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Posted on Dec 30, 2008

Houses were once thought to be one of the safest and most secure refuges for investment, but a key index is debunking that notion: The price survey shows that housing prices in 20 major U.S. cities fell by a record 18 percent over the past year.


The BBC:

House prices in 20 US cities fell by a record annual rate of 18.04% in October, according to a closely-watched home price survey.

The index shows that prices of homes [are] continuing to fall across the US with many areas showing record price falls.

David Blitzer, of Standard & Poor’s said: “Home prices are back to their March 2004 levels.”

The S&P/Case-Shiller index measures the prices of existing family homes in 20 metropolitan areas across the US.

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By marta80, December 28, 2010 at 8:53 pm Link to this comment

i this case the houses can be bought by the average people.that’s why, form my point of view, houses are still considered to be one of the safest and most secure refuges for investment and for the future. and with a Georgia reverse mortgage cheap you can own one and live for the rest of your days in it.

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By Conservative Yankee, December 31, 2008 at 7:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

‘scuse me but;

the price of “an average home” across fifty States is no indication of anything UNLESS one is trading in homes. The houses in key areas (like Florida California Michigan) lost 50 precent of what they gained during the 90’s. If you bought your house 20 years ago it is still a bargin at ‘89 dollars. Houses in Westchester (NY) Marin (Calif) and Bergen (NJ) still are no bargin (IMHO.)The problem that we treat Housing, medical care, and food as “market items” to be traded as “futures” is never adressed. that would be a stab at the Rezco’s Trump’s and Helmsley’s of the world… unacceptible. 

Also, if the “worth” of property is falling, why have the property taxes increased (based on CURRENT value) raise your hand if your property tax/rent have declined.

Real Estate is always a good deal IF you take a long term view.  Finding $2 and losing $1 is still a 100% profit!

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By Louise, December 31, 2008 at 7:09 am Link to this comment

In 1998 I was house shopping. I found a lovely house for $59,000, but decided it needed to much work. I also found a lovely house for $69,000, but didn’t like it’s proximity to a highway. My kids bought a two story 3 bedroom 2 bath with garage and beautiful yard for $80,000.

Last year I was hunting again. [Mostly out of curiosity] The $59,000 was on the market, advertised for under $200,000 [considered a good marketing strategy] The $69,000 house was listed at $225,000.

My kids got transferred in 2005, and sold their house for $189,000. But the “equity” was carried on a separate note and now their buyer is falling behind. However, they have a realistic attitude. They easily broke even, and then some!

Now here in my area, we are told housing values have dropped only 11% this year, which means I suppose, those houses I have been watching over the past ten years reflect that drop. But when laid up against the increase they experienced in the prior eight years, I have to wonder ... what is value anyway?

I never did buy a new house. I decided when Bush II came into office I better stay put. After all, I had the experience of having lived through the Reagan and Bush I “pee on me” real estate bubble. [Not near so bad, but bad enough] So while I watch people try desperately to sell those houses they paid way to much for, between 2001 and 2007, I thank goodness my payment is the same as it was 13 years ago. And in 7 years it will be paid off.

I am old, and have a clear memory of real estate’s ups and downs, and the danger of believing whatever some real estate broker decides is sound value. But that doesn’t help those who got sucked into buying the artificial value created by greed. So, if we manage somehow to come out of the mess greed driven markets have created for us, I think the best advice anyone can take, or give is, remember!

Remember.

Remember the price paid for runaway speculation. Remember the tragedy created by uncontrolled markets. And most of all, remember if something sounds to good to be true, it probably is. Even if it comes straight from Greenspan or Bernake, the White House, Congress or your favorite Wall Street insider know-it-all TV station.

By the way, while were on the subject of declining values versus runaway greed, let’s not forget ... Standard and Poors has a share of the blame. While brokers were creating artificial value, they, along with other credit rating agencies, were complicite in making bad loans happen!

http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/446/index.html

http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/412/housing-recession.html

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By Shift, December 31, 2008 at 6:06 am Link to this comment

America is crumbling from self inflicted wounds based upon false ideology.  It isn’t just housing prices that are deflating, any remaining idealism has been shred as well. The realized financial dreams of those at the top are impermanent and disappearing despite their looting of the Treasury. 

Many in the Middle Class do not have the resources to live in America.  The prices of everything must fall to restore the balance.  The Depression must run it’s course so that life in America can once again be affordable to the majority of it’s citizens. The choice we face is either a jack boot on the neck, or a reformed caring society.

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By Verne Arnold, December 31, 2008 at 4:19 am Link to this comment

In the states; Nourial Rubini has posited that the total value of homes will fall by 50%. So far he hasn’t missed a beat in his prognostications. America had become a consumerist society financing their orgy of consumption on credit. Anyone of common sense knew it was a Potemkin Village. Now the grotesque Piper must be paid his due. Many will be caught up in this and think they have no options; but they’re out there if you look. It probably means relocating, but when you’ve lost your job and maybe your home it’s time to get creative. Peace and happiness to all.

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