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Monday, August 23, 2010

How time flies...

I updated the Days on Market Chart on my web site this morning, after letting it languish for several months it turns out. It didn't seem like it had been that long,but when I remembered it and went to look, it was last updated in May, which was 3-4 months ago. Wow, how time flies.

I have been focusing my attention on the weekly updates to the sold statistics for the 6 local markets that I track and I guess I just plain forgot about the old DOM Chart. That chart is useful for a couple of reasons - it shows what the inventory is in several different price bands in those 6 market and it show how the long the inventory is averaging on the market, which may give he buyer some idea of his/her bargaining position and the would-be seller a good idea about the competition and the length of time on the market to plan for.

If you combine the DOM statistics with the local market sold statistics you get a fairly good picture of the local market. Since I don't keep old charts for the DOM statistic, it is somewhat just my own recollection about it that leads me to believe that many sellers have abandoned the market or new would-be sellers have held off getting on the market. I say that because the inventory levels are down quite a bit in several price bands, especially those over $300K.

Locally, Milford still leads the pack in terms of stubborn sellers, with homes over $400K now out to about 2 years on the market on average. I tell people with higher-end homes in that market that it is a false indicator of retained value, if the homes aren't selling. Refusing to lower one's price to the level of the market does hold the perceived "value" of the properties up, but really only in the eyes of the sellers. To the market in general, they are just seen as overpriced houses.

So, visit one of my Web sites - either or and take a lookat teh local market statistics. I believe that these are the only places that you will find the level of detail and some of the derived statstics that are posted there about the 6 local markets that I track on a weekly basis.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

But don't stop dreaming...

“The thing you have to be prepared for is that other people don’t always dream your dream.” (Linda Ronstadt)

Ain't that the truth. As I (we all) struggle through the current recession I find myself having to restart, re-energize and re-visualize (dream) what success will look and feel like, whether it is in real estate or in my other job selling office copiers/printers. People whom I call upon don't always share my dream (vision) of them happily buying a house or a copier/printer.

Right now I'm working through a campaign to sell new multifunction machines to real estate offices, which is something that I know more than a little bit about. I know where the savings are in those offices, but getting people to share my vision about how to achieve those savings hasn't been easy. Business people, especially small business people seem to be frozen into inactivity by the fear that things are still going to get worse rather than better.

The same thing is happening in real estate. People who want to move or maybe even need to move are holding off putting their homes on the market because they think that if they wait for a while home values will stabilize or maybe come back. While that eventually will be true, the timing on that happening is very much up in the air. In last weekend's paper there was yet another "We've hit bottom" article that quoted a hopeful local real estate broker as stating that he feels that the bottom has been reached in the Detroit-area market and that values will start back up soon. Having written such an article several times in the past, I'm now skeptical about whether or not we've hit bottom in Michigan. But, hey, one can dream. Right?

So, to paraphrase the words of another song - "Don't stop thinkin' about'll be better than before." Don't stop dreaming. Just be prepared to deal with the fact that not everyone else will be sharing your dream and that's OK, too.