Want the very latest insight into our Lake Norman real estate market? So do I which is why, every month, I do a snapshot analysis of the middle two weeks of the month to get a sense of where our Lake Norman real estate market is at this very moment…an almost live insight into the heartbeat of the Lake Norman housing market. These Hot Sheet reports serve as pretty good predictors of our short-term Lake Norman real estate market.
The last two months pretty much blew our sales trends right out of the water. As of today the MLS has a total of 119 closed sales for May and 115 sales for June which are the two highest months’ sales since August of 2007! It appears from our numbers below that July will also be a very strong month of housing sales for Lake Norman. Will we match last month’s highs? Let’s take a look:
Lake Norman Real Estate’s Two-Week Hot Sheet
* The above chart is a summary of today’s “Hot Sheet” from the Charlotte Multiple Listing Service for single family homes in all of Lake Norman (area 13). These numbers represent a real time snapshot of the past two week’s activity. (July 7th – 21st). As always, I have included the past 6 months so that you can put these numbers in perspective.
I created this additional chart comparing just the July Hot Sheets for the past 3 years to help put our July 2012 numbers in perspective with the past Julys’, not just the past 6 months:
July Hot Sheet Numbers for the Past 4 Years
- New listings: Our number of new listings increased a bit from last month but remain relatively low. If you add our new listings to the 17 back-on-market we had a total of 105 Lake Norman properties added to our housing inventory in the past two weeks compared to last July’s 98, 112+ in July 2010 and 173 in July 2009. As of this morning the total number of active listings in Lake Norman had increased from our all time low of 752 in January back up to 981 which is still low historically and trending back down after a high of 985 a few weeks ago. The reason these low numbers are such good news is because keeping our inventory low will help stabilize our own Lake Norman housing market no matter what is happening in other areas or states.
- The number of properties that came back-on-the-market, most likely due to cancelled contracts, were about equal to last month and a bit lower when compared to past months and years. Clearly home buyers are still experiencing challenges with loan approvals and appraisals but over all properties that are under contract are more likely to close today than past years. Every loan approved warrants a celebration!
- The number of price changes dropped back down after last month’s jump and are well below prior Julys’. There is no doubt that overpriced listings are sitting until they are reduced to the “magic” number that generates offers, even multiple offers.
- Pending home sales (Now called “Under Contract No Showings” by our MLS) reached their highest levels this year and for the most part were higher than previous Julys’. Pending or “Under Contract No More Showings” are contracts that have passed all of their conditions/contingencies/Due Diligence Deadlines and are just waiting to close. These properties will most likely close by the end of this month or early August.
- The number of closed sales reported in the past two weeks was 36% HIGHER than last month’s and were the highest this year and when compared to all previous Julys’. When all our numbers were in we actually recorded 115 closed sales in Lake Norman last month and 119 in May which, as I said above, makes these the highest months’ sales since August 2007. So far this entire month a whopping 67 properties have already closed comparecd to 45 closed sales last month, 44 in May 43 in April, 43 in March, 34 in February, 21 in January. Considering all of these numbers, my best guess is that we will close at least 100 single family home sales this month. Our numbers certainly are remaining strong for yet another month or two in 2012 which is pretty exciting!
- Unlike last month, our “Under Contract but Continue to Show” properties, formally called Conditional and Contingent sales in our MLS, took a bit of a hit in the past few weeks. As the very most recent properties to go under contract, this may be an indication that our Lake Norman housing market is beginning to slow down after 7 very strong months in 2012.
This month our closed and pending sales remain strong which is very good for our short-term Lake Norman housing market. Our decline in the number of new contracts does seem to indicate that the pace of our sales may be slowing down which is common as we head into late summer and fall. Just as I wrote last month:
Overall, these numbers are very encouraging. If inventory remains low, and our sales are at least steady each month it would indicate that our Lake Norman housing market has hit bottom. Our current number of months of supply of active listings stands at about 8.5 months using our 115 closed sales in June. With a balanced real estate market goal of 6-8 months, Lake Norman has dipped into this territory for the first time since the recession hit!. Here in the Charlotte/Lake Norman housing market our downturn hit in spring 2007 which was a bit later than most of the country. It is reasonable to expect that we might not follow national trends as we heal. I continue to encourage my buyers to buy if they find a good home at a good price, especially waterfront homes. While I don’t anticipate prices going up in Lake Norman this year, I also don’t see that many truly exceptional bargains. (Less than 8% of our inventory are distressed properties: foreclosures and shortsales). Prices in general are low as are interest rates. In my opinion, 2012 represents a great opportunity for potential Lake Norman home buyers. Is that a light I see at the end of the tunnel? Only time will tell!
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