As the main source of real estate information in the Lehigh Valley, the Greater Lehigh Valley Association of REALTORS® is pleased to provide in-depth data on our local housing market. Information is gathered from our Multiple Listing Service (MLS) generating data from over 2,000 Realtor® members.
School's out, and as vaccination rates rise and American enters a new normal, the U.S. housing market continues along at a frenzied pace, with low interest rates and limited inventory fueling record high sales prices. May saw the median existing-home sales price exceed $350,000, a 24% increase and the largest year-over-year increase since 1999, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. Eager buyers are making multiple offers, some for well over asking price, while others are making offers on homes sight unseen.
New Listings decreased 5.8% to 1,096. Pending Sales were down 15.6% to 948. Inventory levels shrank 33.3% to 756 units.
Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased 18.0% to $275,000. Days on Market was down 62.5% to 15 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Inventory was down 44.4% to 1.0 months.
The increase in sales prices comes with a slight decline in existing home sales nationwide, as homebuyers struggle with declining affordability amid a lack of inventory, forcing some buyers to simply wait it out in hopes of more inventory and less competition. Meanwhile, home builders are trying to meet the increased market demand, with housing starts up 3.6% in May from April, according to the Commerce Department. As we ease into new routines and look forward to a post-pandemic future, one thing remains certain: America desperately needs more homes.
As the weather warms and pandemic restrictions ease across much of the country, the U.S. housing market shows little sign of cooling. Robust buyer demand, fueled by low mortgage rates, continues to outpace supply, which remains near historic lows. Nationwide, inventory remains much lower than it was at this time last year, and sales prices are surging as a result.
New Listings increased 36.4% to 994. Pending Sales were up 82.9% to 940. Inventory levels shrank 46.1% to 667 units.
Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased 16.6% to $250,000. Days on Market was down 57.1% to 15 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Inventory was down 60.0% to 0.8 months.
With such limited supply of existing homes to purchase, all eyes are on home builders to provide a much-needed boost of inventory to the market to help meet buyer demand. However, increasing material and labor costs, along with supply chain challenges, have contributed to significantly higher construction costs, with builders passing these costs on to homebuyers. And while the warmer temperatures, rising sales prices, and the reopening of the economy may draw more sellers to the market, historically low levels of homes for sale are likely to continue for some time.
April was another strong month for home sales. The busy spring market continues to see many multiple offer situations driving sales prices above asking price. With such strong activity, by the time a property sale closes, the market may have already moved higher than that sold price suggests. Such markets can create stress and frustration for prospective homebuyers, who are frequently having to submit offers on multiple properties before they are able to secure a purchase.
New Listings increased 355.7% to 998. Pending Sales were up 354.1% to 831. Inventory levels shrank 41.8% to 668 units.
Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased 19.6% to $250,000. Days on Market was down 45.9% to 20 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Inventory was down 50.0% to 0.9 months.
In the spirit of the great Wayne Gretzky, buyers, sellers, and their agents are all trying their best to skate to where the puck, or rather, the housing market is going, not where it has been. While housing affordability remains an area to watch as prices continue to rise, strong buyer demand and limited housing supply show no signs of easing soon, pointing to a continuation of this market trend through spring and into summer.
Please call, text, or email if I can be of service to you. Thank you.
*Courtesy of the Greater Lehigh Valley Association of REALTORS®