The leaves are turning quickly now, and so is housing … down … like autumn’s leaves. Earlier this month, I wrote of how housing sales had started to float upward against my call for a long housing decline more than a year prior, but that turned out to be a mere swirl in the wind:
After more than a year in sales declines, the housing market saw improvement in sales in the past month [August]. However, I remind people that no trend in any market is ever a straight line. All falling markets have upward moves along the way, and all rising markets have downward moves. One highly notable thing that did turn for the worse in housing was that pricing finally joined the decline in sales.
After laying out the few cities where prices had started to move down, I added the following caveat:
I’ve cautioned all along that huge inertia in housing keeps prices from falling because our homes are usually our most valuable asset. Therefore, sellers wait out the market as long as they can before they finally start to surrender value in order to chase sales.
August’s lift in sales didn’t even last two weeks before I was able to write in a comment to the same article that housing starts and permits had declined again in September after their August surge: