Rocket City home sales in March up 13 percent over last year

Rocket City home sales in March up 13 percent over last year
The median sales price for homes in the Huntsville area increased 7 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 North Alabama Multiple Listing Service, Huntsville/Madison County residential sales totaled 576 units during March, a rise in sales of 13 percent or 68 units from the same month the previous year, when there were 508 total sales. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.

For all of Huntsville’s area housing data, click here. 

Huntsville home sales in March rose from 508 in 2016 to 576 in 2017.

Forecast: Closed transactions in March were 107 units or 22 percent above the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s monthly forecast. ACRE’s 2017 sales forecast through March projected 1,215 closed transactions, while the actual sales were 1,410 units.

Supply: The Rocket City’s housing inventory totaled 2,277 units, a decrease of 16 percent from the previous March. New home inventory was down 34 units year-over-year, while existing single-family inventory was down 390 units.

The inventory-to-sales ratio in March was 4 months of housing supply. The market equilibrium (balance between supply and demand) is considered to be about 6 months during March. Huntsville overall continues to move in a favorable direction when it comes to its inventory-to-sales ratio. The market in March experienced a 0.5 percent increase in inventory when compared to February. Historical data indicate inventory typically increases 1.3 percent from February to March.

Demand: Residential sales in March increased by 33 percent from February. This direction is consistent with seasonal patterns and historical data indicating that March sales, on average (2012-2016), increase from February by 19 percent. New home sales made up 25 percent of sales, up from 22 percent the previous March. Existing single-family home sales accounted for 73 percent of total sales, down from 75 percent, while condos were 2 percent of sales.

Pricing: The Huntsville median sales price in March was $184,462, up 7 percent from March 2016 and up 1 percent from the prior month. This direction contrasts with historical data (2012-2016) indicating that the March median sales price on average decreases from February by 1 percent. Pricing can fluctuate as the sample size of data is subject to seasonal buying patterns. ACRE recommends contacting a local real estate professional to discuss pricing at the neighborhood level.

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 Huntsville March Housing Report, including Total Sales, Average Sales Price, Days on the Market, Total Inventory and Months of Supply. 

The Huntsville/Madison County Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Huntsville Area Association of Realtors to better serve North Alabama consumers.

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