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 we are at this very moment…an almost live insight into the heartbeat of the Lake Norman housing market.
I always get excited to do this Hot Sheet analysis each month because it provides me with the mid-month pulse of our Lake Norman real estate market. So where are we today? The numbers below give us a bit of a mixed message for this month but seem to support the up and down trend we have seen so far in 2016. Sound familiar? Let’s take a closer look:
Lake Norman Real Estate’s August 2016 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. These numbers represent a real time snapshot of the past two week’s activity. (August 8th – 22st. As always, I have included the past 6 months so that you can put these numbers in perspective. Below is the July chart using my data since 2009.
August Hot Sheet Numbers for the Past 8 Years
After June’s record breaking closed sales and then last month’s 12% drop but high under contract numbers I have been anticipating at least one month of high closed sales in the short term and it looks like it may be this month based upon the numbers above. But, you never know how many closings we will have in the next 10 days! We currently have 307 single family homes under contract (sellers have accepted an offer but the sale is not complete) in all of Lake Norman compared to last month’s 316 and last year’s end of August’s/early September’s 268. This bodes well for the short term.
- New listings: At 80, our number of new listings added to our inventory in the past two weeks is the lowest in the past 6 months and even lower than all August’s but two since 2009. Our inventory of homes for sale in our Lake Norman area had actually crept up in the past 3 months but it looks they peaked and are now headed downwards. As of today we have 975 active listings in all of Lake Norman down from last month’s 1011 and June’s 1132.
- Our number of brand NEW “Under Contract but Continue to Show” homes, formally called Conditional and Contingent sales, in our MLS, at 82 is well below April, May and July’s but higher than June’s. This further underscores the up and down nature of 2016. However, it is also worth noting that 82 is the highest August hot sheet number since I started this report in 2009. While we are up and down I need at the same time to emphasize that overall 2016 has been and continues to be a very good year.
- Our number of Under Contract No Show/Pending sales, at 40 is the second highest this year and the second highest since 2009. 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 home sales contracts will most likely close by the end of this month or in September.
- 92 Hot Sheet Closed Sales is down right impressive, second only to June of this year and the highest by a large margin than all prior August Hot Sheet’s. So far this month we have closed 107 sales so I am hopeful that we will log in more than August 2015’s 162 sales. Keep in mind, as always, that we have had a surge of new construction this year so these MLS numbers are lower than our actual total sales because so many new homes are sold directly to buyers rather than through the MLS.
Clearly, over all, Lake Norman’s real estate market remains very active even when accounting for our traditional seasonal slowdown. I just listedand sold a home in The Point in the $700’000’s in one day last week which is really remarkable. That said, I am still seeing quite a variety of trends depending on location, types of properties and price ranges. Multiple offers are not uncommon in the $200,000’s and our lower price ranges are selling faster than the higher price ranges. In our trade-up price ranges exceptional properties are selling quickly but otherwise this price niche is unpredictable. Inventory has definitely peaked for the year so competition is going to be strong for good new listings. I am still counseling my buyers to watch the market daily for new listings and price reductions. The average days on market has dropped significantly, especially for “good” new listings. But properties that aren’t perfect are still sitting. If buyers are willing to do remodeling, then now is a great opportunity to buy an older waterfront home that needs work, has been on the market for a long time but is in a great location or has great water. The waterfront tear-downs/fixers are still coming on the market but at higher prices than in the past years since the recession. To get a nice waterfront home you really need to be looking at least in the $700,000’s depending on the location.
If you drive around almost every area on Lake Norman you will see an amazing amount of new construction. I sold a waterfront home in Sherrill’s Ford recently and as I drive more and more on the west side of Lake Norman I am amazed at the number of large developments breaking ground in both Sherrill’s Ford and Denver including a new “Publix coming soon” sign at the corner of Campground and Hwy 150. And, interest rates remain amazingly low and are now expected to stay in the 3%’s for the rest of the year. Don’t forget that we have very few distressed sales, (Less than 2% of our inventory are distressed properties: foreclosures and short sales), so a bargain may actually be a really well priced home that is in a good location with a good floor plan. My Mantra for 2016 remains: Think location, good floorplans and resale and look for good waterfront opportunities before they are gone. And, if you find a property that suits you, don’t wait too long to act!
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