3 Key Highlights of the Current Housing Market

3 Key Highlights of the Current Housing Market (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Important aspects of the housing market were recently underscored with the release of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) quarterly report. Here's the breakdown of 3 key implications of the report.

1. Buyer Demand Is Up

Existing-home sales were, in total, at an annual rate of 4.97 million in the first quarter of 2015. This number is certainly elevated from the pace of the first quarter in 2014, coming in at 6.2% higher. This number encompasses single family and condo homes.

Chief Economist at NAR attributes this success to "steady hiring" and "low interest rates" encouraging a higher volume of buyers to enter the market.

2. National Housing Inventory Is Down (But Chicago's is Slowly Turning Around)

The report also outlines the suppressed amount of homes available the market. At the end of the first quarter in 2015, there were 2 million existing homes available for sale, representing a 4.6 months' supply of inventory. This is indeed down from the 4.9 months we witnessed in 2014 (which is still a suppressed number at that - a healthy balance between buyers and sellers is 6 to 7 months).  Chicago-area MLS is up a bit, 4.9 months in May 2014 and 5.2 months in May 2015. 

3. Single Family Residential Prices Have Accelerated

Home prices have escalated in 85% of metro areas during the first quarter of 2015. In addition, the number of areas experiencing double-digit price appreciation have doubled in comparison to last quarter.

Single-family home prices in particular have represented a 7.4% increase year-over-year, with the national median coming in at $205,200 at the end of the first 2015 quarter, compared to $191,100 in the first 2014 quarter.

The Overall Implications?

Sellers, with a low inventory and high buyer interest, the environment could be ideal for placing your home on the market. Buyers, with low interest rates still presiding over the market and benefits of home investments continuing to soar, it may be a great time to talk with a real estate professional to see your options.

Questions? Don't hesitate to send us an email or give us a call! We'd love to help.

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