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The Rich Get RIcher…For a While

April 9, 2009

This last year i have been valuing property for the banks. The properties I look at are close to foreclosure or working a loan mod or short sale. When the economic instability began, I was valuing crappy litttle houses in scary neighborhoods. Lately, I have been valuing big gorgeous homes built within the last 5 years or in the older established “money” neighborhoods.

This anecdotal evidence seems to concur with the reports that this next wave is good folks that lost their jobs with the economic downturn or finally ran out of money as they went through their savings and credit cards and retirement accounts.

Despite downturn, 2008 was record year for sales of high-end homes – San Jose Mercury News

Nonetheless, in Santa Clara County more homes sold for $5 million or more than at any time since the dot-com-nirvana year of 2000. And in San Mateo County — home to luxury-home strongholds like Atherton and Woodside — it was a record-breaking year for sales of super-expensive castles.

Only in the final quarter of 2008 did the recession finally bite into the top end of the market, sending sales plummeting. While the super-rich weathered the early days of the credit crisis far better than most, experts say, fall’s stock market crash drastically impaired their ability to snap up multimillion-dollar manses.

The tides have now turned and this market segment has dried on the vine.

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