Baldwin County & Alabama Coastal MLS*: Observations for the Month of September 2014
Sales dollars decreased 17% in September to $97,496,977 from August of $117,202,531. This is 13% off September last year at $111,720,189. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales which had continued to point up steadily for three years can now best be described as “squiggly.” I would characterize the market activity as “unusual”. Inventories continue trending down.
In concert with ACRE, The Alabama Center for Real Estate, we did projections for 2014 full year sales. We use the ACRE provided data for the projections, which differs slightly from the data in this report. We project unit sales for Baldwin County increasing by 32% over 2013 and the projected condo increase of 8% over 2013. As of September, the cumulative year over year change in units is up 4%, far short of the adjusted forecast. The condo actuals are cumulatively at about 8% below the forecast, with a 1% year over year change.
On a unit basis, sales of all houses were down 10% to 453 this month vs. last month at 504, which is off 2% from last year’s 462. There is still substantial inventory available to satisfy demand.
Used Home sales decreased 13% to 392 this month vs. 450 last month, which is even with last year’s 392 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 61 this month vs 54 last month and compared with 70 last year.
New listings for New homes increased to 83 from 70 in August. Used homes New listings increased to 679 from 624 in August 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 September, there were 3,641 Active Used homes, a reduction from 4,086 in August. The New home market, which peaked in September 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sits at 446.
The Absorption rate for New homes was 7 months of inventory in September vs. 8 in August. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 9 months of inventory for September vs. 10 in August. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in August 2008 to 9 months this September. The inventory of homes in the upper price range remains high with homes over $400,000 at over a year’s supply.
Average sales price for all homes has been improving modestly for the past year. For New units, prices decreased to $237,174 from $254.039 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices decreased to $211,810 from $229,965 in August. The price trend is up for the year. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in September was 163 this month vs. 212 last month. Days On Market for Used was 170 this month vs. 155 last month.