Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Fortune Magazine - "The Return Of Real Estate"

I was very gratified last week to find a copy of Fortune magazine on the newsstand with a cover story titled: Real Estate: It's Time To Buy Again.

The article points to five trends as justification for improvement in the real estate market:
1) The steady decline in prices which has been going on nationally since 2005 has finally hit the level where it costs less to own a house than to rent in many cities.
2) The supply of renters has increased sharply in the recent past, which has already begun to cause rapid increases in rental rates.
3) Home builders have held back on building new homes for several years, creating the conditions for a shortage of new homes when demand goes up just a little bit.
4) Investors, responding to the big demand for rental units, are rapidly buying down the overhang of foreclosed homes which has dogged the market.
5) The U.S. economy does seem to be on the path to improvement, although we still struggle with high unemployment and weaker-than-normal consumer spending.