By Mike Colpitts
The new president of the National Association of Realtors says that home prices have gotten so low there’s only one way for them to go – up.
“People realize that homeownership is an investment in their future. Given an apparent over correction in most areas, over the long term home prices have nowhere to go but up,” said NAR president Moe Veissi, a Miami, Florida real estate broker, who has also served as president for his local board in one of America’s sunniest capitals.
Veissi’s gun-shot analysis of the housing market may have some credulity considering that home values in most of the country are declining for the sixth straight year and sooner or later should hit the bottom of the market.
Home and condo prices are already climbing in Miami, one of the nation’s hardest hit markets in terms of foreclosures. Housing inventory at the end of February also rose 4.3% to 2.43 million existing homes listed for sale in the U.S., according to NAR. The figure represents an average supply of 6.4 months, but the hardest hit cities in the country have much greater supplies.
However, the inventory is at least trending down from a record 4.04 million homes in July 2007, and is 19.3% lower than a year ago. A healthy or balanced supply average is considered to be 6 months.
The supply does not, however, include an estimated 4.2 million properties in the shadow inventory of homes that have either been waiting to be foreclosed or are not counted yet by lenders as foreclosures since they have not yet been formally repossessed.
Markets in the Midwest and Northern tier states continue to show strong evidence of strengthening markets, with lower inventories of homes and increasing home values.