Don Bauder 4:30 p.m., Dec. 9
High on housing
Potential buyers optimistic about improving values, but modest gains mean a slow climb back to previous highs
Potential home buyers are feeling a bit more optimistic these days, at least according to a California Association of Realtors survey released recently.
A quarter of potential home buyers responding to the 2012 survey were confident home values would improve next year. 41 percent said they believe prices will be higher five years from now, and nearly three-quarters of respondents say that values will be higher a decade from now. Positive responses rose across the board, but particularly on the one-year question, which drew an optimistic response from only 8 percent of respondents when it was first asked in late 2009.
Mortgage backer Freddie Mac agrees with the buyers, releasing its own report calling for a modest 2-3 percent rise in home values over the next year. That may be positive growth, but it shouldn’t cause any panic about prices returning to their pre-recession peaks in the foreseeable future. Average San Diego home values are still 37 percent off of highs reached in early 2007, despite sustained price increases.