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2010-08-30 22:26:14

How Long Will Our Industry be in the Toilet?

It’s been a tough four years for those of us in the Real Estate Industry. The question on every Realtor’s® and Broker’s mind at this moment, with all the negative news that has come out recently regarding our industry is:
“How long is our industry going to remain in the toilet?”

I am still of the opinion that once this economy turns around the Real Estate market will come back much faster than anyone thinks it will. I know I’m in the minority with this opinion, and in fact, I don’t know anyone else who shares my opinion.

You have to look at the history of Real Estate, not just a snap shot of the last 10 years. My Dad bought his first home when I was in 7th grade. It was on an acre on a hill overlooking a beautiful lake. He paid $4,000 for that home. Now the homes down below it on the lakeshore sell for more than a million dollars.
You just can’t convince me that once this economy improves - and it will - that Real Estate won’t make a dramatic comeback.

I read a national article just yesterday that was talking about how bad the market is because some areas have a 4 month inventory. Jeez, that’s an incredible statement. In the past, a 4 month inventory was a seller’s market.

Our economy will improve, because if it doesn’t, we as Americans will continue to change our representatives until it does. History always repeats itself, and we will have boom times again. The smart Realtors® will remember the bad times and prepare for the next Real Estate crisis.

We have a very real inventory crisis shaping up in our industry, when our economy finally improves and we enter back into a normal Real Estate market.

We will always have the move up market, of young families needing larger homes. We will always have people retiring and moving to smaller homes and we will always have growth in our country from legal (and illegal) immigration. We also lose 10’s of thousands of homes every year to natural disasters, fires, obsolescence, etc.
As a result once we return to a more natural 5 to 6 million home sales a year pace, we are bound to run into a serious inventory issue.

You will see the day again in the not too distant future when we will have multiple offers on desirable locations.

So for all the Chicken Little’s of our industry, please keep working and keep faith, the day will come once again when you will forget how bad it has been for the last four years. I know that it seems like we have lost the America that we all knew and loved, but I don’t think so. I see Americans rising up in spirit once again and embracing the American way.

And once that happens, look out Realtors®, the industry will return and will be robust once again.


James A. Crumbaugh III is CEO of Allison James Estates and Homes, a National Internet Based Real Estate Brokerage. You may reach Mr. Crumbaugh at

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