Thursday, February 16, 2017

What a Realtor conference is like and predictions for 2017

I just came back from the National Association of Realtors Broker Summit in San Diego.  Everybody has been to at least one convention in their lives, right? If not, and in case you are wondering what these are like, here's the skinny.

It was held at the Grand Del Mar Fairmont in northern San Diego.  This is a triple luxury hotel that looks like an Italian palace.  Miles from anything and super-expensive, so I didn't stay there.  Nice cocktail parties, though.  The pic above is the lobby centerpiece.

As with all conventions, there is music over the public address system between speakers.  I always expect hits of the '80s but this time it was hits of the late '60s and early '70s -- Doors, Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane, Creedence...seemed a little weird to me, to be honest.  But then the average age of  the Realtors there was about 55. Perhaps the convention organizers thought it was age-appropriate, but there is something incongruous about hearing "Bad Moon Rising" just before an economist takes the stage.

The speakers were excellent and I learned a a lot.  Here are my take-aways for you.
- 2017 is going to be about the same as 2016 for real estate.
- However, prices will show a slight rise.  So will interest rates, but we knew that.
- Shortness of inventory is a major problem all over the country. (You knew that.)
- Affordability is a major issue, too. (You knew that too.)
- Student debt is stopping many millenials from buying homes.
- Home ownership is down across the country, and expected to go lower.  We may soon become a nation of renters.
- Our recent election and its aftermath has caused uncertainty in all sectors, but not enough to hurt the economy in the long run.

Here's the deal on crystal ball predictions -- they are just predictions.  We won't know what's really happening until it happens. In the meantime, I will continue to give my own predictions and also real stats to keep you engaged and aware.

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