The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

27 September 2006

Approaching poverty

Zillow.com continues to tweak the database: the palatial estate at Surlywood now is just barely into six figures, at $100,221, down $4861 from the last report.

The likelihood that anyone is going to offer me a hundred grand for this place, of course, is extremely remote.

Posted at 7:41 AM to Surlywood


I don't care the condition, I'd give you two 100 Grand for it.

Posted by: Brian J. at 7:59 AM on 27 September 2006

I'll better that bid! A king-size Caramello!

Posted by: McGehee at 9:50 AM on 27 September 2006

Zillow changed their algorithm for home value calculations back on August 1, hence the big spike in the historical charts. Now that some closing prices have been added since then, everyone's figures are getting less unreasonable.

Realistically, I'd say $90K, based on the sales of 3 homes less than mile from your home. Of course, I'm not a professional appraiser, so what do I know?

Posted by: Dan at 12:17 PM on 27 September 2006

What is this, a bidding war?

Add a couple Rollo to my previous offer; I'm holding the Teaberry gum in reserve for paying contractors for improvements.

Posted by: Brian J. at 8:20 PM on 27 September 2006

Rolo!?

That does it. I'm calling my broker.

Posted by: McGehee at 8:49 PM on 27 September 2006

Like Dan, I recently noticed a marked change in Zillow's price for my Hoboken home. It was $700K when similar houses were going for $1.2 million (LAST year), now it's valued at about a mill. (And I didn't even paint.) But the million dollar figure itself is probably not achievable right now, either, since housing prices (even around here) are getting soft again. A house is only worth what one person (or couple) will pay, even if no one else will pay that price, and it's all skewed by location. A strange commodity indeed.

Posted by: Mister Snitch! at 11:58 PM on 27 September 2006

Sales are definitely softening in my neighborhood; overpriced houses are no longer overpriced, but buyers are staying away in droves just the same.

Posted by: CGHill at 7:04 AM on 28 September 2006

Around here, the unwashed masses expect a sharp drop in housing prices, partly because in the early 90's, we experienced such a drop. But in the '90's, we also experienced a sharp drop in the economy, whereas the recent housing price spike had less to do with the economy than interest rates. When prices were on the way up, the masses thought they would never touch a ceiling. Now they're just as certain we're in a botomless pit.

Fact is, we're not in the early 90's and we're not in a recession. Interest rates were about the same this time last year (hot market) as this year (cold market). All that's changed is that higher prices generated more product. With demand more or less sated, prices can now fall. That's not the same as FREE FALL, however, and pundits predicting the collapse of real estate prices are just looking for sensationalist headlines. We are simply NOT in a recession, this is just the herd mentality swinging the other way. A story in today's Times (its spirit undercut by writers hoping to make more headlines on news of the great real estate collapse) indicates that prices are already beginning to stabilize. Prices may sag a bit in Surlywood, but the bottom-bounce has already occurred. Those waiting for the Great Bottoming Out ("staying away in droves") will rush right back in when they perceive prices taking off again without them. In Manhattan, it's been little more than a hiccup on the path to higher and higher prices. No bargains here.

Posted by: Mister Snitch! at 8:14 PM on 28 September 2006