renting them out or they are vacant.

Finally, have this last look at the details of sales and inventory over the past 13 months:

Existing Homes Sales: Sales, Inventory, and Months Supply

20090821-home-sales-inventory-months-supply.jpg


Originally published at The Big Picture and reproduced here with the author’s permission.  

4 Responses to "A Closer Look at Housing"

  1. l. laird   August 22, 2009 at 9:01 am

    I’d like to know how many of the sales were to foreigners. I suspect a lot. I don’t think that’s a good thing for America.