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Extreme February Weather Leaves Dent on Residential Market Stats

Winter sports enthusiasts likely enjoyed the snowiest February on record more than those attempting to buy and sell homes. Even so, the latest numbers for Twin Cities residential real estate show some strength amidst ongoing signs of change. Sellers showed a sizeable, weather-related decline in listing activity, while buyers entered into fewer contracts than last February even while closed sales rose. Market times flattened out as the median sales price continued to rise compared to last year. One sign of a changing market is the fact that the ratio of sold to list price has fallen for three of the last four months. This—along with other indicators—suggest the market is improving for buyers, even though sellers still have strong pricing, favorable negotiating leverage and quick market times.

Due to the decline in new listings, the number of active listings for sale decreased compared to the prior year. Even so, buyers have seen inventory gains for four of the last five months. Months supply followed suit, tick down to 1.6 months, suggesting the market is still tight. Buyers should expect competition on the most sought-after listings and neighborhoods. After increasing to 5.0 percent in November, mortgage rates have settled back down around 4.5 percent. That’s great news for buyers. The supply squeeze is most evident at the entry-level prices, where multiple offers and homes selling for over list price are commonplace. The move-up and upper-bracket segments are less competitive and better supplied. Inventory could rise substantially, and we’d still have a balanced market.

February 2019 by the Numbers (compared to a year ago) Sellers listed 4,355 properties on the market, a 14.3 percent decrease from last February Buyers closed on 2,798 homes, a 4.0 percent increase Inventory levels for February declined 5.7 percent compared to 2018 to 7,936 units Months Supply of Inventory decreased 5.9 percent to 1.6 months The Median Sales Price rose 6.2 percent to $265,500, a record high for February Cumulative Days on Market was flat at 69 days, on average (median of 43) Changes in Sales activity varied by market segment

Single family sales rose 6.7 percent; condo sales fell 0.9 percent; townhome sales increased 1.0 percent Traditional sales increased 7.4 percent; foreclosure sales sank 40.3 percent; short sales fell 41.4 percent Previously-owned sales were up 4.7 percent; new construction sales rose 5.3 percent

Quotables

“The cold and snow in February was certainly an impediment,” said Todd Urbanski, President of Minneapolis Area REALTORS®. “The March numbers will offer more clarity on market direction.”

“We’re still sensing plenty of interest from buyers and sellers,” said Linda Rogers, President-Elect of Minneapolis Area REALTORS®. “This spring market should be productive, especially with more inventory.”

All information is according to the Minneapolis Area REALTORS® based on data from NorthstarMLS. Minneapolis Area REALTORS® is the leading regional advocate and provider of information services and research on the real estate industry for brokers, real estate professionals and the public. We serve the Twin Cities 16-county metro area and western Wisconsin.

From The Skinny Blog.

Weekly Market Report

For Week Ending March 16, 2019The Federal Reserve recently announced that interest rates will remain steady and that further rate hikes are not planned for 2019. Given that the federal funds rate has increased nine times over the past three years, this is welcome news for consumers carrying high credit card balances. The overall economy, inflation and Fed actions also have an effect on mortgage rates, so it is generally good news when rate hikes are paused, especially when total sales are dropping in many parts of the nation.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending March 9:

  • New Listings decreased 12.2% to 1,374
  • Pending Sales decreased 20.8% to 976
  • Inventory decreased 5.8% to 8,273

For the month of February:

  • Median Sales Price increased 6.2% to $265,500
  • Days on Market remained flat at 69
  • Percent of Original List Price Received decreased 0.3% to 97.7%
  • Months Supply of Homes For Sale remained flat at 1.7

All comparisons are to 2018

Click here for the full Weekly Market Activity Report.

interest rates

Mortgage Rates Move Lower

March 21, 2019 Mortgage rates have dipped quite dramatically since the start of the year and house prices continue to moderate, which should help on the homebuyer affordability front. The combination of improving affordability and more inventory than the last few spring selling seasons should lead to improved home sales demand.

Information provided by Freddie Mac.

For Week Ending February 16, 2019

The National Association of REALTORS® has reported in the last month that national existing-home sales and pending sales are both down in year-over-year comparisons, but that has not necessarily been a constant from market to market. While weather-related events have hampered some of the necessary machinations of making home sales, buyers have shown determination toward achieving their homeownership goals. This week has shown some sales strain in many markets, but spring is just around the corner.

In the Twin Cities region, for the week ending February 16:

  • New Listings decreased 20.5% to 1,018
  • Pending Sales decreased 10.5% to 810
  • Inventory decreased 2.5% to 8,043

For the month of January:

  • Median Sales Price increased 6.1% to $259,000
  • Days on Market decreased 5.8% to 65
  • Percent of Original List Price Received increased 0.1% to 97.0%
  • Months Supply of Homes For Sale increased 13.3% to 1.7

All comparisons are to 2018

Click here for the full Weekly Market Activity Report. From The Skinny Blog.