Sunday, December 30, 2007

Look Back; Look Ahead

As the curtain gets ready to close on 2007, it is a good time to take one last look at what we have seen throughout the year. The year started out like any other, slow but steady. Only the naysayers were talking about the bubble bursting, but then again they had been predicting that for years. The typical housing market cycle was present as things picked up in the spring and summer. The end of the summer marks the most dramatic event; the fall of the sub prime market. We will continue to see these effects well into 2008, but in San Francisco the effects are much harder to see than in much of the rest of the country. Our number of sales is down, but in most neighborhoods prices are holding steady. Interest rates for a thirty year fixed jumbo mortgage have managed to stay under seven percent.

Over the course of the year many homes were bought and sold, and with each transaction comes a lesson learned. Buyers and sellers learn the ropes, and the agents come away with a new pearl of wisdom each time.

Right now the majority of the people we meet are waiting. Many of them have been waiting for some time now. What are they waiting for? They say they are "waiting to see what the market is doing". As you saw in the District Study, in San Francisco the market is simply plugging along. The wait will continue into January, and once people see that the bottom has not dropped out from under them, the wait will end.

Activity will start to pick up again mid January, and as people's confidence in the market is restored, that activity will continue to grow into the spring and summer. The moral of the story is, the sky is not falling. As San Francisco is a strong market, it will be the last to be affected by the national woes and the first to recover.

It has been a great year for us. The VanFenton team was born and is thriving. Our families are healthy, happy, and growing! Anja was fortunate enough to visit all of her sons and most of her grandchildren this year, and my family was blessed with a new addition.

Have a safe and happy new year. We are looking forward to working with all of you in 2008.

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