Mark Schniepp, director of the California Economic Forecast, had additional comments today regarding the governments mortgage market intervention, after his Santa Barbara real estate market forecast, where he predicted a strong 2009.
"All in all” he said “I don’t see much downside to all the volatility in the markets of late."
“A lot of the volatility is the capitalist system at work”, he said. Schniepp said he thinks consolidations, like the purchase by Bank of America of Merrill Lynch, are fine for the industry.
When the government steps in and lends money, they get paid back and actually make a return on the deal. That’s good business. He sited that is exactly what happened with bailouts of the hedge fund “Long-Term Capital Management” and the Chrysler Corporation.
“The outcome of all these changes in ownership will mean that the real estate markets and credit crunch now present could be resolved much more quickly”, he stated. Schniepp also thinks the government control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is a good thing for the US because it should lead to the financing of more “jumbo” conforming loans which are necessary in buying in the higher end of the real state market, like the Santa Barbara real estate market place.
The Santa Barbara real estate market has faired quite well comparatively over the last 3 years while other markets have softened. The higher end Santa Barbara real estate market has performed especially well, with Montecito real estate median prices up 30% in 2008 over 2007.