Lake Norman’s January 2010 Single Family Housing Statistics
After preparing Lake Norman’s December 2009 Sales Analysis I was feeling pretty optimistic about our short-term Lake Norman home sales. With high numbers of conditional and pending sales at year’s end, it looked to me as if we would close about 60 sales this past month. While we did exceed the abysmal 28 homes sold in January 2009 our January 2010 numbers are actually very disappointing.
- Active Listings dropped 15%. While any drop in inventory is good news in this market, our inventory actually increase by over 7% from December’s low of 1161. One of the worst scenarios for our Lake Norman housing market would be an increase in inventory. Right now, based upon our January sales, we are back up to a 25.4 month supply of active listings. Remember that 6-8 months of supply is considered a balanced housing market.
- Contingent Sales plumetted by 81% compared to the 16 in January of 2009. These are the homes under contract that are contingent upon the buyer’s home selling. Clearly, Lake Norman sellers are much less willing to accept contingent offers than they were last year.
- Conditional Sales increased 129%! These are homes that just went under contract and still have financial and inspection conditions. Homebuyers were definitely out looking and buying in January. I know that I showed property all month to both local and out-of-state buyers…even in the snow!
- Pending sales had a very slight increase of 4%. These are the contracts that are past inspections and are just waiting to close. So, while we experienced a significant increase in newly opened sales contracts, our pending sales would indicate that our February Lake Norman home sales will be about the same as February 2009. After 4 consecutive months of healthy sales increases compared to the prior year, will our sales flatten out next month?
- The number of closed sales increased by 75% compared to January 2009. This means that we have had sales increases compared to the prior year for four consecutive months. I would feel more like celebrating if we were up against better numbers but since January 2009 was so low 49 is actually the third lowest month of sales in Lake Norman for the past 5+ years. Our absorption rate (number of months of inventory of homes for sale) jumped back up to a 25-month supply. Remember that 6-8 months of inventory reflects a balanced market.
- It is important to note that our average sales price dropped 18% compared to January 2009 to only $375,027.
6-Year Comparison of Lake Norman Home Sales By Month
* Please note that all of my numbers come from the Charlotte Region Multiple Listing Service and will not include sales that took place outside of our MLS.
**I have made an adjustment of the totals reflecting the ACTUAL sales every month in 2009 and the totals in the prior calendar year. The columns may not add up but I do my best with what I have to work with!
While one might celebrate our 49 sales this past month, if you look at the history of January sales in our Lake Norman market, you will quickly see that our sales were well below even January 2008 numbers. After 4 consecutive months of sales increases, will we see this trend end this month? My prediction is that they will be just about equal to February 2009. We certainly aren’t out of the woods yet. Keep looking for a decrease in our months of inventory until we get down to that magic 6-8 months. That will be the first substantial indication that our Lake Norman housing market is turning around.