The January market stats are in! Everyone knows I am not much of a statistics girl, but I love these ones. They come in halfway through the next month so it allows me to reflect on whether the trends I was feeling were taking place across the metro area, or just in localized neighborhoods. For January, my market predictions were pretty accurate! The simplified version for those of you not wanting to read on: There are lots more listings, prices are still normalizing, and the market is still leaning toward a seller’s market.
For everyone wanting to get a bit more in-depth, here is my breakdown: We saw the median home price drop just slightly from December, which is something we expect after the holiday season. Almost every year between October and January we see prices fall. Seasonality effects even the strongest markets and this is certainly not a sign that the market is crashing. Despite this slight drop, we had a huge surge of new listings come on the market, more than double what we had in December. There are likely many reasons for this big push but my guess for the biggest reason is that sellers are scared. The media has been stating over and over that we are in for a crash, another recession is imminent, and housing is doomed!! Well, the good news is that nothing that drastic is going to happen. If you have been a buyer, or known a buyer in the last 3-4 years, you know that everyone has been hoping the market would slow down, pricing would stop skyrocketing, and that multiple offers would be a thing of the past. The good news is we all got what we hoped for! I find the best analogy for this is that the market is slowing like a car, we were going 100 miles an hour and now we are going 60. We are still moving forward, just not accelerating. The bad news is, we are on our way into the spring market, and things are going to pick up quickly again.
The average days on market is the most surprising number for me. 76 seems like an exceptionally long time for something to sit on the market, especially when we are seeing so many homes sell on the 3rd day. Truthfully, this number should be much lower, it is skewed primarily by homes that are overpriced with sellers who aren’t willing to negotiate. I’m looking at you, home that needs to be torn down but is listed over 600k! If a home is priced well, “pinterest perfect,” and in a neighborhood close in on the east side, expect it to be pending by the end of its first weekend with multiple offers.
I anticipate we will be in a seller’s market through the rest of our busy season and then we will see the market slow through the end of the year. We may even have a bit of time where we shift into a buyer’s market right around the end of summer. If you are thinking of buying, I would still recommend doing it now. Interest rates are low, but expected to climb, and they affect your affordability more than a slight increase in home prices. If you have questions about affordability, talk to your lender, they have lots of info and stats for you!