September 29, 2017

It Seemed Like The Only Way Was Up

It’s Friday desk clearing time for this blogger. “While there’s no doubt that a lack of homes on the market means sellers continue to have the upper hand, there are signs of buyer fatigue and flattening prices in the District. ‘The housing market is slowing in nearly every metro area in the country,’ says Nela Richardson, chief economist of Redfin brokerage in Washington. Affordability is the culprit in the District and other locations, Richardson says. Sellers need to recognize that this is not the time to overprice their homes, despite the low inventory, says Donna Evers, broker/owner of Evers & Co. in Washington, which was recently sold to Long & Foster Real Estate.”

“‘Sellers who have been waiting for summer to end to put their homes on the market tend to overprice their homes in the fall,’ Evers says. ‘This is particularly a problem for homes valued at $1.5 million or above. There are lots of expensive properties on the market, so sellers need to compete in that price range.’”

“If you’ve been house shopping lately in Nashville or its surrounding cities, you know the perfect house only stays on the market for days, and in some cases, hours. Some realtors are now saying the market is cooling off and giving buyers a more level playing field. ‘I would say for the last two and a half to four years it’s been a hot sellers’ market. And now these last 30 to 45 days I’m personally starting to see a slowdown, and it’s kind of slowly shifting back to a neutral market,’ real estate agent Kim Cunliffe said.”

“Libby Dorris has watched her neighbors struggle to sell their homes for months. ‘One has been on the market since March and the other since July,’ Dorris said.”

“It’s been a busy year for the Killington real estate market, and while prices are moving up slightly for some properties, they still represent good values, real estate agents report. Kyle Kershner, broker and owner of Killington Pico Realty noted, ‘The number of sales for both condos and single-family homes in Killington are up year-to-date over the same time period in 2016, but paradoxically, the median sales price in both categories is down by nine and ten percent respectively. A possible explanation for this is that listing inventory in both categories has remained high — I’m carrying more listings today than I have at any other point in my 16-year career. … we have a 30-month supply of single-family home inventory on the market today and a 20-month supply of condominium inventory.’”

“These facts about the Kitchener-Waterloo real estate market are true: Homes are selling for, on average, less money than they were earlier this year. They’re spending much longer on the market. Bidding wars are far less common. April was when the local real estate frenzy was at its peak. The area’s average residential sale price hit an all-time high of $512,656. Since then, the average sale price has fallen for four straight months. For August, it stood at $441,992.”

“Most adversely affected by the changing conditions, says Keith Church, the broker of record with Royal LePage Grand Valley Realty, are people who think they can get the same price for their home now that their neighbour got for a similar property a few months earlier. ‘They’re not going to get that today,’ he says. ‘The market has sagged for the sellers.’”

“House prices in London have fallen annually for the first time in eight years, figures revealed today. The capital has seen a dramatic turnaround in just two years, from buyers queuing at open days outside homes for sale to reduced signs going up on property listings. ‘I’m in the process of buying two properties for clients in Loughton where not only am I the only buyer for each but we are paying 10 per cent less than the asking price. Prices in many places are falling back, sales are taking longer and pitching an asking price is hard,’ said property buying agent Henry Pryor. ‘My advice is that the price is just a part of the marketing to attract buyers to come and view. It’s not a statement of value nor is it what you are prepared to accept. There is a market for those who want to buy and sell, it’s just not the same market we had 18 months ago.’”

“There is little doubt that since the recent financial crisis ended, housing prices in Denmark have skyrocketed to a point when talk of ‘housing bubbles’ have once again came to the fore. But those discussions could very well dissipate soon. From Monday morning, tens of thousands of homeowners in the Copenhagen and Aarhus areas will wake up to a whole new housing market reality as the Business Ministry moves to avoid a repeat of the bubble burst of yesteryear.”

“Some experts, however, contend that the state’s effort to put a damper on the housing price spike is too stringent and could lead to a downward spiral. ‘The new rules will curb price development in the impacted municipalities, and that’s basically the purpose of them. But as regards the bigger picture, there are a lot of other initiatives aiming to tackle the price development – primarily through a tax reform,’ Mikkel Høegh, a real estate economist with BRF Kredit, told Politken. ‘So we are afraid we will see the opposite of a bubble: a downward trajectory that will completely deflate the housing market.’”

“For several years it seemed like the only way was up for Yangon’s property sector. But like any market, real estate goes through cycles of boom and bust that are normally based on supply and demand. In most regards Yangon’s property market is now in a period of oversupply. Prime office rents are less than half what they were only two years ago. Condo prices (both rental and sale) are coming down; all indications suggest rents will fall further. House and land sale prices in mid-to-outer suburbs are falling with plenty of stock on the market and few sales; rents here are also declining.”

“The biggest change in recent years, though, is choice: renters now have much of it, which was not always the case a few years ago. Supply has caught up to demand and there are now a variety of rental types across a range of prices. This trend is likely to continue – just look at the skyline and consider how many high-rise projects are sprouting up.”

“The ANZ has told its brokers to tighten lending restrictions in 11 postcodes in Brisbane and Perth, where buyers will now need a 20 per cent deposit before they can borrow. Banking and Finance Consumers Support Association president Denise Brailey warned the big four banks were scrapping some unpopular fees and cracking down on home loan applications as a last-minute attempt to win public support and stave off a Royal Commission.”

“Ms Brailey said she had more than 2,000 low income people on her books that had lost or faced losing their homes after being ‘preyed on by banks’ and granted loans they could not afford. ‘I have seen 70 and 80-year-olds on incomes of $30,000 a year given million dollar loans. It is just a disgrace,’ she said. ‘These are not isolated incidents, every case I’ve looked at has got fraud, some of them have got forgery, but they are all unaffordable, unstainable, unverified loans. In some cases, the elderly customers were paying the interest on their loans with the bank’s money.’”

“The 1,800 investors who handed over $120 million to a suspected Ponzi scheme masterminded by Pilbara businesswoman Veronica Macpherson are unlikely to get their money back, according to the liquidator of her Macro group companies. The biggest land asset is the Newman Estate, a 244-lot subdivision marketed by Macro as an upmarket development that would attract mine and service workers to live in the town and prompt a shift away from fly-in, fly-out workers.”

“Now corporate investigators like ASIC and liquidator Hayden White of KPMG are trying to unravel the vast and complex web of companies and international money flows left behind. Mr White recently reported to unsecured creditors and investors — who were mostly from overseas, predominantly from Singapore and Malaysia — that they were unlikely to see their money again.”

“The median price of land has dropped from $410,000 to $75,000 in the past year, according to the Real Estate Institute of WA. ‘They continue to incur costs, rates and taxes and they’re difficult to sell,’ Mr White said. ‘I’ve never had a situation where you can’t sell property. I always tend to have that view there’s always a buyer at some price. Unfortunately this matter is changing my view on that.’”