Wiregrass region home sales decline in January from one year ago

Sales: According to the Wiregrass Board of Realtors, January residential sales decreased 10.9% year-over-year from 101 to 90 closed transactions, ending 7 consecutive months of Y/Y gains. Following seasonal trends, sales decreased 28.6% from December. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.

For all of Wiregrass’s housing data, click here.

Inventory: Total homes listed for sale in January declined 46.7% year-over-year from 426 to 227 listings. Months of supply declined from 4.2 to 2.5, reflecting a market where sellers generally have elevated bargaining power.

Pricing: The area’s median sales price in January was $169,900, an increase of 25.9% from one year ago and an increase of 10.2% from December. The differing sample size (number of residential sales of comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss pricing, as it will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood.

Homes sold in January averaged 67 days on the market (DOM), 17 days faster than January 2020.

Forecast: January sales were 13 units, or 12.5%, below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 103 residential sales for the month, while actual sales were 90 units.

Click here to view the entire monthly report.

NAR commentary: According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing home sales nationwide increased 0.6% from January (seasonally adjusted annual rate). Sales increased significantly from one year ago, rising 23.7%. Sales prices continued to grow at higher rates than before the pandemic, rising 14.1% year-over-year.

Lawrence Yun, chief economist for NAR said, “Home sales continue to ascend in the first month of the year, as buyers quickly snatched up virtually every new listing coming on the market. Sales easily could have been even 20% higher if there had been more inventory and more choices. Home sales are continuing to play a part in propping up the economy. With additional stimulus likely to pass and several vaccines now available, the housing outlook looks solid for this year.”

ACRE commentary: Home sales in Alabama increased for the eighth consecutive month in January, rising 17.2% year-over-year. The strong rebound in sales activity during the second half of 2020 has extended into 2021, with 21 of 24 markets in the state recording year-over-year gains in home sales during January. Buyers are incentivized by low mortgage rates, increasing their buying power during a time of rising sales prices, which increased 11.9% Y/Y in January. Sales prices continue to grow at a faster rate than before the pandemic, which could motivate more potential sellers to list their homes going forward. Statewide inventory, however, continues to tighten, declining almost 40% year-over-year, reaching an all-time low of 10,815 listings.

The Wiregrass Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Wiregrass Board of Realtors to better serve area consumers.

Editor’s Note: All information in this article reflects data provided to the Alabama Center for Real Estate for the time period January 1 – 31, 2020. Thus, the performance represented is historical and should not be used as an indicator of future results, particularly considering the impact of COVID-19 on the housing market.

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