Building Market Intelligence

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Are Consumers Paying Down Debt?

Consumer borrowing declined for the first time in more than 10 years, which is a possible indicator that they are reining in their spending and getting their own personal balance sheets in order. As noted by the Federal Reserve this …

Running With the Devil

Inside the Bailout: What We Get vs. What We Need The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA), signed into law on Friday, was adorned with billions of dollars in earmarks. Still, it seems there was little room for home …

Distress Breeds Opportunity

As market conditions continue to soften, even the builders who have already filed bankruptcy are licking their chops – anticipating what will certainly become the land buying opportunity of this generation. In preparation, they’re lining up new equity partners and …

Featured Market: Riverside-San Bernardino

The Riverside-San Bernardino market has plunged from one of the hottest markets in the country in 2004 to one of the most challenging markets today. The change in numbers is staggering: Job Growth: From 60,800 payroll jobs added in 2004 …

The National Bank of the United States

The U.S. government now controls the U.S. mortgage industry, which means two very favorable things for home builders: The near-term future of mortgage liquidity will be set by policy rather than economics. In an election year, that can only be …

First Impressions Are Crucial

In today’s competitive environment, you really have to stand out. A potential buyer’s first impression should be very positive. Clean Up the Neighborhood How does the neighborhood look? Is there something you can do to clean it up? Identify the …

Permit Plummet Is Astonishing

Single-family permits in the Northeast, Midwest and West are already below their respective troughs in 1991, and the South is well on its way to a similar decline. In all regions, single-family permits have declined by 50% or more from …

National Affordability Statistics Are Misleading

In recent weeks, we were in several meetings where analysts made the bullish argument that affordability had improved to the point where home prices could fall no further. While affordability has indeed returned to normal levels (as shown by the …

Patience Is a Virtue, But It Isn’t Exciting

Whoever coined the phrase “patience is a virtue” could not possibly have had the current housing bust in mind. Billions of dollars have been raised by very impatient investors who want to buy real estate at a discount. However, most …

Gas Prices Shift Demand Back to the Urban Core

We believe that there is going to be a tremendous shift back to urban areas, led by those who bought homes in the outlying areas who lose their home to foreclosure. They will choose to rent near work to save …