Home Sales have rebounded in many of the largest markets across the U.S! Last month, home sales jumped sharply in Southern California, the San Francisco CA area, Minneapolis, and Orlando.
Indeed, in these areas, thousands of foreclosed properties have attracted deep-discount bargain hunters with cash to buy, or access to hard-to-get financing on homes that need moderate to extensive repairs and upgrading.
In the Chicago Metro Area, however, according to a report and statistics compiled by The Wall Street Journal, the theoretical Inventory of Homes for Sale stands at over 18 months, amidst a 10.4% area unemployment rate, and a 7.1% rate of homeowners at least one payment behind in their mortgages. The Median Home Price across the Chicago Area has dropped 23.8% since mid-2006, when prices here peaked.
There are hundreds of distressed or foreclosed properties for sale in the Chicago Real Estate Market.
Chicago isn't the only area experiencing continued real estate market weakness, however. Detroit, where the unemployment rate in June hit 14.9%, still has an over 14 month supply of homes for sale, and a 31.9% drop in the median price of a home since their prices peaked within the last couple of years.
Sales have also declined, amidst high levels of inventory, and increasing jobless rates, in Nashville, Charlotte, Las Vegas, and parts of Florida, as well as in and near New York City and Long Island NY.
Higher-bracket homes have been especially hit hard by the housing crisis nationally. Upper-end buyers have fewer financing options, and often can't upgrade their home at all if they can't release the frozen equity in their existing home, which often cannot sell, or eventually sell far cheaper than projected. Today, even owners of the nicest homes are not immune to loss of a job - they often fall behind on their mortgage payments, and cut their sales prices to deep-discount levels in order to get the homes to sell.
Potential buyers face their own unemployment concerns - those fearing for their jobs are reluctant to chance a home purchase. Further, mortgage credit remains tight as loan underwriting standards have been made far more stringent, and appraisers have been far less liberal with their home valuations, causing many sales to fall through due to under-appraisal.
And no one can accurately predict if the expiration of the Fed $8,000 Credit For First-Time Homebuyers, on November 30th, will dampen sales further.
MoodysEconomy.com predicts how quickly the real estate market will truly rebound will be tied closely to local unemployment numbers. They predict Washington DC, Minneapolis, Houston, and Dallas will likely have unemployment rates below the average nationally, and may actually fare better than metro areas with higher-predicted unemployment - Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Orlando, Sacramento, and Portland OR.
The unemployment outlook here in Chicago is unclear.
Please see our post via BlogChicagoHomes.com.
DEAN & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO