In Naples today, a leading national real estate expert said the ‘run is not over yet’. The president of Coldwell Banker and other top leaders were attending a conference to discuss the industry. The real estate meeting comes amid a sluggish market and declining home sales over the past year. Charles Richardson is a regional manager of Coldwell Banker in Southwest Florida. He says from a buyer’s point-of-view, the slowdown is good because realtor customer service is much better now than in the past.
“The communication skills, the information the research, the marketing skills. Those are demands that are upon us that truly in a super-hot market, they aren’t demands at all. We’re in a very tight market and the good people are surviving.”
Coldwell Banker national president Jim Gillespie says this year is ‘off’ compared to last year. But nationally, 2006 is on-track to be the third-best ever in terms of home sales. He says mortgage rates are at near-record lows and demand is expected to be brisk.
Mortgage giant Freddie Mac announced Thursday that mortgage rates have dropped to five-month lows. It comes as real estate experts are meeting in Naples to discuss the status of their industry. Home sales across Southwest Florida have seen steep declines this year after last year’s phenomenal run. But prices still remain at near-record levels. Coldwell Banker Southwest Florida manager Charles Richardson says this region’s real estate market is a complicated one because there are many ‘northern’ factors that can impact it.
“The cost of fuel oil, the amount of snow they get and how many stories Katrina can actually generate for the evening news, are all factors that play into the psychology of our buyers. It’s not just as simple as, ‘hey how many speculators were there last year and pulled out this last year?’ probably 20-25% of our market was investors and speculators. They’re on the sideline now.”
Speaking during a news conference sponsored by the Naples Press Club, national Coldwell Banker president Jim Gillespie said the real estate “run is not over yet” and he believes housing demand will outstrip supply in the long-run.
Friday, 15 September 2006 01:00
Real Estate UpdateWritten by WGCU Newsroom