Huntsville Real Estate Sales Flat in 2011


Huntsville/North Alabama Area MLS Observations: Real Estate Market December 2011

Year end summary:

TOTAL NEW USED New Avg price Used Avg price All Avg Price Total $ Sales
2010 8,544 1,857 6,687 $225,137 $147,760 $164,545 $1,412,705,316
2011 8,610 1,764 6,846 $228,839 $142,279 $160,086 $1,379,625,696
% change 0.77% -5.01% 2.38% 1.64% -3.71% -2.71% -2.34%

As the above chart illustrates, 2011 was largely even with 2010, but that was a win compared to multiple years of decline. Price pressure indicated by the decline in average prices will likely continue.

Projections:

We published our preliminary outlook for 2012 on the web site Here. I forecast a 2.2% increase in units for 2012. Currently this is based on my estimate of the January unemployment rate which will be released in Late February. Given the pricing pressures, it is likely that total dollar sales will be down slightly. The numbers will be revised when the final unemployment rate for January comes out. 

December sales improved 6% to $109,029,076 vs. November at $103,296,410. This was virtually identical to last year at $109,443,153. The twelve month moving average line on the total dollar sales chart is flat.

Total unit sales increased to 688 in December vs. 668 in November increasing of 20.

New sales increased to176 this month vs.142 last month, increasing 34.

Used sales decreased to 512 this month vs. 526 last month, decreasing 14 (Sect E  p.3).

Used inventory levels remain high this month at 12 months (see the chart Sect C p.1), with the situation particularly challenged in the higher price ranges. Used homes over $100,000 are still over 12 months of inventory and over $400,000 have two or more years of inventory.

New home absorption is 9 months of inventory overall, (with last month at 10 months), (E-1). The New Home inventory level in the $300,000-$500,000 is approximately 5 months (not bad).

There continue to be a large number of housing permits issued in Huntsville city, given the market conditions. November decreased to 78  vs. 79  in October (chart on the web site).

Total Active listings decreased this month to 7,920 compared to last month’s 9,034, which is below last year at this time at 8,879 with the reduction likely exaggerated due to year end expirations. (Sect A p.4 and Sect E p.3).  Active New listings decreased from 1,491 last month to 1,320 in December, down 171. (Sect E p.3). Active Used listings decreased from 7,543 last month to 6,600 this month, down 943 and below last year’s amount at this time of 7,473. (Sect E p.3).

Average Days on Market for Sold New homes was 177 vs.142 days last month, with Used at 142 in December compared with 149 in November (Sect A p.18). Days on Market at or below 6 months, while the inventory numbers are way higher, indicates well priced homes are selling. Sellers, including bank owners, are not adjusting to the new price reality which contributes to inventory build-up.

Average sales price for Sold New homes was $238,330vs. $212,742 last month. (Sect A p.2)

Average sales price for Sold Used homes was $131,021 vs. $138,949 last month. (Sect A p.2)

The Average price lines which were on a upwards slope for a while, turned down particularly for Used Homes. Prices for individual properties remain under pressure.

TWB 1/12/12

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