Nary a Trickle

Posted by Dave Fratello on Thursday, April 16th, 2009 at 5:23am.

About a fifth of the voters (19%) in this week's short poll thought this week would see just 0-4 new listings among SFRs west of Sepulveda.

That looks like the smart money now.

If a listing isn't announced by midday Thursday, it's generally not coming out in a given week.

And by Wednesday night, the tally was rather limited:
  • 1 bogus re-list (229 24th, began at $5.495m in Feb., now $4.999m);
  • 1 new offering that began in escrow ("backup offer" status) – 2107 Valley at $1.099m; and
  • 1 bona fide new listing, super-cute 1600 Elm (3br/3ba, 1975 sq. ft., $1.339m).
Of course, we'll only count 2 of those toward the week's total of new listings.

The crickets chirping in the background represent new territory for MBC. We may be seeing a stalling-out of sorts here.

Easter Week was one thing – you expect less activity.

Implied in our poll this week was the question of whether you think lots of potential sellers are quitting before they begin, or whether "normal" RE activity was simply held back by the holiday, coiled up, ready to spring.

Data so far support the "quitting" theory.

We struggled with this subject, by the way. News that there is no news is, well, a bit boring. Mrs. MBC propped us up. She said, in short, "If nothing is happening, that means something, doesn't it?"

If new sellers refuse, en masse, to enter this market, that might be nice for those who remain, even if inventory is quite high. Buyers may be bored, but those who are serious will find increasingly good deals. And that, at least, will be news.

We won't call Spring dead yet. Those high winds the last few days have made a lot of things seem screwy. Before you know it, we'll be in Summer and MB will shine. It may even be a great time to buy.
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