Local home sales decline, prices increase

Published 10:31 am Wednesday, May 17, 2023

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The 2023 Housing Market Restructuring continued in April with fewer local home sales and prices inching higher.
“The market is performing much the same it has for months,” Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors (NETAR) Jan Stapleton said. “Sales mirror per-pandemic volumes and prices stubbornly stick close to the all-time high set May last year. More listings are slowly coming on the market, so there are more choices for buyers. But total inventory continues to be anemic. We’ve had less than two months of inventory of homes on the market for 29th consecutive months.” At the end of April, the region had 1.9 months of inventory. That’s how long it would have taken to sell everything at April’s sales rate.
There were 582 closings on single-family and condo sales in April. That’s 85 fewer than during March and 233 fewer than last year. That number should see some minor improvement when the mid-month update is made and closing reported too late for the early county are included.
Last month’s median sales price was $249,450. That’s a $11,550 improvement from March and $29,450 more than April last year. The median price peaked in May last year at $250,000.
Stapleton explained that the median sales price is the middle of the market. Most sales activity is not in the median price range. It’s on homes in the $300,000 to $399,999 price range. They were up 16 percent from last year while sales in all other price ranges were down.
Close to half (47%) of the homes sold last month were discounted from the asking price. The median discount was $12,100. The biggest price reduction was $400,000 on a home listed for $2.8 million. The smallest discounts were $900.
Homes that sold for more than the asking price accounted for 29% of April’s sales. The most a buyer paid over list was $400,000 on a $1.8 million listings. There were 14 sales that the over-list payment was less than $1,000.
Cash deals accounted for one of every three sales last month in NETAR’s primary area of Carter, Greene, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington Co. TN.
The typical sale that closed last month was on the market for 47 days before it closed. NETAR’s consecutive days on the market begin the day a listing goes public and ends when the sale is closed. Days on the market have declined every month since January when the total was 59 days. When the time on market is declining it signals consumer demand is increasing.
The local prime home buying and selling season typically peaks in mid-to-late summer.

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