Here in Hawaii our market tends to follow California. Whatever movement or trends happen there tend to flow here whether sooner or later. The pundits say it takes 12-18 months but I experience that it happens a lot sooner. Our CEO posted this article from Real Trends to share the good news as we get ready for the weekend of open houses and prospecting here on Kauai.
September home sales show market beginning to stabilize as sales are up 1.9% in September 2008 over August 2008; Pricing pressure remains but is easing in a number of regions, according to REAL Trends.
Year-over-year results reverse from September as sales post 1.9 percent increase while prices down 9.6 percent versus decline of 11.9 percent in August. Increase in sales first signal that market for housing unit sales may be approaching bottom. REAL Trends believes that the market is showing sign of measurable improvement as closings increased slightly in September 2008 over August 2008.
It is more evidence of a "sloppy bottom", a term coined by Realogy CEO, Richard Smith, where monthly results seem to vary significantly from month to month. The strongest region was the West where unit closed were up 27.1% from a year ago. The Midwest was also up 7.9% from the same month a year ago. Lagging was the Northeast where closings were down 10.2% from a year ago.
Prices continued their softness with the average price of all closings was down 9.6%. This showed improvement from the August report where prices were down 11.9%. The best region was the Northeast where prices were off 3.9% and the worst region as far as price declines was in the West where average prices on closed homes were off 21.3%.
"These results are very promising and show that the housing market is moving towards a sustainable floor. We don't know what impact the decline in equity markets will have or the weakening general economy although historically none of this is good news for housing. A decline in interest rates and a significant rise in affordability may be enough to offset some of the other negative economic news.
While one month does not make for any confirmation of a housing market turnaround, housing consumers and investors are buying up significant numbers of lower priced foreclosures according to brokerage firms and sales professionals. Any strong housing turnaround will start with recovery at the entry level. The recovery in closings in California, Arizona, Nevada and Florida due to sales of lower priced homes is a signal that Americans continue to see housing as a good investment."
September 2008 August 2008
Closed Sales AVG Price Closed Sales AVG Price
National +1.9% -9.6% -17.5% -11.9%
Northeast -10.2% -3.9% -23.4% -4.3%
South -8.6% -5.0% -19.8% -12.9%
Midwest +7.8% -11.1% -19.1% -7.5%
West +27.1% -21.2% -6.1% -21.3%
Now the Californians and Arizonian's just need to get on a plane here and we'll show them what value looks like on Kauai, right?
Ron Margolis, RA, CDPE, ABR Hawaii Life Real Estate Services 808.346.7095 email: email@example.com