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(June 2017) Lucas & Upper Wood County Housing Market

There has been a general slowdown in sales across the country, and this cannot be blamed on negative economic news. Unemployment remains low and wage growth, though nothing to overly celebrate, has held steady or increased for several years in a row. There is strong demand for home buying, emphasized by higher prices and multiple offers on homes for sale in many sub-markets. As has been the case for month after month – and now year after year – low inventory is the primary culprit for any sales malaise rather than lack of offers. New Listings decreased 12.9 percent for Single Family homes and 14.9 percent for Condo-Villa homes. Pending Sales increased 3.3 percent for Single Family homes and 3.0 percent for Condo-Villa homes. Inventory decreased 17.7 percent for Single Family homes and 24.4 percent for Condo-Villa homes. Median Sales Price increased 4.0 percent to $130,000 for Single Family homes and 18.1 percent to $155,000 for Condo-Villa homes. Days on Market decreased 11.3 percent for Single Family homes and 16.5 percent for Condo-Villa homes. Months Supply of Inventory decreased 18.5 percent for Single Family homes and 26.9 percent for Condo-Villa homes. With job creation increasing and mortgage rates remaining low, the pull toward home ownership is expected to continue. Yet housing starts have been drifting lower, and some are beginning to worry that a more serious housing shortage could be in the cards if new construction and building permit applications continue to come in lower in year-over-year comparisons while demand remains high. Homebuilder confidence suggests otherwise, so predictions of a gloomy future should be curbed for the time being.