No One Should Be Surprised....
"Sonoma County home prices dropped for a second consecutive month in August as buyers sought bargains and sellers cut prices to make houses stand out in a crowded market."
"It marks the first time since 1997 that prices have dropped for two straight months when compared with levels from a year ago."
'"The buyers are just waiting to see if sellers are adjusting their price downward, if they can get an even better deal on a house," said Bob Buhman, a broker-manager for Creative Property Services in Santa Rosa."
'"There are many people standing on the sidelines right now," McCormick said of buyers."
'"There's going to be a better time to buy. But they're going to be real tentative and driving hard bargains."
'"Sonoma County home prices face a greater risk of falling within the next two years, according to a study released Tuesday by PMI Mortgage Insurance Co., a national mortgage insurer in Walnut Creek."
"There is a 60 percent chance that prices will decline in Sonoma County, up from 51 percent a year ago, according to the study, which is based on home prices, employment and affordability."
'"No one should be surprised by the slowdown we're seeing," said Mark F. Milner, PMI's chief risk officer. "Over the past five years home prices appreciated much faster than incomes, and that can't continue forever."'
"Signs are mixed as the housing market moves into the fall and winter when purchases typically decline. Still, prices might dip further until there is a better balance between buyer demand and the number of homes for sale, brokers and lenders said."
"Sellers were slow to respond to the changing market. Often, they would price based on what a home might have sold for a year earlier and not against what comparable homes sold for recently, brokers said."
'"This thing is much deeper and has happened much faster than people realize," said Marty McCormick, president of Financial Company of America, a Santa Rosa lender."
"Sonoma County's overall median resale price fell in July, marking the first year-over-year price decline in more than four years. August's price drop was steeper, and further declines are looming, brokers and lenders said."
'"We're still seeking that level because there's a lot of buyer caution in the marketplace," Laws said. "I don't know if we have hit the bottom."
Baby, we've hit bottom when the only left for you to hold onto is the floor.