Northern NJ Residential Inventory Update

Time again for the Northern New Jersey Weekly Residential Inventory Update. Sorry it was delayed by a day, the data was compiled yesterday but not posted. We broke through 14,000 on GSMLS and will likely break through 7,000 on the NJMLS next week.

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, Warren Counties)
3/22 – 13,779
3/29 – 14,018 (1.7% Weekly Increase)

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Passaic Counties)
3/22 – 6,822
3/29 – 6,932 (1.6% Weekly Increase)

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Hudson County)
3/22 – 2,169
3/29 – 2,031
(Not sure if this is a data issue, saw a similar temporary downspike in February)

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53 Responses to Northern NJ Residential Inventory Update

  1. grim says:

    U.S. Treasuries Decline; 10-Year Yields Are at 21-Month High

    U.S. Treasuries fell after government statistics showed a drop in jobless claims and an increase in the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation.

    Treasuries declined this week after the Fed raised its benchmark interest rate a 15th straight time to 4.75 percent and said more increases may be needed to contain inflation. The 10- year yield has risen half a percentage point from its 2006 low of 4.29 percent on Jan. 18.

    “We don’t see the Fed stopping before the second half of 2006,” said Yasutoshi Nagai, an economist at Daiwa Securities SMBC Co. in Tokyo. “We are recommending investors sell Treasuries before yields move even higher.”

    The core personal consumption expenditures price index, a measure of prices tied to consumer spending and excluding energy and food, rose at an annual rate of 2.4 percent last quarter, government data showed today. The index, which is watched by the Fed, compared with a 2.1 percent pace reported earlier and a 1.4 percent rate in the prior quarter.


  2. Rich In NorthNJ says:

    For the curious in Bergen County, here are the number of residential listings including condos & co-ops from NJMLS

    03/03 3,132
    03/10 3,230
    03/17 3,337
    03/23 3,432
    Today 3,543

    An average of 15 new residential units a day being added to the Bergen County market!

    Use the word, spread the word: Bubble.
    To paraphrase Robert Shiller, perception alone can cause the market to turn.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Holy Smokes inventories are really starting to pile up.

    don’t worry immigrants and nothing down buyers using 200 year loans will save the day.

  4. grim says:

    You forgot big Wall Street bonuses and rich foreign investors.


  5. Richard says:

    i’ve noticed a good portion of the starter market inventory (up to $650k) is just plain garbage and is sitting even after sizable price reductions? this might lend credence to the notion that the middle and upper markets are at least for now faring better than those trying to get in. potential first time home buyers are considerd the fringe and that’s typically where the cracks appear.

  6. Anonymous says:

    wow I just made the mistake of looking at houses in the lehigh valley, and for $340k you can get a 4 bedroom place. Anyone else considering moving to PA?

  7. UnRealtor says:

    A seller in Short Hills remains in an alternate reality with this new listing:

    MLS 2261641
    2BR (yes 2), 2.5BA

    Assessed at: $431,100

    Owner bought house at market peak in July 2005 for $735,000.

    So what does that extra $105,000 get you? Well, this 2 bedroom ranch comes with “architects preliminary drawings for a 4 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath colonial.”

    I think the seller is confusing having paper plans for a 4BR colonial, with actually having a 4BR colonial to sell.


    We’ll see this one drop like a rock over the next 6 months…

  8. UnRealtor says:

    “Anyone else considering moving to PA?”

    Or put another way, anyone else considering a 2 hour commute?

    Life is too short to work an extra day (10 extra hours) each week as a commuter.

    I’ll never commute more than 60 minutes, and would prefer less.

  9. trroll says:

    Looks like we got more of those (infamous RE bubble) stories in the news these days though some are still in a denial as to what will really happen… This article starts hard on the bubble but at the end they decided to quote a RE brokers… I give you three chances to guess what they said – but you will only need one.

  10. skep-tic says:

    “i’ve noticed a good portion of the starter market inventory (up to $650k) is just plain garbage”

    definitely true. everything up to $1.3m or so looks like crap to me at this point. people are dreaming. the high end seems to realize the party is over and is making real price cuts. people living in middle class homes need to wake up and realize there isn’t a tidal wave of millionaires looking to buy split levels and capes.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Just to throw in another side topic, about the garbage being put on the market. I have noted the trend in Montclair is for BROKERS to buy the choice properties, subdivide those properties, and squeeze a couple of overpriced crap houses onto the lot. Here’s the newest culprit.

    Hope you do not mind me posting the link, but it is so typical….

  12. Anonymous says:


    Basically, what you’ve described is the bottom falling out of the market… when the high-end starts to cut price, it puts downward pressure on the entire market.

  13. Anonymous says:

    This is so irresponsible, it’s almost beyond comprehension-


    Mortgage Lenders
    Dismiss Concerns
    Over Risky Loans

    March 30, 2006; Page D2

    WASHINGTON — Bank trade groups and financial institutions blasted proposals by bank regulators to rein in unconventional mortgages that allow borrowers to afford more expensive housing, dismissing concerns about risk as overblown.

    Complaints poured in from groups representing federally regulated banks and thrifts, including the American Bankers Association, America’s Community Bankers and the Consumer Mortgage Coalition, suggesting that the new requirements are overly restrictive and if adopted would cause many lenders to stop offering the nontraditional home loans.

    One of the most aggressive mortgage lenders, Countrywide Financial Corp., said in its comment letter: “We do not believe that the risks associated with these particular loan products justify the specific and prescriptive guidance.”

    Late last year, federal regulators proposed more disclosure and tighter requirements for borrowers to qualify for so-called “interest only” and “payment option” adjustable-rate mortgages. The loans, which have been offered in various forms for decades, allow borrowers to exchange lower payments during an initial period for higher payments later in the payment schedule — as opposed to the level payments of a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.

    With borrowers risking a possible doubling of monthly mortgage payments as interest rates rise, regulators raised concerns about defaults of these complex loans and whether borrowers truly understand them. The guidance recommended against allowing reduced documentation in evaluating an applicant’s creditworthiness.

    The loans grew in popularity over the past few years as housing prices escalated in several regions of the country, but demand has cooled recently as general interest rates have risen. Many banks, in part because of regulators’ crackdown, already have stopped aggressively marketing nontraditional mortgages.

    Final recommendations won’t go into effect until after an internal review of comments — probably in a few months. The comment period ended yesterday. Regulators could amend the guidance to address concerns raised by the banks, but it is unclear what changes that might involve.

    The proposals were issued by the Treasury Department’s Comptroller of the Currency and Office of Thrift Supervision, Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and National Credit Union Administration.

    America’s Community Bankers said it supports appropriate disclosure to potential borrowers about alternative mortgage terms, but the group objected to requiring lenders to determine the “suitability” of mortgage products for the individual consumer. “We do not believe it is appropriate or possible for the lender to dictate the best mortgage products for individual consumers,” the ACB letter said

    The Consumer Mortgage Coalition, a trade group representing national residential mortgage companies, said in its letter that requirements should apply to all lenders including state-chartered mortgage companies, not only to federally regulated institutions.

    Meanwhile, a few consumer advocacy groups, including the Greenlining Institute in Berkeley, Calif., and small banks wrote letters applauding strict guidance.

    “It is very dangerous to use mortgage products that allow borrowers to buy homes more expensive than they can afford. Add this to a slowdown in the economy and the job market and we could have a serious recession,” said David Stone, president of the Portales National Bank in New Mexico.

  14. grim:

    The Ten is finally reacting to energy prices. Some of the latest calls are for $3/gallon gas throughout the summer. Usually analysts do not place prime focus on energy due to volatility in prices, but we are experiencing chronic expensive energy. The pass through to producer prices is going to happen and Bernanke is going to react accordingly.

    FYI – supposedly there is pent up demand if the Ten hits 4.90%’s, so the interim may not find the prices move below these levels.

    The fact that we are even here is significant. Remember, all the Real Estate pundits built their forecasts of 2006 & 2007 to exclude significant moves in long-term rates. It was their convenient way to double-talk the press and give themselves a way to backpedal with finesse. If the Ten breaks 6.00% we are going to have a lost decade in the 2000’s.


  15. Richard says:

    i think we’re seeing some short term volatility on the 10-year. it’s oversold IMO. it’ll fluctuate for a while before settling around 4.8% end of 2006. couse as we know opinions are like …..

  16. Richard says:

    “Looks like we got more of those (infamous RE bubble) stories in the news these days though some are still in a denial as to what will really happen.

    the only statistic that will change sellers minds is days on market. we’re just in the beginning of the slowdown. i’ve heard numerous stories from realtors saying buyers are hearing all this bubble talk and most are waiting a bit to see where things go. once the nice weather kicks in the buyers will come out in force and start snatching up properties. while activity may pick up i can’t see even a significant portion of the current inventory on the market moving.

    another guess? price levels through peak season will match last year’s peak season with slight declines in the single digits. after that i expect a steeper drop.

  17. grim says:

    How about that yield curve today. Is it time to say goodbye to the inversion? Too soon?

    10Y at 4.86
    30Y at 4.89
    (as of 11:50)


  18. Richard says:

    with the steady rise in rates the market is slowly turning to favor the traditional would be home buyer who waits to save a sizable down payment before taking the plunge. the more you put down the less impact interest rates have.

  19. UnRealtor says:

    “suggesting that the new requirements are overly restrictive and if adopted would cause many lenders to stop offering the nontraditional home loans.”

    Good! Let’s get back to sanity!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, but not many can afford the ridiculous asking prices.
    So don’t bother. Let them sit and worry as the news gets more negative.

    100% gains in 5 years just to sign the dotted line is a gift they better take fast beofre it is lost.

    30% drop herez we come.

  21. Anonymous says:

    I am reposting this under this topic – so it doesnt get lost on an old topic, this is for Rachael

    It is very hard not to feel you need a home right now. Stop watching hgtv, those shows kill us apt dwellers! If you are considering purchasing this year in spite of indicators of a downturn in the market, please make sure you have 20% not 10% and you will be living there at least 10 years. If that is not the case then speak to a mortgage broker ask them exactly what you will pay on a $ 270,000 mtg with taxes and PMI included per month. Add to that 1% of the total cost of the home for repairs, add to that higher utilities ( it’s more expensive to heat a home vs apt)it should be about 1800 Piti 90 pmi 500 taxes 250 repairs for a montly total of 2540 w/o utilities, Save the difference btwn that and your rent for one year, really feel that payment. Then look at home prices with your xtra money.
    Im am sure you are feel priced out of this market, but believe me I have been on both sides and the feeling of being priced out does’nt match the hopelessnes of being “priced in” (Grim)
    Grim, great phrase!

    9:26 AM

  22. Richard says:

    in addition to the cost of a home, don’t forget you usually have to pay for water and garbage removal. small change but it adds up.

  23. Elric says:

    [Anon]: Anyone else considering moving to PA?

    [UnRealtor]: Or put another way, anyone else considering a 2 hour commute?

    Life is too short to work an extra day (10 extra hours) each week as a commuter.

    I’ll never commute more than 60 minutes, and would prefer less.

    I couldn’t agree more. I work in Mahwah (renting in Westwood), and I work with people who drive 90+ minutes each way from PA (or way upstate NY). They can reconcile the commute any way they want, but jeez, 15+ hours a week driving to and from work?!? I could (almost) justify the time outlay if it was spent on a train, but that much driving is exhausting both mentally and physically.

    I think some NNJ workers just get seduced by the idea of a newly built palace on a huge wooded lot for 100k less than a 50 year old starter cape here. I admit it’s fun to dream about, but at some point the reality of that commute kicks in for me. It’s one of the very few quality of life issues that I’m not willing to budge on.

    If I can keep that commute number down around 5-7 hours per week, that’s a lot of extra time I can spend with my family (and not using gas / wearing out my car).

  24. grim says:

    Moving further out isn’t just a Jersey phenomenon, it’s happening in all of the bubble areas.

    Buyers will buy where they perceive value and use whatever justification they need to convince themselves.

    I believe this phenomenon has caused a rolling boom in this area. As affordability fell in the metro areas, buyers moved to the fringe. That increased demand at the fringe pushed up prices, and pushed the fringe even further out.


  25. Metroplexual says:


    You are correct that this has happened in fringe areas of major metros. But not just bubble metros. In some areas the growth has been generated by a desire for newer bigger housing as well as a desire to get away from government and taxes.

    Unlike here in NJ, you can live in unincorporated places in many parts of the country where you only pay either state taxes or county taxes.

  26. UnRealtor says:

    Definitely a surge in Chatham inventory:

    Chatham, 07928

    Date / Total / Under $750K
    3-Mar-06 / 85 / 15
    6-Mar-06 / 85 / 16
    8-Mar-06 / 87 / 17
    14-Mar-06 / 93 / 20
    16-Mar-06 / 93 / 19
    21-Mar-06 / 89 / 19
    30-Mar-06 / 104 / 28

  27. Richard says:

    unreal in chatham huh? while not really if you visit blogs like this one. most of the under $750k inventory is outright laughable for the asking price so they’re just sitting with a few desperate buyers ‘getting in’ before the prices rise even further according to their realtor. and to think it’s not even april yet…

  28. DebtVulture says:

    At the beginning of the year, Chatham had a total of 60 properties for sale! I’m sure we will hit a 100% increase since 1/1/06 in the next month. And yes, I can’t believe some of the crap out there for even $900K.

  29. UnRealtor says:

    Check out the housing bubble photo gallery:

  30. UnRealtor says:

    $205,000 price drop:
    MLS 2253060
    276 Hobart Ave, Short Hills
    Days on Market: 198
    $2,650,000 => $2,445,000

  31. Anonymous says:

    What’s going on in Ridgewood, seems everyone is having an Open House?

    Mar-24 $629000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 204 WALTHERY AVE (RIDGEWOOD, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $669000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 404 ALPINE TERRACE (RIDGEWOOD, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $695000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 365 FAIRMOUNT ROAD (RIDGEWOOD, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $745000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 230 ORCHARD PLACE (RIDGEWOOD, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $749000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 422 COLWELL COURT (RIDGEWOOD, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $769000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 225 S. Pleasant Ave (Ridgewood, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $899000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 363 S. Irving Street (Ridgewood, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $1189000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 70 Sherwood Road (Ridgewood, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $1249000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 160 Melrose Place (Ridgewood, NJ) pic

    Mar-24 $1795000 – OPEN HOUSE 3/26 138 Heights Road (Ridgewood, NJ) pic

  32. Anonymous says:

    This seller must be in trouble, $899K for this giant house in Ridgewood?

  33. Anonymous says:

    I’ve been watching Ridgewood prices drop. They’re not immue either!

  34. Anonymous says:

    Excuse me, but that’s what a $900K house SHOULD look like!

    Just sayin’.

  35. Rachel says:

    My husband sure said a mouthfull (mboy). It’s not just peer pressure.. at this point I don’t care about that.. I want my son to have a yard to play in… run around.. have his friends over.. now he can’t do that… but it looks like we’ll be waiting it out.. not happy about it.. but probably the smart thing to do.. who knows.. nobody really does.

  36. Anonymous says:

    “Excuse me, but that’s what a $900K house SHOULD look like!”

    Yes, I agree, but when was the last time you saw a house like that in a nice town for $900K? 4 years ago?

  37. Richard says:

    this one in glenridge is actually not a bad bargain relative to this market at $675k. if i had to buy i’d go $635k and it’s yours.

  38. NJGal says:

    Seriously, what the hell?

    This condo was on the market in the fall, FSBO, for 629. With no takers, he took it off, and relisted in Feb. for 599. With no takers still, he gives it to a realtor, who expects to sell it for 650. Seriously, if someone buys it for 650, I will not know what life if coming to. But I will know that they didn’t follow the market.

    Plus, no parking, in Hoboken. No thanks.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Well, I do know of one house that “re-marketed” in hunterdon last week – and will likely remain on the market indefinitely. This is long, but a great example of people in denial of the market.

    Got some popcorn handy?

    Stone bank house in Holland Twnshp.

    Listed 8/30/05 at $429,500. 2 bedroom stone bank house on 2.86 acres (beautiful lot, but unusable). The house is tiny, and due to the topography, cannot be expanded. It does have a 2 car garage with studio space above it – heated and electified, and has a HB. But it’s again, a 2 bedroom. We’re talkin niche property.

    Sellers received 1 offer in late Sept – $409-ish. Rejected.

    Sellers didn’t receive another offer until late January – $382K. Sellers countered at $420. Potential buyers laughed and left the table to wait them out. (Thorough analysis indicates asking price is way high)

    Open houses every weekend – nothing. Realtor calls the January folks 3 weeks later and indicates sellers facing reality. January buyers place another offer, and come to an agreement on 395. A generous offer.

    Sellers hold up Attorney review period for 2 weeks by refusing any written acknowledgement of a decommissioned underground oil tank that the sellers had disclosed on their disclosure statement! Buyers had confirmed with the county and faxed the closure certificate to sellers, who still insisted on un-knowing about it. Provisions for soil testing were made, if buyers could theoretically locate a tank.

    Home Inspection, Septic, and soil testing arranged to occur simultaneously.

    H.I. results – needs a new roof, electrical work, deck, joist in garage need sistering, and radon results come back at 15.3! (standard is below 4).

    Septic fails – absorption field is cooked. (Existing location is right next to creek classified as ‘impaired’ by the EPA for excessive levels of fecal coliform). Sellers (wife wearing the pants) freak out on septic inspectors and the buyers -“That’s it! We’re done! We’re not moving! The system’s always worked fine for us! See what you’ve done? You HAD to have this done, didn’t you!!!”. Um, ok.

    And yes of course Hunterdon Cty has a copy of the report and open case on it.

    Sellers calm down the next day and email buyers directly asking for help – listing indicated flood insurance required, but buyers flood cert came back saying it’s not. Since the sellers will need to take out a home-equity loan to replace septic for the buyers, it would really help if they didn’t need to get FI to obtain the loan. Buyers are glad to help out, and send the doc.

    At the appraisal (which wasn’t even close to sellers asking price, btw) sellers say that the think the septic inspectors were just trying to sell them a new system and have decided to get a second oppinion. (Can you say “Denial”? Yes, I thought you could).

    2 days later the sellers respond via their attorney that they refuse to do anything about ANY items on the list, and would make a decision on the septic after their inspection.

    Later that week the realtor informs the buyers that the second test failed as well, and that the sellers were going ‘full steam ahead’ on getting an engineer in. Also indication they’re getting estimates on the other items they’d said they wouldn’t do.

    2 days later buyers attorney notified that sellers will not make any repairs to the septic, or anything else, in connection with the deal – no negotiations, no nothin’! Forces buyer out a month before closing!

    So let’s see – sellers facing septic replacement that will have to be an uphill, pumped affair ($25K roughly), a new roof, a new deck, radon mitigation, significant electrical work. Sellers had planned to retire to central America upon the sale, and are looking at a net of 75K less than they’d figured. So they forced the buyer out.

    Then 2 days later they reactivated the same MLS number – updating the Flood Ins Req to ‘No’.

    A day later they RAISED the price by 10K to 439,500!

    Caveat emptor, indeed!!

    Poorer but wiser.

  40. UnRealtor says:

    “Then 2 days later they reactivated the same MLS number – updating the Flood Ins Req to ‘No’.

    A day later they RAISED the price by 10K to 439,500!”

    Great story, sounds like a real nightmare.

  41. Richard says:

    “A day later they RAISED the price by 10K to 439,500!

    talk about some in denial folks. their logic would seem to be see if we can get another buyer in here who won’t do such a thorough job on the property heck even waive the inspection!

  42. Grim Ghost says:


    Glen Ridge is a nice enough town, and the house looks nice, and has clearly been updated very well but 675 (or even 635K) for a 3 bed/2 bath on 1/8th of an acre, 80 years old ? Still seems high

  43. Anonymous says:

    “talk about some in denial folks. their logic would seem to be see if we can get another buyer in here who won’t do such a thorough job on the property heck even waive the inspection! ”

    But not disclosing what they already know opens both the seller’s and the broker to lawsuit. Of course it must be proven but there is a written record.

  44. Anonymous says:

    “But not disclosing what they already know opens both the seller’s and the broker to lawsuit. Of course it must be proven but there is a written record.”

    Well, the listing agent told me that she’s talked to the county about other houses and claims they won’t enforce it. Uh huh. And the sellers are splitting for Central America as soon as they sell. I have very little faith in either of them disclosing anything.

    Poorer but Wiser

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