The latest Residential Real Estate Index from the University of St. Thomas' Shenehon Center for Real Estate, for March 2018, reveals that the low-supply, high-demand conundrum of the past couple years has continued into 2018 and is only getting more out of balance. A few key statistics from the report:
The median home sales price has increased almost 10% from March 2017
The numbers of homes for sale has decreased ~36% from same time last year
Homes are "flying off the shelves" with average number of days on market down to 57 from 93 a year ago (decrease of about 39%) - our experience has been any decent home under $300k in a good part of town will be sold in a handful of days
Unfortunately, as noted in the report, wage increases have not kept pace with the increase in housing costs. That has meant buyers nationwide are stretching further, with roughly 20% of conventional buyers this past winter (is it safe to say "past" yet?) spending 45% of income on their mortgage and other debt payments. That stat referenced in the report comes from CoreLogic, a major source for Real Estate data. For reference, most financial experts recommend spending at most 28% of gross income on housing costs. Unfortunately, the further people stretch themselves for ongoing expenses, the more likely they will be to default. As appealing as homeownership is to people, it is NOT worth the risk of extending oneself further than recommended.
The report did include the good news that activity increased considerably from February to March of this year, both in listings (+11%) and sales (+38%). Spring always brings a fevered return to activity, so that is not surprising (as welcome as it may be). We hope to continue seeing that rate of listing increase as the even busier summer season approaches.
We've said it before, but this market cries for having a reliable and experienced Realtor at your side. Things move quickly, so having good communication but also a knack for negotiation are key attributes for success. We pride ourselves on our accessibility, transparency, and ability to favorably read the situation; please let us know how Serdar + Partners can help you!