This article was originally published in my Beyond the Headlines column in the Bullhead Area Chamber of Commerce newsletter.
I touched briefly last time on the game we play every four years called “Wait and See”, in which we temporarily suspend our decision-making ability while we “wait and see” what happens with the presidential election.
Given that economic activity generally depends on action of some sort, the results of this sort of inaction tend to be less than ideal. Real estate is no different.
You may recall we played the Wait and See game during the still-recent real estate collapse as well. Even when inventory of homes for sale soared and prices plummeted – textbook elements of a buyers market – most people waited to see if we’d hit bottom. That collective inaction further stalled recovery and ultimately contributed to many homeowners losing their homes.
The irony of the Wait and See game as it relates to the presidential election is that it’s never clear what exactly people are waiting to see. There’s lots of pre-election banter as we get caught up in the show, but I have yet to have a single person articulate what they are waiting to see beyond “what happens with the election.”
So what happened?
Well, your guy either won or lost. Meanwhile, the local real estate market felt it as we waited on that result.
Residential inventory in Bullhead City increased 15 percent from the seven-year low of 399 homes for sale at the end of July to 459 homes at the end of November, compared to 3 percent during the same period last year, which was more typical for the slower fall season.
Of course the danger of a rise in supply over the long term is downward pressure on prices. While an early look at November numbers shows a year-over-year decline in single family home sales, the median sale price jumped and eye-catching 25 percent.
I suspect this is a temporary bump caused by a combination of the seasonality of our market, higher prices, and the presidential election.
I guess we’ll have to wait and see.