Wednesday, August 23, 2006

NPR Audio Files

Here is National Public Radio's (NPR) August 23, 2006 Day to Day report "Marketplace Report: Housing 'Bubble' Popped?" (about four minutes long). In this one David Lereah (chief economist for the National Association of Realtors) actually blames sellers for the housing slowdown. And this too "New Home-Sales Data Confirms Market Slowdown" (about 3.5 minutes long). Lots of "we knew it all along; this was predicted" BS.

Wow, David Lereah actually telling sellers they absolutely must lower the price of their houses even if it means taking a loss. The snowball has started rolling now and it's going to get bigger and bigger, faster and faster, and ultimately land with a big, fat, wet thud.

Here is NPR's August 22, 2006 Talk of the Nation "Where Is the Housing Market Headed?" (long, about 45 minutes). The first two guest speakers are pretty much useless IMO and it doesn't get even remotely interesting until the last third. One point not to miss is the fact that places like the Bay Area ("glamour" areas) are particularly susceptible to boom/bust cycles.

1. Lawrence Yun, senior economist with the National Association of Realtors

2. Elizabeth Razzi, author of The Fearless Home Buyer: Razzi's Rules for Staying in Control of the Deal; real estate journalist

3. Robert Shiller, author of Irrational Exuberance; professor of economics at Yale University

If you want to skip the long program above, here is just one caller's (a Bay Area real estate broker's) comments about the local RE market as well as Robert Shiller's response.


Anonymous said...

I just had a friend tell me he bought a Mill Valley POS for next to a mill.

He mentioned that his great credit got him a no down payment loan.

This was ironic 'cause I was just about to tell about this blog and other resources.

I hadn't seen him for a while and remembered that he was wanting to buy.

I didn't mention anything about this blog or the current state of affairs.

Any opinions?

I saw the house and it looks like a true POS.

Is location location location true?

Anonymous said...

Sorry if the post was off topic.

I am worried about my friend and his commitment to house payments and property tax etc.

He is sure the value will rise.
I don't want to burst his euphoric bubble.

What's up with a no down payment loan?

Marinite, thanks again for this forum.

I listened to the NPR stuff and it only confirmed my bubble belief.

Anonymous said...

I heard this NPR stuff on the radio the other day and it struck me how the pace of the "down market" discussion has quickened on the local and national stages within the past several weeks. Looks like the recognition of year over year losses forces these guys to be, well, closer to honest...

Marinite said...

conflicted -

Other than what I say in my posts, I won't comment on how wise your friend was or what he should do. Other people who leave comments on this blog are free to say what they want as long as it's appropriate. But frankly, if he has already committed then what can you do?

But thanks for sharing this tidbit of your life as it goes to show that there are no-down "toxic" loans being used even in Marin. Not that there was any doubt, but there it is.

marine_explorer said...

I spoke with a local res. contractor yesterday who wasn't aware of the high incidence of toxic loans in CA, and what that could mean to our local market. Discussing bay area loan stats was enough to prompt a few nervous laughs at future scenarios for local homeowners.

Looking over the hills of Tiburon, we had to wonder how many were too wealthy to care--and who are slowly sinking in debt? From my single vantage point, it's really hard to know how bad things may get for individuals or as a part of a larger picture.

From this conversation, I was reminded how we all have a limited view of the situation, whether we’re builders, bankers, or consumers. And, given what has transpired already, it’s best we shun the talking heads and focus on how this will affect us personally. Will that mortgage kill you eventually? Is it really a buyers market now—should you go for it—or wait? Is Marin really immune from a housing downturn?

Whether the media is upbeat or pessimistic, it’s important we all have a broad enough view to distinguish hype from well-reasoned advice. Applying those critical-thinking skills is our best protection.

Anonymous said...

Whether there is a bubble or not does not matter. The truth is that the more reports on the "bubble" the more there is a bubble.
Markets are the fruits of self fulfilling prophecies.

In other words blogging is not an innocent sport and one can not "report" without being part of the scene as an outside observer would be.

This being said a lot of people belive that there is a bubble which means that there is one. A lot of people believe that buying opportunities will occur when the bubble will "burst". That mean that the down will be followed by an up and the cycles on either sides will be faster than we have ever experienced before.

So get your money ready and start your engines...

Anonymous said...

In other words blogging is not an innocent sport and one can not "report" without being part of the scene as an outside observer would be.

Really--how does this assumption hold up under critical scrutiny? I'm seeing a bit of mistaken causality here, where belief takes on too large a role. Granted, psychology followed the market up, but that's because there were actual opportunities in place--such as cheap credit--to drive the bubble. In a similar way, psychology will follow the market down--but that's only a reflection of the actual market of overpriced homes, poor affordability, tightening credit, and decreased speculation. Psychology is a lagging indicator of an already present reality.

Lereah, Shiller, or bloggers can talk all they want. What is spin and what is sage advice will be decided by the market—not the other way around.