Tuesday, May 20, 2008

DataQuick Results for April, 2008

Here are the April, 2008 results from DataQuick:

The median price in Marin is down -13.5% year-over-year. Last month it was -4.5%, before that about -6.5%, and before that -5.5%. Marin is currently down about -29% from the peak.

I don't know about you, but I hope Leslie Appleton-Young is making regular trips to her doctor at least judging by this quote she made back in April, 2007:
"It's God's country, what can I say," Leslie Appleton-Young, chief economist for the California Association of Realtors, told an audience of agents Tuesday in Terra Linda. "When is the 30 percent decline in Marin County's market going to happen? Not in my lifetime."
And I can't let this, from the Marin IJ the other day, pass without some comment (emphasis mine; the graphic is from foreclosure.com -- this time last year the "preforeclosure" number for Marin was 168 compared to the 478 of today, and this time 2006 it was a paltry 35):
A crumbling Marin housing market is booming business for Coldwell Banker broker George DeSalvo. The veteran agent deals in real estate owned, or REO, properties that have gone through foreclosure and into bank ownership. DeSalvo described today’s market as the worst he’s seen. "I think this has close enough parity to foreclosures that took place during the Depression," said DeSalvo, a Novato resident who works out of Greenbrae.

Edward Segal, CEO of the Marin Association of Realtors, said he has seen "a big spike" in member requests for workshops on foreclosures, short sales and REOs over the past six months. One such session last month was standing-room only.

Realtor Vince Gramalia in San Rafael, has practiced real estate in Marin for more than 30 years but spends about 75 percent of his time dealing with REO properties these days.

"Being in the business for a while, I was aware of it since the early '70s," he said. "We went through a couple phases like this, and we saw this coming."
"Saw this coming"? What the...!? Not likely; this blog is testament to that. Your industry time and time again refused to deal honestly with the public. Your industry, and yes, I am also most certainly including the real estate industry in Marin, did nothing but engage in disinformation, overt manipulation, and general fear mongering to prop up buying activity and to line your own pockets with ever larger commissions. Need I remind you of incessant talk about how we are immune, we're "special", about how prices can only go up, about how Marin real estate will never lose value, "buy now or be priced out forever", distorted statistics, egregious propaganda sponsored by your industry in our local media? The list goes on and on and is documented to some extent here on this blog. Don't you dare now say "you saw this coming". Yes, we (the readers of this blog) saw this coming but probably not you and certainly not your industry. But if you did happen to foresee this, were you out actively warning your clients that they might be making the biggest financial mistake of their lives; that perhaps they would be better off postponing a purchase? I didn't think so.


Blogger Unknown said...

you might want to read the rest of the article about the guy that saw this coming. He's been doing REO for about 3 decades and has apparentlyu built long standing relationships in that niche. Thus, he's killing it right now. Give credit where credit is due..

May 21, 2008, 10:08:00 AM  
Blogger Alarming said...

Given the fact that inflation is accelerating, there is no more room for the fed to cut rates. When the interest rates start to back up again, what would the RE and credit situation be like? Be very careful for any wishful thinking promoted by the RE industry.

May 21, 2008, 10:37:00 AM  
Blogger marinite2 said...

Also, did you all see the glowing article in the IJ today? ... A day or two AFTER their negative article on foreclosures? Notice how they are comparing April results to March? Not year-over-year. Don't you like how they reported month-over-month during the bubble when prices were going through the roof on a monthly basis, then when things flattened out it was year-over-year, and now that year-over-year doesn't work for them, they jump on any month-over-month comparison that they can write a cheery article about. When they cannot, we hardly hear anything from them.

May 21, 2008, 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger bob said...

Speaking of glowing news, I suppose you all saw this in the DQ reports:

"La Jolla, CA.----Bay Area home sales edged up from a seven-month run of record lows last month, indicating that mortgage availability is improving and that an increasing number of fence sitters have decided they like today's lower prices, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 6,310 new and resale houses and condos sold in the nine- county Bay Area in April. That was up 28.8 percent from 4,898 in March, and down 15.3 percent from 7,447 for April 2007, DataQuick Information Systems reported.

The month-to-month jump was the strongest for any March/April in DataQuick's statistics, which go back to 1988. Starting last September and through March, each calendar month was the slowest on record. Last month was the slowest April since 1995 when 5,636 homes were sold.

"The big issue here is that mortgages are becoming obtainable, which will reduce the pile of stacked up pending escrows. It's unclear if the financing is because of policy changes or because mortgage investors are getting more interested in securities. Probably both," said Marshall Prentice, DataQuick president.

The median price paid for a Bay Area home was $518,000 last month, down 3.4 percent from $536,000 in March, and down 21.4 percent from $659,000 in April last year. Last month's median was 22.1 percent lower than the peak median of $665,000 reached in June and July last year.

Last month's median price would have been closer to $578,000 if the availability of jumbo home loans had remained stable. A year ago jumbo loans, mortgages above $417,000, accounted for 63.4 percent of all Bay Area home loans. Last month they were 28.8 percent, DataQuick reported.

Foreclosure property resales accounted for 25.7 percent of last month's Bay Area market. The percentage is higher in outlying areas that absorbed spillover activity during the frenzy. While foreclosure properties were 5.9 percent of San Francisco's resale market and 8.9 percent of Marin's resale market last month, they were 44.7 percent in Contra Costa and 54.2 percent in Solano. "

So for one thing, the one nuggest of positive news was that this month was better than last month- the worst on record, but still worse than last year, which was already deep in the slowdown period.

Secondly, a huge amount of those homes sold were foreclosures, of which it seems that there are already quite a few early knife-catcher investors buying.If you took SF and Marin out of the equation, we're talking close to 50% of all sales being foreclosures, which as well know means these sales will crash prices further.

But thirdly was the info that those buying with jumbo loans fell by 50%.I've been looking to somewhat of a tangible number that would indicate how much real pain BA buyers will endure without the help of cheater products. This article doesn't make it clear. In order to get closer to an answer, I would need to see what the avg price of a foreclosed home sold for, and what percentage of them were bought without jumbos. If these homes are selling for say- 250-350k, with no jumbos, then that is just about right for what I think would be doable as far as a more reasonable price range for the area. If the non-foreclosure homes are being bought with no jumbos and selling for considerably more than the foreclosures ( those selling in my hood are around 550-600k), then that would indicate that people have a much higher pain tolerance than I had originally thought, which would indicate a very slow decline in prices versus a more sudden drop as we've seen so far.

May 21, 2008, 12:02:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

The SF Chronicle also ran a gushing, front page article "A Glimmer of Hope" because sales are up versus March. But if you actually read the article, there's no hope. Sales were up in counties with high foreclosure levels, and prices are way down off peak. And all the economists quoted say it's going to get worse before it gets better. But, still the attempt to spin is just pathetic.

May 21, 2008, 12:05:00 PM  
Blogger bob said...

Well, if anything, the last two days of panic on Wall Street will probably not help restore confidence.

Then again, there's a tiny little voice in the back of my head that tells me that since people in the BA were so amazingly stupid during the boom and bought way the hell beyond their means, that perhaps there's a 'glimmer' of hope that they'll get right back to being stupid. This area breeds pompous, polished attitudes.

So I'm trying to not get all giddy right yet because who knows? Perhaps we're all setup to start another Freakin' boom... at which point this ole' boy packs his bags and gets the hell out of here because I've had enough.

May 21, 2008, 1:20:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Today's Chronicle also reminded me how addicted we've become to RE money and the House ATM. Like anything that suggests the housing bubble could be re-inflated is cause for front-page celebration.

Seriously, once you read beyond that headline today, the news was pretty grim. So why the spin? And why on the front page, when previous months' bad news was mostly hidden away in the Business section? Disgusting.

May 21, 2008, 2:37:00 PM  
Blogger bob said...

So why the spin? And why on the front page, when previous months' bad news was mostly hidden away in the Business section? Disgusting.

Easy. Most news agencies, media outlets, and other forms of entertainment get vast quantities of money from lending, RE, and banking institutions just like our politicians do. It really isn't any different than the car section in newspaper where utter POS vehicles like a Kia Sephia are given rave reviews.

May 21, 2008, 3:44:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Wait a minute there...
I am a regular reader of your blog, and I am not in the RE industry.

I know George DeSalvo; he handled a home sale and purchase for me years ago. Take his quote at face value and add no implications. He is straightforward, honest and truth-telling. These are qualities rare in his industry.

I happened to run into George at lunch two years ago this week. I had not seen him for many years and have not seen him since.

At that time, May of 2006, he in fact told me that he thought the Marin market had run its course and he did not see much upside.

So, yes, he did see it coming and did advise this potential client as such.

Do not lump him into the other 95% of his profession. He is successful because he is open to his clients. He drives at least one car worth more that your annual salary, and probably paid cash. You could at least call him before you mudsling him. You would finish the conversation with a much different interpretation of his comments.

May 24, 2008, 2:11:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Another LOL article in today's Marin IJ....this time the foreigners are coming and will save the Marin market. Never mind they're less than 10% of recent buyers according to the article. Never mind that inventory and NOD's are through the roof here. It still made front page news.

May 24, 2008, 7:04:00 PM  
Blogger marine_explorer said...

"...this time the foreigners are coming and will save the Marin market."

How predictable...realtors are saying that from San Diego to Victoria, BC.

"We went through a couple phases like this, and we saw this coming."

LOL, right. If you did, you kept that to yourself.

May 25, 2008, 1:38:00 PM  

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