Alabama Coastal Real Estate Yet Another Record In November

Baldwin County & Alabama Coastal MLS*: Observations for the Month of November 2016

Sales dollars decreased 5% in November to $127,234,937 from October $133,794,557. This is up a remarkable 36% from last year’s record level of $93,511,408. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales, after a pause during the summer months, appears to have resumed its upward trend. Lack of new construction now seems to be depressing sales somewhat. Inventories are continuing to trend down very consistently.

Sales in most price categories show consistent improvement as do inventories. Check out the chart on page A-17 to fully appreciate the inventory trends. Still, inventory remains high, but improving, at over a year for anything over $500,000. Note that inventories over a year is less and less, for instance the price ranges of $600,000-$800,000 are at just 12.7 months. With the $500,000-$600,000 at 15 months.

In concert with ACRE, The Alabama Center for Real Estate, we have projected expectations for 2016. We use the ACRE provided data for the projections, which differs slightly from the data in this report. The projection for 2016 located here expects projected home sales in 2016 of 5,139, which is a -1.74% difference from 2015 actual of  5,230. Year to date through October actual sales are 7% above expectations. 317 more units were sold through November than the 4,386 projected.

On a unit basis, sales of all houses were off 28 at 480 this month vs. last month at 508, which is up from last year’s healthy level of 400. Used Home sales decreased to 403 this month vs. 415 last month, which is up from last year’s 357 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 77 this month vs 92 last month and compared with 43 last year. New listings for New homes decreased to 135 from 202 in October. Used homes New listings decreased to 506 from 603 in October with net inventory down.

The absolute number of Used Active homes on the market, which had a slight peak mid-summer of ‘09, has been consistently improving. In November, there were 2,992 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,417 in October and a new multi year low. New homes, which peaked in November 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sit at 618.

The Absorption rate for New homes was 7 months of inventory in November vs. 8 in October. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 6 months of inventory in November vs. 7 in October. 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 6 months this November. The inventory of homes in the upper price range remains high with homes priced $500,000 and over at a year’s supply, but even here we are seeing improvement. For instance the $600,000-$800,000 has only 12.7 months of inventory. I have been expecting construction to begin to pick-up in the under $400,000 range, and this has happened. Sales have been keeping up, so we have not seen an increase in inventory.

Average sales price for all homes has been static for the past year. For New units, average price increased to  $258,702 from $244,530 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices were virtually unchanged this month, $266,290 from $266,836 in October. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in November was 172 vs last month of 188. Days On Market for Used was 166 vs. last month 153.

The results point to a strong upcoming year, I believe.

TWB 12/9/2016

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