8 Healthiest Housing Markets: Minneapolis-Saint Paul Metro Tops The List

by Alex Stenback on November 8, 2011

Builder Magazine (A trade publication) is out with a report which is getting much tout in local real estate circles because it names Minneapolis- Saint Paul as THE healthiest housing market.

[ The source article is of annoying the page-view pumping variety (list spread out over multiple slow to load pages) so we'll link instead to the reprint from the NAR. ]

Entitled, The 8 Healthiest Housing Markets, the piece itself is mostly a garden variety pseudo-analysis pointing to factors like: “As a hub for medical technology and headquarters for several large companies, employment [in Minneapolis-Saint Paul] is expected to grow 2.5 percent in 2012.” and “Building permits are forecast to more that double, from 4511 in 2011 to 10,118 in 2012.”

Which is fine, and far be it from me to belittle pseudo-analysis (a topic I am all too familiar with around here,) but then we get to this doozy:

“Home prices here are expected to rise 8 percent next year, the highest growth projected in the 100 cities analyzed.”

This will never happen.  It just won’t.

Don’t get me wrong – I’d be the first to cheer an 8% rebound in real estate prices – as much as it would mean for the real estate market, it would say even more for the health and resilience of our local economy, and can’t begrudge cheery optimism like this (it is a trade publication, after all) but this notion is so far afield from any reasonable assessment of the state of our market it strains any credible definition of analysis.

I’d certainly like to see the “analysis” behind this prediction, if only for the entertainment value, but I think we’ll just need to wait until 2012 to see how it holds up.

In the meantime, I’ll repeat a pledge I made elsewhere:

If the Twin Cities does see an 8% rise in home prices for 2012, I will happily print and eat the article on livestream.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Zapiens November 8, 2011 at 9:57 am

The key terms missing from this description is “in real dollars.” House prices could rise more than 8% if inflation is, say, 5% or even 10%.

Alex Stenback November 8, 2011 at 10:40 am

True, but inflation (depending on which measure you are using) ramping up that quickly and flowing through to home prices is just as unlikely as an outright 8% jump in home prices.

The global economy remains in the midst of a great deleveraging – deflation is a bigger risk.

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