Last year, U.S. consumers seemed to be operating with a renewed but cautious optimism. The stock market was strong, wages were edging upwards and home buying activity was extremely competitive. Not much has changed in 2018 in terms of those measures, yet there is a sort of seasoned prudence mixed into the high emotions that go with a major expense like a home purchase. We are now several years deep into a period of rising prices and low inventory. Those in the market to buy a home have caught on. As sellers attempt take advantage of rising prices, expect buyers to be more selective.
Closed Sales increased 11.1 percent for existing homes and 6.9 percent for new homes. Pending Sales increased 18.0 percent for existing homes and 25.5 percent for new homes. Inventory decreased 28.6 percent for existing homes but increased 6.4 percent for new homes. The Median Sales Price was up 9.7 percent to $175,500 for existing homes but remained flat at $358,903 for new homes. Days on Market decreased 15.6 percent for existing homes and 3.3 percent for new homes. Supply decreased 30.0 percent for existing homes and 1.8 percent for new homes.
Whatever external forces are placed upon residential real estate markets across the country – whether they are related to tax legislation, mortgage rates, employment situation changes, new family formations, the availability of new construction and the like – the appetite for home buying remains strong enough to drive prices upward in virtually all markets across the country. New sales are not necessarily following that trend, but monthly increases are expected until at least late summer.
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*Information provided courtesy of KCRAR and Heartland MLS