October 5, 2017

It’s Easier To Find A House Than It Was During The Boom

A report from the Nashville Post in Tennessee. “On the surface, it’s been a stellar 2017 for the Nashville real estate market. In fact, the city’s real estate sector could easily be placed in the national ’supernova’ category. Despite the positive press, there are complications hidden ever-so-slightly beneath the surface. ‘We are already seeing an absorption rate that just doesn’t work. There are parts of East Nashville where no one should be building new houses. They have plenty of inventory,’ says John Brittle, who has been active in Nashville’s residential real estate sector for 30 years. ‘There are people buying lots where they think they can put two houses but they can only put one. There’s a lot more being built than they think because they don’t study the whole market. The competition is getting really tight, and the developers are willing to go ahead and build and make less per house. That’s going to give us an inventory glut in certain places.’”

“‘By the end of this year, I believe we’ll see investors losing money on real estate deals in certain areas,’ Brittle predicts. ‘[They will have] paid too much for a lot because construction costs went up too high and because of added costs related to regulations such as Nashville’s new sidewalk bill.’”

The Denver Channel in Colorado. “Home prices in the Denver metro area dropped slightly again in September, signaling that the typical seasonal slowdown is underway. The biggest change in September was the number of sold homes. While it’s typical to see a decrease of about 10 percent this time of year, last month saw more than 21 percent fewer homes sold. The double-digit decreases were consistent across single-family and condo properties.”

“According to DMAR, agents have reported that home showings are starting to slow down and some buyers are lowering prices to entice more buyers. Agents also are seeing an increase in homes falling out of contract and going back on the market. ‘We’re starting to see a slowdown in overall housing market traffic even in the lower price ranges,’ said Steve Danyliw, chairman of the DMAR Market Trends Committee.”

The Hartford Courant in Connecticut. “Home sales in greater Hartford perked up in August, but prices paid dipped the most for any month so far this year, a new report shows, as potential buyers remained cautious about making purchases. Carl Lantz, the association’s president and a real estate agent at Re/Max Premier in West Hartford, said houses that have the latest updates in kitchens and bathrooms and are in desirable locations are selling well, often with multiple offers.”

“The trouble is the ’shadow inventory’ of dated homes where sellers are often forced to reduce asking prices to lure in a buyer, Lantz said. ‘There’s insecurity in the economy as a whole in Connecticut where buyers chose to buy homes that are renovated and homes that are not renovated suffer in price,’ Lantz said.”

The Naples Daily News in Florida. “Naples area Realtors had a great summer, until Hurricane Irma came around to spoil it at the end. There was virtually no activity going on in the MLS for almost two weeks after the hurricane, said Wes Kunkle, president and managing broker at Kunkle International Realty in Naples. ‘Next month’s numbers may show kind of a downturn,’ he said. ‘But I think it’s going to be kind of a false downturn hopefully.’”

The Stockton Record in California. “Christina Fugazi was among the supporters nearly two years ago when the council approved a temporary but significant reduction in the fees housing developers must pay before they can build in Stockton. The goal was to quicken the pace of single-family and multi-unit residential construction in the city, but so far the results have been lackluster, Fugazi acknowledged. ‘Building is taking place everywhere around Stockton, but not here,’ said Fugazi, whose council district includes downtown.”

“‘It’s still really challenging,’ Community Development Director David Kwong said of Stockton’s housing conditions. ‘If the market is not there to construct those units … then people won’t build them.’”

From KFYR TV in Montana. “It’s a lot easier to find a house for sale in Sidney, Mont., than it was during the oil boom. ‘There’s like to me houses here it’s hard for people to buy because they can’t afford to buy it because it’s out of their price range,’ said Kim Hall, Sidney resident.”

“During this slowdown stage that’s lasted for at least a year, 130 homes are on the market. ‘This is actually the highest inventory I’ve seen. We are definitely looking at the most options families had to look for homes in a long time,’ said Amanda Seigfreid, Missouri River realtor. Seigfreid says sellers shouldn’t think all hope is lost. Interest rates are still low, so buyers have plenty of options. ‘When there was more people looking, than there was homes available, there was less to choose from prices went up. Right now there’s so much to choose from, the prices have come down,’ said Seigfreid.”

“Sidney resident Tammy Pederson says this is her first time selling her home, and says she’ll just have to be patient. ‘The process it’s slow, but it’s definitely a house worth being seen so we will wait for the right buyer and hopefully it will get sold,’ said Pedersen.”

From Crain’s New York. “It’s a buyer’s market in Manhattan, where more homes traded hands during the third quarter of the year than at any time since 2015. And because house-hunters refused to budge on offers, sellers had to adjust and include discounts averaging 6%, according to a report. ‘Buyers are just sitting there, waiting for the sellers to get in sync with what is happening now, and not what was happening two or three years ago,’ said Jonathan Miller, head of appraisal firm Miller Samuel, which prepared the report.”

“New developments appeared to have a record-setting quarter, but Warburg Realty noted that these figures are actually indicative of when the contracts were signed, and are not a good barometer for what is happening now. ‘Most of those records … pertained to deals signed several years earlier for buildings then under construction,’ Warburg head Frederick Peters wrote in his market report. ‘For those buyers who have wanted to flip their units after closing on them, the resale market has been less kind.’”