Whenever I write a column, I always want to be optimistic. Optimism is a human condition. That is where we all want to be. You will see some numbers from January that would seem to indicate there is a light at the end of tunnel. Now, there is nothing I would like more than to tell you that things are looking up and 2005 is here again ! We are not there yet..
Remember the old saying that “liars figure and figures lie.” For example, what the federal government and the National Association of Realtors do not include in their reports is the “shadow inventory.” This is comprised of literally hundreds of thousands of foreclosed homes that have not been relisted yet. Believe it or not the lenders don’t always get these marketed immediately.
. Another significant omission from the stats is the “expired and terminated listings” where owners have removed their listings waiting to relist when the market improves. So, the Plano home inventory and the days on market stats are skewed and look better than they really are. See below.
We all know the real estate market has been in the toilet for the past few years, and that nobody’s buying. It’s tough to buy a house when you have no money and no one will offer you credit. Having said this it must be noticed that north central Texas has tumbled the least (although Collin County had the largest increase in foreclosures last month over Denton and Dallas counties). Prosper homes, McKinney homes and Frisco homes statistics are similar to Plano homes. We know that markets that hold up the best in a recession are generally the first to rebound. So, eventually Plano may lead the way.
The home market is usually cyclical and history tells us it is usually 3 to 4 years. We know that half of California and Michigan would move to Texas if they could sell their present homes. And many will. In addition, there are a lot of buyers sitting on the side lines looking for further declines in home prices. So, we know there is a lot of pent up demand out there. When demand finally surpasses supply we will be on the upswing.
What this all means to Plano-ites if you are thinking of selling…hold off and if you are thinking of buying proceed cautiously and drive a hard bargain. To learn more go to http://billremington.com
The truth is that no one will be able to forecast the bottom. We will only know this in hindsight as we begin to recover. As they say on Fox news channel, “we report…you decide. Here are the January stats for Plano homes in Texas:
New listings…379 down from 503 (-25%) in 08′
Closed sales…141 down from 219 (-36%) in 08′
Median sales prices…$234k down from $250k ( -9%) in 08′
% asked vs. sold price 92% down 1.3% in 08′
Average days on market…98 down from 112 (-12%) in 08′
Plano Home Inventory…988 down from 1499(-34%) in 08′