Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for September 2011
Sales in September declined 12% to $176,754,946 from August’s $200,691,237, up 9% from last September’s $162,426,387. This month to month fluctuation is in line with the normal seasonal contraction without the distortion caused by the expiration of last year’s tax credit. The 12 month moving average line for total dollar sales remains tilted slightly upward. Year to date total $ sales were down 3% to $1,534,598,983 vs $1,580,081,340, and unit sales were off 4% to 9,450 vs 9,869 last year. This is a modest reduction considering the absence of major government actions such as the tax credit.
Total unit sales were down 9% to 1,101 in September from 1,214 in August, a decrease of 113. This is a 13% improvement from September 2010 at 973. New sales improved 6% to 139 homes this month from 131 in August, an increase of 8 units. Used sales declined 11% to 962 homes in September from 1,083 last month, a decrease of 121 (Sect E p.3).
This month Total Inventory is lower at 11,235 vs. 13,612 last year. Active New listings decreased to 925 in September from 1,216 in August, a decline of 291 units (Sect E p.3).For the second month, Housingpermits showed a big increase in Jefferson County to 140 in August from 117 in July. Shelby County was down to 16 from 19 (see website for details).
Absorption rate for New and Used homes last month remain high. New homes at 8 months supply this month and a reduced sales pace, is one month worse than last year at this time (Sect E p.3). The situation remains distressed. New home supply seems to be accumulating. Under $100,000 New homes are at 11 months supply. (Sect C p.1 and Sect E p.3.) New home inventories in higher price ranges (above $400,000), remain excessive at over a year.
Absorption for Used homes in September 2011 shows 10,310 Used Active listings as a lower number than 12,365 last year (Sect E p.3), which is 12 months of supply, a bit better than 14 months last year (Sect E p.3). The listing activity is somewhat less than last year as is sales activity….
Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses was 206 compared to last month at 199 . The Used homes DOM was 149 in September, compared with 149 last month (Sect A p.18). NOTE: DOM for Used Homes indicates that well priced homes are moving in less than 6 months. The high months of inventory indicates that sellers, including bank owners, are still holding out for higher prices. Newsflash: If the home is not selling, reduce the price, particularly since we are entering the slower sales season of the year.
Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $220,825 from $235,413 last month (Sect A p2). Average sales prices for Sold Used homes decreased to $151,830 from $156,835 last month (Sect A p2). The twelve month moving average price line for Used Homes has been quite steady since mid 2009 and is now showing an uptrend. Average Home prices, new and used, have stabilized and show an upward trend (Sect A p2). This is mostly a reflection in the change of “mix” with more larger homes being sold, but the price of any specific home remains under pressure.