Baltimore Metro sees highest March-level sales total since 2007

Posted on April 10, 2014 by Corey Hart
10

Apr

2014

New listing activity increases for 12th month in a row; Prices essentially flat compared to last year

OVERVIEW

The Baltimore Metro Area continued to see winter weather well into March, but buyers and sellers in the region were less affected by it than earlier in the year.  Both buyer and seller activity improved from last March and the number of closed sales, active listings and new listings increased from this time last year.  Closed sales increased 4.6 percent, with gains seen in each property segment.  The number of new contracts declined by 1.3 percent from March 2013, but remained higher than the March-level for the six preceding years. 

Seller activity continues to climb and the number of active listings increased 10.7 percent from last year.  New listings also increased from last year and have now done so for 12 consecutive months.  Despite these increases, inventory remains tight and is only 52.8 percent of its peak-level.  The median sales price for each property segment increased, but because of a modest shift in the property mix of sales, the region’s median sales price declined by 0.4 percent.  The housing market in the Baltimore Metro Area has had improvement despite the uncommonly harsh winter and this improvement is likely to continue in to spring.

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CLOSED SALES

Highest March-level in seven years; increase in closed sales across all property segments.  There were 2,048 closed sales in the Baltimore Metro Region in March, 4.6 percent, or 91 sales, more than last year.  This is the highest March-level since 2007.  The number of sales increased 33.2 percent from last month, which is in line with the 10-year average February to March change of 33.6 percent.  Sales of single-family detached homes increased 6.0 percent, or by 60 sales, from last March and led all property segments in growth.  The number of closed sales of condo properties increased 5.6 percent, or by 13 sales, from last year. Those for townhomes increased 2.5 percent, or by 18 sales, from March 2013. 

PRICES

Modest decrease driven by property mix of sales; increase for each property segment.  The median sales price in the Baltimore Metro Region was $227,500 in March and decreased 0.4 percent, or by $1,000, from last year.  However, this decrease was driven by the property mix of sales rather than a decline in any single property segment.  All property segments had median sales price increases from last March. The median sales price for single-family detached homes increased 3.4 percent, or by $10,000, to $300,000.  At $187,500, the median price of condo properties increased 2.7 percent from last March for a gain of $5,000.  The median sales price for townhomes increased 0.9 percent, or by $1,400.

Of the jurisdictions, Howard County had the highest growth in median sales price, increasing 13.6 percent from March 2013.  Only Harford County had had a lower median sales price as compared to last March, decreasing by 12.9 percent.

NEW CONTRACTS

Decrease in new contracts for all property segments.  The number of new contracts signed in March decreased 1.3 percent, or by 42 contracts, from last year to 3,228 contracts.  New contracts increased 32.3 percent from last month, which is a sharper increase than the ten-year average February to March change of 28.4 percent.  All property segments had fewer contracts than this time last year.  Condo properties decreased 4.2 percent, or by 16 contracts, representing the steepest decline.  New contracts for single-family detached homes declined 1.1 percent, or by 19 contracts, from last year.  New contracts for townhomes fell by 0.7 percent, or by 8 contracts, from a year ago.

INVENTORY

Sixth year-over-year increase in active listings; increase in new listings led by townhomes.  Active listings in the Baltimore Metro Region increased 10.7 percent from this time last year to 10,659 listings at the end of March.  This is an increase of 1,030 listings and the sixth consecutive month of increases for this indicator.  Even with this increase, active listings are 47.2 percent lower than their July 2008 peak.  Active listings for townhomes had the highest growth rate, rising 11.8 percent from last March.  Active listings for single-family detached homes increased nearly as much, climbing 11.5 percent.  Those for condo properties increased 2.6 percent.  New listings contributed to the rise in active listings, with a larger year-over-year growth than in the past months.  There were 4,471 new listings in March.  This is an increase of 8.2 percent, or 339 listings, from last year and the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year gains.  Condo properties had fewer new listings than last March, decreasing 1.9 percent or by 9 listings.  New listings both townhomes and single-family detached homes had increases from this time last year.  New listings for townhomes rose 12.3 percent, or by 170 listings, from last March, while those for single-family detached homes increased 7.7 percent or by 177 listings.  At 62 days, the median days-on-market is ten days more than last year but remains lower than the 10-year March-level average of 77 days.

 

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About the RBI 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 bulk of this report’s content is readily available, down to the subdivision-level of granularity, via interactive charts and reports offered in rbiEXPERT, a premium subscription service offered to real estate professionals interested in growing their business with the help of industry-leading and user-friendly analytics. 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.

About RealEstate Business Intelligence, LLC

RealEstate Business Intelligence, LLC (RBI) is a primary source of real estate data, analytics and business intelligence for real estate professionals with business interests in the Mid-Atlantic region. The full monthly data report for all jurisdictions in the MRIS region, along with interactive charts and graphics, can be found at www.rbintel.com/statistics. RBI is the only company in the Mid-Atlantic region that provides timely, online access to statistical information directly from the MRIS Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Visit rbintel.com or www.facebook.com/rbintel to learn more.

About the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University

The Center for Regional Analysis conducts research and analytical studies on economic, fiscal, demographic, housing, and social and policy issues related to the current and future growth of the Virginia, Maryland, and DC areas. Through its range of research and programs — major economic impact studies, economic forecasts, fiscal analyses, conferences and seminars, publications, information services, and data products — the Center’s activities strengthen decision-making by businesses, governments, and institutions throughout the Greater Washington region.  Visit http://cra.gmu.edu to learn more.

 

 

 

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