St. Louis Association of REALTORS(R) Presidents’ view of the market – First Post in a series

Dennis Norman

Dennis Norman

By: Dennis Norman

Last month I published my E-View with Karen Vennard, the 2009 President of the St. Charles County Association of REALTORS(R) to get her take on the real estate market in St. Charles County.  Now it’s time for the St. Louis side of the Missouri River. 

To find out the status of the real estate market in St. Louis County, as well as the City of St. Louis, I turned to Carole Baras, CRS, GRI, ePRO, the 2009 President of the St. Louis Association of REALTORS(R) to get her take on the market.

Carole, licensed since 1982, has been an active member of the St. Louis Association of REALTORS(R) for over 20 years, having served as a director, committee member on many committees and chairman of several prior to becoming president in 2009.  Among Carole’s accomplishments is being the recipient of the prestigious “REALTOR(R) of the Year” award in 2005.

Carole is also active in her community through involvement with the South County Chamber of Commerce including serving as President of the Chamber.

Now for the  E-View:

Carole Baras, 2009 President, St. Louis Association of REALTORS(R)

Carole Baras, 2009 President, St. Louis Association of REALTORS(R)

Dennis – Carole, St. Louis, like most metros across the country, enjoyed good real estate sales numbers and appreciation during the boom.  When did you see things change in the St. Luis market, or, in other words, when did the downturn start?

Carole – During the beginning of 2006 the number of active buyers appeared to take a downturn and was especially apparent during our “Prime” selling time in the spring of 2006.

Dennis – With regard to the St. Louis market, do you think we have seen the worst of the downturn yet?  Are we at the bottom?

Carole – Yes, I do believe that we are at the “bottom” and we are definitely seeing a turn around in the sale of average-priced homes.

Dennis- Carole, where do you see the market now?

Carole – This is a strong buyer’s market because of the $8,000 stimulus for first-time buyers and other programs that are available such as Beyond Housing that assist medium to low income families.  We still have not seen a strong market for the “move-up” market, but I do think it will follow soon.

Dennis – The city of St. Louis has struggled for years with a declining population.  During the boom there was a flood of development activity including a large number of lofts developed downtown and the city even saw a modest increase in population.  What has the downturn done to the loft market?

Carole – As with many different businesses, including real estate, when opportunities seem very good, the “Loft” market was a BOOM and investors flooded the market.  Now that money has tightened and the buyers are unable to get the creative loans that had been available this has created a down turn in the market.  Pricing is being effected by the slow down and we will see opportunities for buyers that were not there before. 

Thanks to Carole for taking the time to share her thoughts on the market with us.  Over the next couple of days I will post the rest of my interview with Carole.

To read part two of this series please click here.
To read part three of this series please click here.

If you wish to reach Carole below is her contact information:

Carole Baras,
RE/MAX Results
4850 Lemay Ferry Road
St. Louis, MO  63129

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