The State Of The Nation's Housing 2011

The State Of The Nation's Housing 2011The State of the Nation’s Housing 2011 was prepared by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, and this is the third year that I have provided a copy of the report for download, as well as an overview of what our reader's can expect in the report.

As with previous years, this study by Harvard University is full of charts, graphs and analysis of the US housing market, and is the one national housing report that I most rely on to gain an insight on what's to come in real estate.

The Harvard real estate report explains that with employment growth strengthening, consumer spending up, and rental markets tightening, some of the ingredients for a housing recovery were taking shape in early 2011. Yet in the first quarter of the year, new home sales plumbed record lows, existing sales remained in a slump, and home prices slid.

Tight underwriting requirements, on top of uncertainty about the direction of home prices, continue to dampen home buying activity. The weakness of demand is slowing the absorption of vacant properties for sale, hindering the recovery.

Tallahassee Fares Better Than Most

The Harvard study shows that prices at the low end of the housing market have fallen more than at the high end. I took their data and then compiled a similar report for home value declines in Tallahassee, and the following real estate graph was created.

Home Price Declines

The real estate graph shows how the bottom third and top third (price ranges) of each market have fallen in value. My methodology was a little different than the method used in the Harvard real estate report, but it is consistent enough to use for comparison. Of the 17 metropolitan areas included in this year's State of the Nation's Housing Report, Tallahassee was only bettered by four of the markets.

The 2011 State of the Nation's Housing Report is a solid analysis of the US housing market and should be read by industry professionals. Often times, real estate market reports are generated by groups and individuals who have a vested stake in the market, and the bias that they contain makes the reports suspect (to say the least). The annual Harvard housing study seems to be a fair and unbiased view of the national housing market.

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