Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Are demographic changes helping or hurting housing?

The housing market sales doldrums we experience today is partly a result of the smaller Generation X hitting their prime homebuying years. Most anticipate a resurgence of housing when Millennials start buying homes in larger numbers.

Back in 1997 a demographic study shook the homebuilding...

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Can mortgage interest rates inflate a housing bubble?

As mortgage rates rise, home sales will decline, and if it goes on long enough, prices will fall.

In rocketry, escape velocity is the speed required to propel an object into a stable orbit. In a housing market, escape velocity is a rate of price and sales volume increase necessary to sustain an...

Monday, August 29, 2016

Federal tax policies inflate house prices for high wage earners

Home mortgage interest deduction encourages high wage earners to borrow more; capital gains tax exemption encourages wealthy to invest more in personal homes. The combined effect inflates house prices.

Politicians promote home ownership through a variety of subsidies and tax loopholes,...

Friday, August 26, 2016

The recent apartment boom is great for California

By providing more housing units, apartment developers will lower housing costs over time and relieve the pressure on Californian’s personal budgets.

Combating the chronic shortage of available housing in California requires building more places to live. It matters little if these new...

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Why home prices feel expensive when ownership costs suggest otherwise

Houses feel expensive because an unusually large percentage of the payment is going toward principal amortization.

For the last few years, my monthly housing market reports rate most communities across Southern California highly, suggesting it’s a very good time to buy a house. Yet...

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

New houses will be smaller over the next decade

As Millennials buy new homes, builders will provide smaller houses Millennials can afford.

For years, academics in planning circles touted the rise of the small, high-density housing alternatives near mass-transit hubs. While this product might be the future of housing, it won’t be due to any p...

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Seasonal home sales slowdown particularly harsh in 2016

Both the data and the anecdotes demonstrate a noticeable and significant slowdown in home sales. Is it merely seasonal?

I am moving out of my current rental and back to Orange County (more on that later). I agreed to allow my landlord to market the property for sale over the last month while I...

Monday, August 22, 2016

When Nimbys lose, families gain new homes

When Nimbys lose their emotional fights to block new development, new families move into the neighborhood and enjoy new houses that otherwise would not have been built.

Real estate development provides homes, offices, shops, features of the built environment the define the quality of everyday...

Friday, August 19, 2016

The flow of Chinese buyers in Irvine slows to a trickle

A rising US dollar makes Irvine homes much more expensive for Chinese buyers, and capital controls makes it much more difficult to move money out of China for those inclined to do so.

Many Chinese investors consider Irvine, California, a safe haven where they can store their wealth far from...

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Who gains and who loses with high house prices?

High house prices are demanded by foolish Ponzis, enjoyed by real homeowners, and favored by politicians pandering to both groups.

Why are high house prices the keep rising considered a universal good? Does everyone benefit if house prices are high and keep moving higher? When house prices move...

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Are property speculators ignoring the risks again?

Most real estate investors are really speculators betting on appreciation. It’s a strategy destined to be a loser.

One look at the MLS, and everyone sees that house prices are very high. People don’t get as much house for their money because house prices rose faster than...

Monday, August 15, 2016

Entry-level houses scarce because underwater owners can"t sell

Entry-level housing is not available for sale because many owners of these properties are still underwater and unable to list and sell their homes.

From 2000 to 2005, house prices more than doubled in many areas of the country. Although rates of home price appreciation that high can’t be...