Oh February! A time when we as Virginians wonder why we did not choose to reside just an itty-bitty-bit more south. Here is a link to the weather recap of winter’s “last hurrah” month. As we were worrying about our early-budding weeping cherries, the local real estate market was buzzing along, prepping for early springtime action…
W H A T ‘ S H O T . . .
○ Inventory is waaaay-doooowwwwnnn. Guess what? That’s not a bad thing. In this case, we are slowly-but-surely digesting and ridding our market of the 2014 influx of recession side-effects, (aka foreclosures, short-sales, etc.) Less inventory means a healthier market; higher Average Sales Prices and lower Days on the Market. Classic example of Supply & Demand, ya’ll!
○ Speaking of “Foreclosures, Short-sales, and Bank-owned, OH MY“; our local foreclosure market is 1.6% of active inventory. The lowest it has been in years! (In the past, this percentage has fluctuated between 14-18%.) REO’s (“Real Estate Owned” or “Bank Owned Foreclosure”) made up 20.5% of Jan. 2015’s sales…but have steadily decreased to only 8.8% YTD sales. Woohoo! Let’s hope folks are getting steady on their feet again.
○ Average Sales Price increases 10.7% from Feb 2015. SAY WHAT?! Amazing. **This does NOT account for seller paid concessions. Seller paid closing costs have become quite consistent in the past several years, represented in 45-50% of sales. 46% of Feb ’16 sales had seller paid concessions, averaging at $4719.
○ Days on Market – We are holding steady within a “normal market” (90-120 days) in February with an average of 96 days, and a median of 93 days.
○ By the way, did I mention larger Ranch homes, (2000< sqft) with double garages, listed under $200k are this area’s HOT ITEM. Well, I just did…H-O-T, I said it again.
W H A T ‘ S N O T . . .
○ Inventory is waaaay-doooowwwwnnn. I know, I just said it wasn’t a bad thing above…BUT if you have money in your pocket and ready to spend some major dough on the house of your dreams, not having a selection to choose from can be very frustrating! (Listen, it happens to me all of the time. When I finally get some alone time AND some chump change, it seems my favorite stores never have anything of interest.) Here’s to Spring and the housing excitement & activity that follows.
○ 2014’s Lender underwriting “tighten-up” improvements are still affecting loan approval and closing deadlines. This past fall’s new adjustments to closing procedures has also provided some delays and “hiccups” in the process. COMMUNICATION between all parties is key, as well as lots of PATIENCE, young padawans.
*This report was prepared by and for the use of Westhills Ltd. REALTORS. It is not to be copied in whole or in part without explicit permission of Katherine McNicholas.
**All data based on information from the Greater Augusta Association of REALTORS®, Inc. or Multiple Listing Service for the period 2.1.16 through 2.29.16. All information is believed to be accurate, but cannot be guaranteed.