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What will Washington do about the Subprime Crisis in 2008?

March 1, 2008

The subprime crisis still rocking and rolling these days.  In terms of the crisis’ primary component, it is expected to actually grow in scope during 2008:  The number of subprime-related foreclosures expected to occur this year will actually outpace the numbers from 2007. The bottom line for the economy, in many ways, is that whileRead More

2008 Home Sales in Austin Texas Could Be Much Worse

February 28, 2008

The number of homes sold in Austin Texas in 2008 compared to the same time period in 2007 from January 1 thru February 28 is down 35% and homes taken off the sale block is up 52% in 2008 when comparing the same time periods.  In 2007 there were 1,690 homes sold from February 1 thru February 28 with 336Read More

What the Fed Will Do with Interest Rates?

February 28, 2008

“Whirlwind of activity” is a favorite cliché of journalists.  During most economic upheavals the press likes to use the phrase to describe what’s been going on at the Fed.  It’s descriptive, and it gives a certain sense of excitement that “bureaucrats held a lot of tense meetings” just doesn’t seem to communicate.  But if aRead More

Federal Reserve’s Residential Real Estate Report about Credit Market

February 24, 2008

With US housing foreclosures making headlines the world over, it should come as no surprise that banks have tightened their lending guidelines for the residential real estate market.  That being said, the Federal Reserve’s recently-published survey of bankers that specialize in residential real estate reveals some interesting information about the credit market that feeds theRead More

US Government Passes Stimulus Package including Tax Rebates

February 22, 2008

During 2007, it was the real estate market that seemed to be determining the fate of the economy.  A number of events gripped the economy during the year.  There were the write-downs that much of the financial industry was forced to endure due to subprime loans that ended up being securitized into a liquid formRead More

Mortgage Application Numbers Take a Dive

February 22, 2008

Weekly numbers are hardly ever reliable.  Whether its for sports, economics, or politics, it’s always hard to spot a trend using statistics from just one week.  There’s usually too much “noise,” or random movement of data to spot a genuine trend.  That’s why markets rarely react to weekly unemployment or housing numbers with the sameRead More

February Home Sales Update for Austin Texas Real Estate

February 17, 2008

The number of homes sold in Austin Texas in 2008 compared to the same time period in 2007 from January 1 thru February 16 is down 29% for the time period beginning January 1 and ending February 16.  In 2007 there were 775 homes sold in January and 446 homes sold from February 1 thruRead More

2007 4Q Commercial Real Estate Industry Numbers Not Looking Good

February 9, 2008

While final numbers on the value changes in the national commercial real estate market during the fourth quarter are not yet in, MIT has released an important study on the subject.  The Transaction-Based Index follows the values of the nation’s major pension funds’ Commercial Real Estate holdings. In the third quarter of 2007, MIT reportedRead More

Tighter Credit Market Reported for National Commercial Real Estate Industry

February 8, 2008

The Federal Reserve recently completed its “2008 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices.”  It is a much-awaited quarterly survey of the opinion of banking executives that specialize in lending for the real estate market.  While the results were expected to suggest a tightening of loan requirements throughout the industry, the results forRead More

2008 Home Sales Have Started Off Beat

January 31, 2008

In 2007 there were a total of 13,162 homes sold in Austin Texas at a 9% average increase in value from the previous year. While the number of homes sold was down 12% in 2007 compared to 2006 in Austin Texas, homes sold for an average of $14 per square foot more in 2007 thanRead More