Thousands of Sellers Gave Up in June

Those of you that have been following King County inventory may have noticed something a little odd about June’s official end-of-month inventory count from the NWMLS. While the number of listings appearing on local home search sites seemed to indicate that June’s inventory would be a few hundred higher than May, the NWMLS statistics for the month showed a drop of nearly 500.

In order to satisfy my curiosity on this, I went back to the listings chart we have used in a couple previous posts, and there was definitely something unusual about June:

King County SFH Listings Breakdown
Click to enlarge

The number of new listings (light blue) declined slightly from May to June, just as it did last year. The number of sales (green) increased slightly, which was opposite the move from last year. But the interesting thing is the number of homes that were simply pulled off the market with no sale (red): 2,262 in June vs. 1,459 in May—a 55% increase.

I’m not alleging that this implies any sort of funny business. I just find it interesting that so many people would suddenly give up all at once like that. With 2,262 homes delisted and only 1,965 sales, last month marks the first time on record (back to 2000) that there have been more delistings than sales in a spring or summer month.

Does this signal a shift in the mentality of home sellers in King County? Are the “voluntary sellers” pulling their homes off the market, leaving only those that “must” sell? I think these are interesting questions to consider. We should keep an eye on the inventory and sales statistics in the coming months to shed more light on this matter.

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About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.

132 comments:

  1. 1
    mukoh says:

    IMHO Banks have increased their extensions and refinancing to people who are on the edge of losing. Saw at least 120 bank headed properties in my particular target come back to sellers with new deeds, same bank, and or modification of loans.

  2. 2
    deejayoh says:

    Do you think people might have been trying to beat the change to reporting CDOM? I am not sure how that worked, but possibly people wanted to reset the clock?

    of course, we don’t seem to be seeing the listings coming back online now, so that probably puts a fork in that theory

  3. 3
    Rentersarelosers says:

    Voluntary sellers are also delisting, why compete with the desperate sellers?
    It should result in a more balanced market and stable to higher prices in the near term.

    Maybe the bottom really was in January February 2008?

  4. 4
    Lake Hills Renter says:

    Maybe it’s sellers banding together to teach us reluctant buyers a lesson. Pull their houses off the market and make prices go up. That’ll teach us!

    At least, that’s the idea according to at least a few realtors.

  5. 5
    Rentersarelosers says:

    Lake Hills Renter,

    For crying out loud it’s not a conspiracy!

  6. 6
    jon says:

    My theory is that these are the houses that are STI and can’t be shown on MLS anymore, but they aren’t sold either.

  7. 7
    james says:

    As an agent, I know of several sellers that are tired of the current market. Most don’t have to sell, they’d just like to sell. Some are sick of “lowball” offers, some want to wait for a more favorable market. Some are on vacation and have given up on the idea of selling this year. You can’t force sellers to give away thier equity, even if it was only paper equity. The market is quite literally, dead. As a agent, we haven’t seen the bottom yet, and prices should continue to drop.

  8. 8
    mukoh says:

    Its also the FNMA guidelines up to $500k. Banks modifying loans to keep people afloat and modification of the same loan to FNMA guidelines instead of foreclosing it. For later sale to them backed by the good old printing press. It is back to 2001-2002 FNMA buying 90% of the loans. :)

    Strongest owners will get modified the weakest of the weak will have to go to the court house steps and run away from there.

  9. 9
    AndyMiami says:

    Rentersarelosers // Jul 17, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    Voluntary sellers are also delisting, why compete with the desperate sellers?
    It should result in a more balanced market and stable to higher prices in the near term.

    Maybe the bottom really was in January February 2008?

    GET OFF DRUGS…whatever you are on. And if you are not on drugs, then you should try them…

  10. 10

    RAL-

    I find you quite entertaining. Your constant bottom call is hilarious.

    As for the delistings, I’ve known a few people that have delisted so ‘they don’t have to sell when the market is bad’. Presumably, it will be a better time to sell after their house has dropped 40% in value.

    Great chart Tim.

  11. 11
    Garth says:

    The CDOM / STI change is the best guess I think.

    A neighbor told me they sold their house about 3 months ago, it showed STI for a while, then MLS made changes and it looked as though it never was listed and then this week it showed up as sold and the new people moved in.

  12. 12
    The Tim says:

    jon @ 6:

    My theory is that these are the houses that are STI and can’t be shown on MLS anymore, but they aren’t sold either.

    Wouldn’t STI listings be counted as pending sales? Perhaps an agent can clear this up for us.

  13. 13
    Thomas B. says:

    Interesting. I’ve noticed a new townhouse development that was completed about a month ago add signs stating that they were for lease. I also noticed an apartment to condo conversion add signs that they were leasing (those have been on the market for over a year now). I think a lot of developers realize the soft market and want to get some money out of their projects. I was actually thinking about moving into one of the townhomes.

  14. 14
    TheHulk says:

    RAL is getting more and more delusional by the day. Its outright funny and kinda sad at the same time.

    That said, put yourself in the RALs shoes….

    Realtor : comps in your area sold for 300K
    RAL: My house is so much better maintained, plus my lovely upgrades! Didn’t you see my lovely basement. Mom! didn’t you show him the basement. It must be at least worth 550K.
    Realtor: (Aw shucks this person is such an idiot, but I need the bloody 3% for my OWN mortgage) Yes sir, your house is indeed lovely but this is a tough market.
    RAL: (Sticks fingers in his ears lalalalalalalala)
    Realtor: Yes sir you are completely right. We must list it at 550K
    … 2 months later, no offers
    Realtor: Maybe we should bring down the price a tad. How about 500K.
    RAL: Are you nuts? I wont go any lower than 530K!!
    Realtor: (sighs) lets go with 530K
    RAL: (Surfs the web finds seattlebubble and rants a little)
    … 2 months later no offers except one for 250K which would make RAL 50K underwater.
    RAL: (Desperately watches the news for anything remotely positive, as soon as he sees something comes and rants here.)
    … Yesterday:
    Realtor: The market is really tanking. We haven’t received any offers at all. I even hinted at higher interest rates to the 5 people who came to see your house (hides a smirk since 3 of them were looking for directions to the much nicer house a couple of miles away). Maybe we should relist at 200K in a couple of months.
    RAL: (banging away at his keyboard, barely looking at his agent, ranting away on Seattlebubble) Yeah yeah whatever. (RAL starts shouting “RentersAreLosers, RentersAreLosers…)
    Realtor: (ooooookkkkk) slowly steps out and swears to god never to come back to RALs dump again.

    Very much tongue in cheek people, very much tongue in cheek.

  15. 15
    Rentersarelosers says:

    I find you quite entertaining. Your constant bottom call is hilarious.
    GET OFF DRUGS…whatever you are on. And if you are not on drugs, then you should try them
    ………….

    You are a bunch of condescending a holes.
    Your opinions are valid while opposing opinions are not.

    Glad I am off the market so I don’t have to deal with you immature douchebags.

  16. 16
    jon says:

    “Wouldn’t STI listings be counted as pending sales? ”

    I’m not sure, but STI has not yet reached the Purchase and Sale agreement. I think after P&S it is a pending sale.

  17. 17
    Rentersarelosers says:

    TheHulk

    Well done. Bravo.
    Wrong on all counts but who cares.

  18. 18
    AndyMiami says:

    I find you quite entertaining. Your constant bottom call is hilarious.
    GET OFF DRUGS…whatever you are on. And if you are not on drugs, then you should try them
    ………….

    You are a bunch of condescending a holes.
    Your opinions are valid while opposing opinions are not.

    So, does that mean you are on drugs..

  19. 19
    mukoh says:

    Jon,
    STI is already with signed around and mutually accepted P&S agreement in escrow.

  20. 20
    laxtosnoco says:

    Interesting post. I think you’re probably onto something about people who don’t have to sell taking their houses off the market.

    Still, given the much higher inventory and slow sales, shouldn’t we expect to see more de-listings? Many listing agreements expire after a set period of time (ex. 90 days), so by default you should see more de-listings as the agreements expire. Also, it would be interesting to see if those expireds quickly pop back on the market with a new agent/price. Someone with access to the MLS could sample a batch of de-listings to see what happens to them a few weeks later.

  21. 21
    The Tim says:

    Still, given the much higher inventory and slow sales, shouldn’t we expect to see more de-listings?

    I certainly think we would, but what was interesting to me was the dramatic jump from May to June. Inventory has been high and sales slow all year, but June in particular saw a big bump in “delisted” homes.

  22. 22
    deejayoh says:

    Glad I am off the market so I don’t have to deal with you immature douchebags.

    Why did you delist your house if the bottom was Jan/Feb?

  23. 23
    Scotsman says:

    What!?! RAL delisted! Sell now, or own it forever!

    I think those that don’t absolutely need to sell are waiting. After the election, when hope and change are in the air, the Spring bounce of 2009 will let them sell at a significant profit over current prices. Or maybe not. Maybe by then Seattle’s market will look more like CA. and AZ.

    In my area, several homes have de-listed, and are now for sale by owner. I guess every 6% one can save helps. But there are still no sales.

  24. 24
    Sandy says:

    I have to second the opinion of those who think “voluntary” sellers are pulling their homes. We’ve seen some of that in my area and if you put yourself in these sellers shoes for a minute, it will make sense. In Snohomish county market times have been extending. Now we have had a lot of sellers that have been on the market for 6 months or more. That’s a long time to have your home on the market. If you are on the market thinking you’re going to get some great price for your home, it might be worth it to put up with the hassle. But if you have now had 6 months to watch your house not only NOT sell, but to have to keep dropping prices to stay competitve, then you have to be pretty motivated to stick with it.

    So yeah, I think some of those folks are giving up. I think a lot of people were hoping for a spring bounce that didn’t materialize.

  25. 25
    Everett_Tom says:

    Glad I am off the market so I don’t have to deal with you immature douchebags.

    Actually the easiest way to avoid dealing with us… is not to come to this site…

  26. 26
    Please Buy My House, Idiot Renters! says:

    “What!?! RAL delisted! Sell now, or own it forever!”

    Damn, and I was just about to make an offer on his house…

  27. 27
    TC says:

    If the number of listings went down in 1 month that may be because people took their home off the market.

    That is probably a good thing. Hopefully it will help the market stablize.

    But I don’t understand if people don’t have to sell why do they list their list and ask such a high price?

  28. 28
    Garth says:

    Any time you alter the meaning / remove an option from a database that is used for historical reporting like this, there is bound to be some sudden impact affecting the report.

  29. 29
    deejayoh says:

    Good point Garth. Methodology change is probably a factor – especially since “delists” is the number that is backed into.

    Interesting if you look at San Diego, even though inventory growth has slowed/stopped – price drops are still accelerating.
    Inventory below is from BMIT, prices from Case Shiller

    YoY Change | Inventory | Price
    Jan-07 | 5.9% | -4.2%
    Feb-07 | 1.6% | -5.0%
    Mar-07 | 2.1% | -6.0%
    Apr-07 | 3.3% | -6.7%
    May-07 | 0.0% | -7.0%
    Jun-07 | -1.4% | -7.3%
    Jul-07 | -3.6% | -7.8%
    Aug-07 | 0.6% | -8.3%
    Sep-07 | 4.1% | -9.6%
    Oct-07 | 5.1% | -11.1%
    Nov-07 | 12.1% | -13.4%
    Dec-07 | 18.0% | -15.0%
    Jan-08 | 20.3% | -16.7%
    Feb-08 | 18.8% | -19.2%
    Mar-08 | 13.9% | -20.5%
    Apr-08 | 5.6% | -22.4%
    May-08 | 0.3% | na
    Jun-08 | -7.6% | na

  30. 30

    I would like to see an overlay of homes that were listed as “short sale” or “preforeclosure” that were “taken off the market.”

    Stale? Sure, there are some sellers who are giving up. How many others went to auction in June?

  31. 31
    Joel says:

    But I don’t understand if people don’t have to sell why do they list their list and ask such a high price?

    Fishing like that was part of the bubble mentality and still persists to some degree as sellers are slow to learn how the market has changed. During the bubble people would see their neighbors selling their house for some ridiculous price and think “Gee, I don’t really need or want to move, but if I could $X dollars (where X is some really high amount) for my place I could move up/buy a boat/construct a 20 ft. tall murder-bot.” So they would list at their way high price and because of the housing bubble a good lot of them got their asking price. Some people just haven’t gotten the memo that the market has shifted.

  32. 32
    Everett_Tom says:

    TC,

    When my wife and I were out looking (last year ), we met a few of the sellers. Many of them wanted a little more room (new baby, new dog, looking to garden more), or would like to live closer to X (where X was a child’s school, someones work, etc..). They didn’t have to move, but it would “be nice”.

    From what he said before, I think RAL is like that. He doesn’t have to move, but wants to retire somewhere other then where he currently lives..

  33. 33
    Joel says:

    Oh I forgot to ask: I thought that the whole STI change was only for sites mirroring the NWMLS data like Redfin and ZipRealty and wouldn’t change the way the actual MLS worked. Is this right or did I read it wrong?

  34. 34
    Lake Hills Renter says:

    RAL: You are a bunch of condescending a holes.

    My god, that has to be the most ironic statement i’ve seen in a *very* long time.

  35. 35
    rose-colored-coolaid says:

    Rentersarelosers

    You are a bunch of condescending a holes.
    Your opinions are valid while opposing opinions are not.

    Glad I am off the market so I don’t have to deal with you immature douchebags.

    Some of the comments about you have been a little harsh, but come on. You picked a name that is certain to offend the 35% of the population who rent their home. No matter how awful a thing someone says to you, they are only insulting one person. So grow a little skin maybe.

  36. 36
    Alan says:

    RAL,

    What is your thinking on when you will relist your house?

  37. 37
    Greg Perry says:

    On the Eastside inventory absorbed at the highest level in 4 years, dropping from 8.3 months to 6.5 months.

    In June the MLS changed accounting status by eliminating ACTIVE STI by changing it to PENDING STI. I believe that all Pending status’ are now counted as PENDINGS. This could account for a dramatic drop in ACTIVES and rise in PENDINGS.

    I think in the long run, this will be a good move. Personally, I didn’t like ACTIVE STI and believe when they sell they should go to PENDING.

    I believe the playing field shifted slightly and will take a few months to balance out.

    That being said, anecdotally, I have seen a spike in activity on the Eastside. In May, before the MLS change, Redmond’s PENDING count was above last year’s PENDINGS. We’ve sold a lot of listings out of our office in the last month. Personally, I have 5 in escrow. I had a good first quarter, a soft 2nd quarter, and activity is currently good. The toughest segment on the Eastside is the high end.

  38. 38
    Greg Perry says:

    I don’t know. I always thought losers were someone who bullied others and called them names.

    Funny.

    So much emotion here around renting and home ownerships. It’s really somewhat a symbiotic relationship. Renters need landlords……landlords need renters.

    Anyone who needs to make themselves bigger by putting someone else down isn’t really very big at all…….

  39. 39
    Greg Perry says:

    Jillayne, “How many others went to auction in June?”

    In my main tracking area (Eastside), this would a very few. Other areas with higher AR’s, especially influeneced by new construction plats, would likely have a higher number. I don’t see any practical way to track them, however.

  40. 40
    EconE says:

    Don’t worry RAL.

    When you relist your home, I’m sure you’ll still get enough for it to be able to get a nice beachfront place…

    In Haiti.

  41. 41
    Richie says:

    I was planning to buy a nice SFH in early June. I looked 15 houses ranging from $450,000 to $920,000 in 98103 and 98115. Believe me all those house listed under $595,000 were ugly or in heavy traffic areas. I have waited a month to see the market condition. I am surprised to see that none of them has been sold. Two were off the market. A few drop $10,000 to $50,000. My personal experience confirmed the corporeity of the author.

    I am going to wait four to six months before I make a decision.

  42. 42
    mike2 says:

    Interesting. This is what happened right before the bloodbath started in DC Metro. Asking prices were relatively stable – down slightly. The following season sellers got motivated and REO inventory started to rise sharply.

    Can’t happen in Seattle.

  43. 43
    Mark says:

    Greg Perry,
    What is your sense of what the mortgage industry is like? How hard is it for potential buyers to obtain loans? What kind of down payments are the lenders looking for? How about credit scores? Are you seeing many or any people being kept out of the markets that would like to buy for any of the above reasons or any other reason? I’ve been told by a friend that is looking to buy a home that Bank of America told them King County is now considered a declining market. Have you heard this also? TIA

  44. 44
    Rentersarelosers says:

    I’ve been told by a friend that is looking to buy a home that Bank of America told them King County is now considered a declining market. Have you heard this also?

    THAT IS A LOAD OF CRAP. THE TYPE OF RUMOR MONGERING I EXPECT AT THE SEATTLE BUBBLEBRAIN SITE. ABSOLUTELY FALSE.
    ……………………………

    EconE // Jul 17, 2008 at 5:38 pm

    Don’t worry RAL.

    When you relist your home, I’m sure you’ll still get enough for it to be able to get a nice beachfront place…

    In Haiti.

    THANKS FOR BEING A TRUE BUBBLEBRAIN.

    GOOD LUCK TO YOU TOO.

  45. 45
    obama08 says:

    I have two friends who were trying to sell their houses during the typical Mar-May period. They are looking to relocate within King County, not moving outside of the area. They were not in a position where they were forced to sell, foreclosure, jobless, etc. But they didn’t have any luck selling their place during the spring so they figured they would just pull it off the market for now. Their rational was, it’s summertime and they just want to chill and not have to deal with keeping the house in tip top shape all the time and being bothered by having to show the place. It’s summertime and people want to have fun, so those numbers don’t surprise me. If they don’t have to sell that is. My guess is that most of these however, including my friends, will eventually be back on the market later this year or next. Hope that anecdote is helpful y’all.

  46. 46
    Greg Perry says:

    “Can’t happen in Seattle.”

    MIke 2, you have a point. One of the key indicators to watch is inventory absorption (supply /demand AR’s). As inventory builds, naturally prices should fall, however there as a “lag”. Prices are slower to fall at first and then they fall at an increasingly faster rate, if the AR’s continue to build, or remain flat with high months of inventory.

    On the other hand, as inventory becomes tight, prices tend to rise at a faster rate than they fall because of the competition factor.

    Of course that scenario could happen in Seattle, however, at this point I’m not all that uncomfortable with AR’s in core areas in price ranges $700,000 and below. More likely, a bloodbath may come in the high end.

    Outlying areas with high AR’s will struggle until the excess inventory is absorbed. New construction absorption particularly will be important to watch.

    We cannot just look at supply numbers to understand a market.

  47. 47
    RAL=Choad says:

    Cool, he’s yelling. Now maybe he’ll just go back to the PI’s blog where he belongs.

    The Tim, keep on keepin on.

  48. 48
    Greg Perry says:

    Mark,
    It’s absolutely true that buyers again have to qualify for their loans. For me the mortgage climate is uncannily similar to pre 2000 conditions before the financial institutions lost all risk aversion.

    Several buyers this year have come in with substantial down payments. Those who don’t have the case are going FHA which requires 3% down, but will allow gifts. Credit scoring is affecting the end interest rate.

    I’ve completed 3 buyer transactions this month and the lending process was very smooth.

    But, you know I never did have fringe buyers. My buyer pool has always been solid. Over the years, by choice, I served only a few hand picked investors.

    BOA is not a big factor in local mortgages. I don’t have specifics, but most financial institutions consider the tri-county area as a region. For instance, Pierce and Snohomish certainly affected what Eastsiders could get for raised FHA loan limits.

    A mortgage professional like Rhonda could fill in the details.

  49. 49
    Rentersarelosers says:

    RAL=Choad // Jul 17, 2008 at 7:03 pm

    Cool, he’s yelling. Now maybe he’ll just go back to the PI’s blog where he belongs.

    The Tim, keep on keepin on.
    …..

    I was responding to 2 posts, to avoid confusion I used caps. I was NOT yelling.
    By the way what’s with your handle? Dingleberry seems more like you.

  50. 50
    david losh says:

    My impression is that agents are less inclined to take over priced listings today.
    Listing agents don’t make money if a property doesn’t sell. Price reductions haven’t been working.
    We are in a declining Real Estate market. You don’t need BOA to tell you that.
    Prices have gone down significantly these past couple of months. I’ve seen a lot of houses in the low $300K range. You just didn’t see that a year ago.
    I also agree about the condition of the properties on the market, they look like crap. With lower prices sellers have the take it or leave it attitude to presentation. They are listing for less money so they figure the buyer should pay for the condition.

  51. 51
    david losh says:

    I was worried there for a couple of days, but Renters are Losers is back!
    This is how it works. You get upset, everybody piles on, the comment count goes up. and Tim has a more viable format than any other blog out there.
    The more viable the format the more attractive to advertisers, media, and blog links. Keep up the good work.

  52. 52
    Mark says:

    Thanks Greg and David, I was wondering about the declining market thing in relation to what kind of down payment they might require.

  53. 53

    Mark, I’ve found that FHA has really become a very popular mortgage right now…especially since the release of DU 7.0 which has much tougher guidelines than before.

    Even though FHA will allow as low as a 3% down payment, we are going to be seeing 20% down FHA mortgages. For one, FHA does not slam borrowers with a higher rate if their mid credit score is 719 or lower.

    Sellers would be wise to consider FHA buyers…even if their home is priced over $600k since the FHA limit for King County is currently $567,500.

  54. 54
    budbrad says:

    On Microsoft’s conference call today, they reported significant exposure to……..losses in mortgage-backed securities. Seems some of that huge chunk of cash in their register went into CDOs, which may be written down.

    Like (some) people have been saying… this mortgage crap is EVERYWHERE.

  55. 55
    Mark says:

    THAT IS A LOAD OF CRAP. THE TYPE OF RUMOR MONGERING I EXPECT AT THE SEATTLE BUBBLEBRAIN SITE. ABSOLUTELY FALSE.
    …………………………..

    Cool, now your yelling!
    And how would you know it’s false? Other than your assertion that it’s false!

    Here’s a good one that you posted last week, RAL:
    “I enjoy the freedom of stock trading, no inventory, no whiney assed employess, no problems.”

    Anyone surprised that you can’t get along with “whiney assed employess”, and had to escape into the privacy of your home to trade stocks online?

    You’re a nut job RAL! It isn’t everyone else, it’s you!

  56. 56

    I’m just checking out my pipeline…right now, 50% of my business is FHA, including jumbo-FHA with LTVs (for FHA) from 90-97%. This is a significant increase for me and I’m glad I “cut my teeth” on FHA/VA loans.

  57. 57
    Sniglet says:

    I’ve been told by a friend that is looking to buy a home that Bank of America told them King County is now considered a declining market. Have you heard this also?

    This is absolutely true. Rhonda Porter (a well known mortgage broker-blogger in our area) has confirmed this. In fact, I believe WaMu has a similar policy towards King County.

  58. 58

    Gee Sniglet…thanks. I think WaMu and BOA prefer the term “soft” vs. declining. It’s way flufflier.

  59. 59
    economist says:

    Many of them wanted a little more room (new baby, new dog, looking to garden more), or would like to live closer to X (where X was a child’s school, someones work, etc..). They didn’t have to move, but it would “be nice”.

    That means that if they take the house off the market, that’s one less seller and one less buyer, so it makes no difference.

  60. 60

    Add Wells Fargo to the list too.

  61. 61
    Greg Perry says:

    Thanks Rhonda

    I always appreciate your contribution!

  62. 62
    Rentersarelosers says:

    Mark,
    And how would you know it’s false? Other than your assertion that it’s false!
    …………

    Did you try asking Bank of America?
    Hell no, you would rather be a condescending shit towards me.

    I did talk to Bank of America.
    Do your homework ‘lil boy.

  63. 63
    Scotsman says:

    RAL- get your home back on the market, take what you can get, and get out of town! Retirement calls, and you’re gonna haave a heart attack if you’re still here next spring when the sh$t is all over the fan. Plus, the rain will be back in a couple of months, and you know how that goes…. Love ya baby!

  64. 64
    Rentersarelosers says:

    Mark
    Anyone surprised that you can’t get along with “whiney assed employess”, and had to escape into the privacy of your home to trade stocks online?
    …………….

    After 35 years of supervising young know it all’s like you I got tired of babysitting.
    No more whiney assed employees.

    Thanks for bringing that up again.
    Appreciate your diligence.

  65. 65
    Rentersarelosers says:

    RAL- get your home back on the market, take what you can get, and get out of town! Retirement calls, and you’re gonna haave a heart attack if you’re still here next spring when the sh$t is all over the fan. Plus, the rain will be back in a couple of months, and you know how that goes…. Love ya baby!
    ………..

    ROFLMAO! Thanks man. It will be just fine, no heart attcks here, have practically no mortgage, can pay it off with the bills in my wallet.

    The rain….oh the rain…….. never mind it’s summer now and it’s gorgeous out there. Will deal with this move to the sun stuff in “rainier” times (just round the corner.)

    You all would miss me if I left :-)

  66. 66
    mikal says:

    Harley is right about the lack of tolerance to others opinion. It is fun to see how excited RAL gets alot of you. What a bunch of dorks.

  67. 67
    magnolia44 says:

    something to be said for not giving up..look at the donation button on the site..Tim refuses to give in like many sellers… he might reach his goal, he might not. What an interesting irony how many months has it been?

  68. 68
    Yaoyao says:

    Rhonda Porter // Jul 17, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    I’m just checking out my pipeline…right now, 50% of my business is FHA, including jumbo-FHA with LTVs (for FHA) from 90-97%. This is a significant increase for me and I’m glad I “cut my teeth” on FHA/VA loans.

    ==========================
    97% jumbo loans? When will FHA need taxpayer bailout? Bastards.

  69. 69

    Yaoyao, FHA jumbos are really tough to qualify for since the payments are higher with upfront mortgage insurance and monthly mortgage insurance. In fact, all FHA mortgages have mortgage insurance–even if you’re putting 50% down and the mortgage insurance remains for a minimum of 5 years unless the home owner refinances out of FHA.

    Just this week, FHA modified the mortgage insurance to be “risk based” so those with higher credit scores and more down payment are rewarded, those with lower credit scores and less skin in the game have to pay slightly more.

  70. 70

    Greg, thanks for thinking of me.

  71. 71
    Sniglet says:

    Rhonda,

    What is happening with mortgage insurance these days? I keep hearing horror stories about how insurers are raising rates and black-balling vast regions of the country. Is tightening of mortgage insurance having any impact locally, or is the Seattle area considered “healthy” by insurers, and therefore exempt from their tightening elsewhere?

  72. 72
    Mark says:

    Mark,
    And how would you know it’s false? Other than your assertion that it’s false!
    …………

    Did you try asking Bank of America?
    Hell no, you would rather be a condescending shit towards me.

    I did talk to Bank of America.
    Do your homework ‘lil boy.

    RAL

    I feel like I’m trapped in some sort of Abbott & Costello routine with you.
    I asked Greg if he had heard Bank of America considered King County a declining market.
    You blast back that it’s a load of crap spread by the bubblebrains.
    I ask how you know it’s a load of crap.
    You reply that you have asked Bank of America, and tell me to do my homework.
    It looks like you and I asked the exact same question – and you blast me for it.

    Thats why people act like a condescending shit towards you.
    It’s you RAL, not everyone else!

  73. 73
    Everett_Tom says:

    Many of them wanted a little more room (new baby, new dog, looking to garden more), or would like to live closer to X (where X was a child’s school, someones work, etc..). They didn’t have to move, but it would “be nice”.

    That means that if they take the house off the market, that’s one less seller and one less buyer, so it makes no difference.

    Yea, except that I suspect the buyer who is left is in a lower price range, due to the lack of “move up equity” those who don’t have were looking to get..

  74. 74
    Rentersarelosers says:

    No Mark, you said:
    And how would you know it’s false? Other than your assertion that it’s false!
    ……….

    You didn’t think first, that I had already verified my info.
    You implied that it was just my assertion that it was false.

    Is English a third language for you? fourth? Or are you a just a “child left behind”?

  75. 75
    jesse says:

    Agree with obama08. It’s a pain in the @ss to keep a property staged. We’ll see massive pressure in the fall when WaMu and all the others stop the paycheques. Anyone who thinks that high inventory causes lower prices is a fool. The destination is undisputed; inventory only influences how fast prices correct.

    I love the comment above. “it will be a better time to sell after their house has dropped 40% in value.” LOL so true.

  76. 76
    patient says:

    Great post The Tim! When analyzed like this it shows that in this scenario the shrinking inventory is yet another sign of the ever softening market not a strengtening one as you could be fooled to believe.

    I talked to a guy at work who de-listed his SFH on the Eastside ($600k range) after zero offers in six months. He is going to re-model the bathrooms to try raise the appeal and re-list in Sep. even though the home is in nice condition and less than 10y old. My guess is that he will have to eat the re-modeling costs and at least another 5% off the price for what he could have sold it for this spring if he lowered the price to where he got offers. I think he might be close the watermark due to a heloc and tries anything else than a price below the loan amount.

  77. 77
    darth_z says:

    Chill out people. RAL is suffering of what’s called HOMALLUCINATION Syndrome!!! You guys should have pity on him.

  78. 78

    Sniglet, MI rates are on the rise…horror stories might be a stretch. I was comparing a FHA mortgage to conforming w/mi and conforming has the better payment…we’ll see if we can get it approved conforming or if we have to switch to FHA (payment difference was small–but who doesn’t want a lower payment)

  79. 79
    what goes up comes down says:

    Greg from what you write it seems everything is peaches and cream. I guess I don’t get that — unemployment going up, foreclosures going up, inflation going up?

    I mean last year people — mostly in RE — were saying we would never be where we are now — and either they were flat out liars or idiots — any market whatever it is returns to the trend line — that is why there is a trend line.

  80. 80
    Mark says:

    RAL,

    I directly asked a real estate professional if he had heard that BoA considered King County a declining real estate market. That was enough to get you foaming at the mouth again. I responded by asking how you knew that was not true, other than by your own assertion. Your response was that you had asked the same question of BoA and advised me to do my homework.

    Now, once again, you and I asked the exact same question, you assert that you asked BoA, and I asked someone whom I believe to be a competent real estate professional. When I asked the question though, you became unhinged.

    Now which part of that don’t you understand? Tard!

  81. 81
    economist says:

    Yea, except that I suspect the buyer who is left is in a lower price range,

    No, the buyer who left is the same person who gave up selling the house.

  82. 82

    what comes up goes down…this time last year, my business came to a halt and I began to notice underwriting issues early in 2007… I was always concerned about the crappy mortgages lenders (like me) could do. “last year” I wouldn’t say peaches and cream. I doubt Greg would either.

  83. 83
    Yaoyao says:

    Rhonda,
    Could you lay out the cost of a guy getting a 97% FHA mortage? What is his upfront cost? How much skin does he really have in this game? If the market tanks another 10%, how much motivation he has to walk?

    Then I’d know whether or not FHA will end up lile Fannie/Freddie, w/ potential trillion dollar cost. Your number that 50% of your loans are FHA really scares me. Of course, maybe the portion of FHA loans in the entire current market may be much smaller.

    It’s kind of funny and sad to see how Fannie/Freddie were supposed to save the market and then need saving themselves. How do I really know if FHA is in the same bucket?

    Thank you for your professional perspective.

  84. 84

    Yaoyo, FHA only requires a 3% investment from the buyer (3% of the sales price). The seller can contribute up to 6% of the closing costs and prepaids.

    I don’t see Fannie or Freddie saving the markets. And FHA won’t pick up everything either.

    I did factor in how many transactions I can’t do right now…I’m turning away more people than I’m getting approved.

  85. 85
    Yaoyao says:

    Rhonda,

    Earlier in the year when conforming jumbos were approved, at the time the Congress expected Fannie/Freddie to pick up the loans and securitize them(thus saving the market), no?

    I’m not quite sure about the difference between FHA vs Fannie/Freddie. Is FHA not leveraged that its loans have to fit in a budget?

    From what you see, how much has loan volume dropped this year vs last year? If the dropoff is sharper than the sales volume drop, I expect the difference is people w/ cash buying houses.

    Thanks again. Your perspective is very informative.

  86. 86
    Yaoyao says:

    Reading up on FHA:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Housing_Administration

    “In 1965, the Federal Housing Administration became part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Since 1934, the FHA and HUD have insured over 34 million home mortgages and 47,205 multifamily project mortgages. Currently, the FHA has 4.8 million insured single family mortgages and 13,000 insured multifamily projects in its portfolio.[1] The Federal Housing Administration is the only government agency that is completely self-funded. It operates solely from its own income and comes at no cost to taxpayers. This department spurs economic growth in the form of home and community development.

    During budget planning for 2008 HUD had been projecting $143,000,000 budget shortfall stemming from the FHA program. This is the first time in three decades HUD had made a request to Congress for a taxpayer subsidy. Even though FHA is statutorily required to be budget neutral, the GAO is projecting taxpayer funded subsidies of half a billion dollars over the next three years, if no changes are made to the FHA program.”

    I think that answers my question.

  87. 87
    Greg Perry says:

    WGUMCD,
    If you follow my postings on various blogs, including my own, http://www.425realty.com, you’ll see that I am a market realist.

    On 10/23, I wrote this on the 3rd quarter 2007 market changes. To date I know of no other local RE professional that called this: http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/realestate/archives/124285.asp

    On 1/21, I encouraged Sellers not to take a “Spring Mark Up”. Others called out for other ideas.
    http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/realestate/archives/129941.asp

    In April I wrote a piece on a study that I did on Bellevue 530. This study showed the relationships between OLP (original list price) LP (list price) and SP (sales price). This showed the result of Sellers trying to take the spring mark up.

    http://www.workingforyou.typepad.com//realestate/2008/04/its-finally-cle.html

    and the 2nd part

    http://www.workingforyou.typepad.com//realestate/2008/04/nwmls-area-530.html

    On June 2, I wrote this piece about “Chasing the market down” I don’t think any other RE professional has come close to approaching this subject.: http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/realestate/archives/140217.asp

    And many, many posts and comments on the proper use of absorption rates in analyzing markets.

    A common myth and misconception is that there is only one market. The real market for a buyer or a seller depends on location, price, and even house style, and can be quantified by absorption.

    So no, it’s not rosy. Some areas and price ranges are holding up better than others. Some areas and price ranges are very challenged.

    Thank you for asking the question. I detecting sincerity in it. This thread started as a very interesting topic and degenerated into a petty school yard name calling mess.

    If you take the time to read and study some of these studies and conclusions, at the very least, they’ll give you some food for thought, whether you agree with them or not.

  88. 88
    shawn says:

    RAL, no one can damage your reputation to the extent that you do to yourself. What you clearly miss is that it is not your message we don’t like, but your delivery. RAL if you want to argue with intellectuals then learn the art of arguing, or at least become self aware.

  89. 89
    Buceri says:

    We touched on this a few months ago when inventory “highs” were discussed.

    Indeed, there was going to be a point where the “voluntary” sellers were going to give up, leaving the “must sell” out there. It starting to play out.

    And as far as pricing, there is no “leveling”. Entry level means entry level and a $250K-$300K loan is not “entry level”. I know; in Seattle we don’t know any different; but that is changing. My daily e-mails from Redfin and Zip show a ton of “reduced price”.

    ………………………………………………………………….

    Now for the morning ritual – open Yahoo Finance and read the headline that confirms the economy is recovering, and as RAL claims, the bottom was in Jan-Feb!!!!!

    “Citigroup reports 2Q loss of $2.5B as more consumers fail to make their loan payments”

    NEW YORK (AP) — Citigroup says it posted a $2.5 billion loss and laid off more employees in the second quarter as it struggled with surging loan defaults.

  90. 90
    economist says:

    “Yea, except that I suspect the buyer who is left is in a lower price range,”

    No, the buyer who left is the same person who gave up selling the house.

    Wait I minute, I misunderstood you. “Left” vs “is left”. :-)

    The point is that if someone who pulls their house off the market was going to buy a similarly priced property, it makes no difference because he’s just playing musical houses. His house won’t be sold but he won’t be buying either.

    What makes a difference to the market is when someone changes their exposure. That is, moving from a renter to an owner-occupier (or vice versa), or up- or downsizing. Or buying or selling an investment property.

  91. 91
    TC says:

    Buceri,

    I think that entry level is different to each person. It depends on their situation and what they have for a down payment.

    Some people start off smaller with a condo and then bump up to a house in a few years.

    Still the beginning homes in this area are still less expensive then other places.

  92. 92
    TC says:

    Also these houses that have reduced prices, they could be lower for a few different reasons.

    They could be forclosures and short sales. Also the seller could be asking way too much for the property or they really have to sell it.

    Also the information that receive from the media about the banks and lags behing what is currently happening. It seems like that has been discussed on this site.

    Seattle is not that different than other places. It will probably or has already experienced some drop off. However I think that people will still buy whenever the time is right for them.

    I guess that is my 2 cents.

  93. 93
    Buceri says:

    TC – Seattle IS expensive. The US is more than California, NY, Boston and very, very few other places where RE prices are higher. Job growth is higher in the South where housing is much cheaper and population growth is much higher than in the PS area.

    With regards to entry level, I know everyone is different. But 9 out of 10 times, entry level is someone young with not much to put as a down payment.

    “However I think that people will still buy whenever the time is right for them” – Sure; but if those people were informed, they would never buy now. But economic news are “boring”.

  94. 94
    TC says:

    Buceri,

    That is your opinion, I think that many people buy when the time is right for them. You have no idea if those people are informed,

    Many times entry level is buying a condo and staying in it for awhile then moving up. I did that and now many other people that have done that. The price you are quoting is for a SHF and that number will be different in different places.

    You can say don’t buy, your opinion. Things work out in the long run and you make money some things and may lose moeny somewhere else.

    I am sure that if ask most people that their investments have gone up and down over the years, that is why people diversify their investments.

    Some people have real estate and some people have other investments.

    The areas you are taking about have lower home prices and people move to those areas. Seattle is growing and people are still moving into the area. There are many great things here and people will keep coming. Home prices will go back up.

    Everything I said is my opinion and everything you said is your opinion.

    RE prices will be different in different places as these areas have their own things going for them.

    I have not read anywhere that now is not the time to buy. Many the people that are buying are busy living their lives and try to make the best decision at the time.

  95. 95

    TC- Ask the people if who bought in So Cal two years ago if that was the ‘right time for them’. Had they been more educated, they would be a lot better off financially than they are now.

  96. 96
    TC says:

    Actually I just moved up here some Southern California. Are you from Southern California or have you purchased a place there?

    Captain Kirklnad your point is weak. You are comparing other places to Seattle.

    Southern California had one of the largest run up in prices in the nation. Southern California is a very desirable place for people to live, at least the part that I lived in. So just like when an area such as California sees such a larger run up and then they see large fall. California will come back. I know many people who have homes in that area and they are not worried. In fact they have been having homes sell again. However they have been creamed with foreclosures and short sales. There are some great bargins and people are scooping them up.

    Your house is what it is worth when it is sold. I am sure that people in California lost money just people have lost money all over the country,

    Seattle had a run up but not as much as some of the other places.

    I remember your remark awhile back about somewhere in Arizonia.

    I am sure that you think Seattle is doomed. If is it it will come back. There are some great bargins in this area. Many you should go get one and buy it below market value and then keep it for a awhile.

    Right now is not the time for you to buy great for you.

    Back to point many people make decisions that are right for them. Just as you are deciding not buy at this time.

    You can be a side chair speculator all you want. I am sure that you will have some comment to come back with.

  97. 97
    TC says:

    But I get the feeling that I am getting into a circulair argument with you.

  98. 98
    Everett_Tom says:

    The point is that if someone who pulls their house off the market was going to buy a similarly priced property, it makes no difference because he’s just playing musical houses. His house won’t be sold but he won’t be buying either.

    What makes a difference to the market is when someone changes their exposure. That is, moving from a renter to an owner-occupier (or vice versa), or up- or downsizing. Or buying or selling an investment property.

    I’m amazed you caught that 5am… :)

    I guess it depends on how you view the market, I find Greg’s assertion that there are “multiple” markets (as expressed in one his comments above) compelling. Following that. I’m assuming the person selling would be buying a higher priced house (since they’d be using their equity). I’m sure that’s not always the case, but I believe it’s true most of the time.

    The two (so a very small sample size!) sellers we actually talked with about this were looking to go from a 3 bedroom to a 4 bedroom place.. I’m assuming that means they’d be in a higher price range. We heard of other sellers moving for these reasons, only though our Realitor (R).

  99. 99
    David McManus says:

    It has proven countless times that last year was NOT a great time to buy.

  100. 100
    what goes up comes down says:

    TC, You are basically saying the old SEATTLE is special thing all over again. As you point out there are many great things in SoCAL and it ran up and now ran down — BUT if it was so great WHY did it go down.

    The point is this THE whole RE market ACROSS the NATION was fueled with cheap, easy to get (no doc) loans — IT WAS NOT FUNDAMENTALS.

    How many times does this need to be stated. To return to the fundamentals when people actually did not look at the house as an ATM will take sometime and it will cause some pain BUT it WILL happen.

  101. 101
    Buceri says:

    “I have not read anywhere that now is not the time to buy. ”

    TC – there is a guy called the Treasury Secretary, that I believe he knows a thing or two about money. Last Tuesday he said:

    “U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson, Jr., offered a pessimistic view of the country’s housing slump Tuesday as he called for help for hard-pressed homeowners and new mortgage regulations.

    But he urged Congress not to overreact by passing excessively harsh measures.

    “Let me be clear: Despite strong economic fundamentals, the housing decline is still unfolding, and I view it as the most significant current risk to our economy,” Paulson said in a speech at a Georgetown University law forum. “The longer housing prices remain stagnant or fall, the greater the penalty to our future economic growth.”
    ——————————————

    Please keep in mind these were the words of a guy that must keep cool, so the markets don’t react.

    Thank you for sharing you just moved up from California. It helps to understand your situation.

    Just like the other bulls, you probably have a unit for sale or make a living in this industry. I am truly sorry, and hope things turn around for you.

  102. 102
    NotaBull says:

    To get back to the original post, a market with less inventory but with a higher ratio of “must sells” is not a market that holds its value any better. The “like to sells” weren’t selling anyway, as their price was probably too high based on wishful thinking and last year’s price.

    Tim, I think it would be interesting to see if the median *asking* price also took a corresponding drop. If so, that would indeed indicate that a lot of of the over-priced “like to sells” are gone, and now we’re left with the remains.

  103. 103
    Sniglet says:

    TC,

    According to your logic, was it a “good” time to buy in southern California 3 years ago? If potential price declines don’t factor into a purchase decision then I suppose the decision to buy is a purely personal one (e.g. do I like the house or region, etc).

    Still, I find it hard to believe that there are many people who bought homes in Sacramento 3 years ago who are happy that they did so.

  104. 104
    TC says:

    Buceri,

    You have the same old tired thing as well. The economy is in a tailspin that has been stated over and over again.

    However you like to point how bad things are. You can quote all the stuff that you want I understand your logic in that.

    RE market come and goes in cycles and that has been stated before.

    Buecri I am sure that you are a renter. You can watch the markets all you want. I have read things over and over again and thoughts and opinions change all the time. The economists are making their predicitions. You are right things might get worse. I do have a place and I am sure that it has gone down in value, however it will go back.

    Some people try to be optimistic and others are pestmistic.

    The economy comes in cycles of growth and then recession that does is clear.

  105. 105
    TC says:

    Sniget,

    What I am saying that people make the best decisions at the time. I didn’t say that 3 years ago was a great time to buy. RE markets change all the time. People make their decisions and then make the most of them.

    I used to ask when is the best time to buy a house. The answer I got was when you are ready. I agree that there is not much logic in that however back to point people buy when they are ready.

    You seem to want some magical time to buy. However I am sure that you will miss that time as you will be spending your time here. Where you will ge engaging in the same types of conversations for some time to come.

    Guess what you might miss that “perfect” time to buy.

  106. 106
    NotaBull says:

    “Some people try to be optimistic and others are pestmistic. ”

    Pestmistic: A bearded lady with supernatural powers that specializes in the prediction of future events involving insects and/or vermin.

  107. 107
    Buceri says:

    “You have the same old tired thing as well”

    The irony TC is that you have no data – prices go down, inventory goes up and you still talk fantasy….

    I have a family member in the industry (just like you??)….he is happy his wife has “a real job” (how he puts it).

    And….nope. I am a homeowner since 1997.

    Again, if you are trying to sell your investment property, good luck and I am truly sorry you find yourself in this situation. If you want to move back to California; well, it seems that by December most of those markets will be even lower than Seattle. So hold on until Jan-Feb 09. Otherwise, stick around, and remember: “no matter the weather, true Seattlelites never carry umbrellas.”

  108. 108
    Ubersalad, Ph.D says:

    At first when I joined this forum back in late 2005 or so (my date could be wrong) just after the demise of Merit Financial in Kirkland. I was right in the middle of the mortgage/real estate business and there was NO sign of the train ever slowing down. Tim at that time was definitely on his own with very little stat to support his theory of the bubble. However, since then, few can argue that Tim was not on the right track and the train has most certainly stopped.

    The prefect time to buy is always the past tense IMO as few of us can truly predict the future. But it is obvious right now is not that time, and bubble heads here are just arguing when that time will be again. Real estate price is not a damn 15 minute window, if the time is right, it will be right for a while…

  109. 109
    Greg Perry says:

    Not a bull,
    “Tim, I think it would be interesting to see if the median *asking* price also took a corresponding drop. If so, that would indeed indicate that a lot of of the over-priced “like to sells” are gone, and now we’re left with the remains.”

    In fact the median “asking” price rose! I posted this above in #87. In the data I have access to, I can see OLP (original list price) LP (list price a the time of sale) and SP (sold price).
    http://www.workingforyou.typepad.com//realestate/2008/04/nwmls-area-530.html

  110. 110
    Sniglet says:

    You seem to want some magical time to buy. However I am sure that you will miss that time as you will be spending your time here.

    Hmmm… So the only way to tell if it was a good or bad time to buy is only after the fact (i.e. when we see what prices do several years after the purchase)? This is kind of like Greenspan’s comments about how you can only detect bubbles after they popped.

  111. 111
    budbrad says:

    Rhonda said it, but it was missed by all the yelling.

    The calendar is conspiring against the housing market. We are moving out of the traditionally hot selling season and into the fall slowdown.

    And in the middle of the best time, seasonally, to sell a home, people were pulling out.

    All things point to lower prices/values over the next 6-9 months.

  112. 112

    TC @ 96.

    Sniglet @ 103 summed it up nicely. Granted, Real Estate will probably be worth more in 50 years if you don’t sell your house. In the mean time, it will drop considerably, ruin financial situations, and shatter the lives of people who choose to buy right now (assuming they can’t afford to ride it out 20+ years or need to sell for other various reasons). See FL, CA, AZ, NV, OR, MA, and more. New homeowners have lost EVERYTHING.

    I recommend you go live in Candy Cane Land where unicorns and rose pedals line the streets. Your blind optimism, coupled with zero worthwhile arguments is nauseating. Please say something other than: ‘if it’s right for them, it’s the right time to buy’. You should move to Fremont, buy an 8 ft bong, and live happily ever after.

    How you are possibly write for so long, yet say absolutely NOTHING is beyond me.

  113. 113
    Greg Perry says:

    There are pockets of areas where prices are stable and pockets where prices in fact are in decline. Sellers and agents are starting up to 5-6% too high before taking their first price reduction.

    In declining markets, sellers face the phenomenon of “Chasing the market”. They start high and reduce and reduce never really catching the market. In declining markets sellers must get ahead of the market so when normal market times build they find themselves “in the market” not “on the market”.

    Which is why it’s critical agents understand AR’s and have the ability to communicate them. Along with a traditional CMA and other market information, help a seller position correctly to the market.

  114. 114
    EconE says:

    TC said…

    “Some people try to be optimistic and others are pestmistic”

    looking past the misspellings (I don’t really care)

    Ahhhhh…the power of positive thinking. Yeah…I know plenty of people that think like that. They lost their asses in the dot-com boom and are losing them in RE in places all over the country.

    So where’d you move from TC?

    What’s this delightful So Cal locale that was unaffected by the downturn?

    Where in Seattle did you buy a condo?

  115. 115
    economist says:

    I’m assuming the person selling would be buying a higher priced house (since they’d be using their equity).

    In that case, if they stay put it represents a decrease in demand and is negative for the market.

  116. 116
    TC says:

    Capitan Kirkland,

    I will go to Candy Lane and enjoy myself with nothing meaningful to say.

    I hope that you enjoy your outlook on the world. Call it reality whatever you want. It is these comments that keep people coming back to this site. Your outlook is negative, cup half empty kind of person.

    But before you pull your data out. Please make sure that it is relevant.

    Actually The Tim does a nice job laying out his take the Seattle Market.

  117. 117

    TC-

    I do enjoy my outlook. I’m not negative. I’m objective. Big difference.

  118. 118
    Jackson Wallace says:

    THe bottom line is that baby boomers have not even begun to lquidate their home retirement equity yet. Many in Seattle still think this area is immune to national developments, and who can really say? There are lots of people that have lost their shirts in the stock market, and those people are coming on the market with their golden pre-boom properties, but they’re selling it for prices noone wants to pay. Meanwhile the speculative garbage has come back on the market, and everyone’s just laughing at it, because noone wants trash at any price. This market has a ong way t tumble folks, a LONG way. Also, mid-winter is a great time to buy – that’s when people hate life around here, and the desperate sellers come out of the woodwork. The market has teetered on the brink twice this year, and we still have six months left. Much more fun to come. Sellers – sell while you can. Its down for several years from here…

  119. 119
    jon says:

    The problem with the boomer theory is that the steepest drops are in the locations where the boomers were supposed to be moving to, not moving away from.

  120. 120
    Big Mike 34 says:

    I wonder if the houses are disappearing because they have gone into foreclosure…..It takes months before a house can be foreclosed and I suspect they are just starting to be removed for that reason….The finincial orginization move very slowly and I suspect most do not yet have good programs for selling these houses yet…

    If they were start they would just turn them over to a realestate orginization and let them take care of it….On the other hand …If they were smart….They would not be in this mess.

  121. 121
    ARDELL says:

    I received an email from Tim asking me to check this. Delisted in May was 2,303 and delisted in June was 2,754. “delisted” being taken off market as a result of a contract expiring or an election by the seller to “cancel” the listing. Those numbers are the total of both. Some of those were re-listed and are showing as “new”, I would expect, in that chart.

    What I don’t understand is where are the SOLD properties? If “sales” are “pending/in escrow properties” then where are the ones dropping off because they sold?

  122. 122
    Ron says:

    Greg Perry- I like the position you have taken and your writing is very straight forward.
    By the Way I actually ran across one of your older audio tape self help courses at a Garage Sale, Not a Bad thing. Honestly Exercise equipment and Self Help are things that are purchased with the Best of intentions and usually never used. I’ve purchased so many courses for a mere few dollars a piece still most the time still in there wrapers unused- I think many people purchasing real estate the last few years forgot to learn what they were doing.

    Interesting to read your postings, I really enjoy reading your postings as well as Rhonda Porter, thank you for coming and hoping to read more educational material…
    Ron..

  123. 123
    Greg Perry says:

    Hey Ron, I appreciate you.

    Full disclosure, there are two of us!

    check out my photo on http://www.425realty.com

    All the best,

  124. 124
    mikal says:

    Ron, agreed. Jillayne has smart comments as well.

  125. 125

    Yaoyao, re 85, when Congress passed the temporary increase to conforming loan limits, they did so “back dated” (I don’t recall the date off the top of my head) IMO so the GSEs could help create liquidity buy purchasing loans that were not moving.

    I need to write a separate post to answer all your questions! (or try to).

    “Is FHA not leveraged that its loans have to fit in a budget?” Are you refering to a borrower’s budget? Typically the back ratio for FHA is around 45% of gross income (high I know, I’m just giving you the stats).

    “From what you see, how much has loan volume dropped this year vs last year?” Personally, so far this year is pretty similar to last year. Neither of which have been typical in my 8 years in the mortgage industry (or my 14 years in title/escrow before that). Last year, at the end of July, my business stopped when the Jumbo market seized up. I happened to be doing more jumbos than ever at that time–partly because of the higher priced homes and I was working with more people relocating to WA from out of state (generated from my blogs and referral). The rest of the year was pretty darn slow.

    Just recently I’m experiencing a little bit of a slow down and then spurts of business. (other than that, the rest of the year has been pretty solid for me). A part of the reason of why I’ve been keeping my plate pretty full is because there are fewer loan originators around so I don’t think that my volume of business is reflective of the amount of purchases or refinances taking place–just less LO’s to take care of them.

  126. 126

    Ron, thanks a bunch! I’m happy to give you my 2 cents…for what ever it’s worth. :)

  127. 127

    AND RAL THINKS WE’RE ALL A BUNCH OF WHINERS?

    Oil’s on its way back up too [and if gas went down 10 cents the last week, big friggin’ deal]:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aSnq6oyJGCB0&refer=worldwide

  128. 128
    Rentersarelosers says:

    Softwarengineer,

    Oil is up .76 cents at 8:05 PT
    It’s doom and gloom, the world is coming to an end.

    No wonder you don’t earn 100k + !
    You are an eternal Pessimist!

  129. 129
    TJ_98370 says:

    .
    My personal adventures take me to the thriving metropolis of Pullman WA, once again. I am happy to report that residential construction of $400,000 homes is still underway. I continue to wonder who can afford these places, considering the local economy. There must be alot of duel proffessor-type income WSU families that I don’t know about.

    I’ve seen something I have never personally seen before, but maybe it isn’t all that uncommon elsewhere. I picked up a flyer of a new house that is still under construction and it featured interior spaces that are as yet unfinished! There is a nice picture of the unfinished living room, unfinished kitchen, unfinished entryway, etc. I guess Pullman realtors are not real big on “staging”.

  130. 130
    TJ_98370 says:

    .
    My personal adventures take me to the thriving metropolis of Pullman WA, once again. I am happy to report that residential construction of $400,000 homes is still underway. I continue to wonder who can afford these places, considering the local economy. There must be alot of duel proffessor-type income WSU families that I don’t know about.

    I’ve seen something I have never personally seen before, but maybe it isn’t all that uncommon elsewhere. I picked up a flyer of a new house that is still under construction and it featured interior spaces that are as yet unfinished! There is a nice picture of the unfinished living room, unfinished kitchen, unfinished entryway, etc. I guess Pullman realtors are not real big on “staging”.

  131. 131
    explorer says:

    Apparently, Short Sales may also be under emphasized– to keep the panic level down, and keep up the appearence that the “slow market” conventional sales are all there is. Not much for commissions there, so it’s not surprising.

    The article in the Seattle Times RE section yesterday was very good. Congrats to Jillayne, she was quoted in several places. Looks like the ST is finally quoting people that actually are a bit more honest and knowledgable.

  132. 132
    Kary L. Krismer says:

    I haven’t read all the comments, but I’d guess the decrease in listings is due to the Distressed Homeowners’ law, which was intended to protect them, but in actuality hurts them. That went into effect June 12, 2008.

    Many/most brokerages required amendments to the listing agreements, which would have brought out the distressed status of the listing. Either the agent or the broker could have decided to not list the property if distressed, or the owner could have decided to not sign the amendment.

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