The relationship between supply and demand establishes pricing whether it is for toothpaste, a mani/pedi, Bitcoin, or a house. Demand moves based on consumer sentiment. This is true for Wall Street and Main Street and that is the extent of the similarities between the two.
While the company that we love to hate is struggling, we are all left on the sidelines guessing what will happen next. This is not the end of iBuying, nor is it the end of Zillow, and this certainly does not mean the market is crashing (the price reductions are only bringing the asking price down to market value). It may mean that Wall Street investors decided profitability is important and it is time to stop buying high and selling low.
Could it really be possible that we are overbuilding? But what about the extreme undersupply of housing stock? NAR said we have a national deficit of over 5 million units. Economist, Dr. Peter Linneman says have a 2-3 million unit shortage. Wall Street housing analyst, Ivy Zelman says the deficit is less than one million units. These are all credible sources so how do we make sense of this? Perspective is key, different data tells different stories.
Today is all about the AZ market. On Wednesday, Lawyers Title hosted a presentation with Tina Tamboer with the Cromford Report. She always shares pertinent and timely information. Below I have combined a lot of her information from her presentation, along with additional information from my research.
In this 21 minute video, Lydia Wietsma and I discuss the latest in forbearance, foreclosures, loan servicing, Zillow, and the market.
Do you have clients still worrying about when the housing market will crash? The intensity of late 2020 and early 2021 felt like the market frenzy of 2005. As the market normalizes it may feel weird or uncomfortable as we pivot again. While those emotions are important and we have to have emotion to make decisions, we have to look at the facts. And the facts point towards stabilization and continued appreciation, just at a slower rate.
In this 10 minute video, Amber Kovarik and I discuss the Federal Reserve’s September 22nd announcement stating the start of the bond and mortgage backed security purchase tapering will likely start this year and the expected impact it will have on mortgage interest rates.
At some point, nearly everyone who was in the real estate business in 2008 says, “I wish I bought one/some/many houses when they went on sale from 2009-2011.” Then they go on and say, “Next time, I will be ready.” This sentiment is why prices won’t crash.
Looking at housing, things look good and the market is attempting to normalize, but we do not see the whole picture. Wall Street, federal policy, a worldwide pandemic, labor and supply chain shortages also impact housing. But there is still more to consider: the intense and seemingly ever-increasing battle between the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
Despite the normalizing of the market, it is not normal. Demand has actually increased recently which is unusual because this is the time of year demand typically declines. After a 44% inventory increase over the past three months, inventory seems to be leveling out again and the increases have flattened. Leveling out at 7,400 listings is less than ideal. The size of the Greater Phoenix market calls for 25,000 listings and we haven’t seen 20,000 active listings since 2016.