Extrapolations. I was going to title this, "Simple Math", but I like the word extrapolations...
So the housing inventory "plummets" in Bend? (Bulletin, 11/12/09)
Pardon me if I doubt it.
It seems to me a little simple math could have been applied to this assertion. How many houses were coming on the market for sale before this sudden decline, and how many after?
Is it likely with the high unemployment in Bend that fewer people are needing to put their house for sale?
So what do we get? Several quotes from real estate agents, which I consider all but useless as news.
And this from a California economist, Bill Watkins -- "That's absolutely good news. A decline in housing inventory is a precondition for a recovery."
So have we really had a decline in housing inventory? Or is there shadow inventory waiting to come onto the market?
How many houses were taken off the market without selling?
Later on in the story, Mr. Watkins has part of the answer: "He believes banks have generally been slow to list foreclosure properties, and that may account for some of Bend's decline in inventory."
"There's some evidence banks are slowing down their foreclosure process to keep the market more orderly..."
Nice phrasing: "More orderly..."
If you don't mind, I'll apply this reasoning to my own store.
My customers often look at my selection and say, "Wow! That title must have sold really well since you only have one left!"
Or "Wow! That title must have sold really poorly since you have a dozen left!"
Not really. In the former case, the title is such a dog I only ordered 2, and I have 1 left. In the latter case, the title is such a good seller I ordered 75, and I have 12 left.
What I've learned to do is leave between 1 and 5 copies out for sale, no more. If I have more, I keep them behind the counter and refill as needed.
Because you can't beat human psychology.
4 days ago