Don't be shocked!!!
Your Realtor expectations for the market seems to accurate. It should be no surprise as I and other Realtors must always stay atop of the market and are in "the thick of the fight" every day.
So if you are thinking of buying or selling a home, why would you contact some one who know what you need to know???
Call a Realtor today!!!
REALTORS' Expectation Versus Reality
By Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS
How reliable are REALTORS®’ subjective opinions of the market outlook? At the end of 2013, for example, REALTORS®, on average, expect home prices to be 4 percent higher in 12 months. Is this forecast in-line with what economists are expecting? Does this match up reasonably close to what actually happens in the marketplace? Finally, are REALTORS® consistently more optimistic, more pessimistic, or perhaps more random and volatile in their outlook than other forecasters?
The following table shows the consensus forecast of economists participating in the Wall Street Journal survey (including this author), the consensus forecast of about 3,000 REALTORS®, and the actual price change as measured by the nationwide repeat-price index from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). The economists are making their individual projections based on various economic variables such as GDP, unemployment, inflation, housing starts, months’ supply, and other commonly available economic indicators. The REALTORS®, by contrast, are making their individual forecasts based on what they see in their neighborhood, from new numbers of listings, buyer traffic, listing prices, and other on-the-ground factors.
Time of Forecast
Economist Forecast in 4 Quarters (Q4 vs. Q4)
|REALTORS® Forecast in 12 months||Actual Price Change after 12 Months from Time of Forecast|
|Dec. '12||+3%||+3%||+9% - 10%|
Quite surprisingly, the expectations of economists and REALTORS® are very similar, despite the varying forecast techniques. It also appears that their forecasts are “conservative,” in a sense—there are no wild swings in the numbers compared to the actual movements in the price 12 months afterward. No forecaster apparently wants to go out on a limb in making dramatic projections. Or at least the few dramatic forecasts – one way or the other – are getting balanced out such that the consensus forecasts do not show big changes.
Nonetheless, it is worth noting the slight and steady shifts toward increased optimism in forecasts onward from 2009. The actual real-world prices also improved greatly compared to the prior years. Therefore, at least directional-wise, the forecasts are projecting correctly in terms of the momentum of home price changes. In the most recent data, as of November, both the economists and REALTORS® are projecting 4 – 5 percent gains, which would mark the best optimism in at least six years. Will that mean an even stronger actual price growth in 2014 than what we have observed in 2013 of near double-digit price appreciation? Probably not. Even though more jobs are being added to the economy with each passing month, housing affordability is getting hit from rising mortgage rates and stagnant wages. The likely scenario is for actual price increases to slow, such that they match up with the “conservative” forecast of economists and REALTORS®.
Regionally, there are notable variations in forecasts amongst REALTORS®. Stronger price gains are anticipated by REALTORS® in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah. The actual price increases have, so far, in 2013 been generally stronger in these states. But let’s wait and see if this trend continues or if REALTORS® are making their forecasts based on what they see in today’s conditions and not based on the likely developing conditions of the near future.
Lawrence Yun is the chief economist for the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION of REALTORS®. He will be sharing his insider insights on the national and regional housing markets in this new, exclusive column for the Power Broker Report.