Wow, how could I forget this gem from November 2007? National Association of Realtors “Chief Economist” Lawrence Yun: Seattle a "superstar" market
Seattle is becoming a “superstar” market, where housing costs may never settle back into historical relationships to incomes, a national analyst declared on Tuesday.
Speaking at the annual conference of the National Association of Realtors, association Chief Economist Lawrence Yun used comparisons of mortgage payments to incomes to put much of the nation in a positive light.
“If anything, middle America appears to be under priced,” he said.
But it’s also possible that some [coastal cities] are joining the ranks of international cities like London, Paris, San Francisco and New York, where costs are less tied to incomes, he said. “Now I’m beginning to think: Miami, Seattle, are they becoming superstar markets?”
Many wealthy baby boomers are moving to Miami, Yun said. “In Seattle, Microsoft millionaires are there.”
While the Seattle area’s job market is still strong, Yun said the affordability crunch caused by rising home costs would slow sales and cause prices to plateau.
“I feel that the Seattle market is very healthy in terms of the local job market conditions,” he said. “I don’t see any prolonged price declines.”
Lawrence Yun has since moved on to a successful career as a stand-up comedian. Wait, nope. He’s still the NAR’s primary mouthpiece, despite having been completely and thoroughly discredited.
“Going into 2008, I see it as a year of opportunity,” he said.
Flashing an image of stampeding horses, Yun said: “It’s just a question of unleashing this pent up demand to the market.”
Yun predicted prices would remain essentially flat in 2008, while sales would increase slightly.
“We are hitting low right now,” he said.
Just a few months after these claims, he was at it again in February 2008: Economist: Seattle-area home prices manageable for typical workers
Seattle-area home prices are manageable for typical workers, according to the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors.
“You may even say Seattle is underpriced if you believe Seattle is becoming a superstar city,” Lawrence Yun told area brokers in Bellevue on Thursday. “Seattle is underpriced in relation to other West Coast markets.”