Housing Crash of the 90's

Asked by Dreamhome, Citrus Heights, CA Mon Apr 2, 2012

Does anyone know how long it took for the housing market to recover from the 1990's crash?

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James Tan’s answer
James Tan, Agent, elk grove, CA
Wed Apr 4, 2012
Hi Dreamhome,

I believe most people would agree that by 1995, the market was starting to recover. This coincides with the bull market due to the rise of the internet.

Remember though, that the 1990's housing bust was much worse in southern California than for northern California.

The recovery was also quicker in the san Francisco/san jose area than in Sacramento.

The current recovery (if there is one) is going to be a lot slower cause:
a. Interest rate is already close to zero and cannot be lower, but it will go up.
b. There's an implosion of demand, which will not recover unless credit becomes easier, especially for people who had shortsales.
c. There 's a huge inventory of delinquent mortgages, which will depress housing prices for some time unless Fannie Mae/Freddie take drastic measures.
d. There is no equivalent of the internet bubble which created trillions of wealth for people in silicon valley & California. (The social media bubble is not big enough, it only affects the peninsula) .
0 votes
Kylee Roe, Agent, Sacramento, CA
Wed Apr 4, 2012
Thanks Elizabeth.
Here's an interesting thought--just throwing it out there, not aimed at Elizabeth mind you. Or maybe you won't find it interesting at all.....

We talk about "recovery" as though in some way, it is "owed" to us that my condo will again and soon be worth $265 K and that inflated value in our property is our due, and defines our "recovery". Well, what we Realtors and all the consumers, real estate clientele, news media, wanna be buyers, etc. are failing to see is the recovery we are in.

Values are half of what they were in the recent boom years, but the Sacramento market is very alive--low inventory, high demand. Most homes for sale go into contract in 30 days or less. What is bad about this? Were you looking for a different scenario?

Interest rates are amazingly low, despite a recent inch upwards. First time buyer programs are readily available, if not abundant. Some lenders can offer downpayment assistance, or have programs where the lender can contribute closing costs to the purchase. FHA has a loan so a borrower with less down can still buy a fixer property and work on it (203K).

What is really the definition of recovery? We're pretty good right now!!!
1 vote
Jim Walker, Agent, Carmichael, CA
Mon Apr 2, 2012
It took the election of Bill Clinton to end the 1990's George Bush Senior real estate slump. The Disruption of the American economy that came with George Bush Junior was widespread, longer and worse.
1 vote
Kylee Roe, Agent, Sacramento, CA
Mon Apr 2, 2012
Elizabeth--when you say "like this" do you mean the most current crash --late 2000's or did you mean after the 1986 Tax Reform hit?

Dreamhome, I bought a condo in Citrus Heights in 1996 for 90K. By 2005, it was worth 265K. So there's a semblance of a timeline.

I agree with Dan, we here in Sacto are seeing bits of recovery, and hitting the bottom in price de-valuation. However, this rise and fall is different than the 90's crash and recovery--and lenders will behave differently in the future (one hopes!) about how loose they will be with their money, appraisals, etc.
1 vote
Steven Ornel…, Agent, Fremont, CA
Tue Apr 3, 2012

According to the timeline below the "90's Housing Crash" started in 1990 and ended 1997.

You may also find the following links of interest:

"Timeline of the United States housing bubble"

"The Housing Bubble and the Financial Crisis"

0 votes
John Arendsen, Agent, Leucadia, CA
Tue Apr 3, 2012
Well, I guess if we're going to make this a political finger pointing venue we could fall back to the S&L debacle of 1980 at the peak of the Jimmy Carter hyper-inflation era and 18 to 21 percent interest rates. That was indeed a crash that saw property devaluation of up to 50% in many communities.

"The S&Ls' experience yields three important lessons." "First, excessive regulation was the initial cause of the industry's problems. Second, federal deposit insurance was ultimately responsible for the high costs of the debacle. Finally, government-sponsored efforts to protect the industry only invited abuses and increased the ultimate cost of restructuring."


The advent of Reagan era "trickle down economics" usherd in a gradual RE recovery which excellerated and gained the momentum and carry over effect that contributed to and helped sustain the "Clinton Years" ground swell of economic prosperity whence RE realized one of the best periods of growth in history.

The second S&L crisis was actually spawned in 1987 with "Black Monday". This stock market crash led to the 1990-1992 recession which actually only lasted about 8 months officially. This was not necessarily political. Moreover it was a culmination of events one of which was Iraq's invasion of Kuwaitt which impacted oil prices.

There's a lot of history here and way to much for a short and/or concise answer to this queston. There's politics in everythig and it's easy to point fingers. The bottom line is that the less government has to do with controlling our lives the better. Just my opinion.
0 votes
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Mon Apr 2, 2012
It varied depending upon the market. I purchased a home in 88 and watched the value go up like a rocket until then, settle back a bit, but then it eventually started rising again.
This crash is different from 91, it had many more elements feeding the purchase frenzy, especially the looseness of money. We are beginning to see recovery in various pockets of the country while other areas are still in decline. I suspect things will eventually return over time, no one knows exactly how much time though.
0 votes
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