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July 22nd, 2008 2:49 PM by David W. Welch
Treasury Secretary Paulson, stated that he believes the real estate market may be turning the corner in the next few months. Bear in mind, his statements are relative to national numbers. Real estate is a local market place with local economic factors weighing more heavily than the national economy. For instance, a lot of good economic activity is happening in Houston Texas. From what I understand Houston added more than 100,000 new jobs in the last 12 months. The spike in oil prices is fueling much of that activity, so it is hard to say what effect the recent drops in oil will have. Right now though, they are selling homes faster than they can sell them it seems.
In the Secretary's comments he defines turning the corner as stabilization in prices and more buyers entering the market. Using that definition, Orlando certainly has the indicators suggesting we have turned the corner. If you look back on my blogs since January of this year, sales have increased every month and prices have been stable for the last couple of months. From the sales numbers I have looked at so far in July, we may see a small drop in sales and the median price. We definitely are seeing more first time buyers entering the market as our affordability index has improved greatly over the last several months. We still may see the median price come down a little bit more as short sales, foreclosures and the first time buyers begin to have a greater impact on sales statistics. All in all, I believe Orlando has turned the corner. Personally, I would love to see more of our public officials making positive comments. I think it is reassuring and encouraging which are two things most people need right now - even us optimists.