Louisiana Real Estate: Still Feeling The Pain Of Katrina

The Louisiana real estate market has an oversupply of homes and a tight credit market, which contributes to the much lower than average median home price. However, the …

The Louisiana real estate market has an oversupply of homes and a tight credit market, which contributes to the much lower than average median home price. However, the good news is that foreclosures are low compared to other states, and Shreveport — the commercial hub of Louisiana — is expected to see mild appreciation in 2009. For more on this, see the following article from Housing Predictor

Louisiana is caught up in an over abundance of rebuilt homes with growing unemployment. But incentives provided by the federal government, including the first time home buyers tax credit and federal money supplied for reconstruction may pave the way for a stronger future.

In New Orleans home sales are slower than they had been after the rush to rebuild following Hurricane Katrina, mainly because of the difficulty for many home buyers to get new mortgages. The credit crunch and the worst recession since the Great Depression are hurting the local economy.

As values across New Orleans fall, homes that haven’t been repaired since Katrina’s furry are rotting, damaged and gutted by floodwaters that long ago receded. Thousands linger on the market for sale with few interested parties.

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A rise in job-layoffs has also made it more difficult for many homeowners to make their mortgage payments, but New Orleans still ranks in the low-end of the country in terms of foreclosures. Housing Predictor forecasts that home sales will remain sluggish through 2009 in New Orleans on average home deflation of 11.3%.

Local Louisiana Housing Markets at a Glance

CityForecast
New Orleans−11.3%
Baton Roug−9.6%
Lafayette−8.3%
Shreveport1.4%

In Baton Rouge the housing market is behind 2008 home sales with a growing inventory of homes. The market surged for two years after Katrina as many residents of The Big easy fled New Orleans for new beginnings. However, the glut of inventory is weighing on Baton Rouge, which is projected to see a rise in foreclosures the remainder of the year. Baton Rouge is forecast to deflate 9.6% by Housing Predictor in 2009 in average home values.

Home values have dropped only slightly in most of Lafayette. But the credit crunch has made it harder for perspective new purchasers to get financing. A state bond program assisted new buyers coupled with the first time home buyers tax credit, increasing the volume of sales. Trouble in the credit markets have added to the weakening economy. Slower sales over the remainder of the year will send average home prices lower by a forecast 8.3%.

In Shreveport, considered the commercial center of the Tri-state area encompassing Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana the city is rising from its once sorted past of high crime. The crime rate has dropped more than 30% in the past year alone, and homes are at some of the most affordable prices in the south.

The median price for a home is roughly $100,000 under the national median. Investors and bargain-hunters are often disappointed when their low-ball offers are rejected, which demonstrates the market is one of the strongest in the area. Home prices are rising in Shreveport amid the national downturn and are forecast to appreciate an average of 1.4% for the year.

This article has been republished from Housing Predictor. You can also view this article at
Housing Predictor, a real estate analysis and forecasting site.

 

 

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