Where Are All the Buyers?

I  have been seeing reports lately in a variety of places that Bay Area real estate sales for June show a continued slow down; slower than May of this year and slower than June of the previous year. Not good news for sellers. There are also reports that sales prices are higher. Not good news for buyers (although I am seeing some cities experience lower sales vs. listing prices). But given that mortgages are remaining relatively stable and inventory is high, I have to wonder: Where have all the buyers gone?

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Are buyers intimidated by the market? By the prices? Biding their time until, hopefully, the bottom falls out? I don’t think that the market is significantly different now than it was 6 months or a year ago. I don’t think prices are so much higher, that it would affect affordability over that same period. Mortgage rates are not likely to fall, and more likely to rise, so now seems like a good time. And as for the bottom falling out again, I think that is unlikely. The Bay Area economy is strong, Silicon Valley is doing its part. So why are people hesitating? Ah, if only I hadn’t broken my crystal ball.

I don’t want all the doom and gloom to hamper sales. I want to see people out their making their dreams come true, planting a vegetable garden in their very own back yard, painting the nursery three shades of blue with clouds without a landlord getting irate, learning how to refinish a hardwood floor or install a ceiling fan. Those tax breaks you get with a mortgage don’t hurt either. There is a lot of inventory out there, lost of homes/condos/lofts to choose from. Really, just check it out on Redfin.com.