Menu
TwitterRssFacebook
More Links

Are you looking for an experienced agent to help you buy or sell a home? Contact Jim the Realtor!

Carlsbad
(760) 434-5000

Carmel Valley
(858) 560-7700
jim@jimklinge.com


Category Archive: ‘Market Conditions’

Zillow Threatens McMansion Hell

I think Rob Dawg might have started this one – his blog is where I heard of the McMansion Hell on Friday, and now Zillow is chasing her around like a felon:

https://www.theverge.com/2017/6/26/15876602/zillow-threatens-sue-mcmansion-hell-tumblr-blog

McMansion Hell is a Tumblr blog that highlights the absurdity of giant real estate properties and the ridiculous staging and photography that are omnipresent in their sales listings. The blog, started by 23-year-old Johns Hopkins graduate student Kate Wagner, began in July 2016 as a way to poke fun at pretentious architecture. It has since gone viral, but now she’s facing potential legal charges by real estate site Zillow for allegedly violating the site’s terms of service by reproducing the images on her blog.

A typical McMansion Hell blog post will have a professional photo of a home and/or its interior, along with captions scattered throughout by Wagner. She also adds information about the history and characteristics of various architecture styles, and uses photos from the likes of Zillow and Redfin to illustrate how so many real estate listings inaccurately use the terms.

Under each post, Wagner adds a disclaimer that credits the original source of the images and cites Fair Use for the parody, which allows for use of copyrighted material for “criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research.” In a cease and desist letter to Wagner, Zillow claims Wagner’s reproduction of these images do not apply under the Copyright Act. Additionally, the company claims McMansion Hell may “[interfere] with Zillow’s business expectations and interests.”

Zillow got sued for using photos without authorization, so now they are going after the little people with a vengeance?  Where will they stop?

Save

Posted by on Jun 26, 2017 in Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions, Zillow | 2 comments

Will Prices Keep Going Up?

The N.A.R. Chief Economist Lawrence Yun was befuddled in his previous press release, and now this:

“Home prices keep chugging along at a pace that is not sustainable in the long run,” Yun said. “Current demand levels indicate sales should be stronger, but it’s clear some would-be buyers are having to delay or postpone their home search because low supply is leading to worsening affordability conditions.”

Yunnie is an old-fashioned guy who relies on historical norms.  But more people are probably thinking the same – this run-up in pricing isn’t sustainable.

Or is it?

We are in an environment where we are peppered with lottery ads daily.  People dream about getting rich quick, and selling your house is about the closest most people get – and it’s not enough just to sell your house for an all-time record price.  Instead, every seller wants more than the last guy got.

Unless that mentality changes, prices will keep going up.

Won’t there be a point where we run out of ready, willing, and able buyers?  Yes, but unless a seller NEEDS to move, they aren’t going to budge.  They aren’t going to lower their price until they are absolutely convinced that they must – and it’s more likely that sellers will withdraw their listing and try again later.

If sellers do need a solution, there are more alternatives than ever:

  1. Reverse mortgages.
  2. HELOCs
  3. Share with family.
  4. Share with others. (H/T daytrip)
  5. Loan mods.

Once we reach the point where the market stalls, it will stagnate for years until sellers and realtors realize they must adjust their price to sell.  Realtors themselves struggle to accept the rules of supply and demand – they just keep hanging onto their listing until the market catches up.

Rising rates, economic downturns, political drama, world calamities – none will be as influential as a seller’s ego when it comes to adjusting on price.

Watch the number of sales – they are the precursor.  If/when sales start to decline, all it means is that fewer sellers are willing to adjust enough on price.

Will their reason for moving be powerful enough to not seek an alternative, and sell for what the market will bear?  It’s doubtful, and as a result, a market that is this hot will take time to re-calibrate – if it does at all.

Save

Posted by on Jun 22, 2017 in Boomer Liquidations, Boomers, How Hot?, Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions | 0 comments

San Diego Bubble: Not Yet

A bubble perspective from our friend Rich Toscano!

http://www.voiceofsandiego.org/topics/economy/theres-still-no-san-diego-housing-bubble-yet/

With the median San Diego home price recently having exceeded its prior bubble peak, there is some concern that the housing market may be entering bubble territory again. But while San Diego’s housing market is certainly hot, and its home prices a good deal more expensive than usual, it’s hard to make the case that this is a genuine bubble.

A bubble is more than just a market that’s become pricey. Investment bubbles are characterized by extremes in two areas:

• Valuation: Prices become exceptionally high compared with the economic factors that have typically driven pricing in the past. Often, prices and valuations will experience very rapid increases.

• Psychology: Investors are optimistic to the point of euphoria. They are dismissive of risks (and skeptics who raise them), and seem to fear only missing out on further gains.

San Diego housing in the mid-2000s was an absolutely classic bubble. From 2001 through 2005, local home prices increased 63 percent faster than incomes and rents. At their peak, home valuations reached 73 percent above the historic norm; the highest it had gone previously was 12 percent above normal, and that had led to a six-year downturn. By mid-bubble, prices — already totally unhinged from their fundamentals — were growing at a blistering pace, as much as 33 percent in a single year.

As for the sentiment … I was a housing skeptic on these pages, so I could go on at length. Suffice it to say that one reader informed me that by not buying a house, I was dooming myself and all my descendants to be part of a new permanent underclass of non-homeowners. That was one of the nicer comments.

Things look quite a bit different in 2017.

Read full article here:

http://www.voiceofsandiego.org/topics/economy/theres-still-no-san-diego-housing-bubble-yet/

Posted by on Jun 5, 2017 in Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions, Rich Toscano | 3 comments

SD Median Price Hits New Record

Glad to see the U-T relying on Rich for an explanation!

LINK

The San Diego County median home price hit $525,000 in April, passing the region’s previous peak reached in 2005, real estate tracker CoreLogic reported Tuesday.

High demand and tight supply appear to have pushed the price beyond previous milestones. There were 3,618 homes sold in April — the lowest for that month since 2012.

Supply is dwindling, too. In April, there were 4,763 active home listings in San Diego County, said the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors. That is down from 5,754 listings the same time last year and the 6,386 in 2015.

When adjusted for inflation, the nominal November 2005 peak of $517,500 would be roughly $644,500 in 2016 dollars. Still, the San Diego median price is noteworthy for increasing 7.4 percent in a year and outpacing most of Southern California.

Housing bubble fears are likely with the new median but home prices would have to rise 40 percent (assuming no income or rent growth) to be as overvalued as much as they were during the last peak, said Rich Toscano, who predicted the last housing crash on his blog Professor Piggington’s Econo-Almanac.

“Homes are definitely expensive when you compare purchase prices to rents and incomes,” he said. “They are the most expensive they’ve been outside the bubble. But, it still doesn’t compare to the expensiveness of the bubble.”

Toscano said low interest rates are keeping the monthly mortgage rates somewhat affordable and home valuations high.

“In theory, for as long as low rates persist, they could keep supporting the prices,” he said. “The big question is if that will continue to happen and the smartest people in the world disagree on that.”

There were 2,306 resale homes sold in April, bringing the median home price to $575,000, a new peak surpassing the previous record of $574,000 set in May 2006. The resale condo price was $385,000 with 1,108 sales — still $15,000 away from the peak set in April 2005.

Save

Posted by on May 24, 2017 in Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions, Rich Toscano | 2 comments

Trump Tax Plan and the M.I.D.

Hat tip to SWM for sending in this clarification regarding the point at which the M.I.D. is an advantage.

http://www.seattletimes.com/business/real-estate/trump-tax-proposal-would-make-mortgage-deduction-useless-for-most-homeowners/

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has taken pains to stress that the Trump administration isn’t out to kill Americans’ beloved mortgage-interest tax deduction — but a side effect of the plan could turn it into a perk for only the wealthy.

President Donald Trump has proposed rewriting the tax code to raise the standard federal deduction to a level where about 25 million home­owners would no longer take advantage of the century-old break.

A married couple would need a home-loan balance of about $608,000 — almost triple the mortgage on a median-priced U.S. home — before using it would make sense, according to a new analysis by property-data provider Trulia. That would be up from about $322,000 today.

Without the incentives, along with a proposed end to local property-tax deductions, home sales may be hurt in cities where prices are rising quickly and buyers are stretching to afford their purchases, from Denver and Portland to Boston and Washington, D.C. Reduced demand would weigh on values, causing price declines nationwide, according to the National Association of Realtors, which opposes the change.

The proposal “is a backdoor way of rendering the mortgage-interest deduction close to worthless,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics.

Prices may fall 10 percent on average nationwide, taking into account the lack of deduction for state and local property taxes, according to a preliminary estimate prepared by a consultant for the National Association of Realtors. Zandi, of Moody’s, said the proposed deduction changes would reduce prices by about 4?percent nationally, including the property-tax impact, with bigger decreases in pricier parts of the country.

Economists have been critical of the mortgage-interest deduction because it disproportionately benefits people with more expensive properties, including many who would have purchased even without the break. It also inflates home prices because buyers often overestimate their tax savings when they’re budgeting for a purchase, said Dennis Ventry, a professor at University of California, Davis, School of Law who has studied the program’s history.

Trump’s plan might boost homeownership rates over time because a drop in prices would improve affordability and the standard deduction would give buyers more money to spend on a house, Ventry said.

The real-estate industry is lining up against the proposal, including the powerful National Association of Realtors, which spent $10.2 million lobbying Congress in the first quarter, more than any other organization except the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Trump’s plan also targets tax deductions for state and local taxes paid — a provision that would hurt homeowners in states where property taxes are high.

“One of the big reasons for homeownership is the ability to deduct property taxes,” said Coldwell Banker Realtor Kevin Cascone, who’s based in Westfield, New Jersey. “If that’s eliminated, what’s the difference between renting and buying?”

Save

Posted by on May 18, 2017 in Jim's Take on the Market, Local Government, Market Conditions | 3 comments

NSDCC Months of Inventory

Market conditions are favorable throughout the NSDCC.  Here are stats on the individual areas:

Area
Zip Code
ACT
PEND
SOLDS – April
Months of Inv. (A/S)
Cardiff
92007
19
11
9
2.1
Carlsbad NW
92008
38
37
18
2.1
Carlsbad SE
92009
75
78
52
1.4
Carlsbad NE
92010
15
33
11
1.4
Carlsbad SW
92011
27
25
26
1.0
Del Mar
92014
69
19
15
4.6
Encinitas
92024
95
56
40
2.4
La Jolla
92037
180
44
29
6.2
RSF
67+91
246
49
27
9.1
Solana Bch
92075
24
16
12
2.0
Carmel Vly
92130
85
82
30
2.8
All Above
All
873
450
269
3.25

It used to be that 6 months of inventory was considered normal. Can we say the new normal is more like 3.0?  Areas that are performing very well are 2.0?  Those on fire are 1.0?

Posted by on May 16, 2017 in Frenzy, Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions, North County Coastal | 0 comments

60% Looking to Downsize

I don’t know about the relevance of the others above, but the 60.6% of Americans looking to downsize is a nice idea – and probably where the conversation about market conditions begins.

Does anyone HAVE to downsize?

Not really – the worst cases are the seniors in a two-story home who can no longer handle the stairs, but they can always install an elevator or camp out permanently in the living room.

I think we are going to have a limited supply of homes for sale until those thinking of downsizing really NEED to move.  If they are flush, they will most likely stay put.

It will be those who need to tap their equity to stay alive that will finally cut loose of the long-time family homestead, and leave town.

This might be where the virtual-reality headsets could pay off.  Downsizers could take a convenient virtual tour of all the cheaper areas around the Southwest to see if anything is tempting!

Posted by on May 9, 2017 in Boomers, Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions | 1 comment