Sales: According to the Wiregrass Multiple Listing Service, Wiregrass area residential sales totaled 102 units during August, 20 percent above the number recorded during the same month the previous year. August 2016 home sales totaled 85 units. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.
For all of the Wiregrass area housing data, click here.
Forecast: August sales were nine units and 9.6 percent above the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE’s 2017 sales forecast through August projected 686 closed transactions, while the actual sales were 711 units.
Supply: Wiregrass area housing inventory totaled 742 units, a decrease of 6.9 percent from August 2016. Inventory was down 3.9 percent from the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data that indicate August inventory on average (2012-16) decreases from July by 2.1 percent.
The inventory-to-sales ratio during August was 7.3 months of housing supply, down 22.4 percent from the same period last year. Restated, at the August sales pace, it would take 7.3 months to absorb the current inventory for sale. The market equilibrium (balance between supply and demand) is considered to be approximately 6 months.
Demand: August residential sales were down 1 percent from the prior month. Historical data indicate August sales on average (2012-16) increase from July by 4.6 percent. The average days on the market until a listing sold was 132 days, faster than August 2016’s 162 days.
Pricing: The Wiregrass area median sales price in August was $154,650, an increase of 23.7 percent from August 2016 ($125,000) and a 13.3 percent increase from the previous month. This direction contrasts with historical seasonal data (2012-16) that reflect the August median sales price on average decreases from July by 8 percent. It should be noted that the differing sample size (number of residential sales of the comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss prices, as they will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood.
Industry perspective: “For the first time in 2017, we have increased our full-year growth outlook. The upgrade reflects economic activity gaining momentum at the end of the second quarter, though we see a great deal of uncertainty surrounding the forecast,” said Fannie Mae Chief Economist Doug Duncan. “The list of uncertainties now extends beyond the geopolitical and legislative, as the effects of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma will require time to untangle. Historically, natural disasters that hit heavily populated areas led to substantial near-term declines in economic activity but meaningful rebounds in subsequent quarters due to rebuilding efforts. Thus, economic growth in the second half of 2017 could still average a slightly stronger pace than the first half. Unfortunately, we continue to expect home sales to be flat during the second half of the year compared to the first half due to strong home price appreciation and lean inventories.”
Click here to download graphs from the Wiregrass Region August Housing Report, including Total Sales, Average Sales Price, Days on the Market, Total Inventory and Months of Supply.