To David over at the davidlereahwatch and my fellow bubble bloggers - let's turn the heat up on this guy even more. The MSM must stop picking up this guy's BS as truth, he must be called out for what he is, and the NAR must be exposed.
The people of America (and the MSM) should see TCDL as the discredited hack that he is. "Lereah" should go down in American history as yet another Charles Ponzi, yet another Henry Blodgett, yet another snake oil salesman spreading lies and destruction for profit. And the perfect personification for a corrupt REIC and a pathetic and paranoid National Association of Realtors.
With his latest book, "All Real Estate is Local," due out in April, Fortune's Ellen Florian Kratz talked with Lereah about where the market is headed and how an angry blogger almost made his mother cry.
Even though the market contracted, 2006 still didn't bring the first yearly price drop since the National Association of Realtors started tracking the statistic in 1968.
Do you think it will happen in 2007?
I don't because we're already seeing some parts of the real estate market picking up again. It looks like we've bottomed out. The worst was the fourth quarter of 2006.
There are a lot of good signs that the worst is over for housing.
So when it's all said and done, this contraction in housing is probably going to be the least severe contraction we've ever had, which is going to surprise a lot of people.
But many think we still have a long way to go.
If you look at local areas, that statement is true. California has a long way to go. I expect them to continue to experience pain all throughout this year. Southern Florida, same thing. Las Vegas is probably going to take a little longer to correct as well.
So they could decline into 2008 or longer?
They could. It's hard to tell right now. The real key for some of these areas that are having problems is prices. Prices need to come down to bring buyers back to the market.
If you're talking about national, I think we've bottomed out, and it looks like we're going to come back very modestly throughout this year. And then in 2008, it will be back off to the races again in my opinion. But for a quarter of the country, that's not the case.
What do you predict for price appreciation for 2007?
My forecast is 1.4%
So you don't think California and Florida could bring the whole country down?
They'll bring themselves down. But will it bring the whole country down? No.
I know. That's Bob. That's what he says. We disagree. He thinks psychology will play a major role here, and my view is no. We haven't strayed from the fundamentals.
Will problems with subprime have any effect on your sales numbers?
I think in some areas yes. Foreclosures are going to happen in California. You may see a rise in Las Vegas or Phoenix or Washington DC and parts of Florida, but it's not all over the country.
The share of second home buying. It was 40 percent of the market in 2005. I was in shock.
You've been accused by the blog David Lereah Watch of being too bullish. What's it like to have an online antagonist?
At first I was kind of laughing. And now, it's enough already. This is a 26-year old that could not afford a townhouse and blamed it on the boom. And then he said, Who's talking about the boom and my name kept coming up. So I became Satan to him.
The worst was that my mother read one of those things, and she almost started crying.