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Front Page - Friday, January 26, 2018

December 2017 home sales review

As we settle into the new year, let’s look back at how 2017’s housing market in the greater Chattanooga area wrapped up. It was a strong year for home sales as people flocked to our area, many millennials began entering homeownership and homes sold quickly – making for a competitive market.

The number of homes for sale, days on market and months of supply were all down in year-over-year comparisons in a majority of the country for the entirety of 2017, as was housing affordability. Although total sales volumes were mixed, prices were consistently up in most markets – including greater Chattanooga.

Buyers may not benefit from higher prices, but sellers do, and there should be more listing activity by more confident sellers in 2018. At least, that would be the most viable prediction for an economic landscape pointing toward improved conditions for sellers.

New listings in the Chattanooga region decreased 12 percent to 660. Pending sales were up six percent to 619. Inventory levels shrank 26.2 percent to 2,530 units.

Prices continued to gain traction. The median sales price increased 7.9 percent to $178,000. Days on market was up 1.7 percent to 59 days. Sellers were encouraged as months’ supply of inventory was down 26.2 percent to 3.1 months.

Unemployment rates have remained low throughout 2017 and wages have shown improvement, though not always to levels that match home price increases. Yet housing demand remained incredibly strong in 2017, even in the face of higher mortgage rates that are likely to increase further in 2018. Home building and selling professionals are both cautiously optimistic for the year ahead. Housing and economic indicators give reason for this optimism, with or without new federal tax legislation.

This year is expected to be another stellar one for the greater Chattanooga area’s housing market. Whether you’re looking to buy, sell or both, connect with a Realtor on www.gcar.net to make sure your i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed so you’re ready when the right home or buyer comes along.

Greater Chattanooga Realtors is “The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga.” A regional organization with more than 2,000 members, Greater Chattanooga Realtors is one of some 1,300 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. Greater Chattanooga Realtors service Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net.