Would you be surprised to know that many of those relocating to Lake Norman do so only after first deciding that they want to live on a lake in the southeastern US and then determining through their own research that Lake Norman is the best lake in the southeastern US? Perhaps its our 520 miles of shoreline that offers every kind of housing from modest cabins to grand estates but there is no doubt Lake Norman is one of THE destinations for those seeking a lifestyle change.
Until about March of 2007 our waterfront homes and lots were appreciating at a much faster rate than the non-waterfront homes throughout the Lake Norman area. Because we have a finite number of watefront lots/homes, the limited supply and high demand resulted in very strong sales and increased price appreciation compared to other homes in our lake communities.
What a difference a year makes. And, the downward trend continues as you can see from this new sales analysis:
2008 Spring/Summer Waterfront Trends
|Conditional & Pending Listings||38||26||+46%|
6 Month Sales 2008 Versus 2007
|1/16/08 – 7/16/08||1/16/07 – 7/16/07||% Change|
|Average Sales Price||$947,272||$911,366||+4%|
- The number of active waterfront listings continue to increase at a rate of over 15% since late April of this year
- The number of Conditional, Contingent and Pending sales is 46% higher than at the end of April of this year (are things picking up?)
- The number of closed sales for the same 6-month period in 2008 versus 2007 dropped a whopping 64%
- The average sales price in this same period increased by 4%
With 621 active waterfront listings on the market at today’s rate of sales (86 in 6 months or 172 in a year), the number of months of supply of active listings is an incredible 43 months! Keep in mind that a balanced real estate housing market has between 6-8 months of inventory.
What an amazing set of numbers. We have literally seven times the inventory levels of a balanced market yet average prices have hardly budged!
As I show waterfront homes the number of vacant homes definitely out-numbers ones that are still occupied. Sellers seem to be holding out hope that the market will pick-up while buyers are waiting for prices to drop. I think this is particularly evident in our Lake Norman waterfront homes which may be why sales are so slow. Both sides are in a holding pattern waiting for the other side to give. Since at least some of these homes are second homes perhaps the sellers are less motivated and many of the buyers don’t have to move since this is a lifestyle choice rather than out of necessity. It’s like watching a blinking contest…who is going to blink first? There is no doubt in my mind that prices of waterfront homes will come down…but by how much and when is truly impossible to predict!
Sometimes the decision to move in to a beautiful waterfront home on Lake Norman shouldn’t be about buying at the bottom but rather taking advantage of every year you can live here!
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