Monday, July 02, 2012

Recent Housing Articles

I have been meaning to link to several housing articles for about a week.  The first link is a NPR article (audio, too) that, to me, explained why the huge glut of pending foreclosed homes, which for years has been seen as a threat to derail any housing recovery and suppress prices, could be overblown.  Institutional investors are snapping up foreclose homes as fast as they come on the market:
Paul Herrera, government affairs director for the Inland Valleys Association of Realtors in Riverside, says there are 40 percent fewer homes on the market compared with last year, and sales volume is up.
Herrera says homebuyers like Bryant are often losing to a growing field of investors, often backed by Wall Street, who are willing to pay cash.
"Cash is always king in this sort of situation," he says.
And then there are the ridiculous stories:
No one here is bidding on a home to live in it. They're people like Gabriel Anguiano, who's recast himself from golf course manager to minor real estate tycoon. In the past four years, he's bought and rehabbed 120 houses to rent or flip.
"I would buy a $30,000 condo, put in another $5,000 in remodels and then sell it for 80, 90. So you make $50,000," he says.
I don't believe this story for a second.  If a former golf course starter can routinely earn more than 100% returns flipping homes and condos, there would be a tidal wave of capital flowing to distressed housing.  Institutional investors are buying distressed homes as income plays, with investment income of 7% to 9%, not 100%.

The second article details the rebound in Las Vegas housing prices, which is a positive sign.

The third article is actually commentary from The Economist's Free Exchange blog.  The following paragraph summarizes much of what I've been reading lately:
Price rises have looked imminent for some time. Sales figures have been trending upward and inventory numbers are at remarkably low levels. Rents have also been increasing, making home purchases look ever more attractive. There is still an ample stock of distressed and bank-owned homes to work off, but America seems to have achieved bottoms for both sales and prices. Housing markets have adjusted.

1 comment:

rational number said...

In mathematics, a rational number is any number that can be expressed as the quotient or fraction p/q of two integers, with the denominator q not equal to zero.