Homeowners more optimistic about their values than agents
Think your home's value rose or at least stayed even in the last year? You have that in common with nearly 40 percent of Marylanders polled by HomeGain.
Less than 25 percent of the Maryland real estate agents the site surveyed, however, said the same of their clients' home values.
Agents surveyed by HomeGain were also more pessimistic about where the market is headed. Forty percent expect prices will fall over the next six months, compared with 28 percent of homeowners.
Agents have complained pretty much from the start of the housing bust that sellers aren't realistic about their property values, though that doesn't apply to everyone. Some homeowners pick asking prices that get them contracts toot sweet, while others languish on the market for months -- even years -- with no offers.
HomeGain's poll surveyed 2,600 homeowners and 1,100 agents nationwide. That's a pretty typical survey size, though of course the numbers in Maryland were low -- 79 homeowners and 38 agents.
Maryland has a fairly high share of optimistic agents and homeowners: The state ranked 10th for the percentage of agents and homeowners who think prices will increase in the near-term (10 percent and 15 percent, respectively).
It's no easy feat to predict exactly where prices will head. Think of how much debate you'll find over what a home should be priced at now.
Maryland agents polled by HomeGain said half their seller clients think their homes are worth at least 10 percent more than they -- the agents -- believe is the market value. Meanwhile, 40 percent of their buyer clients think homes on the market are at least 10 percent overpriced, even though many agents talk their sellers into asking for less than they wanted.
Not a new gulf, for sure. And it probably won't disappear anytime soon.