Sales: According to the North Alabama Multiple Listing Service, February home sales in Marshall County totaled 53 units, unchanged from one year ago. Of the 53 total sales, 48 were existing single-family homes, one was a condo and four were newly constructed homes. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and the Annual Report.
Click here to check out all Marshall County housing data.
Forecast: February sales were four units or 7 percent below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 57 sales for the month, while there were 53 actual sales. Year-to-date there are 108 residential sales in Marshall County, matching ACRE’s forecast through February.
Supply: Marshall County housing inventory totaled 425 listings in February, a decrease of 16.3 percent from one year ago. Inventory in the area was unchanged from the prior month. Historical data indicate that February inventory on average (2013-2017) increases 1.8 percent from January.
Demand: February home sales in Marshall County decreased 3.6 percent from the previous month’s total of 55 closed transactions. This month-over-month change goes against historical data trends indicating that February residential sales on average (2013-2017) increase 2.8 percent from January. Homes selling in the area during February averaged 110 days on the market, a decrease of 1.8 percent from one year ago. The five-year days-on-market average for Marshall County during February is 125 days.
Seeking balance: The inventory for sale divided by the current monthly sales volume equals the number of months of housing supply. The market is considered to be in balance at approximately 6 months of supply. Marshall County had 8 months of housing supply during February, down from 9.6 months of housing supply during the same month last year. Restated, at the February sales pace, it would take 8 months to absorb the current inventory for sale.
Pricing: The Marshall County median sales price in February was $120,000, an increase of 1.7 percent from one year ago. The February median sales price was 5.4 percent above the previous month’s median sales price. This month-over-month median price increase goes against historical data trends indicating that the February median sales price on average (2013-17) decreases 0.3 percent from January. Pricing can fluctuate from month to month as the sample size of data is subject to seasonal buying patterns. ACRE recommends contacting a local real estate professional for additional market pricing information.
Industry perspective: The 10-year treasury is a crucial indicator of economic expansion. As of March 1, 2018, the 10-year treasury stood at 2.88 percent, a slight increase from last month’s rate of 2.86 percent. Mortgage rates also experienced a slight increase recently as the current rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.57 percent, up from 4.38 percent one month ago. As the economy continues to strengthen, people will have more money in their pockets with the intent to spend. This increase in spending will most likely create higher stock prices and lower bond prices. With this increase of confidence in the market, mortgage interest rates can be expected to increase.
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) produces economic analyses of the home-building industry based on government data. The Housing Market Index (HMI) depicts market conditions for the sale of new homes. The HMI ranges from 0 to 100; a rate greater than 50 represents good sales conditions.
The HMI in the South has stayed relatively steady in the past few months with a score of 73. However, the HMI is lower in some regions of the United States, such as the Northeast, which has a rate of 56. The West has a higher HMI of 77, and a better market for good housing conditions.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency uses the House Price Index (HPI) to measure the average price changes in repeat sales or refinancing on the same properties. The FHFA’s national HPI was up 6.7 percent from the previous year compared to Alabama, which has increased from the previous year by 5.6 percent. The HPI rose in all 49 states except for Mississippi.
Compared to the national housing market conditions, Alabama’s real estate market has been showing improvement. Although total residential sales in Alabama decreased 2.3 percent from January 2017, the statewide median sales price increased 2.3 percent from January 2017. Statewide, homes in Alabama are selling much more quickly than in recent years as the average days on the market decreased 19.6 percent from one year ago.
Click here to generate more graphs from the Marshall County February Housing Report, including Total Sales, Average Sales Price, Days on the Market, Total Inventory and Months of Supply.