Sales: According to the Tuscaloosa Multiple Listing Service, Tuscaloosa-area residential sales totaled 202 units during October, up 3.6 percent from 195 sales in the same month a year earlier. October sales were down 8.6 percent compared to 221 sales in September. Results were 25.6 percent above the five-year October average of 161 sales. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.
For all Tuscaloosa-area home sales data, click here.
Inventory: Total homes listed for sale in the Tuscaloosa area during October were 884 units, a decrease of 0.5 percent from October 2017’s 888 units and an increase of 0.5 percent from September 2018’s 880 units. October months of supply totaled 4.4 months, a decrease from October 2017’s 4.6 months of supply. However, October‘s months of supply increased from September’s 4 months of supply.
Pricing: The Tuscaloosa median sales price in October was $179,900, an increase of 4.8 percent from one year ago and a decrease of 4.1 percent from the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data (2013-17) indicating that the October median sales price on average decreases from September by 0.8 percent. The differing sample size (number of residential sales of comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss pricing, as it will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The average number of days on the market (DOM) for homes sold during October was 62 days, down from 72 days in October 2017 and equal to 62 days in September 2018.
Forecast: October sales were one unit, or 0.5 percent, above the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 201 sales for the month, while actual sales were 202 units. ACRE forecast a total of 2,347 residential sales in the Tuscaloosa area year-to-date, while there were 2,304 actual sales through October.
ACRE’s statewide perspective: While nationwide sales declined during September, residential sales in Alabama continued to grow during the early fall of 2018. Total residential sales in Alabama increased 8.5 percent year-over-year from 4,678 to 5,074 closed transactions. Year-to-date through September, statewide residential sales are up 6.8 percent from 44,272 one year ago to 47,283 currently. Home price appreciation in the state grew but at a slower pace than in previous months. The median sales price in September increased 0.6 percent from $161,480 to $162,482 while the year-to-date median sales price is up 4.4 percent from 2017. Although nationwide inventory levels are starting to stabilize, Alabama’s residential inventory decreased 8.9 percent from one year ago. Low inventory levels were a major factor contributing to rising sales prices throughout 2018. With low inventory levels, it is not surprising to see homes selling more quickly than in previous years. Homes selling in Alabama during September spent an average of 90 days on the market, an improvement of 18 days from 2017.
NAR’s national perspective: During September, nationwide sales volume for existing homes decreased 9.1 percent year-over-year from 462,000 to 420,000 closed transactions. According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, rising interest rates played a significant role in September sales declines in markets across the nation. “This is the lowest existing home sales level since November 2015,” he said. “A decade’s high mortgage rates are preventing consumers from making quick decisions on home purchases. All the while, affordable home listings remain low, continuing to spur underperforming sales activity across the country.”
Click here to view the entire monthly report.
The Tuscaloosa Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Tuscaloosa Association of Realtors to better serve West Alabama consumers.