In Depth Analysis: CalculatedRisk Newsletter on Real Estate (Ad Free) Read it here.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Building Castles to the Sky

by Calculated Risk on 5/06/2008 06:45:00 PM

Here are a couple of interviews with analysts that were wrong about housing (emphasis added) ...

From a Newsweek interview with ex-NAR economist David Lereah: It’s Going to Get Worse

"[I] just didn't realize the scope, the extent, the magnitude of the loose underwriting—not looking at incomes and wages, just providing so many mortgage loans based on [expected] future price appreciation rather than the creditworthiness of the borrower," Lereah says. "That got so out of hand, and none of us realized the magnitude of it until it was too late."
And from Jon Lansner at the O.C. Register: Insider Q&A learns how a housing expert goofed

Note: this is the "expert" that was mentioned on the front page of the O.C. Register in 2005 - see Lansner's Emblem of O.C.’s $600,000 home market, now a short sale)
Us: Where did you go wrong?

Walter: Along with almost everyone else, I didn’t recognize that the 2003 thru mid-2006 housing market boom was caused almost exclusively by the introduction (and pushing) of low-teaser-rate loans.
Us: What was it you didn’t foresee? Where did the demand go?

Walter: Shame on me! After 40 years of analyzing my way through four economic and housing market booms and busts, I knew that the fuel for every boom also eventually burns it up and causes it to go bust. I had my head in the sand and wasn’t paying attention.If I had been paying attention I would have known that a high percentage of those low-teaser-rate loans would go into foreclosure and bring the whole house of greed tumbling down. But I wasn’t paying attention.