U.S. Real Estate Broker and Agent Confidence Rebounds in March
Brokers and agents across the United States reversed three months of declining optimism in Point2 Technologies’ (“Point2”) Real Estate Confidence Index (RECI) survey, pushing the forward looking market opinion Index up 2.49 percent for the March 2010 survey period, Point2 announced. Accounting for seasonality, the national monthly Index moved up to 5.77 on the one to ten scale (1 being “Bad” and 10 being “Good), up from 5.63 in February 2010.
All three of the national RECI’s variable components improved in March.
The Current Sentiment component, which tracks respondent sentiment of current market conditions made the biggest jump, moving up 3.49 percent on the 1 – 10 scale.
The Short Term, 3 – 6 month optimism/pessimism gauge improved 0.87 percent, and the Long Term 12 – 18 month variable moved up 3 percent, to 6.51 on the scale. 68.6 percent of the respondent base gave the Long Term component a rating of 6 or higher. 10.5 percent gave it the maximum rating of 10 / 10.
Cautious optimism and a general sense of stabilizing market conditions in many parts of the U.S. were driven by declining inventories in the low to mid price range home categories, which some respondents also linked to more frequent bidding wars. “50% of our market is REOs, Short Sales with lack of inventory. REOs create price wars in our market!” “Few conventional sales, short sales and foreclosures with bidding wars, cash/conventional loans preferred.”
Multiple offers on bank owned properties in some markets, and buyer motivation to move ahead of the government’s April 30 deadline for the current tax credit program also contributed to increased market activity and optimism. “80% of the listings are short sales. We are running out of REO and regular listings.” “Prices are down, there is strong activity on bargain priced properties.”
Sporadic positive sentiment surrounding the onset of spring, typically a more active time of the year for real estate also combined with the tax credit deadline to boost respondent expectations for the coming months. “The spring selling season is coming up, there are ample buyers waiting, we need more inventory, interest rates are great.” “Conditions in Atlanta are getting better as the weather gets better. The sense of urgency is starting to hit many buyers as the first-time home buyer’s credit nears its expiration.”
Amidst the renewed optimism, negative sentiment and apprehension remained apparent in many states, with survey respondents indicating buyer reluctance to commit due to job uncertainty. Pressure on prices was also expected to continue by brokers and agents in most states, driven by current foreclosure inventories, with more foreseen to hit the market.
The complete RECI Report, including respondent commentaries presented by state, historical data as well as an interactive state by state RECI score heat map, can be accessed at www.RealEstateConfidenceIndex.com.
More than 50,000 brokers and agents from the Point2 Agent software platform user community were surveyed for the March report, with 1845 usable responses aggregated to generate the RECI score for the month.
RECI Survey Instrument and Methodology
The Real Estate Confidence Index (RECI) tracks the real estate market opinions of tens of thousands of licensed real estate professionals, brokers and agents, across the United States, accounting for seasonality, on a scale of one to ten (1 being “bad” and 10 being “good”). The RECI also rates respondent sentiment for market conditions 3 – 6 months and 6 – 12 months into the future on a ten-point scale (1 being “pessimistic” and 10 being “optimistic”). The median across all three time periods represents the Index measure for the month.
The RECI is open to the Point2 Agent membership and to tens of thousands of additional licensed real estate professionals across the nation at the beginning of each month. Respondents complete a simple, four question survey through third party survey solution providers, Survey Monkey. The data is tabulated electronically, median averages surfaced for quantitative questions, and qualitative feedback and respondent commentaries are captured and presented in Point2’s monthly RECI Summary Report.
About Point2 Technologies Inc.
Point2 Technologies (www.Point2.com) is one of the first web-based inventory management and online marketing software developers in the world, today serving customers in the real estate and heavy equipment industries in over 120 countries.
Point2 markets its industry leading listing syndication and website solution, Point2 Agent (www.Point2Agent.com), in partnership with major real estate Multiple Listing Service organizations and Associations, seamlessly reaching and enabling syndication for hundreds of thousands of real estate professionals.
More information about Point2 can be found at www.Point2.com. For ongoing news about Point2, please visit www.point2.com/news.asp.
For questions or to request an interview, please contact Roger Noujeim at Point2 Technologies PR at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 888-955-7900. Custom data, graphics and charts featured on the RECI website or within the RECI report can also be obtained in high resolution, upon request.
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