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Local Economists Believe Ventura County Home Values Will Still Rise

By John Frith VCCAR Editor and PR Consultant: While Ventura County’s economy remains stagnant at best and home sales continue to drop, the extreme scarcity of homes for sale and the strong demand for them likely mean that current market conditions will continue for some time, according to a trio of leading economists. Jordan Levine, senior economist for C.A.R., Mark Schniepp, director of the California Economic Forecast in Santa Barbara, and Matthew Fienup, executive director of the Center for Economic Research and Forecasting at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, agree that even the next recession is unlikely to cause home values in the county to drop much. “I don’t think we’ll see any major declines in home values. The supply constraints can keep prices high in coastal areas in particular,” Fienup said. Schniepp noted that even as prices climb to near-record levels, they are driven by fundamentals. “Maybe prices will drop a little in a recession, but not much,” he said. “This time the market isn’t subject to overbuilding or speculation. It’s due to economic fundamentals, not bubbles. As long as that continues, those are real price increases.” All three economists put the blame for continuing price appreciation squarely on ... more

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