Is Zillow's Collapse A Warning Sign? - Part 2

In part one of this article, we discussed how the recent decline in Zillow, Redfin, and Opendoor share prices could reflect a concern that the risks involved in holding large home inventories while attempting to "flip houses" could present for these Real Estate firms. The recent 50% price drop in the share price levels should send a fairly strong warning to investors that these "flipping" processes contain a moderate degree of underlying risk and extended costs in a super-heated and potentially peaking Real Estate trend.

It has been reported that Zillow increased the purchase of homes for their Ibuyer program, from 86 homes in Q2:2020 to 808 homes in Q3:2020, to 3805 homes in Q2:2021. We’ll learn more about their Q3:2021 home buying efforts when Zillow announced earnings.

It has also been reported that Zillow sold more than $1 billion in bonds to investors to fund this operation that includes using their Zestimate algorithm to buy homes quickly, renovate/flip them, and put them back on the market. The super-heated Real Estate market has driven these firms into speculative trading of houses in an open and often hostile market environment. Taking a bigger leap is Opendoor, which purchased 8,494 homes in Q2:2021. This is a massive inventory of homes that may require many months or years to renovate/sell.

Zillow Collapse

Is this trend a buying opportunity for Zillow, Redfin, and Opendoor – or a warning? Continue reading "Is Zillow's Collapse A Warning Sign? - Part 2"

Is Zillow's Collapse A Warning Sign?

Watching Zillow (ZG) move from over $200 per share to recent levels below $90, reflecting a more than 55% collapse in price, while the housing market continues to rally may be an indication that traders/investors have already discounted the future peak in the U.S. capital markets and Real Estate assets related to the current market environment. Zillow is not the only symbol experiencing this broad price decline. Redfin (RDFN) has also declined more than 54% over the past 7+ months.

Is the peak in real estate flippers prices sending a strong warning for traders/investors?

The peak in these stocks happened near February 16-22, 2021. This date, interestingly enough, aligns with a peak in global capital markets using my proprietary Smart Cash Index and a very clear peak in the Chinese Hang Seng Index.

Recent news that Zillow halted the purchases of homes using its "Zestimate" and Ibuyer programs, which act as a purchase, renovate, flip-type of market service allowing home sellers to get an almost instant purchase offer from Zillow has raised questions in my mind related to the potential risks involved in owning large quantities of real estate assets in a shifting market.

This news article suggests Zillow has over 2800 US homes available for sale. We are not aware of how many homes have been purchased and are waiting for completed repairs/inspections before they go on the market. Continue reading "Is Zillow's Collapse A Warning Sign?"