Category Archives: sales forecast

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  

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Birmingham Area Real Estate Sales in June Remain Robust

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for June 2017

June saw a reduction of 23% in dollar sales from May. Sales were lower both in units and dollars than last year, which was very robust.  Average prices are mostly flat. Total dollar sales for June were $400,193,493, off 5% from $421,620,788 last year, and off 7% from last month of $430,630,025.

Total Unit sales were down 4% at 1,774 in June from 1,841 last year and off by 8% compared with 1,924 in May. New sales were down 12 at 157 homes this month, vs. 169 in May, and off by 13 from 170 last year. The low inventory level of new homes suggests a good environment for builders. Used sales were 1,617 homes in June, off 8% from 1,755 last month, and off by 3% from 1,671 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 is minus .5% for the year; that is actuals are behind projections of 6,033 through May and at 6,002 actual thru May. Check the link to see when the June numbers are posted..

Total inventory is slightly higher this month at 8,821 vs. last month at 8,261 and less than 9,521 last year. (Sect C p.1). Active New listings increased to 1,052 in June from 1,039 in May (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 June shows 6 months, which is even with 6 last year. Used Active listings at 7,769 are up from last month of 7,222, but less than 8,400 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 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 204 compared with last month at 205. The Used homes DOM was 99 in June vs 107 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes increased to $303,506 from $302,028 last month (Sect A p2). Over a several month period, prices seem to be quite unchanged. Average sales price for Sold Used was $218,023 this month compared to $216,289 last month. (Sect A p2). Given the general robustness of sales and low inventory levels, prices on average seem quite stable, not yet increasing by much.

TWB 7/9/2017

Alabama Coastal Real Estate for June Continues to Outperform

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

Sales dollars decreased 5% in June to $219,531,971 from May’s outstanding $230,077,838. This is up an impressive 24% from last year’s record of $177,240,799. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales is moving up substantially.

Inventories continue to drop. Check out the chart on page A-17 to fully appreciate the inventory trends. 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. Note that 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 May actual sales are 3% above expectations. 2,623 sales were recorded so far this year which is ahead of the projection of 2,550.  

On a unit basis, sales of all houses were 787 this month vs. last month at 800, which is still well above last year’s healthy level of 666. Used Home sales decreased to 632 this month vs. 676 last month, which is up from last year’s 546 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 155 this month vs 124 last month and compared with 120 last year. New listings for New homes decreased to 112 from 204 in May. Used homes New listings decreased to 743 from 850 in May 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 June, there were 2,716 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,306 in May and a new multi year low. New homes, which peaked in June 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sit at 686.

The Absorption rate for New homes was 7 months of inventory in June vs. 9 in May. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 6 months of inventory in June vs. 7 in May. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in May 2008 to 6 months this June. I had been expecting construction to begin to pick-up in the under $400,000 range, and this has happened to a modest degree. Sales have been keeping up however, so we have not seen an increase in inventory.

Average sales price for all homes has begun to show an upwards trend. For New units, average price decreased to  $260,118 from $289,610 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices decreased this month, to $283,566 from $287,228 in May. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in June was 176 vs last month of 206. Days On Market for Used was 138 vs. last month 133. The peak summer selling season seems to be roaring!

TWB 7/9/2017

Alabama Coastal March Sales Reach Record Levels

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

Mar17BALDWINSales dollars increased a remarkable 82% in March to $205,223,539 from February $112,736,967. This is up 49% from last year’s record of $137,834,831. (Sect A p.2). The 12 month moving average line of sales, has been heading up substantially. When I saw the outstanding results I immediately went to look for problems in the data. The increase was, however, across a number of areas and price ranges and I found no obvious problems.

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. Note that price ranges in inventories over a year are fewer. Now only the $600,000 and over categories have over a year of inventory.

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 expected projected home sales in 2017 of 6,276, which is a 12.65% difference from 2016 actual of  5,571. This year through March actual sales are 4% above expectations. 1,415 sales were recorded so far this year which is ahead of the projection of 1,359.  

On a unit basis, sales of all houses were up at 763 this month vs. last month at 438, which is well above last year’s healthy level of 446. Used Home sales decreased to 358 this month vs. 364 last month, which is off from last year’s 592 (Sect A p.18). New Home sales were 150 this month vs 77 last month and compared with 105 last year. New listings for New homes increased to 185 from 184 in February. Used homes New listings decreased to 874 from 720 in February 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 March, there were 2,719 Active Used homes, a reduction from 3,309 in February and a new multi year low. New homes, which peaked in March 2006 at 2,144 Active, now sit at 697.

The Absorption rate for New homes was 7 months of inventory in March vs. 9 in February. The Absorption rate for Used homes was 6 months of inventory in March vs. 7 in February. Over the last four years the drop in months of inventory for Used homes has been steady and impressive from 25 months plus in February 2008 to 6 months this March. I had 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 begun to show an upwards trend. For New units, average price decreased to  $247,000 from $268,697 last month. (Sect A p.14). Average Used home prices were up this month, to $274,345 from $254,979 in February. Average Days On Market for New Sold properties in March was 176 vs last month of 196. Days On Market for Used was 144 vs. last month 162. With this very impressive month, it will be interesting to see if the momentum continues through the peak summer selling season.
TWB 4/12/2017

Birmingham Area Real Estate Sales in November Up 30% Over Last Year

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for November 2016

November saw a continuation of the pick up in dollar and unit sales over last year. Prices seem to be modestly increasing. Total dollar sales for November were $269,219,038 up 30% from $205,886,919 last year, and down 6% from last month at $287,629,774.

Total Unit sales were off 10% at 1,283 in November from 1,428 in October, a decrease of 145. This is up by 22% and 231 from last November at 1,052. New sales were up to 164 homes this month, and 257 in October, and up by 43 from 121 last year. The low inventory level of new homes suggests a good environment for builders, and prices have begun to show a more solid uptrend. Used sales were 1,119 homes in November, off 12% from 1,271 last month, a decrease of 152, and up by 188 units  from 931 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.  October overperformed the projection. The cumulative error is plus 9% year to date; that is actuals are running ahead of projections (through October).

Housing permits for October are a bit less than last year. For Jefferson County, in October there were 66 permits compared with 101 last year. Shelby County was somewhat higher than last year’s level (see the web site).

Total inventory is slightly lower this month at 8,654 vs. last month at 8,851 and less than 9,740 last year. It is curious that we don’t seem to be seeing the more normal seasonal reduction of inventory which has been remarkably stable since the beginning of the year without the normal uptick we usually see in the summer either (Sect C p.1). I’d guess that it is an indication of market equilibrium, as the months of inventory have stabilized at about the 6 month level. Active New listings decreased to 1,101 in November from 1,158 in October (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 November shows 6 months, which is less than the 7 last year. Used Active listings at 7,553 are down from last month of 7,693, and quite a bit less than 8,725 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 4 months of inventory except in the over $900,000 category, which has 9 months of inventory (44 homes), with 4 sold in that price range last month. There are a number of MLS areas, particularly those known as the “over the mountain” communities, showing similarly low levels of inventory, including Homewood which has 3 months of inventory.

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 209 compared with last month at 201. The Used homes DOM was 122 in November vs 112 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes decreased to $299,783 from $313,521 last month (Sect A p2), over a several month period though prices seem to be increasing. Average sales price for Sold Used was $196,653 this month compared to $187,574 last month. (Sect A p2).

All in all, the market continues to look quite healthy.
TWB 12/9/2016          

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

Birmingham Residential Sales Healthy in October

Birmingham Area MLS* Monthly Observations for October 2016

October saw a continuation of the pick up in dollar and unit sales over last year. Prices seem to be increasing. Total dollar sales for October were $280,111,936 up 13% from $247,969,228 last year, and down 17% from last month at $337,315,042.

Total Unit sales were off 12% to 1,383 in October from 1,577 in September, a decrease of 194. This is up  by 6% and 76 from last October at 1,307. New sales were down to 148 homes this month, and 235 in September, and up by 34 from 114 last year. The low inventory level of new homes suggests a good environment for builders, and prices have begun to show a more solid uptrend. Used sales were 1,235 homes in October, off 8% from 1,342 last month, a decrease of 107, and up by 42 units  from 1,193 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.  September overperformed the projection. The cumulative error is plus 9% year to date; that is actuals are running ahead of projections (through September).

Housing permits for September are a bit less than last year. For Jefferson County, in September there were 90 permits compared with 83 last year. Shelby County was somewhat lower than last year’s level (see the web site).

Total inventory is slightly lower this month at 8,865 vs. last month at 8,948 and less than 9,955 last year. It is curious that we don’t seem to be seeing the more normal seasonal reduction of inventory which has been remarkably stable since the beginning of the year without the normal uptick we usually see in the summer either (Sect C p.1). I’d guess that it is an indication of market equilibrium, as the months of inventory have stabilized at about the 6 month level. Active New listings decreased to 1,102 in October from 1,127 in September (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 October shows 6 months, which is less than the 7 last year. Used Active listings at 7,763 are down from last month of 7,825, and quite a bit less than 8,908 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 4 months of inventory except in the over $900,000 category, which has 9 months of inventory (46 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 which has 3 months of inventory.

Birmingham area Average Days on Market for New houses is 201 compared with last month at 190. The Used homes DOM was 112 in October vs 109 last month, (Sect A p.18). Average sales price for Sold New homes increased to $316,624 from $286,455 last month (Sect A p2), over a several month period though prices seem to be increasing. Average sales price for Sold Used was $188,868 this month compared to $201,192 last month. (Sect A p2).

All in all, the market continues to look quite healthy.

TWB 11/12/2016