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Don’t Forget That It’s Still Very Easy To Insult A Seller

A report from the Los Angeles Daily News in California. “Home sales in the San Fernando Valley hit a record low last month, even as sellers continued to flood the housing market, according to the Southland Regional Association of Realtors. The association reported that escrow closed on just 266 homes in February, down 14 percent from 309 at the same time last year.”

“That’s the lowest mark since the organization started keeping the statistics in 1985. The Valley’s total housing inventory, meanwhile, was up 24 percent from a year ago to 1,186 available properties.”

“A typical home in the Valley still goes for $657,000. The Valley’s housing market, which has been red hot in recent years, showed signs of a cool-off this winter following record high median costs of $708,000 in May and August. ‘After an extended sellers’ market, what we’re seeing today looks more balanced,’ said Dan Tresierras, president of the association. ‘It’s a market where buyers have gained negotiating leverage and sellers may have to offer concessions if they want a speedy sale.'”

From Mansion Global on California. “Actor Charlie Sheen has averted foreclosure on his Los Angeles bachelor pad, relisting it for the umteenth time last week with another price cut. The five-bedroom Mediterranean-style mansion is now selling for one dollar shy of $8 million, the latest in a series of price cuts over the past year. It hit the market in February 2018 for $9.99 million.”

The Boston Globe on Massachusetts. “The Greater Boston housing market continued to pick up speed in February, with both sales and the number of homes listed for sale on the rise. Condominium prices dipped slightly compared with last February, down 2.9 percent in Greater Boston, while the number of condos on the market surged 22.9 percent.”

“‘It’s nice to see condo sales up and prices starting to moderate, giving more home buyers the opportunity to get on the homeownership ladder,’ said Anne Meczywor, president of the Massachusetts Association of Realtors.”

From Hartford Business in Connecticut. “For the second straight month, home and condo sales fell across Connecticut to a four-year low, with median prices also falling. The median single-family home prices fell last month 5.1 percent to $224,000 from $236,000 a year ago – the weakest February median price in three years, Warren Group reported.”

“‘This is the fewest number of single-family home sales for the month of February since 2015,’ said CEO Timothy Warren. ‘Single-family home sales have declined on a year-over-year basis for seven straight months and 13 of the past 15 months. Clearly, the market has softened despite a low unemployment rate and a good economy.'”

From Realtor.com. “Yeehaw, the latest home-buying season is now in full swing! And buyers are in luck: By and large, this year’s home-buying season is a far better bet for buyers than in the past. In the recent past, you weren’t altogether wrong if it seemed like buyers were offering their firstborn child in order for their offer to get a fair look—and often for houses that you would have snubbed in less-sizzling markets. But now it’s OK to breathe—and even sleep on it.”

“In fact, many say we’re back into what can be considered more of a buyer’s market, where the seller doesn’t hold all the cards, says Brad Cox, a real estate agent at the Vesta Group of Long & Foster Real Estate, in Lutherville, MD. ‘While you still want to prepare a competitive offer, your time window is likely to expand—meaning you can think it over before rushing in with an offer,’ Cox says. ‘And you aren’t going to have to include some of the riskier elements, such as waiving financing or inspection contingencies, that were a hallmark of past years.'”

“But don’t forget that it’s still very easy to insult a seller. ‘I am seeing far more buyers starting to make very aggressive lowball offers in an attempt to test sellers’ appetites, even if they’re totally serious about a given property,’ says Lucas Callejas, an agent at Triplemint.”

From Forbes on Florida. “The current top-ranked football team in England’s Premier League has an owner who is ready to sell his lakefront Florida mansion in Boca Raton, Florida. Billionaire John Henry first listed the property for sale last fall for $25 million, but lowered the price for the first time last week. To reduce a price by nearly half the first time out for a price reduction is often the sign of a motivated seller so this is a pad that could end up being a great deal for $15 million.”

From KLUV Radio in Texas. “In the 2 years before my dad’s passing, we often talked about the DFW housing market and what was causing it’s quickly escalating prices. Occasionally he would say to me, ‘son, what goes up, must come down.’ He said, ‘don’t be in hurry… wait a while… watch the market… and you’ll soon see improvements for buyers.'”

“He also noted that most while DFW area house prices increased around 40% in 4 years, most residents didn’t receive a 40% pay increase over that time, and reality would eventually rise to the top. My father’s prediction is coming true. Bottom line for North Texas, housing inventory is growing, prices are dropping, and reality is quickly settling in.” 

This Post Has 48 Comments
  1. ‘Home sales in the San Fernando Valley hit a record low last month, even as sellers continued to flood the housing market’

    Lowest since recoeds started in 1985. And of course a lot more people live there now so this is crater. Wa happened to my shortage California?

    ‘Actor Charlie Sheen has averted foreclosure on his Los Angeles bachelor pad, relisting it for the umteenth time last week with another price cut’

    The F word, in California!

    1. “The five-bedroom Mediterranean-style mansion is now selling for one dollar shy of $8 million, the latest in a series of price cuts over the past year. It hit the market in February 2018 for $9.99 million.”

      In Realtorspeak, does that mean he started out at $9,999,999, or $1 short of $10 million? Why not just say the asked price has dropped by 20% over one year’s time, from $10 million to $8 million? The $1 difference muddles the picture and won’t even pay for a cup of coffee.

  2. ‘Condominium prices dipped slightly compared with last February, down 2.9 percent in Greater Boston, while the number of condos on the market surged 22.9 percent’

    The Globe doesn’t mention that downtown luxury condo prices were down 14% a month or two ago.

  3. ‘In the recent past, you weren’t altogether wrong if it seemed like buyers were offering their firstborn child in order for their offer to get a fair look—and often for houses that you would have snubbed in less-sizzling markets. But now it’s OK to breathe—and even sleep on it’

    With the added bonus of insulting sellers!

  4. ‘This is the fewest number of single-family home sales for the month of February since 2015…Single-family home sales have declined on a year-over-year basis for seven straight months and 13 of the past 15 months. Clearly, the market has softened despite a low unemployment rate and a good economy’

    We’re seeing a lot from the REIC about how lower prices hurt the economy. Lower prices help the economy, as people have more money for stuff they need.

  5. This was posted this morning on the previous thread:

    Doomed
    In reply to BubblevilleCa.

    “Spin it however you want. Q1 19 has been pretty good for housing. I realize on a blog like this, positive news will never be acknowledged and the reply will always be “yeah but”.

    First of all, eat yer crow!

    What are we supposed to do “on a blog like this” when we are bombarded with lies 24/7 by the REIC? Oh, yeah give them your first born! What kind of “objective” horse-hockey is that? Are we supposed to forget that the NAR double counted sales for years, and only revealed the “error” when the revision made sales go up? These are multi-billion dollar propaganda outfits. So pardon me if I remain skeptical.

    1. That was not my reply but valid points made in it 😉

      Doomed has his view and I have mine, it’s good to be open minded to all views but I tend to go with my gut on what’s happening to the housing market. It does not feel “different” than it did during hb.1 to me but yet the MSM assures us it is. Mabye it is different in other areas but here in CA it is not, if and when money dries up or the economy starts tanking it will be a replay and everything including housing will be affected. I also don’t expect it to happen tomorrow but I do have a gut feeling it will happen sooner than many think. 2020 is my best guess. Again, open to all people perspectives here, glass half full and half empty, I read and put thought into all of the comments. It’s what makes this blog interesting and keeps me coming back 🙂

      1. Here is one thing I keep thinking about that not a lot of people are talking about: diminishing household size. The average family purchasing a house 20 years ago was a larger family. As anyone who has raised children knows, they are expensive. If the average number of children in the US is now 1.7 children vs. 3, then that could mean that people are trading in children to afford a more expensive house. Just something to think about.

        The quote from earlier today was that housing prices have gone up 40% in some area of Texas but wages did not. Well, in some places household size has gone down by 40%.

        1. Ahh yes the myth of the declining birth rate in the US.

          US Birth rate by year

          1975: 1.77
          1980: 1.84
          1990: 2.08
          2000: 2.06
          2010: 2.10
          2016: 1.80

          WOW!! We’ve declined alllllll the way back to what it was in 1975!

          1. Below 2.1 is below the replacement rate. In 1964 the rate was above 3, now we are at 1.76 (your 1.80 is 2016 numbers).

            It seems unlikely that the birthrate will tick up anytime soon because more women are career minded, are waiting until later to get married, have ample access to birth control, many have student debt, and housing is so expensive. The stat I read was that it cost about $250,000 to raise a child from birth to 18 years old, so going from 2.8 children to 1.8 children means maybe some of that money that was being spent on children is instead being spent on interest to Mr. Banker.

          2. It’s a no-brainer that burrying the under-35 set in debt when they face grim job prospects is an effective recipe for killing the reproductive urge.

            With immigration choked off, it’s hard to see where future US housing demand will arise.

            America
            U.S. Births Dip To 30-Year Low; Fertility Rate Sinks Further Below Replacement Level
            May 17, 2018 9:42 AM ET
            Bill Chappell
            In 2017, birthrates fell by 4 percent both for women 20 to 24 years old and for women 25 to 29, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
            AGF/UIG via Getty Images
            Updated at 8:48 p.m. ET

            The birthrate fell for nearly every group of women of reproductive age in the U.S. in 2017, reflecting a sharp drop that saw the fewest newborns since 1987, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

            There were 3,853,472 births in the U.S. in 2017 — “down 2 percent from 2016 and the lowest number in 30 years,” the CDC said.

            The general fertility rate sank to a record low of 60.2 births per 1,000 women between the ages of 15 and 44 — a 3 percent drop from 2016, the CDC said in its tally of provisional data for the year.

            The results put the U.S. further away from a viable replacement rate – the standard for a generation being able to replicate its numbers.

            “The rate has generally been below replacement since 1971,” according to the report from CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics.

        2. You said 20 years ago it was 3. It wasn’t.

          The birth rate today at 1.76 is unchanged form 1975. So to suggest that higher home prices is the cause of fewer kids flies in the face of reality. In the 70s houses were cheap and nobody was having kids then either.

          The US emerged as the richest country on earth post WW2. As with all societies, the richer it gets the fewer kids it has. We don’t need 10 kids to work the farm anymore. One or two kids is plenty for most people.

          1. The 70s were the “echo boom”, which is the natural result of the baby boomers daughters had entered child bearing years and were having their own children. That period ended in about 1994.

            You are correct that all industrial societies have followed the demographic transition to smaller families. There is a brilliant Ted Talk on this by Hans Rosling.

            Having said that, American women appear to want more children than they are getting:

            American Women Are Having Fewer Children Than They Would Like
            New York Times
            Feb 13, 2018
            Lyman Stone

            “As a result, the gap between the number of children that women say they want to have (2.7) and the number of children they will probably actually have (1.8) has risen to the highest level in 40 years. ”

            The only states in the US that are above the replacement rate are Utah and South Dakota.

    2. “Shares of home-building companies are on track for their best quarter in seven years, the Wall Street Journal reported. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders exchange-traded fund — which includes building-products and home-furnishing companies — has soared 17 percent this quarter
      Shares of Beazer Homes USA, BZH, Lennar, KB Home and D.R. Horton have all bounced back — each climbing about 20 percent. Meanwhile, NVR and Toll Brothers have risen 15 percent and 9 percent, respectively.”

      1. It’s entirely possible that a as-yet-unannounced housing market bailout plan is in the works and that insiders with these companies are engaged in the planning process. How else do you explain the rising share prices in the face of a looming housing bust?

    3. Pardon me if I point out that the current crop of homesellers is among the most doomed collection of human beings in the history of mankind, and that the NAR made their present plight much worse than it would have otherwise been had they not been encouraged by never-ending propaganda to massively overpay when they were buyers.

      1. I bought a very expensive car this week. A vanity purchase to be sure, but something I am loving. What I can’t fathom is home purchasers knife catchers today stepping up and buying a house at these prices. Like, in what world would you pay twice what someone else bought something for after having lived in it for 10, 15, or 20 years? This is the state of home buyers today. I could buy an old house that we don’t even like with plenty of repairs/updates that need to be made, or I could buy my dream car. Pretty easy decision for me. It’s like, look at all the things I can afford to do because I am not buying into the housing racket.

  6. “Yeehaw, the latest home-buying season is now in full swing! And buyers are in luck: By and large, this year’s home-buying season is a far better bet for buyers than in the past. ”

    Yeehaw and BooYah baby! Dont insult the sellers Biatches!!! You’ll soon regret not buying in 2019!!! Hurry I need my commission checks !

  7. “In the recent past, you weren’t altogether wrong if it seemed like buyers were offering their firstborn child in order for their offer to get a fair look—and often for houses that you would have snubbed in less-sizzling markets. But now it’s OK to breathe—and even sleep on it.”

    “In fact, many say we’re back into what can be considered more of a buyer’s market, where the seller doesn’t hold all the cards, says Brad Cox

    You just need to offer your second child. No kids? You’re out of luck. This is the best market in decades! You not only get to buy at near peak bubble prices but it will be CHEAPER THAN RENTING!!!!! JOHN/DAVE/SUZANNE TOLD ME

    END OF STORY!!!!!!!

    1. “No kids? You’re out of luck.”

      It’s either kids or homeownership these days for many households who cannot afford both.

  8. “In fact, many say we’re back into what can be considered more of a buyer’s market, where the seller doesn’t hold all the cards, says Brad Cox, a real estate agent at the Vesta Group of Long & Foster Real Estate, in Lutherville, MD.”

    I’ve got some breaking news for you: The seller never held all the cards nor did the buyer ever hold all the cards. It is the LENDER who holds all the cards. The lender held all the cards yesterday, holds all the cards today, will hold all the cards tomorrow.

    The lender is the one who makes things happen. If the lender wants prices go up then – presto! – he makes money available to pukes who bid prices up. Does he want prices to go down? Not a problem; Restrict the amount of money accessible to ignorant pukes and, what-do-ya-know, prices then go down.

    Easy peasy.

    1. There was the post on this blog the other day that talked of swarms of pre-approved pukes descending into homes and immediately engaging in bidding wars. The outcome of such bidding wars was such that the highest bidder among these pre-approved pukes was the puke who had the highest pre-approved loan. The other pre-approved pukes that were there played their parts in this example of mass stupidity by bidding up prices.

      How wonderful all this was in that this process created – instantly and magically created – massive amounts of equity wealth for all the neighbors who just happened to live nearby.

      Truly a modern financial miracle engineered by lenders and executed by vast multitudes of totally dumbed-down ignorant pukes.

    2. Things always get crazy at the peak of wealth effect bubbles. Anyone remember condoflip.com from the last bubble? I was just watching a financial news video on YouTube and an ad popped up for an investment fund that flips paintings. This round of asset price inflation appears to have turned into the greatest everything bubble in human history.

      1. At least with a house you can do a bit of landscaping, put down some laminate flooring, and paint the walls and ceilings. How do you add value to a painting?

      2. I literally just saw a blog post about flipping websites with other people’s money. I’m not sure what to think anymore.

    3. “It is the LENDER who holds all the cards.”

      It’s a good time to remind readers of Mark Twain’s cautionary advice:

      A banker is a fellow who will gladly loan you his umbrella when the sun is out, then wants it back the minute it starts to rain.

  9. “…giving more home buyers the opportunity to get on the homeownership ladder”

    Translation: More FBs signing up for Mr. Banker’s dotted-line special and committing themselves to a lifetime of debt serfdom.

    BTW, when did this “property ladder” or “home ownership ladder” idea appear? I’m pretty sure that for a long time, people simply bought a home to live in.

    1. They were saying that in the UK as early as 2005. The idea is if you don’t get in soon, you’ll be priced out forever.

    2. The “property ladder” concept is an indication that the real estate market as it’s currently configured in most of the Western world is a Ponzi scheme. Sort of like multi-level marketing, the only ones who are successful are those who cash out and exit the market completely before the structure collapses. Everyone else is a bag holder.

    1. Yellen stated that “global central banks don’t have adequate crisis tools.”

      The perpetual mantra of central planners. Give us more power to fix the problems we created in our last power grab. In reality, the only tool the Fed has in its tool kit is a giant dildo to quantitatively ease up the painfully stretched and prolapsed rear end of retirees, savers, blue collar workers, and the middle class.

  10. Could Medicare for those who want it at $200-300 a mo, be like, the USPO is to UPS and Fed Ex? Good ol’ competition? Why not?

  11. “But don’t forget that it’s still very easy to insult a seller. ‘I am seeing far more buyers starting to make very aggressive lowball offers in an attempt to test sellers’ appetites, even if they’re totally serious about a given property,’ says Lucas Callejas, an agent at Triplemint.”

    Insulting greedheads is half the fun of a lowball offer, Lucas. And by the way, those “very aggressive lowball offers” reflect the new market valuations, which only get worse from here.

    1. When you see a stagnant house with 100 DOM, why not put in a low ball offer as your first? Say no, go ahead. I’ll still sleep well at night

  12. “Yeehaw, the latest home-buying season is now in full swing! And buyers are in luck: By and large, this year’s home-buying season is a far better bet for buyers than in the past.

    The Carnival Barkers Association has filed a formal grievance with the REIC media for poaching so many of its members.

  13. Yeahaah? Really?

    You know they are getting desperate when they start saying BS like like.

    Yep fella it’s da good old Texas bbq and house buyer roundup. Come and get em while der hot!

    I say Yeahaaw to the good old foreclosure auction on a waterfront island home with boat dock. Cant wait to get that horse into the corral.

  14. Musn’t insult the tender-footed sellers, who have been perfectly happy to insult buyers by wringing them for every last penny and concession for a decade. Sorry sellers, my sympathy runs about as deep as the puddle in my front yard when you receive “lowball” offers that would still net you a healthy profit.

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