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Monday, June 6, 2011

Case-Schiller - Schmiller we don't need no double dip

The recent Case-Schiller report on the national real estate market showed real evidence that the market has indeed entered a double dip- a second decline in home values, after a short "recovery" earlier in the year.

Of course all real estate is local, so the national trend may not apply in your area. In fact, in my home market of Milford, Michigan, we appear to be defying the odds - see chart below from Altos Research:

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Milford home values turned around earlier in the year and continue to rise and the inventory in the local market is going up, too. Inventory is still low, compared to historic levels, but more people are apparently feeling good about listing their homes (or maybe they just gave up waiting out this mess).

Such is not the case right next door in Highland. There the home value decline turned around in April, but inventory continues to decline.

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

And if one looks at the White Lake market it is hard to see more than a tiny blip that even looked like things were getting better. The malaise continues in that market.

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Finally, there is the Commerce Township Market, which has taken off so fast that the inventory can't keep up with the demand. Since April the Commerce market has come roaring back, in terms of median sold home prices and the inventory has struggled to keep up.

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Both White Lake and Highland also continue to top the 50% mark in terms of the percentage of home sales that are foreclosures or short sales - not an encouraging sign of things getting better.

I certainly hope that our market is a leading indicator of a robust recovery (at least in some of the sub-markets) and not just lagging the national scene. I've listed five houses since the turn of the year, which is good; however, I still have all five on the market, which is not so good. We still need more buyers in the mid-price range ($200-$400K), which is where most of my listings are priced.

So Mr. Case and Mr. Schiller can report all they wish about a double dip in housing. We seem to have been happy with our Single, prolonged dip - thank you very much. We're off to a new, better market without them.

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