Baldwin County & Alabama Coastal MLS*: Observations for the Month of October 2012
Sales dollars increased 2% in October to $81,448,878 from September’s $79,669,696. This is 15% above October last year at $70,294,761. (Sect A p.2). A solid performance in a normally seasonally slow month. The 12 month moving average line of sales is continuing to point up. Inventories are continuing to come down.
On a unit basis, sales of all houses were virtually unchanged 355 this month vs. last month at 357, which is 3% down from last year’s 344. The year to year comparison remains reasonable. At the high end, the $900,000 and over sales remained 11 sales both this and last month as compared with 8 last year.
Used Home sales improved 2% to 323 this month vs. 317 last month, which is up 2% from last year’s 316 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 32 this month vs 40 last month which compares favorably with 28 last year. Increasing sales of New Homes is indicative of a recovering market.
New listings for New homes remained about the same 58 from 57 in September. Used homes New listings increased to 661 from 542 in September with net inventory down.
The absolute number of Used Active homes on the market, which had a slight peak mid-summer of ‘09, has once again been improving. In October, there were 3,287 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,634 in September. The New home market, which peaked in October 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sits at 283.
The Absorption rate for New homes was 8 months of inventory for October vs. 9 in September. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 10 months of inventory for October vs. 11 in September. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in October 2008 to 10 months this October.
Average sales price for all homes has been stable for the past year. For New units, prices increased to $250,201 from $189,984 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices decreased to $227,376 from $227,446 in September.
Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in October was 216 this month vs. 236 last month. This indicates that older inventory is selling, which is a good sign. Days On Market for Used was 179 this month vs. 172 last month.
We see strength in the second home market, which is needed for the coastal area to gain strength. While there is still a lot of inventory, I think the situation on the coast has turned quite positive.