It's incredible what can happen over a year. I thought you might be interested to read what we were saying this time last year:
"While the headwinds remain strong going into 2012, there are indications the economy and the housing market are gaining ground, albeit slowly. Sustained and increased job growth beyond the average monthly payroll gains of 130,000 so far this year ending in November are essential. In housing, look for the rental market to lead the way and for some improvement in the single-family space in parts of the country. All told, next year will be another bumpy ride." -Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac, vice president and chief economist (http://freddiemac.mediaroom.com)
"Own a home? Brace yourself for an even longer recovery than anticipated. A new homeowners survey released jointly by Trulia.com and RealtyTrac suggests we won’t see a housing recovery until 2014 at the earliest now."-Morgan Brennan, Forbes staff (http://www.forbes.com)
"Builders were busier than expected in November, and many are more upbeat heading into 2012. In recent years, housing was supported by temporary help from government tax rebates. Now, the sector looks as if it can stand on its own." -Kathleen Madigan (http://blogs.wsj.com)
Here's what they're saying now:
"Although 2012 will be remembered as the year the housing recovery finally took off, plenty of metro areas still have strong headwinds entering into the new year. And while it's true the housing market still has a long way to go to get back to "normal," the cities among the worst markets might surprise you, especially because many of them have also seen some of the biggest year-over-year home prices increases.
A lot of it has to do with the fundamentals that drive the housing market, says Trulia Chief Economist Jed Kolko—factors such as job growth, foreclosure rates, and for-sale inventories."-Meg Handley (http://www.usnews.com)
"The housing market will improve moderately in 2013, but nobody will mistake this for a boom. The gains in activity and prices will be a welcome relief, but will leave many homeowners still underwater."-Bill Conerly (www.forbes.com)
"U.S. homes are expected to gain more than $1.3 trillion in cumulative value in 2012, the first annual gain in six years and the largest since 2005." -Yeng Bun (www.zillow.com)
Here's to 2013!