Shift Happens Part 6

Tom Brezsny
- Tom Brezsny

Shift Happens Part 6

Continuing the conversation.. trying to wrap our heads around a changing market and all the questions coming at us way faster than they’re getting answered. The sorta-good news is that there’s no longer any question about whether a shift is coming or when it might arrive.  We can let go of all that anticipatory anxiety and devote ourselves fulltime to the real thing! 

We’re well past the peak of the lopsided Sellers’ Market that we had such a raging love-hate relationship with for ten years. Love if you already owned / hate if you were trying to buy!  Say what you want, for all its excesses, it was way better than the unprecedented wave of distress sales that preceded it during the Great Recession. 

Are we at some weird juncture in history where each successive market is destined to careen towards another crazy all-time high or low? Are we locked into a pendulum of extremes? Or is there a “goldilocks zone” on the horizon? A market not too hot / not too cold where we can make a soft landing before blasting off on another run?

As this shift settles in and makes itself more at home, the biggest questions are: How big will it be?  How long will it last?  How fast is it going? Since most sales data is trailing information running 30-60-90 days behind the marketplace, it’s going to be a while before we can put hard numbers to the daily shift we’re experiencing. 

These are the early innings of a broader arc of change, not just in terms of prices but also in the way the real estate process is done.  Maybe it’s too much to hope for, but when there’s so much competition for so few places and people are squeezed into making life-altering decisions when everything is moving way too fast, things get out of whack without most of us noticing. Who has time to stop and notice? 

It’s easy to lose sight of the importance of home and why you might want to buy one in the first place. or how the choice shapes the rest of your life. A home is most people’s biggest asset as well as their centering place for privacy, safety, comfort, security.  It isn’t a cash cow or another invitation to over-leverage or another episode on a flip-this-house reality tv series, 

All those digital short-cuts real estate tech companies have been pushing for the last decade are cynical attempts to cash-in by reengineering the process to move even faster and make it more dependent on them, using the notions of simpler, cheaper, quicker as clickbait. But what happens when the market slows down?

Next Week:  Adjustments buyers will have to make.

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