Real Estate Market – Have we hit bottom?

by October 20, 2007 • 3 comments

It is no secret that the real estate market is troubled right now.  If fact many would argue that even using the word “troubled” is a serious understatement.  I have heard some that have been in the real estate market for 25-30 years say that this is the worst they have ever seen it.  I have heard others say that the last time the real estate market was this bad was post World War II. 

Of course, there is always two sides to every story.  Sure right now is a terrible time to be trying to sell (I’m a good case in point, my house has been on the market for a month and not one showing), but it is a great time to be buying.  There are tons of great deals out there, but why aren’t investors flooding the market place?  Because, why buy a great deal today when that great deal tomorrow will be 10% less? 

 The bottom line is, the real estate market will not be like this forever, and if you have money to be buying now, you should be looking for the deals.  Now is the time!  A buddy of mine was telling me about something one of his grad school professors always said:  “If you wait to start doing something when everyone else is doing it, you’re too late.” 

As much as I feel for those that are hurting, lets face it, people bought property a couple of years ago assuming that they were going to be able to either afford to hold it or flip out of it for a profit and are now finding themselves preparing for foreclosure.  There are tons of properties that are trading hands at 50 cents on the dollar and less.  Owning real estate is one of the great ways a commoner like you and me can accumulate wealth.  Through strategic, methodical purchases we can find ourselves owning three or four properties or more that cashflow and pay for themselves.  That is the ultimate goal of real estate ownership – owning the properties and getting them to not only pay for themselves, but put a little extra money in your pocket at the end of each month. 

I was able to get some data from the Panama city MLS that shows averages from September 20 – October 20 of 2004 – 2007. 


The average days on market went up from 2004 to 2006 (almost doubling from 05 to 06) but slightly dropped in 07.  The total number of sales for this exact period over the last four years has dropped an average of 22 sales each year with the listing price this year 94.6% of last year’s number and the average sold price this year at 94.7% of last years price. 

The parameters for this data are: Single family homes ONLY, $300,000 and down searching Bay County-Central, Bay County-Beach, Bay County-North, and Bay County-East, searching from 9/20/04-10/20/04, 9/20/05-10/20/05, 9/20/06-10/20/06, 9/20/07-10/20/07.

Panama City MLS Study – 9/20-10/20 from 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007

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1 Steve October 22, 2007 at 4:31 pm

Hi Jason. BTW I enjoy PCBdaily very much and am a huge fan of the future of PCB. I own a business that manages the reporting for the MLS’s and usually there is a lag in reporting closings. Most closings are not reported right after they happen, so a lot or most of the closings from 10/10-10/20 would not show up yet. Make sense? Were you were reporting closings and or under contracts? Also, you should always do the entire price range, especially when the market is doing better as prices are always “shifting” up. Tx Steve


2 Jason October 22, 2007 at 8:07 pm

Hi Steve, thanks for the kind words. The data that I used was only closed deals based on data from the Panama City MLS. I decided to take a sample from 0 to $300,000 because in this particular sample, I had a couple of high priced closings that I felt were throwing off the numbers a little. As with all stats, things can always be manipulated and “shifted” around, but my goal was just to give a snapshot.