The weekly poll is worried nobody is going to vote this week. Go over and give it a good left clickin’ to prove it wrong.
This week’s poll question has to do with something that’s on just about every American homeowner’s mind these days: home values. I got an email this week from a very distressed friend. Seems like someone had just told her husband that U.S. homes have lost an average of 40% of their value and that she and her husband’s home was therefore worth 40% less than they paid for it.
Now, statements like that just make me crazy for a variety of reasons. First of all, I have no idea where the 40% number came from or if it’s true. For an average, it seems extremely high to me. Second, real estate is local, not national. The market here is not the same as the market in Nashville, Memphis, Jacksonville, Atlanta, or any other city, and Knoxville certainly hasn’t been hit nearly as hard as cities like Las Vegas or Detroit. And even if there has been a 40% average decline in market value nationally, that does not mean that homes here have depreciated to that degree.
I’m not saying you can sell your home today for what you could have sold it for last year. And if you bought or refinanced your home last year and have to sell this year, you might not be in the greatest situation. But if you’ve owned your home for a few years or if you don’t need to sell or refinance now, there’s really nothing to worry about in the short term. Of course, there’s no way to know if prices will eventually go back up, but I’d put my money on the fact that they will.
But I realize that none of that stops people from worrying that their own home’s value has declined. And that’s understandable when you take into account the general state of the economy and the fact that, for most people, their home is the largest investment they will every make.
Which brings me back to the poll question. What about you? Are you worried about your home’s value? If so, are you worried because you need to sell soon or are you just generally worried? Or maybe you’re not sweating the current market at all? Cast your vote and let me know.
If you have a suggestion for future Weekly Poll questions, let me know about it.