Thursday, July 12, 2018 - by Geoff Ramsey, president, Greater Chattanooga Realtors
Housing markets across the nation are most assuredly active this summer, and buyer competition is manifesting itself into several quick sales above asking price. While the strength of the U.S. economy has helped purchase offers pile up, the Fed recently increased the federal funds rate by 0.25 percent, marking the second rate hike this year and seventh since late 2015. Although the 30-year mortgage rate did not increase, buyers often react by locking in at the current rate ahead of assumed higher rates later. When this happens, accelerated price increases are possible, causing further strain on affordability.
New Listings in the Chattanooga region increased 8.7 percent to 1,388. Pending Sales were up 9 percent to 932. Inventory levels shrank 17.7 percent to 2,756 units.
Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased to 11.7 percent to $201,000. Days on Market was down 27.9 percent to 44 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Inventory was down 19.5 percent to 3.3 months.
Inventory may be persistently lower in year-over-year comparisons, and home prices are still more likely to rise than not, but new listings may finish the summer on the upswing. The housing supply outlook in several markets is beginning to show an increase in new construction and a move by builders away from overstocked rental units to new developments for sale. These are encouraging signs of an already healthy marketplace.
On Aug. 14, join us for the Annual Economic Outlook Luncheon, co-hosted with Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga. We will look at how the Chattanooga region has thrived and changed in the past year and what’s to come. Tickets go quickly so purchase yours today on www.gcar.net or call 423 698-8001.