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Market Trends Newsletter

Housing Report

Note: National Association of Realtors® (NAR) data below is from May (most current national data)

National Association of Realtors® (NAR) data show a comeback in sales of existing homes in May after a decline in April. Meanwhile, low inventory levels helped boost the median sales price to a new high and shortened the median number of days a home is on the market to a new low. All major regions except for the Midwest saw an increase in sales in May.

Total sales of existing homes sales (transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops), grew 1.1% to an annual rate of 5.62 million in May, up from 5.56 million in April. Last month's sales velocity is 2.7% higher than one year ago. 

 Existing Home Sales By Region
NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, said sales action grew in May as more buyers surmounted the difficult market conditions seen in many areas. "The job market in most of the country is healthy and the recent downward trend in mortgage rates continues to keep buyer interest at a robust level," Yun said. The economist added, "Those able to close on a home last month are probably feeling both happy and relieved. Listings in the affordable price range are scarce, homes are coming off the market at an extremely fast pace and the prevalence of multiple offers in some markets are pushing prices higher."

Housing Data Takeaways

  • May's median price for existing US homes (all housing types) was $252,800. This outpaces last June ($247,600) as the new highest median sales price, representing a rise of 5.8 percent from May 2016 ($238,900) and marks 63 consecutive months of year-over-year gains.
     
  • Total US housing inventory at May's end rose 2.1% to 1.96 million existing homes available for sale, however, this is 8.4% below one year ago (2.14 million) and has dropped year-over-year for 24 straight months.  
     
  • Nationally, properties remained on the market for 27 days in May, down from 29 days in April and from 32 days at the same time last year. This is the shortest timeframe since NAR began tracking in May 2011.
     
  • Freddie Mac data indicates the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage fell for the second month in a row, to 4.01% in May from 4.05% in April. For all of 2016, the average commitment rate was 3.65%.
     
  • First-time buyers drove 33% of May's US sales, down from 34% in April but above 30% a year ago. NAR's Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers for 2016 showed the annual share of first-time buyers was 35 percent.

The Price is Right..Or is it?

Dining room view of home listingIf you are planning to put your home on the market -- especially if you live in a place where prices are rising and buyers are competing for homes -- it can be tempting to list your property at a high price hoping that you'll actually get it. After all, it can work with cars, why not with homes?

You may want to think twice -- resales of homes and automobiles are very different things.

Experienced Realtors who have been through dozens, scores, or even hundreds of transactions, will advise you to price your home appropriately from the outset because it's pivotal to seeing the home sold quickly and at the best price. Research backs up what experienced Realtors already know: overpricing your home and then lowering the price a few times most often leads to a final sales price significantly below what you originally should have asked for it.

And, to make matters worse, the longer a home remains on the market, the deeper the discount is likely to be off the original price. Ouch!

How to price your home correctly

Many homeowners seek to price their home based on factors like the price they paid for it, the balance that they currently owe, or simply on the profit they need to buy another house or to meet their financial goals. These motivations are perfectly understandable but in reality the value of your home is what the market will bear. Here's the problem: If a property is overpriced, some potential buyers will avoid looking at it at all (and having no one show up to see it is a pretty clear message from the market). Others may view the home but walk away without making an offer.

So, what can you do? Choose a Realtor who can provide you with the best comparative market analysis (CMA) and who understands your local area intimately. Some agents may attempt to woo you with an inflated price -- it probably happens every day somewhere -- but in the end the market will speak clearly, and choosing an experienced Realtor who understands the importance of market-driven pricing will end up being a choice you won't regret.

Your Realtor's CMA should include sales prices for similar properties nearby that have sold recently, prices for currently listed homes (these will be your competition), and prices of homes that were taken off the market because they didn’t sell. Look for a Realtor with demonstrated experience who can factor in a range of local market issues to produce that all-important first price.

If the price is right from the beginning, it usually means not only a faster sale, it typically means more money in your pocket.

Find Your New Home in the Small Friendly Towns of Grime County

It's getting harder to find a great small town to live in where there's a true sense of community.  But if you look for your new home in Grimes county, that's just what you'll find. The small friendly cities of Anderson, BediasIolaNavasota each have their own unique qualities that make them the ideal place to buy a home.

Even though Anderson is the county seat of Grimes County, it's the smallest city in Grimes County with around 222 residents. If you want a town with great history, then Anderson is the place. The Anderson Historic District has the distinction of being on the National Register of Historic Places. Its courthouse is one of the most visually pleasing courthouses in Texas.  

Navasota is the largest city in Grimes County with 7476 residents.  For a town this size, there's a large amount of companies provding jobs, with 23 companies that provide over 1200 jobs that keep the economy moving along.  And antique lovers will be in heaven with, Bluebonnet Vintage Collectables, Circle P Antiques, Pink Champaign Antiques, Tejas Antiques, and Vintage 105 just waiting for you to explore. And there's a number of great restaurants like Wrangler Steakhouse, Mallett Brothers BBQ and Palmer’s Soul Food and BBQ.

If you want to learn more about all that Grimes County has to offer, please visit our Grimes County Real Estate And Community Information page where you can learn about each city we serve in Grimes County, as well as search for your new home.

Contact Information

Kathy Scott
Real Estate BCS
208-A Southwest Parkway East
College Station TX 77840
(979) 695-3300
Fax: (979) 217-8780