Sales: According to the North Alabama Multiple Listing Service, Huntsville/Madison County residential sales totaled 508 units during March, an increase in sales growth of 8.5 percent or 40 units from the same period last year. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.
For all of Huntsville’s area housing data, click here.
Forecast: Closed transactions in March were 87 units or 20 percent above our monthly forecast. ACRE’s year-to-date sales forecast through March projected 1,117 closed transactions while the actual sales were 1,271 units, a favorable difference of 13.7 percent.
Supply: The Rocket City’s housing inventory totaled 2,711 units, a decrease of 9.4 percent from last March. New home inventory is up 83 units year-over-year while existing single-family inventory is down 340 units.
The inventory-to-sales ratio in March was 5.3 months of housing supply. The market equilibrium (balance between supply and demand) is considered to be about 6 months during March. Huntsville continues to move in a favorable direction when it comes to its inventory-to-sales ratio. The market in March experienced a 4.3 percent increase in inventory when compared to the prior month. Historical data indicates a typical 0.8 percent increase from February to March.
Demand: Residential sales in March increased by 22.7 percent from the prior month. This direction is consistent with seasonal patterns and historical data indicating that March sales, on average (2011-2015), increase from February by 18.7 percent. New home sales made up 23 percent of sales, up from 20 percent the previous March. Existing single family home sales accounted for 75 percent (down from 76 percent in March 2015) of total sales, while condos were 2 percent of sales (down from 4 percent during March 2015).
Pricing: The Huntsville median sales price in March was $172,701, an increase of 9 percent from March 2015 and down 4 percent from the prior month. This month-over-month direction contrasts with historical data (2011-2015) indicating that the March median sales price on average decreases from February by 0.1 percent. It’s important to note that pricing can fluctuate as the sample size of data (closed transactions) is subject to seasonal buying patterns. A broader lens as to pricing trends is appropriate. ACRE recommends contacting a local real estate professional to discuss pricing at the neighborhood level.
Industry Perspective: “Growing pessimism over the last three months about the direction of the economy seems to be spilling over into home purchase sentiment,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “The gap between the share of consumers who think the economy is on the wrong track and the share who think it is on the right track has widened, nearly matching its reading last August, when concerns regarding China and oil prices led to the biggest stock market plunge in years. In turn, we saw dips this month in income growth perceptions, attitudes about the home selling climate, and job confidence, all of which contributed to the lowest Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI) reading in the last year and a half. These declines seem to be at odds with recent news of solid overall job creation, but may reflect weakening economic performance in certain industries.” For the full report, click here.
– See more at: http://alabamanewscenter.com/2016/04/30/rocket-city-home-sales-9-percent-march-last-year/#sthash.F17WAeFp.dpuf