June 24, 2014
MEGAN MCARDLE: Boomer Housing Bust Ain’t Happening Yet. Two personal observations: First, most of the people we know who talk about downsizing look at some places, then realize that while “downsizing” sounds good, they don’t want to do it if it means moving into a smaller house. Second, in my area at least, sales are up because the market is capitulating: People are finally pricing their houses at market-clearing levels (typically involving zero or negative appreciation over the past several years) instead of holding out for a market “recovery.” But if you sell a house that you bought for — to pick one example we saw recently — $409,000 in 1999 at an asking price of $429,000 you’re actually losing money after the real estate commission, etc. And, of course, you’re not keeping pace with inflation. That isn’t exactly a bust, but. . . .