Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Morning Call Incorrectly Claims Home Sales Up in '09

Last week, relying once again on information supplied by realtors, The Morning Call inaccurately reported that Lehigh Valley home sales were up in 2009, and even goes so far as to attribute this to a tax credit for first time home buyers.

The truth? Real estate sales are down, way down, at least in Northampton County, and for each of the last five years. I seriously doubt there's that much difference in Lehigh County.

Last year, there were 5,978 deeds recorded in Northampton County. That's a 46% drop from the 10,996 recordings in 2005. It's a 10% drop from the 6,641 real estate transfers in 2008.

Here's the breakdown, year-by-year: 2009 - 5,978 deeds; 2008 - 6,641 deeds; 2007 - 8,232 deeds; 2006 - 10,109 deeds; and 2005 - 10,996 deeds.

Sic transit gloria stimulus.

14 comments:

Jacob said...

The Mainstream media and government reports have been doing their best to paper over the fact that the "recovery" of 2009 is smoke and mirrors.

Honestly besides the Internet and that our government hides truth in plain site for those who have an education (the investor class), our mainstream media looks more and more like Chinese media everyday.

Anonymous said...

That's nothing. The Boston Globe's Web site at about 2 p.m. last Tuesday posted Democratic had won U.S. Senate seat even though polls were open until 8.

Bernie O'Hare said...

What disturbs me is that this report is based again on outright disinformation, dutifully reported, and even goes so far as to claim a reason for this nonexistent increase.

Anonymous said...

so where do the numbers come from? they had to get the numbers from somewhere, unless area realtors are just making them up.

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much this post. For quite a while I have been railing about the Mcall "reporting" housing stats based on numbers provided wholesale by realtors, who have a vested interest in casting the real estate market in the best possbile light. I have no issue if the Mcall wants to run a story that stats "so and so assoc. of realtors reports that . . ." At least then the public is put on notice that what they're reading is little better than a press release. However, the paper simply reports the findings as if there has been some type of indepedent verification of the findings, which clearly has not occured.

It's generally accepted that the peak of the housing boom occured in the 2Q 2007. Less than a year later, I recall reading more than 1interview in the Mcall of local realtors saying that the worst was behind us and that, given low interest rates, it was a great time to buy. That mantra has continued pretty much unabated for the better part of 2 yrs. as the housing market continues to tank.

To be frank, there are numerous properties and subdivisions in the LV that will likely prove to be virtually worthless in the coming years.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"so where do the numbers come from?" - The are not lying, but area realtors rely too heavily on the multilist to determine facts. The raw data is right at the courthouse, and the raw data demonstrates clearly that real estate transfers, at least in Northampton County, dropped 10% in 2009 below 2008's figure.

Anonymous said...

is it possible that real estate transfers are down, as the county records show but that home sales, a subcomponent of real estate transfers, are up. What I am saying is that real estate sales are not the same as home sale? Two different numbers perhaps.

Bernie O'Hare said...

They are two different numbers. I do not distinguish outright transfers, which could involve a divorce or parent-child transfer an estate, and an outright sale. But if anything, this general decline in EVERYTHING substantiates the proposition that the real estate market remains depressed. It is ridiculous to conclude that those no consideration transfers would go down while sales would increase. If anything, they are increasing.

Anonymous said...

numbers never lie; only statistics do

Anonymous said...

It seems the "investor class" should also realize that a recession is psychologically motivated.

Anonymous said...

I think the commentor was asking was whether these transfers are all HOME sales and not land or commercial sales. The HOME component may have gone up.

Bernie O'Hare said...

The home real estate market is dead. I see this every day in my job as a searcher. If it were not for commercial transactions, there would be none at all.

ironpigpen said...

Hope and Change

Yes We Can

Anonymous said...

ironpigpen - Really? Do you really expect the worst recession in history (brought about by the complete and utter failure of the Bush presidency) to be turned around in 12 months? If your movement wasn't so vapid, you might actually attract more than the politically and factually ignorant people out there.