When people read Bernake or Greenspan say "now is the time to buy" then things will pick up :-)
Much safer to buy on the way back up and miss the bottom, than guess at the bottom and be wrong on the way down right?
By the way... I am looking to buy - but I can't blame people who are scared literally stiff. I just figure Warren Buffet knew what he was talking about when he said "when others are fearful, be greedy - and when others are greedy, be fearful." So I figure it is the time for the smart contrarian to buy...CAREFULLY
There are many factors causing this situation
Banks and mortgage companies are going bankrupt. http://(www.MortgageGraveyard.com)
Prices are too high
Interest rates are too high
Over 1 million foreclosures last year. 2 million foreclosure expected this year. I'm going to guess 3 million foreclosures in 2009. Do you see the pattern? In my opinion this will continue into 2011. From the 2006 peak of the housing bubble, all the 2,3,5 year ARMs will reset.
Real estate is a risky investment right now. Many economists are saying "peak to trough" 15% declines in real estate values. In my opinion, they are being optimistic. Right now, nobody knows where the "bottom" is.
The FED cut interest rates drastically, and long term interest rates still going up. Do you know why? Because banks also know that real estate is risky business, banks have already lost billions. Many are going bankrupt. Do you know CountryWide bank? The biggest mortgage lender in the US. look at their stock CFC over the last year, what do you see? See the pattern?
Many people who qualifed for loans in the bubble period will not qualify for loans now, so this effectively reduces the number of qualified buyers. You are correct about "inventory is up", but that is not necessarily a good thing. There are many vacant houses, that bring down the values of neighboring houses.
Basically all the uneducated buyers have bought houses by now. Unfortunately, some of them will find themselves in the underwater situation, where they paid more for their house than it is worth. They are the future foreclosures I spoke of earlier.
In a way this area, Hampton roads, has avoided a direct hit. The crash here will happen more slowly, mostly because this has govt and military money flowing through the area. The US taxpayer is paying 94 billion per year for the war, and a bunch of that flows through this area. That could change soon, depends on the election. It will crash faster here if they pull the plug on the war.
The cost of renting is 1/2 the cost of buying. Many people say that housing prices are not aligned with rent and income, the way they were before the bubble.
Too many factors to list really. The smart buyer, right now, is waiting. They do not need to be told when to buy. Of course, if no sales for you, then you will be told when to sell.
ps the link is an article today about February 2008 Forclosures up 60%
If you want to see foreclosure listing in virginia goto
google REO there are many.
I enjoyed Mark's reply. Personally I think Mark is 100% correct. Is this the time to buy, or better stated is this the time to begin looking and planning? We think that this question is really a regional question that needs to answered based on the area you are looking to buyer. For example, this is the worst time to be buying in Miami unless you are on the grown in Miami and can really work the market. Miami has 20-35% more to go. On the other hand, this may be a great time to be buying in San Diego or coastal South Carolina. San Diego has hundreds of beautiful condos at amazing prices and I am 100% that they will stay this way for long. Same with coastal SC, we have been selling their as fast as we can. Buy when you are ready....do your homework and pay attention to the local market.
The Schaffer Realty Group