Overall in Kansas City, the inventory is decreasing. December of 2007, there were around 23,000 homes for sale; in June, we averaged 18-19,000. As the inventory continues to decrease and interest rates rise, home values, especially in the most popular areas, will level off and eventually start to rise. As this happens, buyers who can no longer qualify for mortgages in that price range will be forced to look at the surrounding areas which will cause those home prices to stabilize.
Kansas City has never seen the fluctuations that both coasts experience. Investors don't do as well here because of that. (they can't "make a killing" in our market; only a modest profit) But people who want to own their own home can still do so in our market. We are one of the places in the United States where a regular working person can afford to own their own home.
So, I guess it depends on where you are "just looking" and what kind of condition and neighborhood you choose to live in.
It's a holding pattern in some folks terms, it's a business plan in the hand of Starwood's CEO:
"W Atlanta Residences, Atlantaâ€™s only W-branded condos, has reduced prices up to 30 percent on many of its 65 remaining units. Luxury homes now range from the mid $200s, to more than $3 million.
W Atlanta Residences features just 74 units total, making W Atlanta Residences the best resale value in the Atlanta luxury condominium market. Check out life on the A-list at: http://www.wresidencesatlanta.com"
I read a quote from the Starwood CEO in the Business Chronicle back 2009 - I just researched it and found it again:
"...But not Frits van Paasschen, CEO of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. The top dog at White Plains, N.Y.-based Starwood (NYSE: HOT) wants his hotel company to â€œown the upswingâ€ when better times return..."
You either own it or you fret...read the New York Times article from yesterday in the web reference - how about a 5-9 year holding pattern, Debbie?
Most of my first time buyers end up losing their first choice for the home they purchase because they have believed the national media about the sad state of the housing market. They don't believe me when I tell them that Kansas City is not the same as the 150 markets that are used to gather the statistics. Nor do they feel any urgency in making an offer when we find a home that meets their criteria. At least not the first one. When that sells while they're thinking about it, they say "Wow, you were right, we should have made an offer. What can we do now?" Go find another home that meets your criteria and move on it.
Once these units sold and closed, the sellers of condo/townhouses will become buyers, and some will go down to buy at Gainesville GA area ...
Just click to CMA Grid http://msx.mlxchange.com/Pub/EmailView.asp?r=1730208536& to see 6 out of 9 just sold under attorney review !!! Wow! and for past year, several dozens sold and closed!!!
Our biggest problems are the volume of foreclosures on the market...and the media. Foreclosures are a tangible concern which cannot be denied, but the continuing negative (almost morbid) publicity directed against the market is more than a little bit disturbing. It has always been said that real estate drives the economy, and we're finding that to be true.now, only in the reverse.
I for one, am doing my best to convince my buyer clients that this is the right time to buy. For those who are waiting for the market to "bottom out", the only way you can know that's happened is after it has taken a bounce back up. And, that will tell you that you missed it!
So, here's my take on what we all need to do. Qualified buyers, it's the right time for you to step forward and buy. There are plenty of great deals to be made. Marginal buyers, step back for the moment and work on your credit, then come out and buy when you're ready. Unmotivated, overpriced sellers, take your property off the market. This isn't your time, and you're only getting in the way of those who have a real need to sell. And finally, let's all try to treat each other fairly. That should need no further explanation.
Good luck to all!