Before The Housing Market Went To Hell
Thursday, May 5, 2011
SAN DIEGO I was looking over a blog called Housing Market News when I saw a document that said a lot about the days that came just before the lance of the housing bubble. It was a copy of an article that appeared in the San Diego Union Tribune, which covered a housing conference at the end of 2005.
Didn't See It Coming
San Diego real estate experts in 2005 couldn't see the pending housing crisis.
The University of San Diego, back then, was hosting a residential real estate conference called Outlook 2006. Some of the people who spoke there must be sorry they didn't keep quiet. Here's a sample of a few of the things people said about the coming trends in the San Diego housing market:
"We may see a decline in sales, but not prices."
We'll see a "slight decline in homes sales" in 2006.
"We may see a blip in foreclosures and delinquencies."
"I think the bloom is off the rose but there is no gloom and doom."
But gloom and doom is what we got. After peaking right at the time that conference took place - December 2005 - aggregate home prices in San Diego began a plunge that didn't end until May of 2009, when prices were down forty percent from what they were four years before.
Looking at that old UT story brought back memories for me. I hosted These Days during the housing boom and the housing bust. Just prior to the bust, real estate experts would come into my studio and speak in reassuring tones about the future of the housing market.
They said prices would "plateau." There may be a slight dip in prices, they said, but the demand for homes in San Diego was far too strong to predict any dramatic downturn.
Now we all know better.