Is the housing market finally recovering? There were reports this week citing that vacant new home numbers are down, new home starts are up, and the supply of foreclosed homes have decreased. With these numbers in mind, public sentiment about the future of their home values has increased as well. So is the housing crisis finally over?
I don’t know, and I’m not sure if even the professionals know either. Is there a magical number other than huge construction starts that would signal a recovery? Do we just accept the statements of a few politicians or market analysts one day?
The housing market collapse effected different areas differently. Las Vegas and much of Florida were severely impacted, while areas around Washington, DC weren’t (or example). In much of the same way, the recovery will be different as well. We could easily be two years into a recovery, and some areas could still be seeing home values drop due to their local economies. Like politics, the housing market is local.
So what is the market like in your area? For mine, the prices are back to where they were in early 2004 – just before the housing market started ramping up at exponential speed. It has been stable now for the past two years. I would deem this sort of stability a good sign that my local housing market has “recovered”. With housing prices being stable and interest rates being so low, it also seems like a perfect time to buy – and so I did.
Did I make a good decision? I hope so. Only time will tell. Fortunately, I know that unless the economy takes a severe turn South like it did at the end of 2008, I should be able to stay at or above water on the mortgage. But since I don’t plan on moving anytime soon, the long-term value of the home is what I am more interested in. Here’s hoping for a stronger economy in the future!