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Graphing 100 years of the roller coaster ride of U.S. home values

Home values have gone up and down in recent years, but when you chart the last 100 years, the crash becomes a bit more obvious. Hindsight, eh?



A wild roller coaster ride for home values

One of the leading indicators in real estate is the long-running Case Shiller data that tracks housing prices in the U.S. Each month, we rely on them as a high quality data source and came across a chart of the last 100 years of home values as published in the New York Times.

Economist Barry Ritholtz said in a recent article, “I asked Steve [Barry of the New York Times] to update [Case] Shiller’s NYT chart, now that much of the government intervention has run its course. There is still massive Federal Reserve subsidies in the form of record low rates. But the short term bounce caused by HAMP, Foreclosure abatements and first time home buyers tax credits are mostly over.”

In the graph below, pay close attention to the dips and how big the most recent boom was (which makes a recession even that much more obvious in retrospect, right?).

Click the image to enlarge.

Tara Steele is the News Director at The American Genius, covering entrepreneur, real estate, technology news and everything in between. If you'd like to reach Tara with a question, comment, press release or hot news tip, simply click the link below.

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  1. Property Marbella

    August 1, 2010 at 10:52 am

    I don´t think it going down more, Obamas tax Credit and other thing for help the market did stop the house prices to fall more.

  2. Ken Montville

    August 1, 2010 at 11:38 am

    O,,,,M….G. If the projection is anywhere near true, we’re in for a rude awakening. A precipitous decline as foreseen by this graph will certainly cause the “double dip” recession for the economy as a whole and, possibly, create some serious political unrest that would make the gun totin’ Tea Partiers look like an afternoon picnic.

  3. SedonaKathy

    August 1, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    I hope this extrapolation is wrong, but… I just listened to Greenspan, Bloomberg, and Rundell this AM talking about 2011 being another 2010.

  4. Al Lorenz

    August 2, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    There’s food for thought! As much as we want to crawl out of the bunker…

  5. Jonathan Benya

    August 2, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    Wow, thanks for sharing. this is the first time I’ve seen inflation factored out, and from the looks of this chart, we could be in for a much longer, bumpier ride here.

  6. Jonathan Benya

    August 2, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    So I just noticed the super spiffy gold star next to my name! What does that indicate?

    • Lani Rosales

      August 3, 2010 at 11:54 am

      We’re testing out a new feature that highlights people like you who frequently comment 🙂 Ta da!

  7. Michael Goodfellow

    August 3, 2010 at 10:13 am

    If the tax cuts expire this will seriously affect the already depressed real estate market since the cap gain will increase to 20%. Maryland adds an additional 7.5% tax which raises the overall rate to 27.5%.

  8. Nick Nymark

    August 5, 2010 at 7:44 pm

    Looks like there has been a pretty big dip…hopefully we don’t dip down any further.

  9. Cody Moghani

    August 6, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    Dear Tara
    Thank you for sharing this great graph. Amazing!! Would you let me know the reasons for peaks and valleys or fluctuations though some of them are minor on the graph. Were due to socio-economic/Politics/historical events or something else? I appreciate you reply.
    Cody Moghani

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Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?



Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.



aging housing inventory

aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.



zillow move

zillow move

Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub,, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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