October 11, 2017

Used To Be Hot, But Is Now Slowing Down

A report from the Washington Post. “Buyers in the Northern Virginia suburbs, like buyers in other areas, are slowing down a little this fall and opting to wait for the right place at the right price in some neighborhoods. In the most popular locations, though, the sales pace is still fast. ‘Buyers in the DMV [District, Maryland and Virginia] are really savvy and ready to buy,’ says Nela Richardson, chief economist of Redfin brokerage in Washington. ‘There’s no learning curve required. But, especially in the fall, they’ve got plenty of time to wait for the right house.’”

From CBS 46 in Georgia. “It’s hard not to drive down a metro Atlanta street without seeing a ‘for sale’ sign. However, some of these homes are getting more expensive and the salaries among people who want to buy the homes aren’t going up as much as the prices. But realtor Jill Huitron says not all parts of metro Atlanta are seeing homes sell quickly. ‘Sandy Springs — that used to be hot, [but] is now slowing down. So it’s more of a buyers market than a sellers market.’”

“Also a buyers market? Buckhead. The type of market is based on housing supply — Buckhead has nine months housing supply. Huitron says while the market does adjust itself every six to eight years, she doesn’t see a crash as bad as the one that happened in 2008.”

From CBS Minnesota. “The season isn’t the only thing changing in the Twin Cities metro. New numbers suggest the housing market is transitioning, too. Over the summer, homes in the metro were selling before they were even officially listed often at full price or above. New numbers suggest that trend is leveling off. Noelle Nielsen is with RE/MAX Advantage Plus Bright Birch Group. She spent Sunday at an open house in Burnsville. Renovation-ready, it’s listed at $485,000, a reduced price. ‘We have seen a drop in buyers coming out in September. So since then, we have had to do a price drop in this particular house,’ Nielsen said.”

“And Nielsen is far from alone. Data from Zillow from late August shows nearly 20 percent of metro listings were slashed in price.”

The Daily Comet in Louisiana. “A report released by Nationwide Insurance states that the Houma-Thibodaux housing market remains weak, but has gone from the sixth worst market in the United States to the eighth worst. Based on the second quarter of 2017, Houma-Thibodaux is just behind the New Orleans-Metairie market on its ‘Bottom 10′ list. It also found that the majority of the bottom 10 housing markets were in ‘energy-intensive states’ such as Louisiana, North Dakota, Texas and Alaska.”

“Local real estate agents have been seeing problems in the local housing market for a while. Mike LaRussa, with Coldwell Banker LaRussa Real Estate in Houma, said the area has become a buyer’s market because of the downturn in the oil industry. ‘We still have a lot of inventory on the market. There’s no denying it. It has slowed down a little bit. It’s a buyer’s market right now, but it all goes back to the oil. Oil is the heartbeat of our economy,’ LaRussa said.”

The Albuquerque Journal in New Mexico. “Nine years ago, New Mexico had so much cash that it gave some of the money back. Booming oil prices and the housing bubble helped push the state’s operating budget to $6.8 billion – in inflation-adjusted terms – and the Roundhouse was filled with talk of issuing big rebate checks to taxpayers. But the good times didn’t last. All told, every category of state spending has fallen over the past two years, once inflation is factored in.”‘

“‘It’s no big secret that we’ve been struggling,’ said Sen. John Arthur Smith, a Deming Democrat and chairman of the influential Senate Finance Committee.”

The Real Deal on New York. “What does it take to sell a luxury condominium these days? At 432 Park Avenue, a generous return policy. Developers CIM Group and Macklowe Properties have taken the unusual step of buying back an apartment at their supertall tower — thereby freeing up the seller to purchase something even bigger. Though unusual, this type of deal is not unheard of, said attorney Terrence Oved of Oved & Oved. He said it amounts to a ‘put option,’ and makes sense given the slowdown in luxury sales. ‘The market for super-luxury is stagnating,’ he said.”

“Overall, prices in the luxury market slipped 4.8 percent during the third quarter to $6.4 million, according to appraisal firm Miller Samuel. The median price on new development units fell 23 percent year-over-year to $2.79 million.”

From the Observer on Florida. “Sofia Vergara is very close to parting ways with her longtime Miami apartment. The actress purchased the studio, with just one bathroom, at 300 74th Street back in 2007. Vergara apparently lived in this 468-square-foot apartment for quite some time in the mid-1990s, renting it before she decided to eventually pay $165,000 for the rather modest abode.”

“The apartment is in the North Beach area of Miami, located on the second floor of an unassuming, two-story 1950s stucco building. Sadly, there aren’t any interior photos included in the listing, which is located just a few short blocks from the beach. The condo is currently pending sale and Vergara is prepared to take a loss on the apartment, as she listed it for a mere $150,000 in March—about $25,000 less than she paid for it a decade ago.”