The consensus appears to be that we are at or past the bottom, at least for many real estate markets . Inventories have been going down a bit and prices correspondingly up in places like San Francisco and Boston, and that is definitely a good thing. NPR has both a web article and a podcast, “Housing Market Shows Some Signs of Recovery” that gives a good explanation of what is happening. It cites figures from the widely regarded Case-Shiller Home Price Index as well as anecdotal remarks from various buyers and industry figures.
Meanwhile another interesting article comes to the same conclusion about inventory declines. In “U.S. Housing Nearing Bottom…“, Mark Zandi, an economist with Moody’s Investors Service shows an extremely interesting chart. The chart displays a map of the U.S. that color codes markets where prices are out of whack – either too high or too low. Sure enough, the most battered markets (such as Las Vegas, a lot of California, and South Florida), those where prices have been hammered by foreclosure sales, now appear to be undervalued. What goes around, comes around?