Sales: According to the North Alabama Multiple Listing Service, Athens/Limestone County residential sales totaled 111 units during October, an increase of 24.7 percent or 22 units above the same month last year. Year-to-date home sales through October are up 17.7 percent over the same period in 2015. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.
For all Athens/Limestone County area housing data, click here.
Forecast: October sales were 27 percent or 24 units above the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s monthly forecast. ACRE’s year-to-date sales forecast through October projected 866 closed transactions, while the actual sales were 1,158 units, a favorable difference of 34 percent.
Supply: Athens/Limestone County housing inventory totaled 713 units, a decrease of 5.4 percent from October 2015. New-home inventory is up by 45 units year-over-year, while existing homes dipped by 77 units. October inventory was 5.3 percent below the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data indicating that October inventory on average (2011-15) decreases from September by 8.5 percent.
The inventory-to-sales ratio in October was 6.4 months of housing supply. Restated, at the October sales pace, it would take 6.4 months to absorb the current inventory for sale. This is a favorable decrease of 24 percent from 8.5 months of supply in October 2015. The market equilibrium (balance between supply and demand) during October is considered to be approximately 6 months.
Demand: October residential sales were 22 percent below the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data associated with October sales, which indicate a typical decrease of 0.5 percent from September. Existing single-family home sales accounted for 74 percent of total sales (down from 78 percent in October 2015), and new home sales accounted for 25 percent (up from 20 percent).
Pricing: The Athens/Limestone County area median sales price in October was $183,000, an increase of 18 percent from last October. It was a 7 percent increase from September. This direction contrasts with historical data (2011-15) reflecting that the October median sales price on average decreases from September by 1.7 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: “Since July, more consumers, on net, have steadily expected mortgage rates to rise and home price appreciation to moderate,” said Doug Duncan of Fannie Mae. “Furthermore, consumers’ perception of their income over the past year deteriorated sharply in October to the worst showing since early 2013, weighing on the index. However, this component of the HPSI (home purchase sentiment index) is volatile from month to month, and the firming trend in wage gains from the October jobs report, if sustained, may foreshadow an improving view in the near future.”
Click here to generate more graphs from the Athens/Limestone October Housing Report, including Total Sales, Average Sales Price, Days on the Market, Total Inventory and Months of Supply.
The Athens/Limestone County Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Athens/Limestone County Association of Realtors to better serve North Alabama consumers.