FORGET ALL THE HOUSING COMEBACK TALK: Here's Why The Market Is Still A Disaster

house, housing, real estate

Photo: Flickr / erix!

Many experts argue that the U.S. housing market has turned the corner. Some – like Wharton professor Jeremy Siegel – have argued that it’s one of the few bright spots that will drive economic growth.But is the housing recovery all that certain? The Fed’s decision to purchase $40 billion of agency MBS a month certainly suggests that it isn’t as confident as housing bulls would have us believe.

And some markets – like Illinois, New York, and much of the Northeast United States – are getting worse.

We put together 14 charts that highlight the many nagging doubts that are still out there about the much-touted housing recovery.

Note: Special thanks to Keith Jurow, author of’s Housing Market Report, for contributing charts and data to the piece. You can read Jurow’s articles on Business Insider here.

Expectations for higher home prices have been declining in recent months.

Revisions to housing starts have turned negative.

The number of people applying for new mortgages has yet to climb.

The shadow inventory is starting to decline, but it's still at extremely elevated levels.

In some markets, banks are selling less of their inventory of unoccupied houses. So it will take longer to clear out the shadow inventory.

The amount of time it takes to process a foreclosure is rising, which is another sign that shadow supply is being held off the market.

In some markets, like Illinois, foreclosures are on the rise.

In New York, pre-foreclosure notices are surging.

In California, mortgage delinquency rates are staggering.

Price per square foot is down in almost every major market in the northeastern US.

Delinquency rates are staggering in the 15 worst major metro housing markets.

If loan modification programs don't pick up, subprime mortgages in foreclosure will continue to surge.

Re-defaults on mortgages modified between 2008 and 2011 are rising.

Everyone points to the Case-Shiller index to make the case that housing has bottomed. But we've seen a bump before, and as we have seen in the previous charts, this doesn't tell the whole story.

Now here are the best housing markets...

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