Saturday, April 12, 2014

Ada County Market Report for March

March Market Report…its all Daffodils and Sunshine…for now.

by marclebowitz

by Marc Lebowitz, RCE, CAE

ACAR Executive Director

Single family home sales in March 2014 were 580 in Ada County, an increase of 4% compared to March 2013.   YTD total sales are up 2% compared to this time last year; 1,425 homes sold compared to 1,396.

March 2014 is the strongest March we’ve had since 2007.

In March 60% of our total sales were for homes priced above $160,000.  This graphically portrays the diminishing role that fist –time buyers has on our market. In 2010 more than 52% of buyers were “first-time”. Today the number of first-time buyers is closer to 35%.  Long-term this is could become problematic for the large number of millennials wanting to more from renters to owners.

Days on Market for March were 67.  That’s about the same as in February, but still up significantly from December’s 59. In March 2013, Days on Market was 66.

New homes sold in March totaled 112; down 17% from last year.

Existing home sales were 468; up 10%.

Historically, March sales increase from February by an average of 36%. March 2014 posted a 37% increase over February.

Of the total sales in March, 12% were distressed; down 1% from last month. In March 2013, 17% of sales were distressed.

For the month of March, REO sales (60% of Distressed; 34 total sales) exceeded Short Sales (40% of Distressed; 24 total sales).

Pending sales at the end of March were 1078; down 16% from March 2013. Pending sales have traied behind previous year’s pending sales for eight consecutive months.

Of Pending sales in distress (11%), there are slightly more Short Sales (54%; 59 sales) than REO’s (46%; 50 sales).

March median home price was $197,900; up 5% from March 2013. Our YTD median price is $200,000; up 8% over last year.

New Homes median price for March was $300,884; up 19% from March 2013. For Existing homes the increase is 7% to $181,125.

The number of houses available for sale at the end of March increased  5% from February 2014 to 2,246.  This is an increase we really needed going into Spring selling season.  This is 25% more than last year at this time.

We anticipate continued inventory growth from now until the end of Summer.

Of the total active listings, 8% are distressed, down 2% from February.

Of our Distressed Inventory, 66% is Short Sales (118) and 34% is REO (61).

In Ada County we now have 4.5 months of inventory on hand, down a little from the end of February.

The price category in shortest supply is <$100K where we have 1.2 months.

From $100,000 to $119,000 we have 1.6 months available.

From $120,000 to $160,000 we have just under 3 months available inventory.

From $160,000 to $300,000 we have nearly 5 months…except for the very popular $250,000 – $300,000 which has only 4.6 month’s supply available.

Above $300,000 we have a 6 month’s supply. Above $500,000 the supply is closer to 22 months.  Remembering that 6 months of available inventory describes a “stable real estate market”; it looks like we are heading into a period of “normal” like we haven’t seen in several years.

Of sales inMarch, the most popular price point was $120,000 to $160,000 (24%); followed by $160,000 to $200,000 (21%) and  $200,000 to $250,000 with 14%.

So…what’s next?

Sales in March were jump started from February.  We are now chasing a super strong Spring and Summer 2013. April 2013 sales were 719.  Can we increase sales from 580 to 719 with Pending sales where they are? It’s going to be very close.

March is typically a bellwether month for sales and median home price. March 2014 was pretty strong in both categories.  This should continue into the Summer.

We are seeing more and more data that says that the Millennials (the big homebuyer wild card) are feeling better and better about home ownership.  Nearly 90% of Millennial buyers say “homeownership is a good investment”. Our problem is that we don’t have enough inventory to pull them out of their apartments and into homes

This is the pent up demand we’ve been waiting to see activate.

Bottom line…its going to be a roller coaster summer.


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