If we look at November compared October of this year, closed sales are down 28.9%, which sounds HUGE, but if you look at the actual numbers, it’s less dramatic: 1,108 closed sales in 2008 vs 1,268 in 2007. It’s encouraging to know that homes ARE still selling, the key question for consumers is what is the price point that will actually motivate a buyer to make an offer in this climate where the attitude is “I’m waiting for the BOTTOM before I buy”. Taking a look at the sales PRICES we can see that the average sale price in 2007 was $334,500 compared to this November’s average sale price of 308,300. It would be easy to look at that and say “Wow, check out the depreciation” but that’s not necessarily so. Yes we all know that’s occurring at some level, but based on our economy it also means that people are buying less expensive homes due to higher unemployment and a general sense of insecurity about our lending situation and more difficulty in qualifying for loans. We are now sitting at 15 months of inventory for the Portland Metro area, which means that if sales continue at their current pace, it would take 15 months to sell it all. Clark County is sitting at almost 17 months, with many of those being short sales. The Days on Market is 135 days average. This is a GOOD number, which means that homes priced according to what the market will bear will sell quickly. Creative financing with lease options will continue to give buyers options to get into a good home in the event that they can’t qualify for conventional or FHA loans due to being self employed or lower credit scores.