What Realtors and developers refer to as "vibrant" translates to "unaffordable" for those looking for a home. How is wanting housing unaffordable to boost their commissions and profit not a sign of greed? It is the definition of greed.
Don't blame real estate people for the current housing crunch. Its a situation of lower net wages, higher energy costs and less than honorable tactics by large lending organizations, as they "sucker-punched" consumers. Remember the loan offers of 1% (for six months) and "pay what you want" offers, as recent as 2006??? So, how are realtors responsible for that?
I am quite realistic that we (the nations home owners) are in for several years of "rough weather". I have personally purchased a home with interest rates in the high teens ( 17% in 1984) and inflation through the roof. But working 2 jobs, and doing whatever it took to make sure that we made every payment in order to keep the house.
I try to educate my Buyers about "getting back to basics". Buy within your comfort level, don't buy the McMansion if a smaller home will fit your needs. Plus, people got used to using their rising home values as a "bank" and continued to pull out equity, sometimes to finance fancy cars, vacations etc. People need to understand that the goal is to eventually pay off the mortgage and own your home (not the bank)
We, "the Realtors" do not create the home values. The Buyers in the market determine what they are willing to pay. I don't "sell" homes. I can't put a pen in someone's hand and force them to "BUY" anything.
Maybe we have to get back to learning how to save for a downpayment, not expecting that we deserve to have "what the Joneses" have. Live within our means, and not using the mighty credit card , maybe our economy "house of cards" might stabilize.
Just a thought.
Yes, I am definitely seeing more activity in homes priced under $225,000 in the Madison area. Showings have increased significantly since April, I've had 2 offers in the past 10 days and am experiencing the same scenario as Karen described with entry-level buyers on smartly priced homes. I think it is signaling the bottoming out of the housing market . Its a great sign and I'm thrilled!!
Yes, I too am seeing a slight increase in activity here in the Milwaukee area. Lower priced homes (under $200,000 are starting to get more showings and I had 2 recent situations with Buyers, where I sent them listings to see, and by the time we set up showings (within 24 hrs) they both had accepted offers.
Hopefully the trend will continue, and "trickle up"...