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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, April 24, 2015

March 2015 residential market report


Realtor Association President's Message



Travis Close

All expectations in 2015 are for a healthy and energetic selling season. National stories have been highlighting an increase in new construction sales and pending sales, but national stories are not always readily applied to the local scene. All the same, if ever there was a year to list or purchase a home, wider economic factors seem to indicate this is the one.

A first blush at the Greater Chattanooga market stats might indicate things aren’t as rosy as the national scene. For example, in March, Inventory levels shrank 25.8 percent to 4,165 units. Months Supply of Inventory was down 34.4 percent to 5.9 months, which is the lowest we’ve seen in more than a year. Days on Market was down 14.1 percent to 101 days.

While shrinking Inventory and fewer Days on Market favor sellers, potential buyers are anxious, especially with predications that mortgage rates will continue to rise as the year progresses. Homes are going quickly, though, with many sellers receiving multiple offers. And there are several positives in our local market that align with the national perspective.

As of press time, the Greater Chattanooga MLS had more than 4,100 active single-family listings, with new listings being added each day. By the end of April, we should see a slightly higher inventory than in March. Increased inventory is to be expected for this time of year, especially as we gear up for Greater Chattanooga Open House Weekend (April 25 and 26).

March numbers reinforce this positive trend. New Listings in the Chattanooga region were up 9.1 percent to 1,357, which is nearly 300 more New Listings than the 12-month average. This figure is the highest we’ve seen for New Listings in more than a year.

Pending Sales also were up by 19.8 percent to 823. Again, this is more than the 12-month average by more than 100 Pending Sales, and the highest number of Pending Salesa we’ve seen in more than a year.

Closed Sales were up 12.2 percent to 718, which has improved nine of the last 12 months. We definitely are seeing a pattern here, indicating homes are priced correctly for market demand and qualified buyers entering the market.

Another positive for Greater Chattanooga is that prices remain stable. The Median Sales Price was up 13.4 percent to $145,750. The Average Sales Price was up 4.9 percent to $163,221, which is nearly $10,000 more than February’s figures.

On average, more people are employed and making more money than they were at this time last year. The jobs picture, as a whole, looks promising. Employment drives home buying activity, so watch labor statistics as a key indicator for the residential real estate market. Coupled with the mostly positive jobs picture, it’s widely expected that mortgage rates will remain as they are for

at least the first two quarters of the year.

If you’re a seller and want to make sure your home is part of Greater Chattanooga Open House Weekend, contact your Realtor to make sure the open house is registered with the Multiple Listing Service.

If you’re a buyer ready to start looking, make sure to engage a Realtor and ask them which homes to preview. If last year’s open house weekend is any indication, we can anticipate more than 200 scheduled open houses. Consumers who visit an open house may enter a drawing to win a $500 Visa gift card.

The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors is “The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga.” The Association is a regional organization with more than 1,500 members, and is one of more than 1,400 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade. and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net.

All expectations in 2015 are for a healthy and energetic selling season. National stories have been highlighting an increase in new construction sales and pending sales, but national stories are not always readily applied to the local scene. All the same, if ever there was a year to list or purchase a home, wider economic factors seem to indicate this is the one.

A first blush at the Greater Chattanooga market stats might indicate things aren’t as rosy as the national scene. For example, in March, Inventory levels shrank 25.8 percent to 4,165 units. Months Supply of Inventory was down 34.4 percent to 5.9 months, which is the lowest we’ve seen in more than a year. Days on Market was down 14.1 percent to 101 days.

While shrinking Inventory and fewer Days on Market favor sellers, potential buyers are anxious, especially with predications that mortgage rates will continue to rise as the year progresses. Homes are going quickly, though, with many sellers receiving multiple offers. And there are several positives in our local market that align with the national perspective.

As of press time, the Greater Chattanooga MLS had more than 4,100 active single-family listings, with new listings being added each day. By the end of April, we should see a slightly higher inventory than in March. Increased inventory is to be expected for this time of year, especially as we gear up for Greater Chattanooga Open House Weekend (April 25 and 26).

March numbers reinforce this positive trend. New Listings in the Chattanooga region were up 9.1 percent to 1,357, which is nearly 300 more New Listings than the 12-month average. This figure is the highest we’ve seen for New Listings in more than a year.

Pending Sales also were up by 19.8 percent to 823. Again, this is more than the 12-month average by more than 100 Pending Sales, and the highest number of Pending Salesa we’ve seen in more than a year.

Closed Sales were up 12.2 percent to 718, which has improved nine of the last 12 months. We definitely are seeing a pattern here, indicating homes are priced correctly for market demand and qualified buyers entering the market.

Another positive for Greater Chattanooga is that prices remain stable. The Median Sales Price was up 13.4 percent to $145,750. The Average Sales Price was up 4.9 percent to $163,221, which is nearly $10,000 more than February’s figures.

On average, more people are employed and making more money than they were at this time last year. The jobs picture, as a whole, looks promising. Employment drives home buying activity, so watch labor statistics as a key indicator for the residential real estate market. Coupled with the mostly positive jobs picture, it’s widely expected that mortgage rates will remain as they are for

at least the first two quarters of the year.

If you’re a seller and want to make sure your home is part of Greater Chattanooga Open House Weekend, contact your Realtor to make sure the open house is registered with the Multiple Listing Service.

If you’re a buyer ready to start looking, make sure to engage a Realtor and ask them which homes to preview. If last year’s open house weekend is any indication, we can anticipate more than 200 scheduled open houses. Consumers who visit an open house may enter a drawing to win a $500 Visa gift card.

The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors is “The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga.” The Association is a regional organization with more than 1,500 members, and is one of more than 1,400 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade. and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net. v