Carpe Diem

More evidence that 2012 was the year of the housing recovery

Some highlights from the RE/MAX December National Housing Report:

1. Without question, 2012 was the long hoped-for turnaround year for the housing market. The RE/MAX National Housing Report shows a broad recovery across the country, with both home sales and prices rising almost every month of the year. For December, the number of home sales was up 3.8% and the median price of those homes rose 7.6%.

Throughout the year, a favorable combination of record low interest rates, affordable prices and a shrinking inventory created opportunities that many consumers could not resist. The inventory of homes for sale fell each month of the year, ending the year at a level 29.1% below the inventory of December 2011. A reduced inventory helped home prices rise, but also made it difficult for many buyers to find the home of their dreams. The New Year should see the same trends continue.

2. The average Days on the Market for homes sold in the month of December was 84, a substantial 12 days lower than the 98 days average in December 2011.

3.  Margaret Kelly, RE/MAX CEO: “We can finally say that the worst of the housing crisis is now behind us, as 2012 saw dramatic increases in both sales and prices, with home buyers and sellers coming back to the market in numbers we’ve been anticipating for years. The market started 2012 with a great surge, and we’re hoping that 2013 will be even stronger. We’re not completely out of the woods, but we’re well on the way to a solid and sustainable recovery.”

Bottom LIne: More evidence that 2012 was the “year of the US housing recovery,” with more homes selling faster in December at higher prices compared to a year earlier.  That’s what a housing recovery looks like.


One thought on “More evidence that 2012 was the year of the housing recovery

  1. Low rates and a sharp contraction have a way of making a slight recovery look good. But that does not mean that a few selected quotes coming from the real estate industry are enough to convince us that a real recovery is taking place.

    This chart shows that construction are well below the 1.5 million units that constitutes a ‘normal market’. And while at 5.04 million the existing home sales figure is showing a great improvement a ‘normal market’ would have that figure at 5.5 million. What worries me still is the number of mortgages that show some type of distress. The current data is showing 10.63 per vent, which is significantly higher than the 5.25 per cent that we would expect in a normal market.

    This is not to say that we could not have a recovery. In fact, if one expects a devaluation and more money printing a higher nominal house price is to be expected. But even that would be tricky because once the bursting of the bond bubble forces rates higher we could still see a serious decline in real terms even as real estate seems to be booming when measured nominally.

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