Lake Norman Hot Sheet: July 13, 2009
There has been so much speculation in the economic news about the U.S. housing market that I decided we needed a reality check. There is nothing better to shed some light on our Lake Norman Real Estate market than a visit to our Multiple Listing Service. The above chart is 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. As always, I have included the past 6 months so that you can put these numbers in perspective.
Here are some highlights:
New listings decreased by 22%…the lowest number this year! After a peak last month there are consistent signs that our inventory levels are heading downward. This is one key component of a bottom. Once our inventory is drop to a 6-8 month of supply we will be back in a balanced housing market here in Lake Norman.
The number of listings coming “Back on the Market” due to a canceled contract is still extremely high. Considering our pending and contingent/conditional numbers are dropping, then more homes fell out of contract than went under contract in the past two week. This is again a sign of the tremendous challenges involved in loans, appraisals and perhaps a lack of buyer’s confidence in the economy and/or housing market.
The number of price changes are back down to our April levels. This could be simply because the decreasing number of active listings is in line with the decreasing number of price changes when compared to their peak last month.
Pending home sales dropped 18.5% compared to last months high. If you follow the national housing market you will know that there is always much focus on pending sales since these are sales that are past conditions and contingencies and are waiting to close. Pending sales are looked at as the best indication of future closed sales. These have been strong nationally which is one reason why some of the media has been optimistic about the national housing market hitting bottom. However, here in Lake Norman, all numbers are pointing to the fact that June was perhaps the strongest month we will have this year and that sales will continue to decline through the end of 2009.
The number of closed sales remained equal to last month’s hot sheet. What I find interesting is that despite last month’s high pending sales of 54, we in fact only closed 44 in the past two weeks. Last month’s strong pending sales numbers did not result in higher closed sales this month, probably due to the number of contracts that failed to close.
Unfortunately, the number of new contracts, conditional and contingent sales, dropped for the second straight month. This further supports my feelings that our July and August numbers are going to be lower than June’s.
As always, I will close with a note about our months of supply of active listings. If we presume that we will close about 80 sales in July and we currently have 1582 active listings, we still have about a 20-month supply of homes for sale. It is still a buyers market here in Lake Norman!