Category Archives: ACRE

That Is It Folks!

I have been providing these reports for almost 10 years.

There has been a continuing decrease in subscribers, as well as changes by the two MLS systems, which would require me to substantially rework the programs. The Baldwin MLS is switching systems, similarly the Birmingham MLS is requiring additional changes.
The Programs which I wrote were based on some very old versions of Access (a Microsoft product) which is also way past it’s prime and in bad need of rewriting from scratch in something modern.
This has made me realize it is time to discontinue the reports.
I can’t thank you all enough for the support and loyalty over the years.
I’ll continue to provide support to the Alabama Center For Real Estate. including surveys, reports and yearly market forecasts. Their site has basic trend data, but not as much detail as I provided.
I’m also freeing up more time to work more in the advanced machine learning areas with healthcare data, something I’ve found quite interesting and challenging and time consuming.
For the time being the Real Estate market look pretty stable and I hope it remain so for all of you.
My very best,
And again,
Thank you.
Tom
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Birmingham Area Sales Slightly Cooler In July

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for July 2017

Sales were lower both in units and dollars than last year, which was very robust.  Average prices are mostly flat. Total dollar sales for July were $361,764,378, off 5% from $380,693,280 last year, and off 15% from last month of $424,501,685. The market is cooling modestly from last years’ torrid pace.

Total Unit sales were down 8% at 1,637 in July from 1,765 last year and off by 13% compared with 1,891 in June. New sales were down 43 at 132 homes this month, vs. 175 in June, and off by 73 from 205 last year. The low inventory level of new homes suggests a good environment for builders. Used sales were 1,505 homes in July, off 12% from 1,716 last month, and off by 3% from 1,560 last year (Sect E p.3).

ACRE numbers are slightly different from those we report. For ACRE, our month by month 2017 forecast can be seen here: ACRE. For Birmingham, the full year projection for 2017 = 15,238, a 3.6% difference from 2016 actual of 14,705. The cumulative error thru June is minus .6% for the year; that is actuals of 7,554 are behind projections of 7,559. There is a cumulative error on projections of 5 units. Check the link for details when the July numbers are posted.

Total inventory is slightly higher this month at 8,497 vs. last month at 8,155 and less than 9,510 last year. (Sect C p.1). Active New listings decreased to 1,068 in July from 1,081 in June (Sect E p.3). Absorption rate for New homes is at 6 months supply this month, which is less than 7 months last year. (Sect E p.3). New homes have normal inventory levels in the 4-8 month range depending on area and price range (Sect C p.1).

Absorption for Used homes in July shows 5 months, which is lower than 6 last year. Used Active listings at 7,429 are up from last month of 7,074, but less than 8,383 last year (Sect E p.3). Inventory levels have continued to trend down from prior years. A notable exception is however, the over $900,000 price range which has trended up a bit. Market performance is highly area specific, so check the individual area charts. For instance, Mountain Brook has between 1 and 6 months of inventory (except the over $900,000 range with 7 months, 45 units) and 4 months overall. There are a number of MLS areas, particularly those known as the “over the mountain” communities, showing similarly low levels, including Homewood, which has 3 months of inventory.

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 217 compared with last month at 204. The Used homes DOM was 102 in July vs 99 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $287,138 from $297,375 last month (Sect A p2). Over a several month period, prices seem to be relatively unchanged. Average sales price for Sold Used was $215,191 this month compared to $217,052 last month. (Sect A p2). Given the general robustness of sales and low inventory levels, prices on average seem quite stable.

TWB 8/13/2017  

Baldwin County Sales 2017 In July Up A Remarkable 34% From 2016

Baldwin County & Alabama Coastal MLS*: Observations for the Month of July 2017

Sales decreased 7% in July to $206,527,230 from June’s outstanding $222,618,471. This is up an impressive 34% from last year’s record of $154,395,353. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales is headed up substantially. This month’s totals were driven to a large degree by a number of higher end New unit sales in Perdido Key; 14 over $900,000 along with 12 in the $800,000- $900,000 price range.

Inventories continue to drop. Check out the chart on page A-17 to fully appreciate the trend. Note that there are less price range categories for inventories over a year. Now, only the $700,000 and over categories have over a year of inventory. This drop in the upper price level inventories has been very substantial and sustained over the last few months.

In concert with ACRE, The Alabama Center for Real Estate, we have projected expectations for 2017. We use the ACRE provided data for the projections, which differs slightly from the data in this report. The projection for 2017 located here expects projected home sales in 2017 at 6,276, which is a 12.65% over 2016 actual of  5,571. This year through June actual sales are 4% above expectations. 3,312 sales were recorded so far this year which is ahead of the projection of 3,171 by 141 units.  

On a unit basis, sales of all houses were 693 this month vs. last month at 794, which is still well above last year’s healthy level of 627. Used Home sales decreased to 514 this month vs. 639 last month, which is up from last year’s 524 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 179 this month vs 155 last month and compared with 103 last year. New listings for New homes increased to 177 from 125 in June. Used homes New listings decreased to 514 from 639 in June 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 improving. In July, there were 2,787 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,330 in June and a new multi year low. New homes, which peaked in July 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sit at 723, and that number has been gradually increasing.

The Absorption rate for New homes was 6 months of inventory in July vs. 9 in June and 11 months last year. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 6 months of inventory in July vs. 7 in June. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in June 2008 to 6 months this July. I had been expecting construction to begin to pick-up in the under $400,000 range, and this has happened to a modest degree.

Average sales price for all homes has begun to show an upwards trend. For New units, average price jumped to  $444,082 from $260,118 last month (see the 1st paragraph). (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices decreased this month, to $247,153 from $285,290 in June. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in July was 389 vs last month of 176 (due to the aforementioned high priced properties having sold). Days On Market for Used was 125 vs. last month 138. The peak summer selling season seems to be roaring!

TWB 8/13/2017

July Birmingham Real Estate Sales Off Slightly From Last Year

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for July 2016

The last few months have seen a dramatic pick up in dollar sales over last year; some of this volume has been recorded well after the month end reports, but since we re-run full history every month it is now apparent. For instance, roughly $15 million dollars of additional sales were recorded for June after our last monthly report. Inventories are down, and prices now seem to be increasing over the last three months. Total dollar sales for July were $353,471,738 down 4% from $368,148,744 last year, and down 14% from last month at $412,631,135. It will be interesting to see how much in late sales reports show up next month.

Total Unit sales were off 9% to 1,627 in July from 1,789 in June, a decrease of 162. This is off by 163 from last July at 1,790. New sales were up at 179 homes this month, and 164 in June, and up by 9 from 170 last year. The low inventory levels of new homes suggest a good environment for builders, and prices have begun to show a more solid uptrend. Used sales were 1,448 homes in July, off 11% from 1,625 last month, a decrease of 177,  off by 172 units  from 1,620 last year (Sect E p.3). Again, late sales reports will improve this result next month.

ACRE numbers are slightly different from those we report. With ACRE, we released our month by month 2016 forecast which can be seen here: ACRE. For Birmingham, the full year projection for 2016 = 13,460, a 1.25% difference from 2015 actual of 13,294.  July over performed the projection. The cumulative error is plus 7.6% year to date, that is actuals are running ahead of projections (through July).

Housing permits,  for June are down from last year . For Jefferson County, in June there were 60 permits compared with 109 last year. Shelby County was slightly ahead of last year’s level (see the web site).

Total inventory is slightly higher this month at 9,545 vs. last month at 9,471 and less than 10,505 last year. Active New listings decreased to 1,060 in July from 1,113 in June (Sect E p.3). Absorption rate for New homes is at 7 months supply this month, which is even with 7 months last year. (Sect E p.3). The New homes have normal inventory levels in the 4-8 month range depending on area and price range. (Sect C p.1). The level of inventory, both in months of inventory and housing units has been continuing to improve for the year.

Absorption for Used homes in July shows 7 months, which is less than the 8 last year. Used Active listings at 8,485 are up from last month of 8,358, and quite a bit less than 9,464 last year (Sect E p.3). Inventory levels have continued to trend down from prior years. Market performance is highly area specific, so check the individual area charts. For instance, Mountain Brook has between 1 and 5 months of inventory except in the over $900,000 category, which has 14 months of inventory (62 homes), with 9 sold in that price range last month. There are a number of MLS areas showing similarly low levels of inventory, including Homewood (only 4 months of inventory).

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 241 compared with last month at 205. The Used homes DOM was 113 in July vs 110 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes increased to $339,624 from $304,530 last month (Sect A p2), and prices seem to be increasing. Average sales price for Sold Used were $202,126 this month compared to $223,193 last month. (Sect A p2).

All in all, the market continues to look quite healthy.
TWB 8/14/2016

April Birmingham Real Estate Market Continues To Look Like Last Year

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for April 2016

This year seems to be unfolding almost identically to last as far as sales levels go. Inventories are down, and prices seem to be level with last year as well. Dollar sales in April experienced an expected increase of 12% to $319,627,228 from March at $285,245,363, a bit more than last April’s  $308,690,507 (up 4%). The 12 month moving average line for total dollar sales over the last six months has flattened.

Total Unit sales were up 1% to 1,508 in April from 1,488 in March, an increase of 20. This is down by 19 from last April at 1,527. New sales were down at 134 homes this month, and 171 in March and off by 13 from 147 last year. The low inventory levels of new homes suggest a good environment for builders, although prices seem to be steady. Used sales were 1,374 homes in April, up 3% from 1,317 last month, an increase of 57, and off by 6 units  from 1,380 last year (Sect E p.3).

ACRE numbers are slightly different from those we report. With ACRE, we released our month by month 2016 forecast which can be seen here: ACRE. For Birmingham, the full year projection for 2016 = 13,460, a 1.25% difference from 2015 actual of 13,294.  March overperformed the projection. The cumulative error is plus 2.71% year to date (thru March).

Housing permits, the census bureau section that supplies this data, has been down for three months now. They have made data available in a different format and I’m not entirely sure that the data is comparable, but it seems to be. Based on the new data, housing permits are up as I would expect . For Jefferson County, in February and March there were 128 and 156 permits respectively compared with 98 and 125 last year. Similarly, Shelby County has been running about double last year’s level (see the web site).

Total inventory is slightly higher this month at 9,599 vs. last month at 8,924 and less than 9,833 last year. Active New listings decreased to 1021 in April from 1,077 in March (Sect E p.3). Absorption rate for New homes is at 7 months supply this month, which is even with 7 months last year. (Sect E p.3). The New homes for the most part have normal inventory levels in the 1-9 month range depending on area and price range. However, the $800,000-$900,000 range has 18 months of supply (12 houses) (Sect C p.1). The level of inventory, both in months of inventory and housing units has been continuing to improve for the year.

Absorption for Used homes in April shows 7 months, which is the same as 7 last year. Used Active listings at 8,654 are up from last month at 8,223, and a bit less than 9,125 last year (Sect E p.3). Inventory levels have continued to trend down from prior years. Market performance is highly area specific, so check the individual area charts. For instance, Mountain Brook has between 1 and 6 months of inventory except in the $6-700,000 range (9 months of inventory), and the over $900,000 category, which has 16 months of inventory (59 homes), with 7 sold in that price range last month . There are a number of MLS areas showing similarly low levels of inventory, including Homewood (only 4 months of inventory).

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 211 compared with last month at 202. The Used homes DOM was 126 in April vs 128 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes increased to $305,698 from $279,918 last month (Sect A p2), and prices seem to be flat over the last year. Average sales price for Sold Used homes increased to $202,812 from $180,242 last month (Sect A p2). The moving average price for all homes has flattened for the past year. (Sect A p2).

TWB 5/8/2016

Alabama Coastal Real Estate Sales Have A Healthy Start In January

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

Sales dollars decreased an expected 27% in January to $90,529,509 from December $124,697,839. This is 4% above January last year at $86,783,782. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales, which had continued to point up steadily for three years, has now gotten a healthy upwards tilt. Lack of new construction now seems to be depressing sales somewhat. Inventories are continuing to trend down.

Sales in most price categories show consistent improvement. Inventories are improving. Check out the chart on page A-17 to fully appreciate the inventory trends. Still, inventory remains high at over a year for anything over $500,000.

In concert with ACRE, The Alabama Center for Real Estate, we have projected expectations for 2015. We use the ACRE provided data for the projections, which differs slightly from the data in this report. The projection for 2015 located here expected a unit increase of 6% over 2014 actual, for the full year we got an increase of 9%. For 2016 we expect a very slightly slower market than 2015, details to follow.

On a unit basis, sales of all houses were off 22% at 377 this month vs. last month at 487, which is identical with last year’s healthy level of 377. Used Home sales decreased 24% to 318 this month vs. 420 last month, which is off 6% from last year’s 340 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 59 this month vs 67 last month and compared with 37 last year. New listings for New homes increased to 118 from 103 in December. Used homes New listings almost doubled to 804 from 415 in December 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 January, there were 3,133 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,450 in December and a new multi year low level. New homes, which peaked in January 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sit at 474.

The Absorption rate for New homes was 7 months of inventory in January vs. 8 in December. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 7 months of inventory in January vs. 8 in December. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in December 2008 to 7 months this January. The inventory of homes in the upper price range remains high with homes over $500,000 at over a year’s supply, but even here we are seeing improvement. I would expect construction to begin to pick-up in the under $400,000 range, but so far have not seen it.

Average sales price for all homes has been improving modestly for the past year. For New units, price increased to  $248,944 from $242,552 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices decreased to $238,496 from $258,207 in December. The price trend is up for the year. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in January was 175 vs last month of 161. Days On Market for Used was 175 compared to last month 160.

TWB 2/16/2016

Birmingham Residential Real Estate Even with Last October

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for October 2015

In June the Birmingham MLS changed its base system. We have recoded the data to be consistent. Let me know if you see anything strange!

Dollar sales in October experienced a seasonal decline of 19% to $237,234,031 from September $292,441,366, off by 3% from last October’s of $245,404,227. The 12 month moving average line for total dollar sales has flattened. It seems to me that there has been a somewhat larger number of late reported sales which means that prior month totals are higher than what we showed last month by larger amounts than has historically been the case. It is important to view the overall trend and not get hung up on the precision of the latest month’s number.

Total Unit sales were down 3% to 1,240 in October from 1,515 in September, a decrease of 46. This is even  with last October at 1303. New sales were off at 104 homes this month and 179 in September and off from 143 last year. The price pressure and low inventory levels of new homes suggests a good environment for builders. Used sales were 1,136 homes in October, down 3% from 1,336 last month, a decrease of 45, and up by 70 units or .6% from 1,160 last year (Sect E p.3).

ACRE numbers are slightly different from those we report. With ACRE, we released our 2015 forecast which can be seen here: ACRE. For September, the latest available: September sales were 5% or 59 units above our forecast. ACRE’s year-to-date sales forecast through September projected 10,358 closed transactions while the actual sales were 10,471 units, a cumulative variance of 1%.

Total inventory is about even this month at 9,533 vs. last month at 9,970 and about even with 9,876 last year. Active New listings decreased to 940 in October from 1,056 in September (Sect E p.3).

Housing permits were off in Jefferson County to 83 in September from 90 in August, which is off from 95 last year. Shelby County went from 30 to 28 in September, off from 38 last year.

Absorption rate for New homes is at 6 months supply this month, which is about even with 7 months last year. (Sect E p.3). The New homes for the most part have normal inventory levels in the 1-7 month range depending on area and price range. However, the $800,000-$900,000 range has 20 months of supply (Sect C p.1).

Absorption for Used homes in October shows 7 months which is about even with 8 last year. Used Active listings at 8,593 are even with last month at 8,914 and about the same as 8,936 last year (Sect E p.3). Market performance is highly area specific, so check the individual area charts. For instance, Mountain Brook has between 1 and 9 months of inventory except in the over $900,000 category, which has 10 months of inventory (45 homes), with 3 sold in that price range last month . The average days on market for that category is 251. There are a number of MLS areas showing similarly low levels of inventory, including Homewood and Fultondale.

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 189 compared with last month at 185. The Used homes DOM was 125 in October vs 120 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $305,408 from $310,805 last month (Sect A p2). Average sales price for Sold Used homes increased to $180,873 from $177,251 last month (Sect A p2). The moving average price for all homes has been up steadily for the past year. (Sect A p2).
TWB 11/13/2015