This market update is based on February’s data. It’s incredibly beneficial, but we are seeing a huge demand increase right now. Likely driven by the spring market and low supply. Stay tuned to this website for the March update to see if the data reflects what I’m seeing in today’s market.
Total single-family home sales were down last month by 22% to 111 properties compared to this time last year. Prices continue to increase, with the average sold price up 7% to $343,834 while the median price jumped 7.5% to $310,000.
The number of days on market persists in normalizing along with the amount of home inventory on the market. Days on market for February was 47 days, up 74% from last year. The average days on market the last 10 years have been 71 days, so days on market are still 33% below what the market typically experiences for the month of February.
The number of months of inventory again posted a triple percentage increase, up 150% to 2.5 months. The average monthly supply of homes on the market for February for the past 10 years has been 4.36 months, so there is still a way to go before home inventory reaches pre-pandemic levels. New listings hitting the market increased slightly last month, helping the months supply, but new inventory last month was still down 27% from the prior 10-year average. Inventory remains stubbornly low in homes sold under $400k, while homes above $400k continue to fluctuate from month to month, and their days on market continue to increase at a higher rate. There was an exception in the $450k to $500k price range, with home inventory at 1.33 months, but days on market were at 77 days, way above the number posted by the overall market.
Pending listings (homes under contract) were down last month by 19% over last year; even more concerning, pending listings are down 28% from the average for the last 10 years. Mortgage rates increased substantially for the entire month of February, which along with affordability, likely played a role in the decline of pending listings.
Before last week, it looked as if mortgage rates would continue to leap up based on economic data released for January. However, with concerns about the stability of the regional banks after the failure of Silicon Valley Bank last week, investors shifted to government-issued bonds and gold to reduce asset risk, pushing bond yields down. The change in government-issued bond yields has led mortgage rates to decline almost half a percent in the last two trading days. In the short-term, mortgage rates could remain volatile as financial markets continue to evaluate potential instability in the banking industry and economic data.
Our local market continues to remain stable even with continued year-over-year sales declines. Home inventory levels and a reduction in new listings should continue to push prices up. In addition, most current local homeowners have enjoyed refinancing at historically low mortgage rates, giving them few reasons to need to sell their homes, which will continue to keep market inventory low.
SOURCE – Columbia Board of Realtors CEO, Brian Toohey, MBA, RCE, EPRO