As for the housing market and what home prices are doing nationally right now, Clear Capital, Zillow and Case-Shiller are all saying generally the same thing, despite offering slightly conflicting home price numbers. The home buyer tax credits pushed prices up a bit in 2009 through 2010. When they expired, prices dropped down past 2009 lows in response during fall and winter. After a rough start to the high selling season of spring and summer, due to weather and other outside variables, that price drop is slowing down and stabilizing. You can expect prices to drop further this year, but those drops will be less dramatic than we have seen in the past. A housing market recovery will come, but we’re anywhere from a year to three years off. In the meantime, we are close to or bouncing along the bottom in most markets.
And with a slightly improving … or even a less declining market … it’s taking a little more for buyers to purchase a home. Values are in the current market price and not in how much further that price can be lowered. Multiple offers on properties are common and, from what I read in the Washington Post, we’re not alone:
With all the bad news about the national housing market, it may come as a shock to eager Washington area home shoppers when they run into a bidding war. But that has been happening routinely in some popular neighborhoods, say real estate agents, especially when properties are priced slightly under the market and are in good condition or show strong promise for renovation.
For those buyers who feel like they’re missing the boat on the down market, you aren’t. But the tide’s definitely changing. More and more, it might be time to loose the bow lines and take the voyage.