A Terrible Market?

In July of 2002 if new listings were to cease, it would take 4.7 months to sell all the houses at the then rate of sales.  In July 2007, it would take 30 DAYS LONGER THAN THAT! Yup, it would take 5.7 months to sell all of our listings at the current rate of sales.  TERRIBLE!  We have almost 1/3 more homes to sell than we did five years ago! 

Look at closed sales for the year to date for July 2002 at 2,337 vs. 2,624 for July of this year!  THAT IS A 12% INCREASE IN SALES!  THAT IS TERRIBLE!  Wait A minute…a sales increase is actually a good thing. 

In July of 2002 the average market time was 61 days.  The average market time this past July was 52 days!  THAT IS TERRIBLE! 

Appreciation must be TERRIBLE!  In the market we are in, prices are dropping like a rock!  For example, our office does a lot of business in Hillsboro/Forest Grove, and the annual appreciation rate year to date in 2002 was 5.7%.  This year, for the same time period, it dropped clear down to 10.8%.  Isn’t that UP almost double?  In Gresham, the appreciation rate went from 1.2% to 12.7%.  What a travesty!  The Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS) showed three areas in July of 2002 that had negative appreciation, and none in 2007.


We are in a state of emergency in this country regarding foreclosures.  They are at an all time high.  Well, they are at an all time high in Illinois, Michigan, California, Colorado, Arizona and Florida.  In our area, foreclosures are actually down.  Foreclosure rates in Oregon are down 50% and waaaaaaaaay below the national average.

 I don’t pretend to ignore the fact that the real estate market is much different today than it was a couple of years ago.  Financing is more difficult.  The real estate market is and always will be very cyclical in nature. 

The problems in the early 1980’s were much different.  High interest rates (12% to 18%) were prevalent.  Unemployment was high.  Today we have good employment, a bustling economy and low interest rates. 

While we face a different set of problems today, they are not yet, and probably won’t become overwhelming…unless you let them, and that would be TERRIBLE!


excerpted from Portland Metropolitan Association of Realtors® September 24, 2007 newsletter article by:  Gary Taylor, Principal Broker & Branch Manager, RE/MAX equity group, inc. Sunset Corridor office


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