While housing market in the rest of the country is suffering and looking bleak, New Orleans seems to be making it through this economic crisis relatively unscathed. Like the rest of the nation, the area suffers from high unemployment, tighter and harder-to-get credit, and an overstocked inventory of homes for sell. |
The number of foreclosures rose in the last year, but still remain less than 1% than the number of foreclosures in California. Overall, the home prices are slightly down from last year, but there are actually neighborhoods within the New Orleans area that experienced modest gains and continue to have very solid sales.
New Orleans never experienced record breaking growth or skyrocketing demands for housing like California and Florida did a few years back and that may be the reason the housing market has not fallen so far. But perhaps it has dodged a housing crisis because it was already at an economic low point following Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.
Whatever the reason, real estate in New Orleans remains relatively stable. There are few areas with the greater New Orleans area that ought to be examined: the historic French Quarter, Uptown, Bywater, Holy Cross, the 9th ward, and Tammany.
Real estate is alive in the historic areas. Agents are doing well in Uptown. The appeal of Uptown was that it was never flooded and because of that, it is a full functioning town. Everything is still in working order, including the streetcars. With the public transportation and much of the housing located within close proximity to restaurants, nightlife, and the universities, it has become a somewhat of a hotspot for buyers.
As far as Bywater, Holy Cross, and the 9th ward are concerned, average sale prices increased 96% from before the storm. Many people argue that this price gain is a result of the heavy philanthropic activity in that area from the multiple foundations that organized rebuilding projects.
Tammany is starting to behave more like the rest of the nation. After hurricane Katrina a large influx of people flocked to the north shore and those people were willing to pay a premium price for undamaged homes. In fact the demand was so great that builders began new developments to accommodate the demand.
Now with the strike of the economic recession and loans being more difficult to come by, the large inventory of new and available homes greatly outnumbers the number of buyers. But real estate in Tammany is not completely bleak. The sale of homes directly relates to the employment in the area and lately this area has lacked an increase of well paying jobs that often spur home buying.
However there is hope that more jobs will be available with the transfer of Chevron's headquarters to the area and with the NASA Stennis space station in nearby Mississippi offering more work. Tammany may not be in the most favorable situation, but it may be some consolation that they are no worse off than the rest of the country.
This report may be depressing to the current home owners and for those with subprime credit with the desire to buy. But for those with the means, New Orleans real estate screams opportunity. Interest rates are low, prices are low, and homes and property are abundant. It will take years for the housing market and economy to bounce back to a vigorous vitality but when it does, those that buy now, will be on top.
New Orleans real estate agents will show you only those homes best suited to your needs in terms of size, style, features, location, accessibility to schools, transportation, shopping and other personal preferences. Visit www.realestatelouisiana.com to contact a Realtor now.
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