Baltimore Metro Area New Listing Activity in December Lowest on Record

Posted on January 10, 2012 by Corey Hart
10

Jan

2012

December Signed Contracts Down 18.3% from November, Consistent with Seasonal Patterns

Rockville, MD – (January 10, 2012) – The following analysis of the Baltimore, Maryland Metro Area housing market has been prepared by RealEstate Business Intelligence (RBI), and is based on the December 2011 RBI Pending Home Sales Index™ released today.

 

View PDF version of this release

OVERVIEW

Baltimore Metro Area inventory ended 2011 at the lowest level since April 2006 with 12,758 active listings. There was a significant decline in the share of the active market made up by foreclosures compared to 2010, though short sale listings market share was up. The 1,827 new listings entering the market was the lowest level on record and marked a 32.1% decline from December 2010. Signed contract activity was consistent with seasonal expectations, decreasing 18.3% from November, while closed sales exceeded seasonal patterns with a 6.2% month-over-month increase. Sales prices remained stable with a nominal decline from November, though the median price for townhouses exceeded expectations with an annual appreciation of 8.1%. 

 

 

KEY TRENDS

  • Signed contract activity consistent with seasonal expectations.  There were 1,697 new pending sales in December, 18.3% below the 2,078 total in November 2011, consistent with the 10-year average month-over-month decline of 17.2% in December. The number of contracts signed was down a nominal 1.2% from December 2010, though new contracts for condos and co-ops actually spiked 24.7% year-over-year to 182 new contracts, the most active December since 2006.
  • December pricing stable; Townhouse segment an exception.  The median sales price was $219,900 for December 2011, a modest 1.1% month-over-month and 1.4% year-over-year decline. The $160,000 median sold price level for townhouses was an exception, representing an 8.1% appreciation compared to December 2010. Median sales price for foreclosed properties was down 18.4% year-over-year to $92,160, though the sharp annual decrease in closed sales in this category nullified the impact on the overall pricing trends.
  • New listings in December lowest on record; Active foreclosures down sharply.   The Baltimore Metro Area market ended 2011 with the lowest year-end inventory level since December 2005 with only 12,758 active listings. This represents a 22% decline from December 2010 levels.  December is consistently the slowest month of the year in terms of new listings entering the market, but the 1,827 new listings added this December was the lowest level since 1997. The 640 new townhouses entering the market in December 2011 represented a 47.9% annual decrease, potentially correlating with the year-over-year sold price appreciation for this home type. The 218 new foreclosed listings added in December marked a 75.1% year-over-year decrease compared to the 876 foreclosed listings added in December 2010. Foreclosed properties represent only 4.2% of the active Baltimore Metro market at the end of 2011, significantly lower than the 10.7% share for this category to end 2010. Short sale inventory was up 6.3% year-over-year to 2,069 active listings at the end of 2011 and represented 16.2% of the market compared to only 11.9% of the market at the end of 2010.   
  • Closed sales up month-over-month; Bank-mediated sale composition changes.  1,726 total sales were completed in December, exceeding seasonal expectations with a 6.2% increase from November, though this level represents a 5% decline from the 1,817 sales in December 2010. The 173 closed short sales represented a 49.1% increase over the 116 closed short sales in December 2010 while the 260 sales involving foreclosed properties represented a 45.7% decline from 479 in December 2010.  Foreclosed sales accounted for 15.1% of all sales, down from a 26.4% share in December 2010. Short sales were 10% of sold listings, up from a 6.4% share in the same period last year.  

 

 

The RBI Pending Home Sales Index is a two-year moving window on the housing market using new pending sales (signed contracts) and median sales price (closed sales). It provides unique insight into the state of the current housing market by measuring the number of new pending sales for each month through the most recent month.The results include new pending sales through and including December 2011.  The market area includes The City of Baltimore, Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County and Howard County in Maryland.

Baltimore Metro Area, market analysis, press release
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