More news...

For the last several years, real estate has been in a pricing bubble. Prices have been substantially higher than historical relationships to incomes and rents would justify. While prices have started to decline, they are still abnormally high compared to these core fundamentals. This website is focused on analyzing the housing bubble, its aftermath, and real estate in general as it pertains to the Greater Boston Area.
 
Site Guide    Discussion Forums  |  Boston-Specific Info  |  National (US) Info  |  News & Links   
  

Boston-Specific Info

  • Boston Futures: For Greater Boston real estate prices from 1987 through the present and looking several years into the future, see the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Boston snapshot with futures (both before and after inflation). The futures markets are probably the most unbiased predictor of where housing prices are headed.
  • Price/Income: For a gauge of how overpriced the market is, see the latest report on the Greater Boston price to income ratio.
  • Inflation Adjusted: See the latest report on Massachusetts single family home prices for prices as typically reported by the local media but adjusted for inflation.
  • Price/Rent: Comparing prices to rents can help illuminate an overpriced market since many hypothetical justifications for higher home prices should raise rents as well. See the latest report on the Boston MSA price to rent ratio.
  • The population of the Greater Boston Area was declining as the housing market posted its most exceptional gains during the bubble. One of the fallacious arguments which was used to contest the existence of a housing bubble was that a growing population was pushing up the natural price of property. While that argument is flawed in general, it is especially wrong when the population is declining. [Boston Globe] [Boston Bubble]
  • The Wall Street Journal has identified Boston as one of the metropolitan areas in the US where it is cheaper to rent than to buy. Their data goes from 2001, when it was already cheaper to rent, to 2004 when the difference was even more pronounced. The Economist also published an article showing that renting is cheaper, and although it does not focus on Boston, it is very thorough about including various expenses and tax benefits that the Wall Street Journal left out. [Wall Street Journal] [The Economist]
  • Consumer Reports has rated real estate in the Boston market as "Overpriced" and pegged it at 24% over the affordable price as of Q4 2004. [Consumer Reports]
  • The number of homes sold in Massachusetts has been plummeting. For the third quarter of 2006 (the most recently reported quarter as of this writing), home sales have fallen 23% compared with the same quarter one year earlier. This despite the fact that home sales were already on the decline in 2005. [Worcester Telegram] [WCVB] [Milford Daily News]
  • Foreclosures are rising sharply in Greater Boston and Massachusetts. There were more foreclosures in the first nine months of 2006 than in all of 2005, and as of this writing (in November 2006), Massachusetts is on track to break the all time record in 2006. [Boston Globe] [Lowell Sun]
  • Boston and Massachusetts are the typical exceptions that people use to qualify their statements when they say that real estate prices don't fall. Boston and Massachusetts prices have fallen in the past, even in nominal terms (when adjusted for inflation, the fall is even more pronounced). Bear in mind that even if prices decline merely by the same percent that they have in the past, the leverage (a.k.a., margin or mortgage) used to purchase the homes must be taken into consideration - the substantially higher number of zero down and negative amortization loans will leave a lot of people with heavy losses and negative equity. [BusinessWeek] [Wall Street Journal (sub)]
  • To compensate for property that fails to sell, real estate agents in Boston are falling back on the deceptive practice of canceling the listing in MLS and then creating a new listing so that the property appears as new to the market. There were 10,606 MLS cancellations in the first six months of 2005, up from 9,722 cancellations in the first six months of 2004 and 3,736 in 2001. "The number of canceled listings in Massachusetts has nearly tripled since 2001... In a recent spot check of houses for sale on MLS in Middlesex County, Barry Nystedt, president of the Massachusetts Association of Buyer Agents, said one in four listings canceled between May 25 and June 25 was recreated by the same firm with a new MLS number." [Boston Globe]
>>> Discuss the Boston bubble now!
 

PARTNER LINKS

Furnished Apartments Boston
Stylish apartments throughout the
Downtown Boston area.
www.firstbostonrealty.com
 
Do-it-yourself homebuyers
Think Outside the Commission
100% buyer agency rebate option
realestatecafe.com
 
Advertise on Boston Bubble
Buyer brokers and motivated
sellers, reach potential buyers.
www.bostonbubble.com
 

YOUR AD HERE

 

National (US) Info

  • Visit Patrick Killelea's housing crash blog. It is a fantastic resource providing ample quantitative background into the housing bubble.
  • Visit the Wikipedia article on the United States housing bubble for another excellent overview of the bubble on a national scale.
  • It is actually now cheaper to rent than to buy in many areas even after you factor in accumulated equity and tax savings. [The Economist]
  • Yale professor Robert J. Shiller released the first edition of his prophetic book warning of a stock market bubble weeks before the stock market began its epic crash in 2000. He recently released an updated second edition in late February, 2005 with similar warnings of froth in the real estate market. This book is very highly recommended and is quite readable despite the complexity of the subject. [Irrational Exuberance] [Amazon.com]
  • The current nationwide housing boom has been fueled in large part by historically low interest rates and an increase in the use of risky mortgages. Buyers may find that their monthly payments will skyrocket once the introductory period of their mortgage ends and the adjustable rate kicks in. In 2005, only $83 billion, or 1 percent, of mortgage debt will switch to an adjustable rate. In 2007, this number will leap to $1 trillion, or about 12 percent. [Herald Tribune]
>>> Discuss the national and worldwide housing bubbles now!
 

Boston Bubble News & Interesting Links

Get Updates: RSS Feed (What's RSS? -- RSS Readers: Feedly, Firefox)
Suggest a Link: News & Reference Suggestion Forum
Legend: Info/Broken? Info/Broken? Discuss Discuss
<< << << Show Recent Links
2011-11-30
Info/Broken? - Like rest of nation, Mass. residents not moving - "Ownership society" impeding mobility, economic recovery
Discuss - Like rest of nation, Mass. residents not moving - "Ownership society" impeding mobility, economic recovery
Like rest of nation, Mass. residents not moving - "Ownership society" impeding mobility, economic recovery
2011-11-29
Info/Broken? - MA SFH Oct 2011 vs Oct 2010 - MAR: nominal median down 5+%, volume up 3%; Warren Group: nominal median down ~7%
Discuss - MA SFH Oct 2011 vs Oct 2010 - MAR: nominal median down 5+%, volume up 3%; Warren Group: nominal median down ~7%
MA SFH Oct 2011 vs Oct 2010 - MAR: nominal median down 5+%, volume up 3%; Warren Group: nominal median down ~7%
2011-11-29
Info/Broken? - Watchdog: Fannie, Freddie abuses went unchecked
Discuss - Watchdog: Fannie, Freddie abuses went unchecked
Watchdog: Fannie, Freddie abuses went unchecked
2011-11-29
Info/Broken? - Fitch May Lower Fannie, Freddie Debt Outlook
Discuss - Fitch May Lower Fannie, Freddie Debt Outlook
Fitch May Lower Fannie, Freddie Debt Outlook
2011-11-27
Info/Broken? - Average rate on 30-year fixed home loan below 4% again
Discuss - Average rate on 30-year fixed home loan below 4% again
Average rate on 30-year fixed home loan below 4% again
2011-11-23
Info/Broken? - Middle class in Massachusetts losing hope, new study says
Discuss - Middle class in Massachusetts losing hope, new study says
Middle class in Massachusetts losing hope, new study says
2011-11-22
Info/Broken? - Foreclosure activity accelerates in Mass.
Discuss - Foreclosure activity accelerates in Mass.
Foreclosure activity accelerates in Mass.
2011-11-21
Info/Broken? - Mass. unemployment rate holds at 7.3 percent despite October jobs pickup
Discuss - Mass. unemployment rate holds at 7.3 percent despite October jobs pickup
Mass. unemployment rate holds at 7.3 percent despite October jobs pickup
2011-11-21
Info/Broken? - Mass. Stock Of Affordable Housing Drops
Discuss - Mass. Stock Of Affordable Housing Drops
Mass. Stock Of Affordable Housing Drops
2011-11-18
Info/Broken? - Experts: Mass. economy won't rebound until 2013
Discuss - Experts: Mass. economy won't rebound until 2013
Experts: Mass. economy won't rebound until 2013
2011-11-16
Info/Broken? - Gingrich Said to Be Paid at Least $1.6 Million By Freddie Mac
Discuss - Gingrich Said to Be Paid at Least $1.6 Million By Freddie Mac
Gingrich Said to Be Paid at Least $1.6 Million By Freddie Mac
2011-11-15
Info/Broken? - Mass. pressed to reject 50-state foreclosure deal
Discuss - Mass. pressed to reject 50-state foreclosure deal
Mass. pressed to reject 50-state foreclosure deal
2011-11-15
Info/Broken? - Judge OKs W's bankruptcy exit
Discuss - Judge OKs W's bankruptcy exit
Judge OKs W's bankruptcy exit
2011-11-15
Info/Broken? - NAR overestimated home sales
Discuss - NAR overestimated home sales
NAR overestimated home sales
2011-11-14
Info/Broken? - NH man gets prison term for running mortgage fraud scheme in Boston area
Discuss - NH man gets prison term for running mortgage fraud scheme in Boston area
NH man gets prison term for running mortgage fraud scheme in Boston area
2011-11-11
Info/Broken? - New federal program gives money to people more than 25% underwater on their mortgages
Discuss - New federal program gives money to people more than 25% underwater on their mortgages
New federal program gives money to people more than 25% underwater on their mortgages
2011-11-10
Info/Broken? - Poll finds more boomers working past retirement
Discuss - Poll finds more boomers working past retirement
Poll finds more boomers working past retirement
2011-11-09
Info/Broken? - The great $26 billion real estate swindle
Discuss - The great $26 billion real estate swindle
The great $26 billion real estate swindle
2011-11-09
Info/Broken? - DeLeo eyes bid for Mass. to collect online sales tax
Discuss - DeLeo eyes bid for Mass. to collect online sales tax
DeLeo eyes bid for Mass. to collect online sales tax
2011-11-07
Info/Broken? - Bay State housing declines hint of more pain to come
Discuss - Bay State housing declines hint of more pain to come
Bay State housing declines hint of more pain to come
2011-11-04
Info/Broken? - Arlington and Brookline - 2 and 3 in US according to Zillow
Discuss - Arlington and Brookline - 2 and 3 in US according to Zillow
Arlington and Brookline - 2 and 3 in US according to Zillow
2011-11-04
Info/Broken? - Scott Kirsner: Boston a "second-tier" town in technology, financial services, etc.
Discuss - Scott Kirsner: Boston a "second-tier" town in technology, financial services, etc.
Scott Kirsner: Boston a "second-tier" town in technology, financial services, etc.
2011-11-03
Info/Broken? - Natick Mall condo owners sue, seek to void sales
Discuss - Natick Mall condo owners sue, seek to void sales
Natick Mall condo owners sue, seek to void sales
2011-11-02
Info/Broken? - Boston rent ranks third highest in nation
Discuss - Boston rent ranks third highest in nation
Boston rent ranks third highest in nation
2011-11-02
Info/Broken? - Mass pending home sales up 6.2% YOY in October
Discuss - Mass pending home sales up 6.2% YOY in October
Mass pending home sales up 6.2% YOY in October
2011-11-01
Info/Broken? - Mass. group says employer confidence sliding
Discuss - Mass. group says employer confidence sliding
Mass. group says employer confidence sliding

News & Interesting Links Index
Recent | All
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
2014 10 11 13 6 6 3 4 3 4      
2013 25 14 13 6 12 18 11 18 8 15 11 9
2012 24 23 27 19 16 6 9 11 7 7 8 13
2011 38 46 45 44 38 45 41 33 21 22 26 31
2010 51 40 63 63 42 48 45 42 40 52 36 43
2009 52 52 59 63 56 37 53 50 52 68 56 54
2008 76 79 77 71 69 51 56 49 66 61 42 48
2007 63 36 85 60 55 45 62 59 52 76 60 60
2006 24 19 40 46 59 45 34 42 44 50 57 49
2005               41 28 18 17 23

All content on this website Copyright 2005 - 2014, BostonBubble.com, except where noted. All rights reserved. Privacy policy in effect.

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on this website and in the associated forums comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY, expressed or implied. You assume all risk for your own use of the information provided as the accuracy of the information is in no way guaranteed. As always, cross check information that you would deem useful against multiple, reliable, independent resources. The opinions expressed belong to the individual authors and not necessarily to other parties.