Wednesday, December 31, 2008

October really was Fall according to Case-Shiller

The news yesterday regarding the Case-Shiller home index was bleak - but expected. The news was bad - an 18% drop year-over-year average in the 20 index cities. Here is a sad little excerpt from the NY Times article -

Prices in Miami fell by 29 percent. There, homeowners who tried to wait out the market are paying a price, said Madeline Romanello, a real estate agent with Douglas Elliman. Sellers who turned down offers of $700,000 for a house they had listed for $900,000 are now scrambling to sell for $550,000, she said.

This article from The Record we see that not everyone is doing badly - House prices drop nationwide, Bergen County stable. Lets take a look -

October home prices in the New York area fell 7.5 percent since last year, and 0.9 percent monthly since August. according to Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller home price index, released today.

The index reported record drops in national home prices this October over a year ago. Home prices in 20 U.S. cities fell 18 percent, the fastest annual drop recorded by the index. In a composite 10-city gauge, prices fell 19 percent, also a record drop.

And in 14 of 20 metro areas, home prices have fallen more than 10 percent compared to October 2007 , returning to March 2004 levels, said David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the S&P's Index Committee.

But in Bergen County, there are signs of hope, says Bill Gilsenan, director of RealSource Association of Realtors in Waldwick, which serves 3,500 Realtors.

According to the New Jersey Multiple Listing Service, county-wide median home prices stayed stable in September and October at around $420,000 and dropped only 6.25 percent over the last 12 months, compared to Case-Shiller's higher 7.5 percent for the New York area.

In other words bad but as not as bad as the others. The dead-tree edition of the Record comes with a handy guide of price dropping comparisons for change in prices of single family homes from Oct. 2007 to Oct. 2008:

  • Boston: -6%
  • NY Metro: -7.5%
  • Las Vegas: -31.7%
  • Los Angeles: -27.9%
  • Miami: -29%
  • Phoenix: -32.7%
  • San Diego: -26.7%
  • San Francisco: -31%
  • Washington: -18.7%

People will be chasing down the market for some time. And those falls from their highs are pretty scary - especially for those that bought at peak. All that paper wealth is gone.

Hopefully we will see the bottom in the upcoming year. Hopefully.

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