For nearly two years, I have been warning in my articles posted on BUSINESS INSIDER that there is no housing bottom in sight. I’ve been correct.
Yet one analyst after another has been proclaiming that the housing bottom is finally here. This is nonsense!
Many of these “experts” have skin in the game and hope to lure you back into the market. They base their assumptions on the fact that housing prices seem to be falling more slowly. They’re not. Take a look at these shocking numbers I uncovered in the last two weeks:
SINGLE-FAMILY HOME PRICES IN THE NORTHEAST
Location Avg. Price Per Sq. Ft Change from Feb. 2011 Connecticut Fairfield County $260 down 16.6% City of Bridgeport $86 down 17.3% City of New Haven $88 down 31.2% City of Hartford $72 down 10.1% Westport $311 down 30.3% Greenwich $481 down 34.8% Darien $354 down 19.3% New Canaan $371 down 10.1% Branford $126 down 41.4% Glastonbury $161 down 19.1% Simsbury $129 down 13.2% Massachusetts Framingham $157 down 9.2% Newton $313 down 13.5% Scituate $215 down 16.5% Rhode Island Providence $101 down 5.5% Warwick $120 down 12.2% Pawtucket $91 down 18.3% New York State Westchester County $276 down 10.1%Source: Wm. Raveis & Co. – raveis.com
These are real, raw numbers, not an index like Case-Shiller. They come from the largest family-owned brokerage firm in the northeast — Raveis and Co. whose reputation is impeccable. I spent several days reviewing the terrific raveis.com search tool and found similar price declines in more than 150 towns and cities.
Sales volume was way down in most towns in the northeast. To my surprise, inventories are up substantially from a year earlier. All that talk last fall about shrinking MLS inventories is history. Listings are soaring in most towns.
Some people I speak with are sceptical about these numbers. Check them for yourself if you think I’m making them up. Go to the raveis.com homepage and the drop-down menu for “Housing Data.” Then hit the link to “View local housing data” and this will take you to their search page where you can see the latest sales and price statistics for towns in seven northeast states. You’ll be as shocked as I was.
Here is my warning: Prices are crumbling and homeowners have perhaps six months to decide what to do. I strongly suspect that a year from now will be too late.