First up in today’s news quickies is word from Snohomish County that—guess what?— the housing boom has ended. No, seriously. The party is over.
Snohomish County’s housing boom is over.
Builders are laying off workers, houses are staying on the market longer, and the overall number of permit applications has dropped by hundreds compared to last year.
“Nearly every developer has or is contemplating layoffs, and it’s because of the slowdown in the market,” said Mike Pattison of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties.
“The housing peak is over,” said Todd Britsch, president of Bothell-based New Home Trends, which tracks new construction. “These type of frenzies come around every 20 years.”
Instead, the region will see a normal and healthy housing market, Britsch said.
“The market is going into — and homebuyers need to understand this — a normal, sustainable, healthy housing market, and we’ll see an average appreciation of 3 percent a year for the next three or four years. Then we’ll start this cycle all over again. In five years, we may reach 10 percent a year.”
And what evidence does Mr. Britsch bring to the table to support his claim that we are transitioning to a “normal, sustainable, healthy” market? Nothing! That’s right, no evidence whatsoever. But the article is definitely heavy on optimism. It’s full of all kinds of quotes from builders and realtors about “natural cycles” and “fantastic numbers.” You keep the faith, boys.
(Jeff Switzer, Everett Herald, 10.07.2007)