Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Have we hit bottom yet?

The question on many peoples' minds is "Have we hit bottom yet?" This is not an easy question to answer. My belief is that there are some areas in the country that have not hit bottom yet and there are others that are darn near close. On Long Island we have seen some drastic reductions in price compared to just one short year ago. Homes that had sold for $400,000 in early 2007 are now selling for $300,000. For buyers this should seem to be good news however there still is a segment of buyers sitting on the sidelines waiting to see if the market will fall even further. My belief is that there still is some room for further price reductions in certain market areas however in other areas the price is probably close to bottom. Smart and motivated buyers are now in the position to scoop up homes that should far exceed their previous expectations. I have seen w/my own two eyes some pretty amazing deals. I would also like to point out that these incredible deals have been noticed by buyers since they have generated bidding wars with full and over full priced offers. I know that many people will find this hard to believe considering our current market environment but it is true.

Yet the news continues to sound ugly. Today's news pointed out that 1 in 194 homes had foreclosure notices filed. Home prices are down 12.7% through February 2008 and consumer confidence sank to a 5 year low.

Most people tend to become frightened when they hear this news and fright and fear breed inaction which causes the market to further stagnate. When I hear this news I tend to have 2 reactions. My first reaction is sadness for all of the homeowners out there who are losing their homes and all of their neighbors who will be stuck living next to a foreclosed property which can attract vandalism and blight. My second reaction is excitement over the many possibilities for well qualified buyers to get into their first home or the trade up home of their dreams. Home prices have finally fallen to realistic levels where the average person has a shot at home ownership without having to work 80 hours per week just to pay the mortgage. We have now entered into a time of wonderful opportunities for the next generation of home owners. I'm happy to say 'it's about time'!

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