Here’s a jumbo infographic from Douglas Elliman covering the findings of the four market reports in South Florida we prepare for them. Thank goodness Matrix can handle super tall images.
There was a good article in the New York Times yesterday: In Many Cities, Rent Is Rising Out of Reach of Middle Class
Many have complained about the Federal Government’s (and our society’s) overselling of homeownership over the past decade and how the decline in homeownership will eventually lead to an emphasis on rentals in the US. Of course, like many housing market ideas, good and bad, they tend to be presented in a vacuum, without real context.
I believe much of this discourse is in reaction to tight credit combined with a weak economy rather than some sort of fundamental cultural and economic shift. During the bubble we got the opposite discourse – that there was a fundamental cultural and economic shift towards homeownership.
Currently there is a much smaller subset of Americans that have access to financing. According to the Federal Reserve Senior Loan Officer Survey, lending has actually tightened in 2014 over 2013 (related to QM). Many homeowners are unable to sell because they can no longer buy and many renters no longer qualify for financing so the idea of of homeownership as a goal fades.
Case in point has been the recent public discourse on the issue of home affordability, whether it be sales or rentals. Zillow presented an analysis for the New York Times that illustrates how much rents have risen in the past 13 years (since 2000) in cities across the US.
Here’s the scenario:
The economy is weak – we are seeing tepid growth in employment, stagnant incomes and historically tight residential mortgage lending.
The organic flow out of the rental market into the sales market is slowed and a log jam is created of too many renters and not enough buyers.
Rising rents against stagnant incomes creates an affordability crisis. The sales and rental markets are connected. They are not mutually exclusive.
Rising rents are a product of tight credit, which is a residual byproduct of the financial crisis. Fix the economy and credit eases, then lending normalizes (no, not circa ’06) and the pressure on rental housing is eased.
I’m not entirely confident with the reliability of the historical rental data being presented to the New York Times by Zillow – but I still agree that affordability is being pressured:
- Zillow was launched circa 2006 and rents are not public record so the early data has to be super thin.
- The comparison was made between a first quarter (low) and a third quarter (high) in a highly seasonal market.
- I am not sure if “New York” means Manhattan or New York City. If it is Manhattan, then our median rent figure in 1Q 2000 was $2,600 in nominal terms, and $4,276 in real terms. In nominal (unadjusted for inflation) terms, rents have risen 23.1% through 3Q 2013 while real median rent has fallen 27.3%. The Zillow median rent as share of median income nearly doubled, rising from 23.7% to 39.5%. Either incomes have collapsed in NYC or the 2000 rental figure being punched into their model is flawed, ie way low, no?
Other inights on any of this would be appreciated.
All price segments of the market are generally showing a faster market pace than the same month in the prior year. The top 1% ($10M+) had slower absorption rates for co-ops and condos, but not by much. Inventory began to “bottom” in recent quarters so we may not see much more compression in the market pace in the coming months.
Side by side Manhattan regional comparison:
I started this analysis in August 2009 so I am able to show side-by side year-over-year comparisons. The blue line showing the 10-year quarterly average travels up and down because of the change in scale caused by some of the significant volatility seen at the upper end of the market. The pink line represents the overall average rate of the most recently completed month for that market area.
Absorption defined for the purposes of this chart is: Number of months to sell all listing inventory at the annual pace of sales activity. (The definition of absorption in our market report series reflects the quarterly pace – nearly the same)
Manhattan Market Absorption Charts [Miller Samuel]
Rob Ferdman over at Quartz writes a great breakdown of the narrowing rental spread between Manhattan and Brooklyn using the data I crunch for The Elliman Report: Manhattan & Brooklyn Rentals. Here’s my version of the chart.
After I designated last week’s Bloomberg story headline “Brooklyn’s Hipster Economy Challenges Manhattan Supremacy” as my favorite new phrase, specifically:
Brooklyn’s Hipster Economy
Quartz has given me a new favorite phrase (see under original chart):
Coolness doesn’t come free
Entering the world of infographics, here are some highlights from our just released Elliman Report: Manhattan & Brooklyn Rentals 3-2014
[Source: Crossculture.com Click to expand]
I haven’t read the Lewis book yet but I’ve always been fascinated by the topic of communication and linguistics – another book got me interested in the topic: That’s Not What I Meant!: How Conversational Style Makes or Breaks Your Relations with Others by Deborah Tannen circa 1992. I’ve read it three times.
Check out my 3CW column on @CurbedNY:
Spectators and participants in the Manhattan housing market have been burning a lot of calories talking about views, something the super luxury new development projects have been marketing as a key feature. I thought I’d look back over time to at what the average floor level of closed co-op and condo sales by quarter, and see if there is a pattern. I sifted through six years of data (note to self for rainy day: go back 25 years and break out condos and co-ops). While I’ve analyzed the value of floor level in Manhattan here and here before, I’ve never trended floor level and didn’t quite know what to expect…
[My post title was originally "Manhattan Rebound Not Because of Dizzying Heights" but wasn't Curbed staff didn't think it was catchy enough, ed.]
My latest Three Cents Worth column on Curbed:
Tracking How High People Buy In Manhattan [Curbed]