Austin is doing well and holding their own through November of 2008. The median price is only down by 3%! The number of sales is down by 20% for the year and that isn't bad considering the rest of the country! The bulk of existing homes sold in the Austin area for November were in the $200,000 to $400,000 price range.
Charles Heimsath, president of Capital Market Research said Austin still is doing better than many other cities, thanks to continued job and population growth. "Compared to other markets in the country, we are still healthy", Heimsath said. "There are other markets where prices have dropped 20 to 30% or more. For us to have a 3% decline is really very mild in comparison."
On Friday, The Austin American-Statesman (our illustrious local paper) ran an article about this and the headline read:
Sales of existing homes dive; customers scared, agent says
We wonder why customer confidence has deteriorated and buyers are scared to make a purchase! Why wasn't the title more like mine? I feel the article was written to illicit fear in the public. It's all in perception. There are agents and reporters who want to make everyone feel the sky is falling and wallow in doom and gloom (and maybe they believe this).
As my friend Madolyn Johnson said in her Christmas letter; "Our country and the world are plagued with unprecedented challenges, our faith teaches us not to be paralyzed by fear. Our God given talents teach us how to survive and the American ingenuity and spirit drives us to overcome adversity."
When interpreting our data we need to think about the response we want to induce. I'm not implying to sugar coat the facts but to report accurately with an eye to looking at the glass half full rather than half empty!