Home sales declined for the month of July, in comparison to the same period in 2016, leaving the market at .8% increase YTD for 2017.
The key point to keep in perspective when looking at home sales is that while the market is running “flat” to last year, 2016 was a record setting year in the Greater Chattanooga region. So, to be even or slightly ahead of 2016 sales is a feat, since the inventory of available homes for sale is down 22.9% to last year. In essence local, real estate professionals are closing the same number of homes, with dramatically less product to work with.
New listings coming to market during the month of July was up 1% in comparison to last year. This increase represents the first time in 2017 that the number of new homes coming to market in a given month exceeded the prior year. In fact, new listings are running down 7.2% YTD.
Local Realtors were busy writing new purchase and sale agreements during the month of July as “pending” contracts were up 11.6% compared to last year. This is a positive sign as we look toward 3rd quarter home sales. It took the average home a brief 54 days to close in July, in comparison to 61 days in July 2016. This outpaces the YTD trend of 62 days on market, which is a 10.1% decrease from the first 7 months of last year. This heightened pace is a direct result of lessoned inventory levels paired with consistent home sales.
On the pricing front, more positive news. The medium price in our market increased 11.3% in July to $183,600 which outpaces the YTD increase of 9.5%. In a slight contrast, the average sales price increased 7% to $213,726 which was a slight declined from June’s record $227,246. The average price is running in tandem with median with a YTD 9% increase. With increasing prices, the housing affordability index declined 13% and stands at a negative 11.5% YTD.
There was more negotiation taking place in July than the previous 3 months. The average seller received 95.6% of their original list price. This is in comparison 95.8-96.2% in prior months. This is a key number to track as we head into the fall selling season.
Overall the market is performing as predicted with strong demand, only hampered by reduced inventory of properties available for sale.
The Greater Chattanooga Association of REALTORS is The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga. The Association is a regional organization with more than 1,800 members and is one of more than 1,400 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors.
GCAR services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee, and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia.
Go to www.GCAR.net for more information.