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More Owners Are Forced To Sell At Prices Much Lower Than What They Had Bought For

It’s Friday desk clearing time for this blogger. “Last quarter, the number of homes for sale grew at double-digit rates in all five boroughs for the first time ever. In Manhattan, sales inventory rose 15.4 percent year over year, the fastest annual rate of growth in the fourth quarter since the financial crisis. Brooklyn and Queens also saw significant annual increases in inventory, up 22.0 percent and 30.8 percent, respectively.”

“‘The glut of unrealistically priced homes in the city has been a main driver of the slow-moving market that ended 2018 – causing more and more homes to pile up before the new year and heightening competition among sellers,’ said StreetEasy Senior Economist Grant Long. ‘Heading into 2019, sellers who are unwilling to budge on price are going to face an unforgiving market.'”

“Two reports on the Boston condo market’s end-of-year performance show more units coming onto the market across the city’s hottest neighborhoods. However, this has continued to put a damper on sales prices as well as closed sales as sellers find themselves at odds with a shifting market.”

“‘Right now, a lot of sellers are still in the mindset that we’ve been in for the past half decade, said Nick Warren of Warren Residential. ‘Many think they should be receiving multiple offers over asking price after the first open house. This will result in a lot more listings sitting on the market until agents are able to convince them that the 2019 market is different than 2017 and 2018.'”

“The number of homes on the market rose 4.8% last month—a 42-month high—to 669,600, according to Redfin. In San Jose, California, supply soared 131.3% annually in December; in Seattle, inventory rose 117.8% and in Oakland, California, supply was up 69% over the same period. Unsurprisingly, the areas that saw soaring inventory logged harsh sales declines. In San Jose, sales fell 18.9%, Seattle saw sales decrease by 22%, and in Oakland, they dropped 21.8%. The area to see the largest decline in activity was Sacramento, California, where sales dropped 26.5%.”

“‘Now that price growth has slowed down and more homes are sitting on the market, buyers will have the upper hand in 2019. Buyers will have more options with more homes for sale, and it will be sellers working to woo buyers into making an offer,’ said Daryl Fairweather, Redfin chief economist.”

“After persistent and steep price inclines, Ralph DeFranco, Global Chief Economist at Arch Capital Services, says now, ‘The shift in the balance of power is clear. An undeniable slowdown has arrived, particularly in the least affordable areas.’ But take heart. It’s not a bubble bursting. DeFranco says ‘there’s no need to panic.'”

“Vancouver’s housing market is looking more fragile than Toronto a year after policy makers tightened mortgage lending to slow a boom. Sales in the west coast city plunged 32 percent last year, driving benchmark prices down 6.5 percent over the past six months, according to Canadian Real Estate Association data.”

“‘Vancouver is in full-blown correction mode, Royal Bank of Canada economist Robert Hogue. ‘Prices are poised to depreciate more — potentially a lot more considering the degree to which they are still unaffordable to average buyers.'”

“The total value of London‘s housing fell an incredible £26.2billion in 2018, the first decrease since 2009, a new report has found. ‘Our analysis demonstrates the scale of the housing market and underlines the importance of housing to the economies of London and the UK as a whole, both as an asset class and store of private wealth,’ said Lawrence Bowles, residential research analyst at Savills.”

“An estate surveyor, Pedro Opuene, has blamed the political class in Rivers State for the gloom experienced in the real estate industry in Port Harcourt. Opuene said that a lot of houses in Port Harcourt were vacant because they were mostly service houses which are not affordable by many people.”

“‘Even in cases where the property owners had to reduce rent you still find vacant houses. Now in places like GRA, you find at least almost a half of GRA empty, because most of the persons that can pay those high rents are not coming in, they have moved to Lagos,’ he said.”

“Thailand has a total of 454,814 residential units worth US$41 billion left unsold last year, a local industry expert said. President of the Agency for Real Estate Affairs, Sopon Pornchokchai said unsold units in Bangkok made of for 40 percent of the total units left over from 2018 and 55 percent of the total value. ‘Actually, there is no housing shortage in Thailand,’ he said.”

“It’s not just rents that are dropping because of all the new homes being delivered and launched in Dubai. Property owners wanting to sell now find they are getting nowhere near their asking prices because there are brand new properties – ready and offplan – being offered by developers.”

“Sure, they can drop their prices even further and hope the buyer is willing to take the bait. But what it means is that more owners are forced to sell their property at prices much lower than what they had bought for. According to consultancy Core, sales prices have’softened across the board,’ with apartment prices in locations such as Dubailand (down 15 per cent), Sports City (a drop of 13 per cent) and Discovery Gardens (lower by 14 per cent) in the last 12 months.”

“Anxiety is hitting China‘s trading partners and global companies that increasingly count on Chinese consumers. ‘Many people have been laid off. People are having a hard time finding a new job and are panicking,’ said Summer Li, a 28-year-old product manager for an electronics company.”

“Construction, the industry that powered China’s boom in past decades, also is struggling. Some cash-strapped developers in China’s northwest have resorted to paying contractors by giving them apartments, according to Anne Stevenson-Yang of J Capital Research, a financial research firm. The contractors hope to sell later, but some developments are three-quarters vacant, said Stevenson-Yang.”

“Real estate agencies are going to extreme lengths to bait new tenants amid a surge in rental vacancies that’s switched Sydney from a landlord’s market to a tenant’s one. The surge in listings was largely driven by an increase in housing stock across Sydney’s middle ring suburbs, which include areas like Auburn, Bankstown and Parramatta.”

“Nearly 3000 more rental homes became vacant over the December period, pushing the total number of listings across the city to just over 25,000 according to SQM. This was 7800 more listings than were available at the start of 2018. ‘Our feedback from agents suggests that the market is being flooded with new units, making older units more difficult to rent,’ said REINSW president Leanne Pilkington.”

This Post Has 35 Comments
  1. ‘The total value of London‘s housing fell an incredible £26.2billion in 2018, the first decrease since 2009, a new report has found. ‘Our analysis demonstrates the scale of the housing market and underlines the importance of housing to the economies of London and the UK as a whole, both as an asset class and store of private wealth’

    It also demonstrates how fooked you guys are Larry.

    1. It amazes me that no one seems to understand that this “asset class and store of private wealth” is something that is voted on, voted on by buyers (buyers who are able to get hold of the money).

      Milton Friedman once asked his students: “Did you vote today?”

      The response was: “There’s no election today”.

      Then he asked them: “Did any of you buy anything today?”.

      The point was that buyers “vote” on products and services when they buy them and they also vote on these products and services when they decide NOT to buy them.

      In the real estate market these votes produce wealth, equity wealth for all the comparable houses, equity wealth for the neighbors that just happen to live nearby. So, in a very real sense wealth for numerous strangers is voted up and it is voted down by people who may or may not be total fools and who are able or who are not able to get hold of money that does not belong to them.

      And this behavior is considered to be something that is normal and beyond questioning.

      It is rather amazing if you take the time to think about it.

      1. “…wealth for numerous strangers is voted up and it is voted down by people who may or may not be total fools..”

        And, thanks to the Feds fractional reserve banking system on a national level, and HELOC’s on a local neighborhood level, your neighborhood fool [with fake money] can vote early and vote often.

        1. And the result of this voting early and often can support an economy – it can BECOME an economy – an economy that is, in effect, voted into existence.

          Amazing!

  2. This is damning:

    “Some cash-strapped developers in China’s northwest have resorted to paying contractors by giving them apartments, according to Anne Stevenson-Yang of J Capital Research, a financial research firm. “

  3. “‘Now that price growth has slowed down and more homes are sitting on the market, buyers will have the upper hand in 2019. Buyers will have more options with more homes for sale, and it will be sellers working to woo buyers into making an offer,’ said Daryl Fairweather, Redfin chief economist.”

    Love letter?

    1. “sellers working to woo buyers into making an offer”

      Sellers writing letters to potential buyers where they promise to take the squirrels with them?

  4. ‘Heading into 2019, sellers who are unwilling to budge on price are going to face an unforgiving market.’

    Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favor!

  5. Bet those contractors have a clause that they can’t turn around and resell those condos on the open market.

  6. Thailand has a total of 454,814 residential units worth US$41 billion left unsold last year, a local industry expert said.

    The fact that this rising inventory is sitting unsold tells you it’s no longer worth anything close to US $41 billion.

  7. Well, the FED has time to inflate the prices again. This is the perfect excuse to pump more money and to give more “affordable loans to idiots” via HUD and FHA.

    I don’t know how rents and housing are going to go down a good 30% without everybody who caused the bubble do everything in their power to not let prices drop.

    I’m sucker Renter…

    1. more “affordable loans to idiots”

      The problem is that each time you pull this off you need a larger herd of dumb donkeys for it to work.

      1. The problem is that each time you pull this off you need a larger herd of dumb donkeys for it to work.

        Open borders will help supply those.

  8. Sure, they can drop their prices even further and hope the buyer is willing to take the bait. But what it means is that more owners are forced to sell their property at prices much lower than what they had bought for.

    Such a tragedy.

  9. Some cash-strapped developers in China’s northwest have resorted to paying contractors by giving them apartments, according to Anne Stevenson-Yang of J Capital Research, a financial research firm.

    Well that’s poetic justice. The same contractors who built these shoddily-constructed skyboxes thinking they’d hive them off on hapless dupes now get to live in them. Instant Karma!

  10. Amid all this gloomy news of falling home sales and prices, it certainly is heartening to notice how steadily and rapidly the stock market has gone up since Santa failed to visit Wall Street before Christmas. I guess all those housing investors would have been better off buying stocks.

      1. I realize the Fed leadership has discussed balance sheet shrinkage at great length. But isn’t the size of their balance sheet completely arbitrary and discretionary? It seems like the path of least resistance is to keep talking about shrinkage, but never actually follow through.

    1. They’re really playing up this whole “Greenwich is tanking” thing, it’s everywhere. The truth is, it’s been like this in Greenwich since 2009. So I don’t get what the fuss is about.

      What I find fascinating is the pumped up prices at the low end. Like a million or so for a 1970s split level with 3 bedrooms. That’s the joke. What I’m waiting to see is what happens as the low end pumps and the high end dumps, and when the twain shall meet.

    1. “…the Green New Deal is likely to create jobs in the development and installation of renewable energy technology.”

      Wasn’t that promised years ago? Instead, the manufacturing of solar panels, etc. went overseas. The installation jobs, especially for large-scale projects, are only temporary or require you to migrate from project to project.

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