VT: The “Ninth Least Bad” State in Real Estate

The good news: The state’s revenues are up by about $120 million. The bad news is that the national economy is slowing and Vermont’s tax receipts are likely to remain flat in fiscal year 2013, according to the state’s two economic advisors, Jeffrey Carr and Tom Kavet.

The two economists don’t expect Vermont real estate values to climb back up until the end of 2013. Though Vermont has avoided the foreclosures and significant value declines that have been rampant in other states, Kavet and Carr predict home prices will continue to drop in the fourth quarter, bottom out and then begin “an extended period of very low price appreciation.”

Vermont is ranked the ninth “least bad state,” with regard to real estate values, as the economists put it. Price weaknesses are hitting the higher end of the market hardest. Homes worth $300,000 or less are selling reasonably well. Kavet and Carr said they hadn’t seen real estate prices decline so precipitously since the late 1980s. The scale of the drop – from 16.5 percent to -2 percent – exceeds the housing crisis that occurred 20 years ago, they said.
Unemployment rates, though very low in Vermont, are also cause for concern.

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