Miller is an expert on real-estate appraisals and transactions, and runs one of the larger appraisal firms. He has created a variety of real-estate data analytics for various regions as well as nationally. He is also sought after as the go-to appraiser for many of the most expensive penthouses in Manhattan. (Our 2014 conversation can be found here; our 2016 MiB is here)
Miller laments the lack of data to let us know exactly how bad the real estate market is. The contract data we do have is a reflection of transactions agreed upon a month or so ago — before most of the “shelter-in-place” orders were in.
We discussed changes to various on line listing services, like Street Easy and Zillow. In response to the crisis, the online real estate listing sites have removed the “Days listed” that reveal how long a home has been up for sale. The challenges that appraisers are having inspecting the interiors of New York City apartments has now spread to the rest of the country. Desktop (via computers) or exterior only curbside or drive-by appraisals are becoming more commonly used.
He explains that the Spring selling season is likely lost; how soon the market returns to normal will not be known until we get passed the pandemic. While virtual tours and Facetime videos are an option for some buyers, the human element requires seeing and walking through what is likely to be someone’s largest purchase.
You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras, on Apple iTunes, Spotify, Overcast, Google, Bloomberg, and Stitcher. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.
Next week, we speak with John R. Mousseau, president, chief executive officer and director of fixed income at Cumberland Advisors. Mousseau is also co-author of the book “Adventures in Muniland: A Guide to Municipal Bond Investing in the Post-Crisis Era.”
Jonathan Miller’s Current Reads
Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan
Alcohol in Space: Past, Present and Future by Chris Carberry