Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for November 2012
Sales in November declined by 3% to $175,290,274 from October’s $180,739,461, up a healthy 11% from last November’s $158,075,509. The 12 month moving average line for total dollar sales continues to move up indicating improving market conditions. This is the beginning of slowest three months of the sales season. So it is best not to try to read too much into these results.
Unit sales were down 4% to 1,018 in November from 1,056 in October, a decrease of 38. This is up 5% from November 2011 at 972. This is 4% unfavorable to our projection of 1,055 sales expected for November and 7% unfavorable year to date. The complete monthly projections from ABRE, (a joint project between ACRE and Brander Real Estate) ,can be found here http://goo.gl/WFHrO along with the worksheets that show the methodology. New sales declined 9% to 124 homes this month from 126 in October, a decrease of 2 units. Used sales declined 4% to 894 homes in November from 930 last month, a decrease of 36 (Sect E p.3).
This month total inventory is 16% lower at 9,193 vs. 10,993 last year and 10,257 last month. The drop in the current month is caused by month-end expirations which should come back on the market shortly. It is encouraging to see total inventory below 10,000. Active New listings decreased to 764 in November from 993 in October, a decline of 229 units (Sect E p.3). Housing permits went up in Jefferson County to 77 for October from 67 in September. Shelby County permits went up to to 28 from 18 (see website for details). Permits are (marginally)exceeding sales once again.
Absorption rate for New and Used homes is fairly steady. New homes are at 6 months supply this month which is better than last year at this time at 8 months (Sect E p.3). New home supply last month shows 8 months. Under $100,000 New homes is at 15 months supply. The New homes in the $100,000-$700,000 price range have normal inventory levels in the 4-8 month range. Higher price ranges are one to two years of supply (Sect C p.1 and Sect E p.3.)
Absorption for Used homes in November shows 9 months, three months better than the 11 months last year. Used Active listings at 8,429 are lower than the 10,051 last year (Sect E p.3). Interestingly, the under $100,000 market with an average list price of $59,256, which makes up 33% of all listings, is at 7 months of inventory, which drags the overall months of inventory down for all homes.
Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 201 compared to last month at 181. The Used homes DOM was 148 in November, compared with 143 last month (Sect A p.18). NOTE: DOM for Used homes indicates that well priced homes are moving in less than 6 months. If the home is not selling, reduce the price, particularly since we are in the slower sales season of the year.
Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $234,210 from $247,711 last month (Sect A p2). Average sales prices for Sold Used homes increased to $163,589 from $160,783 last month (Sect A p2). The average price for Used Homes has been moving up steadily since the beginning of the year. The 12 month moving average line for New home prices has also been heading up quite nicely since the beginning of the year. Average Home prices, new and used, are improving (Sect A p2). The price of any specific home still remains under pressure. Just a note: Average prices are up slightly from 2007 levels.