Real estate executive expects price moderation While...

Industry Watch

August 11, 2002

Real estate executive expects price moderation

While housing prices could well level off soon, there is little reason to expect a widespread decline in real estate values, a top real estate executive said last week.

Speaking to Bloomberg News about the possibility that U.S. real estate prices are inflated and about to fall, Richard Smith, chief executive of Cendant Corp.'s real estate division, NRT Inc., said the conditions for a "bubble" that might produce a price collapse don't exist.

"If all homes were bought with cash, and the liquidity in the marketplace was such that the cash made it possible to flip homes on a regular basis, we could see the groundwork for a bubble, but that's not true," Smith said. "There isn't a bubble in home prices. ... A bubble would suggest that all housing values are linked to some national scale, and that's just not true."

Noting "classic examples" such as Northern California of real estate markets going through highs and lows, Smith said such cycles have little impact on the national market.

Smith added, however, that he expects the current escalation in housing values to cool.

"Even those who are giddy over home prices in the last few years will say the current rate of appreciation cannot continue," he said.

On the move

Grayson Homes,

a residential builder with headquarters in Ellicott City, has appointed Jim Finecey as community sales manager for Grayson Homes at River Downs Golf Course Community in Carroll County.

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

announced the hiring of new sales associates: Robert Clopp, Patricia Thomas, Judith Young-Espeut, Annapolis Plaza; Roland Emokpae, Bel Air/Abingdon; Nelda Bomia, Carol A. Eckels, Bel Air/Festival; Sean L. Foley, Kathy D. McCoy, Phyllis M. Tutko, Timothy J. Tilert, Bowie; Kim Martel, Catonsville; Ronna Corman-Chew, Andrew Warde, Columbia; Elizabeth Gross, John Minick, Crofton; Jacqueline Crandell, Ronald Withrow, Dundalk; Rhonda Quidas, Joseph Riccio, Darlene Wheatley, Easton; Denise Grove, Edward Hazlett, Naseem Khan, Lyndon E. Murray, Linda E. Williams, Ellicott City; Kelly Gardiner, Jaclyn McGillicudy, Victor Michl, Karen Snoots, Judy Wilson, Debbie Witmer, Frederick; Vincent P. Giunta, Karon D. Hammett, Gaithersburg; Patricia Young, Glen Burnie; Irene Quinn, Donna Reichert, Hagerstown; Robert Fales, Hampstead; Joseph Eugene Hubbard, Hunt Valley; Franklin O. Agboola, Carolyn A. Bowling, Doris S. Brown, Sharon Crawford, Judy A. Friday, Beverly P. Holloway, Trevelyn C. Otts, Lanham; Patrick Germain, Avis M. Moore, Laurel; Annie DeJong, Lexington Park; Peter Marth, Richard Loomis, Peter Ball, Roland Park at the Stone Mill; Diane Deegan-Slotke, Roland Park at Wyndhurst Station; Nancy Cicero, St. Michaels; Debra Chiccone, Commercial Services, Timonium; Thomas Martel Jr., Timonium; Kelly LeFaivre, Shirley Traub, Towson/Lutherville; Pamela DeShong, Marie Zepp, Westminster; Richard Hood, White Marsh.

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