Asheville Mountain Real Estate Blog

Asheville, NC real estate for sale. Information for buyers, sellers and mountain homeowners, without pressure. Rich content for those who are far away about what it is like to live here through the generous use of media. And some nostalgia with our, "Baby Boomers' Fun Stuff", Thanks for stopping by.

My Photo
Name:
Location: Mars Hill, NC, United States

A small, highly personalized real estate firm specializing in mountain homes and land in greater Asheville.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Public Service Announcement: Online Advertising Scam

From two sources, about online advertisements for people who may be looking to rent a property. The ads claim that The National Association of Realtors will handle the transaction.

That is not the case. It is somewhat like the famous Nigerian scams, involving wire transfer of money. Greater Asheville has a significant number of renters and online advertisements. We have not spotted this one locally.

Release From The NAR.

From The Real Estate Bloggers.

Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: National Items of Note

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Asheville and The Arts

Asheville, "the hip, artsy, and eclectic cultural hub of the region" is how we have always referred to the city in our materials. The blog Ashevegas reminds us of that meme again with a couple of recent articles.

Asheville is "an amalgam of mountain culture" points us to a profile out of Richmond that captures the diversity here. Painting Asheville as a place where one is just as likely to hear old time banjos and fiddles, as avant garde jazz, a place where chains such as Starbuck's are shunned downtown, and a spirit of independence reigns.

Back in June, 2008 we noted a population study that placed Asheville in the top 50 metro areas in the country for artists as a percentage of the work force. The options to browse galleries and districts do abound here, The Paris of the South.

A couple of days ago, Ashevegas again, referenced an arts related story out of Charlotte, (with slide show). This one focuses on what is locally called The River Arts District. Visitors can get maps and an artist directory from their website as well.

Art is discretionary as an expenditure, and like real estate, suffers in the recent economy. If you're planning a visit this year, check 'em out, support local arts.

Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: Asheville News

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Asheville: The Weekend and The News

A little, late week roundup of local interests for those who may be visiting.

Things To Do
Mountain Express, continues with its topical Weekend on a Shoestring. The weekend picks there focus on local music from bluegrass to metal and jazz.

The Asheville Citizen Times gives equal exposure for those who might prefer stage and theater over music.

The 2009 US White Water Open comes this weekend to Bryson City and The famous Nantahala River. All Olympic classes will be represented in both slalom and down river racing. A good chance to see the best that the US has to offer in this exciting sport. Photo gallery located here for the curious.

The News
The economy comes home as the Town of Weaverville cancels its July 4th celebration. Ashevegas, a close follower of local economics has more on that.

Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: Asheville News

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Friday, March 20, 2009

Asheville: The Friday News Dump

Here's a whole slew of news around greater Asheville of late.

On The Bright Side
*From the blog Ashevegas, we learn about several grants from the County Tourism Development Authority. Our Friday afternoon favorite would be money for an expansion at The Orange Peel, which was named in April by Rolling Stone Magazine, as one of the top 5 rock venues in the country.

*Again from Ashevegas, our fair city, known for its beer as much as anything else is up for online voting as the best beer city in America. Go here to vote.

*Wall Street in Asheville has always had a certain kind of ambiance. It's one of the places visitors enjoy. The Wall Street Journal ran a recent little feature, go here for some background and interactive elements.

On The Not So Bright Side
*Mountain Express informs us of a jump in the NC unemployment rate to 9.7%. Twelve of the eighteen western counties topped 10%:
The jobless rate in two-thirds of Western North Carolina counties topped 10 percent in January, the state Employment Security Commission reported Thursday.

The national unemployment rate in February was 8.1 percent, according to the national Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The Richmond Hill Inn, a long time centerpiece of tourism in the region was severely damaged this week by a fire of suspicious origin:
Investigators sent at least two samples to a state lab for testing, Buddy Thompson, director of the arson task force for the city and Buncombe County, said at 11 a.m. today.

A State Bureau of Investigation team assisting Thompson is using a dog trained to sniff out liquid petroleum products, such as gasoline, that could have been used to start the fire.

The historic inn building and surrounding complex were set to be sold April 16 on the courthouse steps because of an unpaid mortgage.
For Escapists
The NCAA, in conjunction with several sponsors is offering every Men's Basketball Tournament game in online video for free. The player even comes equipped with a handy "boss button".

Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: Asheville News

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Monday, March 09, 2009

January, 2009 Real Estate Statistics

Ok, a few days late this month, but here we go with the national numbers.

The Quick Summary
Large year to year declines in prices and new housing starts, yet inventories have again climbed in terms of months of supply. For a long time, the story might have been framed as excess inventory. At the risk of making an understatement, it is by now a lack of demand.

Supply Indicators
New Homes Permits, Starts, and Completions, (PDF): Declined from one year ago by 50.5%, 56.2%, and 41.7% respectively.

Single family starts, the most leading of indicators set a new low for the third straight month. This sector is now down 80% from the peak in January, 2005, and is at its lowest level since 1959.

Existing Homes Inventory: This segment represents 85%-90% of the market and in January the number of homes for sale rose to 9.6 months of supply. Six months of supply would be a nice place to get back to.

Demand Indicators
New Home Sales, (PDF): declined by 48.2% from one year ago to an annual rate of 309,000.

This is a record low dating back to 1963, the dawn of data, despite a record drop in prices. It is a 78% decline from the peak in 2005 and continues the familiar pattern of a decline in the raw number of homes for sale, but with demand falling at faster rates.

Existing Home Sales: Fell by 8.6% from one year ago, with a 14.8% decline in prices. It should be noted that 45% of these are distressed sales, thus artificially lowering prices and putting the "real" number of sales at less than 3 million units.

Summary and Outlook
If there is a forward looking indicator that suggested a buy signal, we have not found it. Oversupply looks to be pandemic across the whole economy, not just for housing.

The Wall Street Journal, in its Real Time Economics Section reaches a consensus of continued downside in the market. For a time now, foreclosures, as 45% of sales, have inflated the number of existing home sales, and falsely lowered prices in that segment. Individual sellers have been harmed in their ability to compete in this respect, as have builders of new homes.

The mortgage delinquency rate in Q4 2008 points to further issues with foreclosures, with a record 54 million homeowners in some stage of trouble. This has often been called a shadow inventory waiting to exert its influence.

Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: Real Estate Statistics and Data

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Labels: , , , , , ,

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Asheville: Economic Development Update January, 2009

The Economic Development Commission of The Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce now has, as far as we know, a new feature online.

In a nice presentation, they offer a video report of various economic indexes in the region.

Below is the update for January, 2009. It runs approximately 4 minutes and 25 seconds. The real estate data begins around 2 minutes and 30 seconds in, stating that closings have dropped around 40% from year to year.

Our only addition in this regard would be to note that the decline is deeper than 40% recent months. Depending on how one slices the numbers, this would leave greater Asheville 3 or 4 times less than national levels. Some communities we watch are 5 or 6 times less than the national statistics.

Not to be negative, but the numbers are what they are. We offered an explanation back in December as to why this might be so.


Thanks for stopping by,
Black Bear Realty Website
828 689 2055
Anti Spam Graphic: info AT BlackBearRE DOT com

Filed Under: Asheville Real Estate News

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Labels: , , , ,