Realtors believe that home prices are stabilizing and will continue to do so in 2010, according to a recent HomeGain survey  of nearly 1,000 U.S. real estate agents and brokers. The majority also believe the first-time home buyer tax credit is spurring sales and is contributing factor to home prices stabilizing.
What does this mean for the housing market?
• Sellers are still a tough bunch as they continue to disagree with realtors, even more than before—the percentage of homeowners that believe that their homes should be listed 10-20 percent higher than what their realtors recommend continues to rise (41 percent in Q4 survey), as does the percent of home sellers that believe their homes are worth more than their realtor’s recommended listing price (76 percent in Q4 survey).
• While sellers think home prices are heading up, buyers think home prices are heading down. Realtors must educate both parties toward meeting in the middle.
• The first time homebuyers credit has and will spur sales. Twenty-one percent of realtors said half of their transactions involved a first time homebuyer. However, realtors question whether that spike will continue once the credit expires later next year and additional inventory hits the market.
• Home trends continue to vary by market—home buyers and sellers are more likely to see an increase in housing values in the West and a decrease in the Southeast.