Spoke with a recent transplant to Udon who may be typical, said he was "under water" with his mortgage in California so gave it back to the bank and walked (or ran).
Have been looking at property prices in CA and AZ on www.trulia.com
, while some areas like Palm Springs or Scottsdale have good buys, in others like Orange County or San Diego area it seems one gets little for the money, even if prices are way below their previous highs.
My mother died 3 years ago and I held on to "our" condo in Naples FL in the hopes of a rebound of prices. Forbes magazine has Naples #1 of the top ten places where wealthy Americans are still buying. Still, the value has not budged in three years, stuck at rock bottom. Costing me $8000 per year plus a new $6500 central airconditiner, to hold on, I finally decided to list it for sale, this is money right down the toilet. Given the time and expense to get to FL from Udon, it is a luxury not worth having. Attrition comes to places like Palm Springs, Naples and Scottsdale as they are loaded with retirees who die off. And likely fewer snow birds are looking to have a second winter home in this bad economy. So good buys will likely remain the case for quite a while. For those looking to relocate on a fulltime basis eg retirees from northern states looking for warmer climates, US proeprty is looking great.
Another enterprising friend in Phoenix with good credit, seized the day and bought about ten distressed properties this year, fix them up and rent them out, he is on a roll to creating a lot of personal wealth eg "Rich Dad Poor Dad" style.