As signs of a housing bubble continue to emerge, one corner of the market seems unperturbed -- the market for homes that sell for $5 million and up.
"Gregory Heym, an economist withTerra Holdings in Manhattan, says that while this slice of the market parallels some trends around the country, it's a slippery fish to weigh. "People used to look at the high end as a leading indicator, but I don't know that that's true anymore. People are less price sensitive, and they want to prove that they're as smart at buying real estate as they are at buying companies."
For homes at $5 million and up, sales in 2006 stood at 40 at the end of September for all of Palm Beach County; barring a fourh-quarter surge, it's unlikely that the number will equal 2005's 73, says Ava Vandewater, an executive vice president with Browh Harris Stevens of Palm Beach. So far this year, the average home in this exclusive Florida enclave sold for $4.63 million, a chad down from last year's $4.95 million."