Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Boston At Highest Risk For Falling Housing Prices

Local Realtors Rebuff Results Of Study

It's something many homebuyers and sellers have been trying to figure out for years: When will Boston's hot real estate market cool off?

NewsCenter 5's Kelley Tuthill reported Wednesday that a new study says Boston has the highest risk of seeing housing prices fall of any metropolitan area nationwide.Local realtors are already disputing the results of the study, which was conducted by the PMI Mortgage Insurance Co.

"Day to day in the trenches, I get calls every day from people looking to buy. It's even been busy this winter," Massachusetts Realtors Association spokesman Gary Rogers said.The study predicts the Boston area has a greater than 50 percent chance of seeing home prices decline in the next two years. That's up from 23 percent last year.According to the study, the sharp increase is due to strong home price increases -- despite poor income growth.What's also interesting about this study is where Massachusetts falls in a nationwide list. Boston is ranked the riskiest housing market in the country, followed by San Jose, Calif., San Francisco, San Diego, Providence, R.I., Sacramento, Calif., and New York City.Local realtors say the market remains strong, and is being fueled by new homeowners."I see that as an indicator of the stimulus to the economy that first-time homebuyers are able to purchase in one of the toughest markets in city," Rogers said.Brokers say in a few years, those buyers will be ready for an upgrade, which will keep the market strong.


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