Are we there yet?

These days, the familiar refrain could be asked of the real estate industry, as in, “Have we hit the bottom yet?”

Truthfully, it’s difficult to tell you’ve hit bottom until you’re already on the way up, but consider these figures from the Emmet Association of Realtors for August 2009:  

Emmet County Housing Sales
  2008 2009
Number of Sales 105 90
Average Selling Price $234,361 $230,356
Median Selling Price $136,361 $119,000


It would look as though things are still bleak. But when you break things out by area, the story is more complex than that. For example, in Charlevoix County, sales have plummeted from 48 in 2008 to 26 in 2009, while in Emmet County, the number of sales actually increased, from 39 to 43. On the other hand – and these days it seems there is always another hand – the average sale price in Charlevoix County actually rose from $231,108 to $251,967, while in Emmet County it dipped from $304,001 to $260,734.

So what are we to make of all this? It would look as though if we aren’t yet at the bottom, we’re very near there. Meaning there is (almost) nowhere to go but up.

To put it another way, for the Cedar Point enthusiasts out there, it’s like a roller coaster ride. If not a Corkscrew, maybe it’s the Wildcat, with hills and thrills. So long as it’s not the Mean Streak.

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