Read Between the Lines--and Below the Headlines

By
Managing Real Estate Broker with San Diego Previews Real Estate CA BRE# 01101958

 

 San Diego Vacancy Rates the Highest Since ‘95

...headlined the front page of the San Diego Union Tribune's Business section last week. Those are words that likely sent cold shivers down the spines of real estate investors, homeowners, home sellers, and potential home buyers throughout San Diego county. But smart home buyers and savvy real estate investors should know by now to read between the lines-and below the headlines.

If we take the time to read the article, we immediately discover that the author is referring only to apartments complex vacancies in San Diego, not the enire rental market. The reasons for that decline include new construction competititon, failed condo conversions that are being returned to the rental market, and competition from homeowners who are adding their unsold/unsellable properties to the rental pool.

Private homes and condos, of course, are generally preferred over rental apartment units due to neighborhood, school and privacy issues. Hence, the private real estate rental market might likely be faring better than apartment counterparts.

None of that, though, caught my interest as much as the reported statistic:

Apartment vacancy rates in San Diego will stand at 4.5 percent at the end of March.

I'll admit that these vacancy rates were ridiculously low last fall when they dropped to 1.8 percent and the current 4.5 percent represents a steep increase. But a 4.5 vacancy rate ought to spell r-e-l-i-e-f for many rental seekers, because San Diego at last has a normal vacancy rate.

And this market relief just might bring workers back into the county to live. Many had moved out becuase of tight housing supplies. But with long commute times and the rising cost of gasoline, it just might make sense to return to the San Diego paradise.

And finally, San Diego's luxury rental market is as busy as ever. We receive numerous calls each week from people seeking vacation rentals, long term rentals and rental investments.People caught in blizzards, unrelenting cold, gray skies and thawing mud love to escape in the winter months. Those  It is a market that is far from dead, but apparently not worthy of a headline.

http://www.SanDiegoPreviews.com

 

 

 

 

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Rainmaker
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Sharon Simms
Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International - Saint Petersburg, FL
St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS

You are SO right, Roberta! I can't tell you how many times the article either contradicts the headline or indicates a specificity that isn't implied in the headline.

It's also interesting to read two different papers about the same thing. I read both the St Petersburg Times and the Tampa Tribune and it's amazing sometimes to realize that they are both reporting on the same press release! It's the old "is the glass half empty or half full" slant.

Mar 25, 2007 08:09 AM #1
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Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Good post, Roberta. I saw it too, and once again is just another example of distortion by the media - do we ever see headlines that have anything concrete to do with the article itself? Unfortunately so many just skim the headlines and that becomes their perception of what is going on. 4.5% is still a great vacancy rate (if, in fact, we can believe it) - we saw a similar rate in Boston years after things went crazy and economists were all over it as great news for the market. And depending on who you read, the perspective on the stats can be very different.

Jeff

Mar 25, 2007 04:49 PM #2
Rainmaker
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Roberta Murphy
San Diego Previews Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
Carlsbad Real Estate and Homes

Sharon: Sometimes I think the headline writers and reporters aren't even looking at the same glass of water!

Jeff: What you say about stats is so true. But the media is always looking for the most eye-popping headline (don't we do the same here at times?)--which may not be in line with the story--or reality. Grrrr.....

Mar 25, 2007 05:04 PM #3
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Rainmaker
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Roberta Murphy

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