Nov 2018 – The 4th Quarter is Seasonally the Best Time to be a Buyer

New Listings Up 18% in October between $250K-$400K
The 4th Quarter is Seasonally the Best Time to be a Buyer

For Buyers:
Seasonally the 4th Quarter is the best time to be a buyer and this year is no exception.  Typically buyer contract activity is at its strongest from March through May and weakest between November and January.  Buyers who were out-bid by competing offers last Spring will have a different experience now.  October saw 18% more new listings hit the market between $250K-$400K compared to last October while buyer contracts are about the same within the same price range.  There was only a 1% increase in new listings in the lower price range between $200K-$250K but a 12% drop in buyer contracts which caused overall supply to rise another 11%.  The market is still a seller’s market, but more seller competition for fewer buyers translates into more price reductions and seller concessions until the Spring “Buyer Season” is upon us once again.

For Sellers:
The market may be softening between $200K-$400K (which accounts for over 56% of MLS sales), but that doesn’t mean sellers are getting a raw deal.  Monthly average sale prices per square foot in this price range have appreciated 5% since October last year and nearly 19% in last 5 years.  Under $200K, the appreciation rate is 9.5% in the past year and 44% in 5 years.    $400K-$800K has appreciated 6% in the last year and 14% in 5 years and the annual average sale price per square foot* over $800K has appreciated 3% in the last year and 10.5% in 5 years.  What’s happening underneath that contract price, however, is an increased cost to sell at “top dollar”.  That cost can take the shape of longer days on market with multiple price reductions, repairs, needed upgrades to the home prior to list and closing cost assistance.

*Annual averages are used in the higher price ranges to mitigate the sharp price fluctuations that affect this market.
Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on November 14, 2018 at 4:53 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Price Reductions up 27% on Active Listings Between $250K-$400K

Seller Concessions Spike on Listings Sold Between $200K-$250K
Price Reductions up 27% on Active Listings Between $250K-$400K

For Buyers:
October marks the 4th month in a row that supply has continued to rise between $200K – $400K, which is good news for many buyers as it provides them with more choice and fewer competing offers.  However, for those buyers with budgets under $200K, this trend in supply doesn’t apply to them and their choices are still extremely limited.  Last January, inventory under $200K made up 18% of all active listings.  Within that price range, single family homes made up 50%, condos and townhomes 30%, and mobile homes 20%.  As of this month, inventory under $200K only makes up 12% of actives and has declined 36% since January.  Single family homes make up 45%, condos and townhomes 36%, and mobile homes 19%.  This drop in supply equates to 591 fewer single family homes, 198 fewer condos and townhomes, and 229 fewer mobile homes available for sale under $200K since the beginning of 2018.

For Sellers:
When supply rises, sellers react in a number of ways to compete with one another for the existing buyer pool.  One option is a price reduction on their active listing prior to contract. This does not necessarily result in a decline in sale price, only a decline in sellers’ expectations for appreciation.  Sales price trends may still continue to rise, but perhaps only at 5% instead of 8%, for example.  Another option is to agree to a concession, such as paying a portion of closing costs or a home warranty; and finally to agree to a much lower sale price than what they were asking. Typically sellers agree to the first two options before submitting to a “low ball” contract, which is why sales price trends are the last measures to respond to a shift in supply and demand.  With that being said, weekly price reductions this month between $250K-$400K are up 27% compared to last year, while price reductions between $200K-$250K are only up 1.7%.  However, seller concessions on sales between $200K-$250K reached 41% so far this month compared to last quarter’s measure of 36%.  Only 21% of sales between $250K-$400K recorded a seller concession.  Which leads us to conclude that sellers below $250K are agreeing to more concessions than price reductions; while sellers over $250K are submitting to more price reductions.  Despite this slight weakening in sellers’ advantage, Greater Phoenix is not close to a balanced or buyer’s market so expect overall prices to continue rising over the next 3-6 months.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on October 9, 2018 at 6:55 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , ,

Seller Price Reductions up 46% and 61% in these Price Ranges

Supply Continues to Rise in the Middle
Seller Price Reductions up 46% and 61% in these Price Ranges

For Buyers:
Overall supply is down 9.6% compared to last September.  At first glance that’s nothing new.  However, for those of you who pay close attention to our monthly infographic (I know you’re out there), you have no doubt noticed that last May supply was down 15.5%, June supply was down 12.2%, July was down 11.1% and August was down 9.9% from last August.   What this means for buyers is that the Greater Phoenix market is still in short supply, but it’s subtly becoming less bad.  Most significantly, supply continues to increase between $200K-$400K.  Last month we reported an 8.1% increase in listings between $200K-$250K since May, that is now 9.7%.  Between $250K-$300K, supply has risen 15% in only 8 weeks.  Between $300K-$400K, supply has slowly risen 10% since January.  All other price ranges are either declining in supply or following their normal seasonal trends.  This is great news for buyers; more choice in the marketplace means less negotiating pressure. However, don’t expect sale prices to plummet anytime soon. The first price to respond to a supply shift isn’t a sale price, it’s a list price in the form of a price reduction.

For Sellers:
Despite the increase in supply between $200K-$250K, there hasn’t been a correlating increase in weekly list price reductions from sellers yet.  However that is not the case for the market between $250K-$300K where weekly list price reductions have risen 46% in the past 8 weeks and weekly reductions between $300K-$400K have risen 61% since January.  This is not an indicator that sellers are becoming desperate. Make no mistake, there are very few desperate sellers in this marketplace. There are, however, many optimistic sellers who may be taming their expectations. Average annual price appreciation per square foot remains between 3.5% – 5.0% for sales between $200K-$400K, so it’s still a seller’s market despite recent developments.  Expect prices to continue increasing at least through the remainder of 2018.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on September 11, 2018 at 4:51 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Is Greater Phoenix “Overvalued”?

Is Greater Phoenix “Overvalued”?
Mortgage Payments Are Lower Than They Were 13 Years Ago

For Buyers:
Interest rates have been increasing along with the inflation rate as of late, which has spawned a string of headlines about affordability. While the rate hike has knocked some buyers out of the market without a doubt, general affordability hasn’t taken a big hit yet.  According to the National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo, buyers making the median family income could still afford 65% of what sold in the Valley last quarter.  A measure between 60-75% is considered normal.

Let’s look at the historical cost of a 1,900sf home in Greater Phoenix, for example.  In March 2005, a home that size would run $281K on average.  Today that same home would be $309K, $28,000 more (+10%).  However, the interest rate back then was 5.9% compared to 4.5% today, meaning that the principal and interest payment has dropped nearly $100 from where it was 13 years ago for the same home.  At the same time, the median family income rose from $58K to $69K according to HUD (+19%).  Which is why despite recent increases in interest rates, the affordability of real estate in the Valley is still considered very good.

For Sellers:
Last April CoreLogic released a report ranking the Greater Phoenix area as “overvalued”. In fact, they placed 37% of our nation’s top 100 metropolitan areas in that category.  As of May, after 6 years of higher-than-normal appreciation rates, the monthly average sales price per square foot has finally reached its place along the long-term 3% appreciation line established between 2000-2003 before the 2005 bubble and 2008 crash.  Meaning that if we had fallen asleep in 2003, and the last 15 years were just a long horrible dream, we would have woken up today and not known anything had happened.  Prices are where they would have been had the market followed the average long-term rate of inflation.  That brings to light that current appreciation rates of 6% or more are no longer sustainable in the long term.  However that doesn’t mean that prices will “peak” or “crash” anytime soon.  Most likely as demand slowly wanes, prices will go flat and hang out until they once again fall in line with the rate of inflation, but don’t expect that to happen in 2018.  Supply and demand measures today indicate another 3-6 months of positive appreciation for the majority of homes priced below $400K.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on June 14, 2018 at 4:49 am
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , , , ,

When is the Phoenix Housing Market Going to Slow Down?

 

  • Even though median prices are within 98% of the peak, the fact that interest rates are so much lower today means that homes are still affordable.
  • The median family income has risen $11,000 since 2005, indication there is room for families to bear the increase in price.
  • Despite appreciation rates higher than the rate of inflation over the past 7 years, families making the median income could afford 65% of what sold in Greater Phoenix last quarter.
  • Overall Greater Phoenix home prices have finally reached where they are supposed to be historically and it’s expected to continue rising through the end of 2018.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

 

Posted on June 8, 2018 at 4:07 am
Eric Karlene | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

May 2018 Market Report – Good time to List Luxury Properties

Supply between $175K-$200K dropped 18% in 3 Weeks
Summer is a good time to List Luxury Properties over $500K

For Buyers:
Supply under $200K has continued to drop rapidly, but the $175K-$200K range has accelerated its decline over the past month far more dramatically than any other price range. After being consistently 30-35% below last year, the active supply level dropped a whopping 18% in a 3-week period putting the current count for this group 44% below last year. Single family homes only make up 41% of active listings under $200K, but they account for 69% of actives between $175K-$200K. As more buyers are looking to condos and townhouses for affordable housing, supply for attached homes under $200K has dropped 33% over the last year. However, condo supply between $200K-$300K has actually risen 10% while single family homes in the same price point have dropped 15%.

For Sellers:
We are officially at the peak of the market seasonally for listings in escrow. Over the next few weeks, especially as temperatures reach over 100 degrees in the Valley, expect to see a gradual decline in buyer contracts that will continue through the end of the year. This is a seasonal trend that consistently happens every year and in every price point, even the frenzy market under $200K. The one exception is the luxury market over $500K. While it’s typical to see a decline at the beginning of Summer like everyone else, escrow counts tend to drop for a couple months and then go flat until the end of the year. In fact, luxury supply drops more than buyer activity does in the Summer making it a great time to list luxury property for those willing to brave the heat between June and September.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on May 15, 2018 at 10:11 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Why are the Experts saying “BUY NOW!!!!”?

Are you trying to decide whether to buy now or wait? Well here is what’s going on in our market today. Per the chart below, Mortgage rates are climbing above a 5 year high. The experts are claiming they are going to continue to climb as well. Some say that that they are expected to peak around 6.0% which we have not seen since 2008. With the increase in home prices, this will be pushing some of the Sub $200k buyer’s out of the market for some of the most affordable homes in Phoenix Metro. These home will most likely appreciate around 5% due to the lack of inventory. It will also greatly reduce your buying power at all of the price points. So, if you are sitting on the fence in trying to decide what to you, the data may be that little extra push you need to get into the market and buy today.

 

Here is the current market trend in Dollars per Square Foot:

Posted on April 26, 2018 at 6:08 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , ,

April 2018 – Market Update – MLS Sales Outperform non-MLS Sales in Frenzy Market

MLS Sales Outperform non-MLS Sales in Frenzy Market
Supply Under $200K Down 36% Over Last Year

For Buyers:
Greater Phoenix ended the 1st Quarter 13% lower in supply, which was not helped by a 2% decline in new listings entering the market. All price ranges are below last year’s level of supply with the exception of the $1M+ market, which is up 1.5%. On the opposite end of the spectrum, supply under $200K is down 36% from last year and all prices in between are down 10%. Buyer competition is typically at it’s strongest at this time of year and is expected to begin tapering off seasonally in May or June.

For Sellers:
Despite the highly competitive, fast appreciating environment in the $100K-$200K market, more sellers decided not to list their home on the MLS and many chose to sell to an investor instead. This is ironic considering MLS sales in that price range sell for 12% more per square foot on average compared to normal non-MLS sales, which could equate to a $12,000-$22,000 gap. Additionally, the annual average sales price per square foot rose faster for MLS sales in this range at 7.9% while non-MLS sales rose only 6.0% over the last year.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on April 15, 2018 at 10:18 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , , ,

April 2018 Market Update – MLS Sales Outperform non-MLS Sales in Frenzy Market

MLS Sales Outperform non-MLS Sales in Frenzy Market
Supply Under $200K Down 36% Over Last Year

For Buyers:
Greater Phoenix ended the 1st Quarter 13% lower in supply, which was not helped by a 2% decline in new listings entering the market. All price ranges are below last year’s level of supply with the exception of the $1M+ market, which is up 1.5%. On the opposite end of the spectrum, supply under $200K is down 36% from last year and all prices in between are down 10%. Buyer competition is typically at it’s strongest at this time of year and is expected to begin tapering off seasonally in May or June.

For Sellers:
Despite the highly competitive, fast appreciating environment in the $100K-$200K market, more sellers decided not to list their home on the MLS and many chose to sell to an investor instead. This is ironic considering MLS sales in that price range sell for 12% more per square foot on average compared to normal non-MLS sales, which could equate to a $12,000-$22,000 gap. Additionally, the annual average sales price per square foot rose faster for MLS sales in this range at 7.9% while non-MLS sales rose only 6.0% over the last year.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on April 12, 2018 at 8:53 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , , ,

March 2018 Market Update – Median Sale Price up $20,000 over March 2017

 

Median Sale Price up $20,000 over March 2017
17% of Sales are Closing Over Asking Price

For Buyers:
The percentage of seller concessions awarded to buyers has dropped down to 24% in the first quarter of 2018 after 2.5 years of consistently landing between 26%-28%, yet another indicator of dwindling buyer negotiating power in a prolonged supply shortage. The highest percentage of closings with seller concessions in the last 30 days were sale prices between $150K-$250K at 30-36%. Buyers were most likely to get closing costs in Youngtown at 54%, followed by Buckeye at 52%. Cities with the smallest percentage of closing costs were in affluent and retirement areas such as Paradise Valley, Sun City West and Sun Lakes at 2-3%.

For Sellers:
The percentage of successful sales over asking price is increasing. So far in March, 17% of sales closed over list price, last March it was 14%. Properties sold between $100K-$200K had the highest percentage at 24%, followed by the $200K-$300K range at 18%. The market between $300K-$1M is the most improved with 12% sold over list compared to only 7% last March. There were zero sales over list in the market over $1M. Areas with the highest percentage are El Mirage and Youngtown, both at 50%, followed by Tolleson with 45.5% of sales closing over asking price.

Commentary written by Tina Tamboer, Senior Housing Analyst with The Cromford Report
©2018 Cromford Associates LLC and Tamboer Consulting LLC

Posted on March 16, 2018 at 4:41 pm
Eric Karlene | Category: Market Updates - Cromford Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,