Five positive housing market signs

Here are five signs that say “buy,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

February 28, 2011

 

Here are five signs that say “buy,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

  1. Jobs: Jobs data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is fairly current and the data are a good indicator of where the local economy is going.
  2. Recent Sales: Prospective buyers should look at three factors together: inventory, sales volume and prices. A large inventory with few sales is a bad sign. Conversely, falling inventory and rising transactions is a good sign. Inventory data by metro area can usually be found on the U.S. Census Bureau website.
  3. Construction: The number of building permits is often a helpful way to measure builder sentiment and future housing activity. The National Association of Home Builders often has recent permit numbers.
  4. Mortgage: If most of the people in the area use mortgages, it’s especially important to look at local lending patterns. Some banks haven’t been hit as hard, but most are tightening lending standards.
  5. Anecdotal Evidence: After looking at hard data, getting your hands dirty is a good way to get valuable information. Drive around the neighborhoods, go to some open houses and talk to local real estate agents.

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