Foreclosures plummeted 33% nationwide from a year ago according to Irvine based RealtyTrac. In Ventura County that number declined 18%. Most economists believe this reflects a slower process from the banks rather than an easing of distressed sellers. I personally find this rather difficult to believe. Statewide, sales were down .9% from April. Prices remain soft and sellers should make sure their homes are show ready before putting them on the market. We’re in a beauty contest and a price war and sellers cannot win the sales battle if they are unprepared or overly optimistic on their price.
On another note, UCLA’s Anderson School forecast yesterday that there is a demographic-wide move in California from inland areas to the coastal ones. They suggest that while unfortunate for the hardest hit areas of the Inland Empire, this should be a boon for the western portions of Southern California. They however, do not see a building boom of single family homes in these communities to accommodate these new residential customers but rather see an increase in multifamily home and apartment construction. While this type of building does not provide the tremendous job growth that suburban subdivisions do, they none the less create jobs and have an overall positive effect on the communities where they are built. This should also keep the supply constrained on single family homes in these western and coastal towns, and that should help continue to stabilize pricing in those areas as well. None of this news is great, but as the saying goes, in the land of the blind, the one eyed man is king, so we take the positives where we can find them and to take a cue from the 1970’s, we’ll just keep on keepin’ on.