Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Never mind the real estate statistics

Why do the realty associations continue to cook their own goose? The members have no right to blame the "media reporting" for negative public perception about the current real estate market.

Let's use Texas as an example. The Texas Multiple Listing Services just published residential real estate statistics for the month of August, 2010. When compared with 2009, they show home sales for Dallas as "down 19%", Houston as "down 16%", and Ft. Worth as "down 14%". As for the "median price", this same period shows Dallas as ""up 5%" Houston as "down 1%", and Ft. Worth as "up 1%". One would likely conclude that fewer homes are selling even with sale prices holding steady.

Meanwhile, within 24 hours, the Houston Business Journal published a story about how Texas is expected to well regarding the appreciation of home prices over the next 12 months. It specifically refers to the Houston area as the market with the expected largest appreciation of home prices over any other city in the country. The same article includes the Dallas area with an expected rise of nearly 3%. This story compares with areas such as Florida which are expected to show continued depreciation among home prices over the next year.

Heck, here is the story:

The information in both of these reports are not that much different. However, the irony of the Texas MLS "reporting" the negative home sale comparison while a business publication with no stake in the real estate market gives the information a positive local slant.

Real estate, like most commodities, is about today and the near future. What happened more than a year ago shouldn't have a bearing. Yet, like way too many of the realty associations and industry organizations, the negatives continue to be reported.

Suppose the Texas MLS had simply released the story about how home prices are beginning to appreciate in many areas when compared with last year, and not paraded the sales comparison. They could have given buyers and sellers some hope.

Meanwhile, the last I saw, apartment rental occupancy was way up in these same areas, especially in Ft. Worth, over the past year. At least the realty associations didn't report on that, too.

No comments: