"Irrational gloom" sells papers…but it's not selling homes.

irrational-gloom-in-arizonaOur real estate market today will probably go down in history.  For almost 3 years now we’ve heard nothing but doom & gloom regarding the real estate market in the Phoenix area.  EVERYONE  has heard how “horrible” our market is.  After all, “irrational gloom” sells papers.  Buyers coming from as far away as Canada and even France and England have heard that we’re practically giving away homes in the valley. 

BUT WAIT!  What’s interesting is what is NOT being report.  Homes are still selling.  Are they selling for less money than they were a year ago?  Yes.  But they are selling AND most sellers are picking up the lost value of their homes when they purchase another home that, too, has lost value. 

What kills me is the typical “if it bleeds, it leads” headline theory that simply overemphasises the negative and sheds little light on anything that’s positive about our market.  I mean really…interest rates are down and so are home prices.  Yet, the headlines don’t give us a light at the end of the tunnel…they don’t even give us a flashlight.

I’ve been tracking our weekly stats for over a year now.  Here are some details on Chandler alone:

On December 5, 2007 there were 2268 single family homes for sale in Chandler. The average list price that day was $427,222.  That week, 53 homes in Chandler sold.  Now Fast Forward to 12/2/2008 with 1751 single family homes for sale in Chandler and an average list price of $386,350. 37 homes that sold this week in Chandler.

So in Chandler, values have fallen to more affordable levels and there are fewer homes competing than there were a year ago…but blood is not flowing in the streets, so that’s not going to make the headlines.  I’m starting to believe headlines are there just to scare people and apparently it’s working. 

If you’re planning on buying a home and staying in it a few years, DON’T BE SCARED!  There’s no better time to take advantage of the great deals that are out there.  Not only will you get a great price on a home, you’ll probably get a great interest rate…double bonus!  Now if we can just figure out a way for THAT to make the headlines without loss of life or limb…