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Welcome to your constantly updated resource for news and views on the Brookline Real Estate market. Here you will find commentary and statistics to explain the daily changes in the Brookline specific housing market.

Whether you're looking for an estate in Cottage Farm, a condo in Brookline Village or are just stopping by please feel free to read along and comment at will. If you are interested in speaking about renting an apartment, buyer representation or listing your home please feel free to contact me.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Realtors' Forecast Bucks Common Wisdom

Realtors' Forecast Bucks Common Wisdom - EarthLink - Top News

I enjoyed seeing this in the Boston Globe's "Worst of 2007." Rona Fischman, a buyers agent, might actually find herself and her colleagues over at the Chicken Little Media Factory in my "Worst of 2007" for the reasons this article mentions.

"Despite over-exaggerated negative coverage on the housing conditions, many local markets are actually seeing price increases," Yun said at a press briefing. "Mortgage availability is improving."

I have tried not to editorialize here on the numbers we've seen. While blogs are at their root editorial devices, I have provided hard numbers in my market update sections, and I firmly stand by them. As of this week, this blog has been viewed over 1000 times this Fall and each of you has seen that Brookline's raw statistics demonstrate market stability if not growth. As with all markets, they can be broken down into "sub-markets" of the larger piece, and there will always be pockets of Brookline or specific property types which struggle. Let's face it, in 2004 you had to buy a condo that was on top of the D-Line if you wanted to live in Brookline because a) it was the only thing remotely affordable and b) it was the only thing that didn't sell immediately after coming on market. You won't see those things anymore. People caught up in the height of the boom will not have the same success as sellers now. This does not mean our market is bad. In fact, I would say that more bad property was bought and the market was more harmful back in '04 than it is now.

As we approach the end of the year I will post a 2005 - 2006 - 2007 comparison. I predict it will show 2007 being an improvement from 2006, but both of them sliding down slightly from 2005. Again, the market correcting is not a bad thing. The people who are predicting doom and gloom were the same people who were screaming that the market was in extreme over-valuation a few years ago. You cannot have it both ways. If you bought in 2005, it might take until 2009 for you to see growth. If that upsets you, I suggest you speak with anyone who bought property in the mid '80s. While I am not an investment analyst, I will tell you that a home is not a stock which will fluctuate wildly and provide you chances for immediate growth. If you stay in your home for five years it should make you some money. There is not a five year period that we've tracked where this has failed to be true. If you are moving more than once every five years, then that is a risk you are taking. We need to all be responsible in the housing decisions we make, conservative in our spending, and realistic about our goals. The balance of the economy didn't suddenly shift, the "unsustainable" growth stopped being sustained.


Rona said...

If you are going to use my name on your blog, at least quote me accurately. See :
The pull quote you used is from who-knows-where on and was not even one of my entries.

I wrote the “Best of 2007” and the “Worst of 2007” for a general, Massachusetts based audience. There are markets all around Boston that appear stable or slightly rising. However, there is widespread price drops throughout the region. If anything, the Realtor associations have tried to minimize the decline, not cry “the sky is falling.” I personally see no need for hysteria on either end of this debate. The sky is not falling, and happy days are not here again, yet. Please do not paint me with the same brush as the National Association of Realtors.

The Brookline Connection said...


Thank you for the comment. The article linked to at the top of the post was found in this quote from you: "The ongoing spin from my trade association, NAR."

You claim this "spin" is the "Worst of 2007." The pull quote was from the middle of the article you referenced as being bad. I know your task is to write to a general audience. You are also writing to an audience in Greater Boston which sees some tremendous pockets of stability and growth.

My point in mentioning you and your Globe colleagues is in reference to your apparent disregard for the positive side of local real estate markets. This outlook is exactly what NAR references when they say "over-exaggerated negative coverage." Thanks for reading and commenting!

Rona said...

I'll ping you next time I do a positive post on the market.Most of my readers think I am being too positive about the market! You can watch the comments yourself.
Check these on my site:
"Best of 2007" 12/10/07 "Timing your trade-up" 10/25/07 and Eric's "Arlington: the rules still apply" 10/10/07.

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The views expressed on these pages are the opinion of the author and any public contributors. They do not substitute for the advice of a legal or financial professional. These opinions are not representative of any firm or business. Please always consult an attorney, financial professional or sign a contract with a Buyer Agent or Seller's Agent for specific advice.