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.
As I wrote last month, while hard to explain, our Lake Norman real estate market seems to be oblivious to the crazy global economy and US downgrade. After a relatively strong June, July and August, our housing numbers are continuing at about the same pace despite it all. The report below would seem to be an indication that our September/October Lake Norman real estate sales may exceed our September and October 2010 home sales.
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. (September 7th – 21st). As always, I have included the past 6 months so that you can put these numbers in perspective.
- New listings: The number of new listings coming on the market continues to decline now that our Spring/Summer busy season is technically behind us. If you add our new listings to the 26 back-on-market we only had a total of 91 Lake Norman properties added to our housing inventory. At the same time we had 29 sales close and 49 new contracts for a net increase of 13 homes on the market and this does not include expired and withdrawn listings. At this point our overall number of active listings/homes for sale in Lake Norman is consistently dropping but is still too high compared to our sales. (We are still in double-digit months of inventory).
- The number of properties that came back-on-the-market, most likely due to cancelled contracts, has increase this month as they have throughout the country. Challenges continue related to securing financing as home loans are very challenging to obtain due to tight restrictions.
- The number of price changes actually dropped significantly this month. This may be due to our declining inventory or seasonal trends but it will be important to watch as a continued decline may reflect a strengthening of our prices.
- Pending home sales declined from last month’s high but are the second highest this year. This indicates our closed sales for the next 30 days should remain fairly robust. Pending home sales are contracts that have passed all of their conditions/contingencies/Due Diligence Deadlines and are just sitting ready to close.
- The number of closed sales reported in the past two weeks dropped to 29 after last month’s 46. So far this entire month only 34 closed sales have been reported to our MLS compared to 55 last month, 45 in July, 44 in June, 30 in May, 50 in April, 34 in March, 20 in February, 18 in January and 60 in December. Since our overall Lake Norman pending sales remain fairly high, my best guess is that we should at least match last September’s closed sales of 78 but not approach last month’s 105 which made it the second strongest month for Lake Norman home sales since 2007!
- Our Contingent, Conditional sales and our new category of Actives/Due Diligence are what make me so optimistic about our current market. Rather than experiencing a seasonal drop, we are seeing relatively strong numbers of recently accepted offers which bodes well for our future sales in October/November.
Given the erratic nature of our 2011 Lake Norman real estate market, I find it prudent to literally take it one month at a time rather than try to guesstimate our long-term market. Rather than a double-dip, it looks like 2011 may eek out sales equal to 2010 if we can continue our current numbers for the last few months of the year. Considering our abysmal sales in January, February and May, this is certainly a remarkable turn around.
With our range of the months of supply of active listings at 10 – 13 months compared to the national average of 9.4 months and a balanced real estate market of 6-8 months, we clearly have a ways to go. Economic uncertainty and consumer confidence are significant hurdles for a housing recovery. However, I am encouraging my buyers to buy if they find a good home at a good price. While I don’t see prices going up in Lake Norman this year or even next, I also don’t see that many truly exceptional bargains. Prices in general are low as are interest rates. In my opinion, now through the end of 2011 may represent a great opportunity for Lake Norman home buyers. 2012 is looking very murky due to the global economy but our Lake Norman housing market seems to march to be beat of its’ own drummer. If we see a turn around in consumer confidence then we are playing a new ball game.
Learn More About Life in Lake Norman: