Baltimore area home sales and contracts reach highest August levels in a decade

Posted on September 13, 2016 by Corey Hart



Median sales price up 2% to $255,000, highest August price since 2008; Inventories decline for 12th straight month

Rockville, MD – (September 13, 2016) – The following analysis of the Baltimore Metro Area housing market has been prepared by Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. of MarketStats by ShowingTime and is based on August MRIS housing data.

Click here to view PDF version of this report


  • The Baltimore Metro area median sales price of $255,000 was up 2.0% or $5,000 from last year, and at the highest August level since 2008. 
  • Sales volume across the Baltimore Metro area was almost $1.1 billion, up 14.5% from last year.
  • August closed sales of 3,748 were up 13% compared to last year and up 5.3% compared to last month.  This was the highest level of August sales since 2005.
  • There were 3,932 new pending contracts recorded in August, up 10.7% compared to last year and also at the highest August level in a decade.
  • The number of new listings compared to last year dropped 0.4% to 4,708.
  • The number of active listings declined by 12.6% to 12,315, marking a full calendar year that year-over-year inventory levels have dropped.
  • The average percentage of original list price received at sale in August was 95.6%, the highest August level in a decade.
  • The median days-on-market was 29 days, down from 39 days last year.


  • The overall regional median sales price for August 2016 of $255,000 is up 2% or $5,000 from last year, but down 4.7% or $12,500 from last month.
  • Compared to last year, condo prices were up 8.1% to $205,200, townhome prices were up 3.8% to $192,250 and single-family detached prices were up 2.2% to $322,000.
  • Prices are 2.7% above the 5-year average of $248,380 and 1.1% above the 10-year average of $252,111.
  • August prices are 8.5% above the 2011 bottom of $235,000, and 8.3% below the peak of $278,000 seen in 2007.
  • With a year-over-year increase of 14.8%, Baltimore City saw the highest level of price appreciation, but still remains the most affordable locale with a median sales price of $133,700.
  • Howard County continues to be the most expensive area in the region, with an August median sales price of $400,000, a 1.9% decrease compared to last year. 
  • For the January-August year-to-date, prices are up 2.9% to $250,000.


  • August 2016 sales of 3,748 were up 13% compared to last year’s 3,318, and up 5.3% compared to last month’s 3,561.
  • Compared to last year, townhome sales were up 20.2% to 1,286, condo sales were up 10.3% to 387, and single-family detached sales were up 9.4% to 2,075. 
  • Sales are well above the 5-year average of 3,022 and the 10-year average of 2,648.
  • Sales were 94.7% higher than the 2010 low of 1,925.
  • All jurisdictions saw growth in the number of closed sales, with the largest in Harford County, where sales rose by 19.8% to 399.  Baltimore County saw the smallest increase of 7.4% to 999.
  • For the January-August period, regional sales are up 11.3% to 26,671, and all jurisdictions show year-over-year growth in sales.


  • August 2016 pending sales rose 10.7% compared to last year to 3,932, but were down 0.5% or 18 compared to last month.  This is the highest August level of pending contracts in a decade. 
  • All property types saw YoY increases in the number of contracts.  Single-family detached increased 11.7% to 2,178, townhomes rose 9.5% to 1,346, and condos increased 9.1% to 408.
  • Pending contracts are 20.3% above the 5-year average and 45.8% above the 10-year average.
  • The number of new pending contracts in August was 117.4% more than the 10-year market low of 1,809 seen in 2008.
  • All jurisdictions saw increases in year-over-year pending contracts, with Carroll County having the largest percentage increase of 29.7% to 262, while Howard County saw the smallest of 4.5% to 417. 
  • For the January-August year-to-date, new pending sales are up 8.1% across the region to 33,076.


  • There were 4,708 total new listings added in August in the Baltimore Metro area, a 0.4% decrease compared to last August, and a 7% decrease compared to last month. 
  • This month, only townhomes saw an increase in the number of new listings compared to last year, increasing 3.9% to 1,710.  The number of new single-family detached listings declined by 2.1% to 2,554 and the number of condos dropped 6.1% to 444.
  • New listings above both the 5-year and 10-year averages of 4,286 and 4,300, respectively.
  • The number of new listings in August was up 38.8% compared to the market low of 3,392 in 2011, and was 14.5% below the 2007 high of 5,505.
  • Baltimore County (+4.5%) and Baltimore City (+2.3%) both saw increases in the number of new listings, while all other jurisdictions saw declines, with the largest in Anne Arundel (-5.9%).
  • For January-August, new listings are up 3.2% to 41,032.


  • Active inventories dropped by 12.6% to 12,315 compared to last year and were down 2.8% compared to last month.
  • Inventory levels for all property types were down for the eighth consecutive month, with single-family detached down 14% to 7,114, townhomes down 11.7% to 4,042, and condos down 7.2% to 1,159.
  • Inventories are 3.1% below the 5-year average and 20.7% below the 10-year average.
  • August inventories are 38.3% below the decade high of 19,972 seen in August of 2008, but are 9.5% above the August 2013 trough of 11,246.
  • All jurisdictions in the region continue to show declines in active inventories, with the largest percentage decline of 17.8% in Harford County to 1,224 active listings, and the smallest decline in Baltimore City of 6.6% to 3,252 active listings.


  • The average sales price to original listing price ratio (SP to OLP ratio) for August was 95.6%, up from last year’s 94.4% but down from last month’s 95.8%.  This was the highest August level in a decade.
  • The August average SP to OLP ratio of 95.6% is above the 5 and 10-year averages of 94.2% and 93.0%, respectively.
  • Over the last decade, the previous highest August average sales price to original listing price ratio was in 2007, where it was 95.1%; the lowest was recorded in 2011 at 89.1%.
  • Homes in Howard County sold at 97.3% of their original listing price in August, the highest in the region, and above last year’s 96.3%.
  • The largest gap between original listing price and sales price was in Baltimore City, where it was 93.4%, up from last year’s 91.2%. 
  • All jurisdictions showed increases in SP to OLP compared to last year.


  • The median days-on-market (DOM) in August in the Baltimore Metro region was 29 days, down ten days from last year but up three days from last month.
  • This month, condos had a median DOM of 38, single-family detached homes had a median DOM of 31, and townhomes had a median DOM of 26.
  • August’s median DOM of 29 is below both the 5-year average of 37 days and the 10-year average of 50 days.
  • This August’s median DOM was 46 days less than the peak DOM of 75 days in August 2008.
  • Homes in Howard County sell fastest, with a median DOM of 26, down from 34 days last year.
  • This month, Harford County had the highest median DOM of 35 days, down from 44 days last year.
  • For the year-to-date, all jurisdictions are seeing decreases in the median DOM.  For the overall region, the YTD median DOM is 35 days compared to 41 days last year.

About the Baltimore Metro Housing Market Update

The Baltimore Metro Area Housing Market Update provides unique insights into the state of the current housing market by measuring the number of new pending sales, trends by home characteristics, and key indicators through the most recent month compiled directly from Multiple Listing Service (MLS) data in RBI’s proprietary database. The Baltimore Metro Area housing market includes the City of Baltimore, Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County and Howard County in Maryland.  Data provided by ShowingTime RBI, based on listing activity from MRIS.

About MRIS

MRIS is a leading provider of real estate information technology and one of the nation’s leading multiple listing services (MLS), facilitating nearly $51 billion in system wide sales in 2015. The company supports over 45,000 real estate professionals in the Mid-Atlantic region, including Maryland, Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C. and parts of Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia. MRIS provides its customers with a portfolio of best-in-class desktop, mobile and cloud-based technologies to improve the real estate transaction process for both real estate professionals and homebuyers and sellers. For more information, please visit or to search for thousands of available homes in the Mid-Atlantic region.

About Elliot Eisenberg

Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is the Chief Economist of GraphsandLaughs, LLC, a firm specializing in economic consulting and data analysis.  He is a frequent speaker on topics including: economic forecasts, economic impact of industries such as homebuilding and tourism, consequences of government regulation, economic development and other current economic issues. Dr. Eisenberg earned a B.A. in economics with first class honors from McGill University in Montreal, as well as a Masters and Ph.D. in public administration from Syracuse University. Eisenberg was formerly a Senior Economist with the National Association of Home Builders in Washington, D.C.   He is a regularly featured guest on cable news programs, talk and public radio, writes a syndicated column and authors a daily 70 word commentary on the economy that is available at

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