Cullman home sales steady in March, inventory continues to fall

Cullman home sales steady in March, inventory continues to fall
The median sales price for Cullman homes was up 6 percent in March from a year earlier. (iStock)

Click here to view or print the entire monthly report compliments of the ACRE Corporate Cabinet.

Sales: According to the Cullman MLS, Cullman County area residential sales totaled 67 units during March, down 6 percent from the same month a year earlier. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.

For all of Cullman’s real estate data, click here.

Demand: February residential sales increased 24 percent from the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data indicating that March sales on average (2012-16) increase from February by 54 percent. Days on the market until a listing sold was 107 days, 31 percent faster than the same period in 2016 (156 days).

Forecast: March sales were five units or 7 percent below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s monthly forecast. ACRE’s 2017 sales forecast through March projected 176 closed transactions, while the actual sales were 163, an unfavorable difference of 7 percent.

Supply: Cullman County area housing inventory totaled 541 units, 28 percent below the supply in March 2016. The inventory-to-sales ratio in March was 8.1 months of housing supply. Restated, at the March sales pace, it would take 8.1 months to absorb the current inventory for sale. This is 24 percent lower than the 2009 peak (10.6 months of supply). The market equilibrium (balance between supply and demand) for March is approximately 6 months, so continued improvement in this area would be welcome news.

Pricing: The Cullman County median sales price in March was $137,000, an increase of 6 percent from March 2016 ($129,500). The median sales price was 2 percent above the prior month. This direction contrasts with historical data (2012-16) reflecting that the March median sales price on average decreases from February by 9.9 percent. Pricing can fluctuate from month to month as the sample size of data (closed transactions) is subject to seasonal buying patterns. ACRE recommends consulting a local real estate professional.

Industry perspective: “Our economic forecast remains in a conservative holding pattern as we await word on the particulars of the new Administration’s plans for fiscal stimulus,” said Fannie Mae Chief Economist Doug Duncan. “In the meantime, economic sentiment from most industry stakeholders continues to reach new heights: consumers, as demonstrated by our National Housing Survey, are more positive than at any time since the survey’s inception in 2010 about the direction of the economy, while homebuilders’ optimism remains near an 11-year high. Tight inventory remains a boon to home prices and Americans’ net worth, but it also continues to price out many would-be first-time homebuyers. However, our research suggests that aging millennials, now boasting higher real wages, are beginning to narrow the homeownership attainment gap.”

Click here to generate more graphs from the Cullman March Housing Report, including Total Sales, Average Sales Price, Days on the Market, Total Inventory and Months of Supply. 

The Cullman County Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Cullman Association of Realtors to better serve Cullman-area consumers.

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