This week I reflect on the media explosion over Manhattan’s housing woes (A1 NYT version) and Nightly Business Report and some of the remaining gatekeeper thinking.  While London is falling down but not as much, it’s time to revisit the word “recovery.”  Bernanke said recovery in 2010.  Technically it’s not a recovery when “L” or “J” shaped.

The latest WSJ survey of economists forecast the recession to end in September, there still won’t be any improvement in employment until later half of 2010. 8.5% to 9.5% in the meantime.  Same goes for housing.If credit stabilizes by the end of the year, it will still be another year or more before housing begins to stabilized.

Recent positive stock market results have made everyone feel good, especially the wealthy – even the administration is chiming in. The Wealth effect – sort of.  And perhaps the housing crisis isn’t a crisis?

Hoping for a boring banking system as we reel from a financial oligarchy.

A few mortgage brokers we work with (we only have a handful of those) are running into cash flow problems with low volume and one chooses to re-frame the agreement to show they are doing us a favor.

I twitter a little on social networking and marketing and marvel at how its the communication tool for those older than 21 and in a related item, recommend a great Inman story on non-experts.

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  1. Guest Mark April 13, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you Jonathan for this new endeavor. Your willingness to be candid and thoughtful in this difficult market environment is MUCH appreciated by this “sophisticated” buyer.

    I have a comment for your friend the broker who was unhappy with your quoted outlook on the New York City market. Buyers look to brokers for market intelligence that they themselves can’t easily obtain. Any broker who approaches me with the canned line about this being “a great time to buy” and “New York always holds its value” automatically loses my respect because both of the above statements are categorically false.

    1. It’s a very difficult time to buy. Sure….prices have come down 10 or 20%. But there is a clear risk that prices can easily come down another 10 or 20%….or more….wiping out buyer equity completely after all transactions costs.

    2. Somewhat of a corollary of above, New York absolutely does not always hold its value (over 5 to 7 year periods) as you and any other student of the city’s long history knows.

    The broker who levels with me and then proceeds to try and ferret out truly attractively priced property that fits my requirements but doesn’t sugar coat the mess we’re in might get a nice fat commission.

    The other Pollyannas will just have to wait for another bull market.

    • jonathanmiller April 14, 2009 at 1:24 am

      Thanks Guest Mark – please keep listening! Like real estate, the long term approach is the smart approach. Fear of the loss of control, at its essence, is really counterproductive.

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