It was suggested that the market over $750,000 was “becoming non-existant”, and in yesterday’s seminar, a realtor said that demand in general was “non-existant”. 

Does a market exist? Let’s look at MLS detached active, actives on market more than 90 days, contingents and pendings, sold-in-last-30-days listings, plus the NODs and NOTS counts:

Price Range ACT 90+ %90+ CONT PEND C+P SOLD SOLD09 NOD NOT
0-$300K 1,389 399 29% 995 1,112 2,107
1,429 1,937
$301-$500 2,572 748 29% 886 1,304 2,190
1,482 2,498
$501-$700 1,691 546 32% 217 522 739
474 886
$701+ 3,058 1,374 45% 117 486 603
365 593

The under-$500,000 groups are running well under a ratio of 2:1 actives-to-contingents+pendings, which has been a healthy sign in the past. As long as the servicers can keep dripping out the short-sale approvals and loan mods, we could call the lower-end market survivable – though, surprisingly, it’s where the bulk of the defaults are.

The $500,001 to $700,000 market is 2.28:1 on their actives-to-contingents+pendings ratio, and the defaults are well under the number of active listings, so apparently there are elective sellers in this group that could cancel and try again later if they don’t find a buyer. Plus, a few from above should drop into this category to keep everyone hopping.

More than a third of all active listings are priced over $700,000, yet no big rush to the exits with 45% of those languishing on the market for more than 90 days. The low amount of defaults seem to justify the loitering, but with only 77 sales closed in the last 30 days, you have to wonder when sellers and agents are going to figure it out – isn’t it obvious that something is wrong after 90 days and no deal and 80+% of those around you aren’t selling either?

A commenter suggested that the higher-end sellers can’t lower their price, due to loan balance – we’ll review that next.

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