My Voyage to ‘Bubbleland‘
I started house shopping in March of 2006, and I don’t know if I was more shocked or depressed. “Shockpressed” perhaps? However you want to describe it, I was bummed. My husband and I sold our home in April of 2005, not to take advantage of the rising market, but to facilitate a job transfer that we decided not to take. Having sold our home out from under ourselves, we needed something quickly and decided to rent for a year. Our lease was due to be up at the end of April, and we thought it was time to find a home to purchase. I was astounded at the prices, and decided I needed to find a bargain.
As a research scientist, I tend to research whatever I do rather thoroughly. I looked for ways to determine the value of homes in my area (Phoenix Arizona – East Valley) without using a realtor. We were badly burned by the realtor who sold our home, (that’s a story for another day) and I was disinclined to work with a realtor again.
It was apparent that we were going to have to get a lot less house than we sold a year ago, or we would need to get into an exotic mortgage. I am embarrassed to say now that we were considering it. The more research I did though, the more I came to the conclusion that inventory was up, demand was down, and that we were set for a correction in real estate. By utilizing websites to determine what the market values of homes should be, and tracking what homes were actually selling for, I realized how overpriced the market is, and how difficult it is for buyers to get the information they need. They obviously aren’t getting it from realtors.
So I have researched the National Board of Realtors, the Fed, the stock market, mortgages, and all the real estate information I could get my hands on. My research has led me to do two things. One – we just signed a six month extension on the lease on this home – it’s a bargain, about half what the mortgage would be. The other would be to set up this site – to try and get information in the hands of buyers and sellers. While there are honest and decent realtors, the NAR’s virtual monopoly on listings lends itself to abuse and I believe that has exacerbated the current housing bubble. Laws of supply and demand won’t achieve proper balance in the market, if people don’t have the information they need to make sound choices.
This site is my forum for sharing what I’ve learned. I have an eclectic group of sources I use. Our homes are dictated to a large extent by our incomes, which are affected by the economy, and other market forces worldwide. That means that to try and determine where the market is going, we need to look beyond local market conditions, and so we need to look at eclectic information. I welcome comments, articles, graphs, links, and pictures – anything that can enhance our understanding of the future of the real estate market.
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any comments.
I would very much appreciate a civil level of discourse. While I understand how a lot of what is going on in real estate is enough to make one resort to profanity, I am not comfortable with much of that, or with sexually explicit material. I will promptly delete any material I deem inappropriate. In addition, while I appreciate an intelligent and honest differing opinion, trollish comments can and will be deleted.