I know that this must be a shocker but the former NAR economist, David Lereah, has recently admitted in a Money Magazine interview that he “put a positive spin” on his housing forecasts. Wow! You mean you can’t believe everything the NAR says?
Now that he’s no longer getting a paycheck from these folks his outlook for housing is not nearly as optimistic as it once was:
My views are quite different now. I’m pretty bearish and have been for the past year and a half. Home prices will continue to drop. I think we’ll see a very modest recovery in sales activity in 2009. But we’ve still got excess inventories, a bad economy and a credit crunch that will push prices down further, another 5% to 10% more. It’ll take a long time to get back to the peak prices we saw in many markets.
Barry Ritholtz actually has a far more colorful assessment of this turn of events on his Big Picture blog: David Lereah is a jackass.