Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for July 2014
Dollar sales in July declined slightly by 2% to $317,548,924 from June’s $322,649,595, up by 5% over last July’s $302,736,411. The 12 month moving average line for total dollar sales has flattened indicating uncertain market conditions.
Unit sales were down 2% to 1,534 in July from 1,559 in June, a decrease of 25. This is up 5% from last July at 1,468.
Using the ACRE data and results for forecasting, which are derived in a slightly different method than this report, we forecasted a full year gain of 8% for the full year. As of June the cumulative increase in units is 4%. We determined that the Birmingham MLS is assigning some sales to the Talladega market which were previously reported as part of Birmingham, thus reducing the reported sales in Birmingham, so the forecast is probably a bit more accurate than it appears on a “comparable” basis.
New sales improved by 3 units to 145 homes this month from 142 in June and about even with 149 last year. Used sales were 1,389 homes in July down 2% from 1,417 last month, a decrease of 28, and up by 52 units from 1,337 last year(Sect E p.3).
This month total inventory is 4% lower at 9,723 vs. last month at 10,179 and 10,674 last year. The drop in the current month is caused by month-end expirations which should come back on the market. Active New listings decreased to 735 in July from 1,044 in June (the highest level of new homes active since September 2011), a decline of 309 units (Sect E p.3). Housing permits were up in Jefferson County to 142 in May from 105 in April. Shelby County went from 49 to 25 in June. It is worth noting the high level of Multi-Family permits in Jefferson County of 432 Year to date compared with 322 in the same period last year. There has also been a high number of press mentions of new development activity not yet appearing in these numbers.
Absorption rate for New homes is at 5 months supply this month which is two months better than last year at this time. Last month though, shows 8 months of supply (Sect E p.3). The New homes for the most part have normal inventory levels in the 1-7 month range. (Sect C p.1 and Sect E p.3.)
Absorption for Used homes in July shows 8 months, two months better than 10 months last year. Used Active listings at 8,988 are lower than the 9,715 last year (Sect E p.3). The market performance is highly area specific, so check the individual area charts. For instance, Mountain Brook has about four months of inventory except in the over $900,000 category, which has 8 months of inventory (38 homes) with thirteen sold in that price range last month . The average days on market for that category is 133.
Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 211, compared with 201 last month. The Used homes DOM was 127 in July, compared with 131 last month (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $283,985 from $306.616 last month (Sect A p2). Average sales price for Sold Used homes increased to $198,971 from $196,973 last month (Sect A p2). The moving average price for all homes has been up steadily for the last year. (Sect A p2).
Note the MLS has added 20 new areas #320-570, which are placeholders for each county in the state. I have combined these into a single “other” area (400) with an aggregate of 7 sales last month.