Showing posts with label NAR. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NAR. Show all posts

Thursday, February 11, 2010

NAR Housing Affordability Index Useless

NAR Housing Affordability Index Useless
REALTOR Group's Housing Affordability Index Says Housing Has Never Been Unaffordable

According to this Seeking Alpha article, What's Wrong with the NAR Affordability Index?, the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) Housing Affordability Index (HAI) is utterly useless. The article states "housing never dipped into the level of unaffordable over the entire giant housing boom. This is mind bogglingly astonishing. If the affordability index failed to show housing was unaffordable during 2005-06, when would it ever show that?" In short, according to the NAR Housing Affordability Index (since 1989 when the HAI was created) housing has never been "unaffordable" (see graph below). This is absolutely absurd. How can prices fall so much from 2005 levels and those 2005 levels not be seen as unaffordable? It makes no sense and neither does the NAR HAI - it is absolutely useless.

NAR Housing Affordability Index Useless - Says Housing Has Never Been Unaffordable

As the graph indicates, a NAR HAI reading of under 100 means homes are relatively unaffordable. As you can see, the NAR HAI never goes below 100 so it means that NAR wants people to believe that homes have always been affordable. Therefore, when you hear NAR say "homes are affordable and interest rates are low, etc." please dismiss it as fools gold. It is a worthless statement. Unfortunately, the latest wave of buyers that purchased homes, particularly the first time tax credit buyers, fell victim to this nonsense and, as a result, many of them will be the next round of short sales and foreclosures.

If you are a home buyer or real estate investor in Middle Tennessee who is interested in purchasing a Fannie Mae foreclosure, a Freddie Mac foreclosure, bank foreclosure or REO, a short sale, home, investmenr ptoperty, condo, or other distressed real estate in order to get a great home or investment property at an attractive price without dealing with the difficult REO/foreclosure listing agents and you want aggressive and professional buyer representation, please contact me, or visit my website Search the Nashville Tennessee MLS and Middle Tennessee MLS - Find Nashville TN and Middle TN Short Sales, Pre-foreclosures, Foreclosures & REO's so that you can purchase foreclosed homes, short sale homes and other distressed real estate and properties in Nashville TN and Middle TN. I help home buyers in the Nashville Tennessee and Middle Tennessee Area (Rutherford County TN, Williamson County TN, Davidson County TN, Murfreesboro TN, Smyrna TN, La Vergne TN, Eagleville TN, Lascassas TN, Rockvale TN, Christiana TN, Brentwood TN, Franklin TN, Nashville TN, Belle Meade TN, Nolensville TN, Springfield TN, Gallatin TN and Mt. Juliet TN).

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Real Estate Fiction

Real Estate Fiction

According to this (NAR) article, Headed in the Right Direction, things are looking up for real estate. The article quotes, Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS (NAR), as saying "With home sales heading up and inventories shrinking, prices are stabilizing. These are the key conditions needed for housing to lead the economy into growth mode. Once that happens, jobs will follow." I have never heard such fiction in my life. Housing prices need to stabilize so that the economy will grow and jobs will return! What!? IT IS THE OTHER WAY AROUND LAWRENCE! The economy needs to start growing so that jobs will return so that housing can then recover. The only way housing can recover without job growth is if people borrow more to make up for the fact that they are making less money. The problem is that this is want caused the financial mess in the first place. A backwards real estate market recovery will just lead to more short sales and foreclosures in the future. Please stop producing real estate fiction! We need a sustainable real estate market recovery and that can only happen AFTER jobs return.

If you are a Middle TN homeowner, property owner, real estate investor, home builder or real estate developer who cannot pay your mortgage payments (due to losing your job, having your income reduced, illness, health problems, adverse business conditions, slow sales, loss of investment property tenants, vacancy issues, lack of funds to complete the project, feuding business partners, etc.), know that you will not be able to pay your mortgage, have defaulted on your mortgage, are already in foreclosure, or owe more than your home is worth, please contact me to discuss your options including a loan modification and a short sale (a real estate short sale occurs when the sale proceeds are not sufficient to pay off all the mortgages and liens on the property/home). I am a Middle Tennessee distressed real estate, short sale, pre-foreclosure (preforeclosure) and foreclosure REALTOR and Expert. I primarily help sellers (homeowners, property owners, real estate investors, home builders and real estate developers) of distressed real estate, short sales, pre-foreclosures, foreclosures, investment properties, failed new construction projects and struggling commercial real estate developments located in and around Middle Tennessee (Rutherford County TN, Williamson County TN, Davidson County TN, Murfreesboro TN, Smyrna TN, La Vergne TN, Eagleville TN, Lascassas TN, Rockvale TN, Christiana TN, Brentwood TN, Franklin TN, Nashville TN and Belle Meade TN).  If you do need to short sell your home or property, or you need a quick sale due to being in foreclosure, you can request short sale and foreclosure help and assistance on my website at Get Short Sale and Foreclosure Help and Assistance from a Middle Tennessee Short Sale and Foreclosure REALTOR and Real Estate Expert.

Monday, September 28, 2009

National Association of REALTORS: Existing-Home Sales Decline in August 2009

According to this National Association of REALTORS (NAR) news release, Existing-Home Sales Ease Following Four Monthly Gains, sales of existing homes (includes single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops) declined by 2.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.10 million units in August 2009 from a pace of 5.24 million in July 2009. According to NAR, this is 3.4% above the 4.93 million-unit level in August 2008. Over the previous four month span from April 2009 through July 2009, sales had risen a total of 15.2%.

The news release states that according to Lawrence Yun, NAR Chief Economist, the first time home buyer tax credit is working. The release quotes Yun as saying "Home sales retrenched from a very strong improvement in July but continue to be much higher than before the stimulus. The first-time buyer tax credit is having the intended impact of bringing buyers into the market, allowing them to take advantage of very favorable affordability conditions. Some of the give-back in closed sales appears to result from rising numbers of contracts entering the system, with some fallouts and a backlog contributing to a longer closing process, but the decline demonstrates we can’t take a housing rebound for granted."

The news release goes on to state that a NAR practitioner survey shows that for August 2009, first-time buyers accounted for 30% of home sales and that distressed homes accounted for 31% of home sales. Both of these figures were unchanged from July 2009.

The release goes on to quote Yun as saying "The recent trend shows broad improvement in most of the country, but with an expected rise in foreclosures over the next 12 months we need to maintain a healthy level of ready buyers to absorb the inventory. An extension of the tax credit is critical to preserve incentives for financially qualified buyers to enter the market. Now that the market is showing some momentum, we have an opportunity to achieve a more rapid and broader stabilization in home prices. Extending and expanding the tax credit also would help to keep other families from becoming upside down in their mortgages or risk foreclosure. When home prices show sustained gains, credit will become more widely available to other sectors because Wall Street will be able to price risks confidently. Stable home values will also allow more families to purchase consumer products and provide a strong boost for the broader economy."

According to the news release, in the Southern US, existing-home sales were down 3.1% to an annual pace of 1.89 million in August, but are 1.6% above August 2008. The median price in the South was $157,400, which is 11.0% lower than the same period in 2008.

While this seems fine and dandy, I have a problems with the "spin" on these statistics.
  • Number of Home Sales - Other than for REALTORS and other folks who generate income when homes sell, and as a result, need to turn units, this figure is just not that important unless it reaches extreme levels as it says little about the overall health of the housing market.  For example, if homes were worth $1 there would be a lot of sales, but the market would be devastated.
  • Home Prices - The sale prices of homes declined by 10%+ in every region of the US.  This is further evidence that the market has not hit bottom yet.
  • Tax Credit - I find Yun's comments including "An extension of the tax credit is critical to preserve incentives for financially qualified buyers to enter the market." to be laughable.  First, qualified buyers do not need a government subsidy to "enter the market" buy a home. What they need are AFFORDABLE HOMES, which the market is giving us as only a free market can!  We do not need an artificial government subsidy that will temporarily inflate home prices only to see those prices fall when the subsidy is discontinued. Yun says he want to have home prices "show sustained gains" so that "credit will become more widely available." Given that this whole financial mess was caused by credit being too widely available it is utterly foolish to try to expand credit further.  All we need to save the economy is to have homes reach prices that are sustainable based on people's incomes, not debt.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Be Wary of So Called "Good News"

According to this Reuters article, Pace of U.S. existing home sales fastest in 2 years, sales of previously owned homes increased by 7.2% in July 2009, to the fastest pace in nearly 2 years. That all sounds great, but later in the article it states "The inventory of existing homes for sale in July rose 7.3 percent to 4.09 million units from the previous month, NAR said. At July's sales pace, that represented a 9.4 months' supply, the same as in June."

Here is why that statement is foolish.  Sales are a subset of Inventory (you cannot have more sales than there are homes for sale).  If Inventory increases at a higher rate than sales and Inventory is a larger number to begin with then it is simple math to say that the overall number of homes for sale (i.e. Inventory) actually INCREASED.  The article spins this by using July's home sales number and then comparing that to the new Inventory level to conclude that total Inventory remained the same as June at 9.4 months supply.  Now ask yourself, is July a peak selling month?  If so, does it make sense to divide the new Inventory figure by a peak sales figure and state that Inventory has not increased?  Of course it doesn't.  Therefore, mark my words, the actual supply of homes for sale (i.e. Inventory) has indeed increased which is bad news for the real estate market.