August doldrums

Posted by: Amey Stone on August 10, 2005

Signs of cracks in the real estate market are appearing (rising inventories, more price markdowns in some markets). I feel it here in New York, where it has been more than a week since anyone has come to see our fabulous apartment (on the market in combination with our neighbor’s place for six weeks and counting).

But wait, isn’t this August? Even worse, late August starts next week. That’s vacation time — soon to be followed by back-to-school time (an incredibly hectic period anyone with kids can attest). It’s hardly home-shopping season.

So, while I see signs the housing market is cooling, I wonder if it is just temporary. Will the buyers be back in droves in mid-September? It wouldn’t surprise me a bit.

Reader Comments

Martin

August 12, 2005 2:19 PM

It all about marketing and what you have to market. The days of just selling square footage and nothing else may be over. But unique properties will continue to hold high prices especially in areas like New York. For buyers don't buy fades but quality. Check out SOFI in Manhattan. A small area from 32nd to 38th street on Fifth Avenue. There are four residential buildings there that I know of (445,425,372 and 325 Fifth Avenue). Does not take a genius to figure out a Fifth Avenue address will always be a solid investment.

David

August 13, 2005 4:48 PM

The terrible 9 are destined to literally cream the housing market:

1. new mandated increases in minimum credit card payments (in most cases they increase by five-fold)

2. higher mortgage rates

3. higher gas and energy costs

4. flatting yield curve making...

5. mortgages loans riskier and less profitable which in turn causes...

6. tightening of credit standards

7. the refinance game is now officially over

8. tax cuts and rebates are gone with the wind

9. and the final fool theory comes to fruition

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About

BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.

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