The New York Times has declared the New Orleans housing market to be “booming.” And they have all kinds of quotes that supposedly back that up. But let’s forget the chatter and get to the numbers:
… Across the nine-parish region that includes New Orleans, 7,506 single-family homes were sold between January and the end of last month, compared with 6,449 in the same period last year, according to statistics from the New Orleans Metropolitan Association of Realtors and the Gulf South Real Estate Information Network. The average price so far this year is $221,244, compared with $193,097 in the same period last year.
So in an area where almost a quarter of a million homes were destroyed and thousands of families have had to relocate across the country, home sales are up 16%. Yippee!
That 1000 extra homes sold in such an extraordinary time is actually astonishingly low.
The sales prices figures are equally unimpressive. The numbers the Times cite represent a 14.5% year to year increase in a market that has been averaging about 10-15% for the last several years. And those are buoyed by the fact that mostly homes in the expensive parts of town were selling.
It is worth noting that the housing market didn’t collapse after Katrina but to call it “booming” is just a gross misrepresentation of the facts.