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Appraisal firm CEO says housing market still not stable

…Even though many indicators show that the housing market is steadily improving, Jonathan Miller, president and chief executive officer of New York real estate appraisal firm Miller Samuel, told Yahoo! Finance last week that the country still has a ways to go before it is safe to declare the housing market officially recovered.

“I certainly see housing as rebounding. We’re in a process of recovering, but we haven’t recovered. I think you’re going to start seeing that over the next couple months with transaction activity as interest rates begin to rise,” Miller said.

Miller believes that key indicators of economic stability point to the current improvements in the market as being unsustainable and categorizes the current situation as a pre-recovery period.

“I think we’re in this transition period. I think things are good for housing — we’re moving in the right direction — but right now, to exaggerate, it’s based on nothing,” Miller said….

…Miller also pointed to the large percentage of investor activity in the market as a significant factor that is helping to positively influence the present housing numbers:

“I think the investors have been a big driving force. Wall Street, about a year and a half ago got into the distressed real estate situation; lenders began shifting towards emphasizing short sales. Although inventory is dropping for foreclosures, we still have a very high level, but it’s not expected to be this wall of distressed sales we were anticipating back in 2011.”

Looking forward, Miller anticipates that rising interest rates will help stabilize the market….

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