Supply Continues to Shrink - Lowest New Listings in Fifteen Years
Rockville, MD – (July 10, 2012) – The following analysis of the Baltimore, MD Metro Area housing market has been prepared by RealEstate Business Intelligence (RBI), and is based on June 2012 MRIS housing data.
Median sale prices are on the rise throughout the Baltimore Metro Area, and metro-wide, have reached $250K for the first time in two years. Despite the rising median prices, overall economic uncertainty could be a major factor in keeping many would-be sellers on the sidelines. The quantity of active listings continues to drop, and the new listings entered in June are the lowest June-level since 1997. The shrinking inventory of homes for sale in the region coupled with growing buyer activity is pushing prices up, and shortening the average days-on-market (down 14 days since June 2011). Sale-to-original list price ratios have also narrowed (increasing 2.9 percentage points since June 2011), further evidence of a tightening market. Detached homes are driving sales growth in the metro area; however the condo market posted the highest percentage growth of new contracts in June, and perhaps early evidence of a changing pattern.
Sales continue their upward trend; Detached homes are driving the growth. The Baltimore Metro Area posted 2,567 sales in June, up 8.4 percent from this time last year for the fifth consecutive year-over-year gain. This is also the highest level of sales for the region since June 2010. Sales growth from May to June was 8.7 percent, which is below the 10-year May to June average of 13.6 percent. The slower than average month-over-month growth is likely attributed to the accelerated winter and spring selling seasons that were driven by mild temperatures and pent up housing demand. Detached homes led all property segments with sales rising 12.8 percent from June 2011, an increase of 170 units. Townhome sales rose 1.1 percent from this time last year, an increase of 9 units. There were 250 condos sold in June, an 8.7 percent increase from June 2011.
Median home prices are up across the metro area; Largest year-over-year June gain since 2005. The median sales price in the Baltimore region is $250,000, 6.2 percent higher than June 2011, and the fifth consecutive month of year-over-year growth. The last time the median price for the metro area reached the $250,000 mark was July 2010. Consistent with metro-wide trends, median prices are up in all jurisdictions within the Baltimore metro area. Similar to last month, the price growth is most pronounced in Baltimore City, which at $143,250 is 46.2 percent higher than this time last year. Anne Arundel County posted the second highest growth rate with the median price rising $48,000 to $330,000, a gain of 17.0 percent. In addition to price appreciation in all jurisdictions, median prices for all property types also rose from their June 2011 levels. At $189,000, the median price for townhomes in the area rose 8.0 percent from their June 2011 value of $175,000, the highest year-over-year growth of any residential property segment. The median sale price for detached homes and condos rose 7.2 percent and 3.2 percent respectively.
New contracts dropped between May and June but year-over-year growth continues – the Condo segment leads the way. There were 2,871 contracts signed in the Baltimore Metro Area in June, a 7.0 percent drop from last month, but 11.1 percent higher than June 2011. This is the sixth consecutive year-over-year growth in new contracts. The decrease from last month is in line with seasonal patterns, as new contract levels in the metro area have declined between May and June nine out of the past ten years. All residential property segments had new contract growth compared to June 2011, but also declined from last month’s totals. New contracts on detached homes rose 14.0 percent for the sixth consecutive year-over-year gain. Townhome contracts are up 4.5 percent, and the condo segment posted the strongest growth, up 18.6 percent from this time last year, the 14th consecutive year-over-year gain.
Active inventory continues to drop in the metro area, new listings fall to lowest June level since 1997. There were 12,632 active listings at the end of June in the Baltimore metro area, 26.4 percent below June 2011. The quantity of active listings in the region continues to shrink, with 16 consecutive year-over-year declines. The pattern appears to be holding as the 3,786 new listings in June represent the lowest June inventory level since 1997. If buyers continue to enter the market as evidenced by the increase in sales over the past several months, the low inventory will likely drive up median prices and reduce the average days-on-market in the metro area.
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 ZIP code level of granularity, via interactive charts and reports offered via 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.
UPCOMING PUBLICATION: Mid-Year Distressed Housing Analysis
Next week, RBI will publish the Mid-Year Distressed Housing Report. This report will take a deeper dive into the state of bank-owned foreclosures (REO) and short sales and how prices are trending between distressed property segments and traditional sales (those not requiring bank or third-party approvals). Included in the report, RBI will be releasing brand new statistics examining transaction failure rates and contract-to-settlement trends by distressed property segment. The report will also include changes in the distressed share of the market for most MRIS jurisdictions, comparing year-to-date percentage of sales impacted in the first half of 2012 versus the first half of 2011. Be sure to check www.rbintel.com/blog the week of July 17 for this new report.