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December 10, 2005

Real estate bubble leaving leftovers or Christmas presents for homebuyers?

Sf_marrank_112404v05_v2_2This chart, the first of five documenting price reductions in the Boston Globe's feature story, ranks the increase in markdowns by price range for 2005 versus 2004 (click on image for larger view).

Red and green, the traditional colors of Christmas, indicate price ranges in the middle of the market where holiday homebuyers will find the most price reductions or "Christmas presents" this year. Approximately 3,000 more price reductions have occurred on single family homes between $400,000 and $600,000 (shown in RED), and more than 2,100 price reductions have occurred on homes priced between $300,000 and $400,000 (shown in GREEN). Note, these are increases over last year not that total number of markdowns in each price range.  All figures are through November 24, or roughly Thanksgiving, both years and are based on data from MLS Property Information Network, the multiple listings service covering nearly all of Massachusetts.

Larger price reductions -- some well over $100,000 -- have occurred in more expensive price ranges but there are fewer properties in those price ranges, and in some cases fewer price reductions compared to last year.  (That finding and others will be documented in the next four graphs.  Click on our RSS feed to receive them and other blog entries as soon as they are posted.)

Some homebuyers see prices reductions and expired listings as stale leftovers, others see them as money-saving opportunities.  What's your take?  You can post your comment here, or call our podcast line -- 617-876-2117 -- to record your own sound bite.

Bill Wendel | 07:41 AM in Price trends, Real Estate Bubble, Savings & Rebates, Timing the market | Permalink


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Readers beware of looking at gaphs that show a big increase in the NUMBER of price reductions, without mentioning the concurrent increase in the TOTAL number of listings 04 to 05, of which reductions are a subset (making up about 45% of all listings). Its quite possible that most of the increase in # of reductions is a merely a reflection of there just being that many more listing overall in 05. Indeed, for the data set cited here, there must have ALSO been an increase in the NUMBER of listings WITHOUT a reduction, (see the earlier graphs for individual years, and note the uneven scale). So, in 2005 there are also "more" opportunities to pay full price, whatever that means !

Posted by: warner | Dec 19, 2005 11:20:15 AM

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