February 14, 2024 at 7:07am | Jonathan Crompton
How is everyones New Year going!?
Are you still committed to your resolutions? I am still holding true to mine, which is a challenge I will be honest. I feel that staying committed to anything is a challenge and the reward is not always in the succeeding, it is what you become in the process. More resilient, tenacious, humble etc...It is not the destination but the journey, so I encourage you to stick with your resolutions, you had them for a reason!

The market has been really strong out the gate in January. We saw some great rebounds with listings, contracts and even closings compared to a year ago. The help I think was we had a decent bounce down in the interest rates which spurred some activity. Also, the fact that the price in Charleston over the last 12 months(really 10 years!) has continued to increase year over year. People on the fence are jumping off due to the fact that it does not seem it will slide backwards anytime soon. So the deal you are looking for was yesterday though it is also now!

We are still holding that we will see some encouragement in the form of lower rates, though the jobs report and the CPI numbers that were released may push that down the road a little further. Rates have been on an up and down roller coaster for some time and it may continue for a short period. I would anticipate some easement in the rates come May/June., though do not hold me to it!

Let's talk about the January numbers.

To the Update!

Average Sales Price:

This is the highest average price we have seen recorded in January and EVER! The price year over year jumped 13.3% which is pretty intense. This is the reason we will see people jump on homes this Spring regardless of interest rates. We will most likely continue to see a average year over year appreciation of 3-5% or more, last year was healthy at 4.2%!
Average Days on Market: 

This has been the first time we have seen the year over year numbers decrease in percentages , down 5% from last year, in over a year! Still hovering in the 38 day range, though again that is very "healthy" if you are a home owner looking to sell. It still is putting pressure on buyers to have to make fairly quick decisions as homes are not sitting on the market for long.

Average Months of Inventory:

Here we sit with 2 months of inventory, up 11.1% which is a decent jump though still not enough inventory for our market at the moment. We have been bouncing from 1.8-2 for a year plus now and it just makes it a challenging market. 85% of the home owner population has a interest rate of 4.5% or lower OR owns their home outright. Not a lot of people looking to trade their home for a higher rate, higher price, higher tax, etc... Lets see what Spring brings.New Listings on the Market:

This was a big jump for the beginning of the year. We had 1,822 listings go live which was up 22.4%! The last time we saw a January listing month this big was 2021. People are still moving, just not enough of them for the demand. It will be interesting to watch this plus the contract absorption rate, which is still strong. Though if we see the listings keep coming and the contracts slow down it will lead to a more normal market, which would be welcomed at this point!

Homes Under Contract:

Again, a huge surge in activity early on. 1,570 contracts were written in January which was up a commanding 14.4%. Not quite up there with 2021/2022 though a great number for the start of the year. I mentioned we did see rates dip into the low 6% range, though I do not believe that was the only reason. People who need to move need to, people who have been sitting and watching are no longer sitting. Lets see how this activity plays out as we approach Spring.

Closed Homes:

Well, I have been saying we are getting close to bottoming out on the closed homes and we finally bounced positive. Now having 989 closings in January may not seem like a lot, and going up 3.9% may not seem like a lot, though it's the first time in a year we were positive year over year for the month. It will be fun to watch the numbers and how much a jump we have in closing year over year. With the contracts that were written, it may continue upward.

So, what does this all mean?!

So far so good! Market is strong early on. Confidence in buyers seems to be high and the buyers that are in the market are some of the most qualified due to the environment we find ourselves in!

Last year we left one of the lowest home sold markets since 1995! That does not take in effect that the population has grown since then and the demand for a home is so high! We just did not see the inventory to where it needed to be plus some 60% of buyers last year sat on the sideline due to the uncertainty of the market.

That may not be the case this year as a lot of predictions of home prices falling etc.. did not come true. In fact, they still went up on the normal percentage of increase. Take that with the higher price of homes and the higher rates for a loan and we still grew in price is amazing. Buyers that were waiting should see that as a sign as prices will most likely continue to grow, so the longer you wait...the more expensive that home becomes...and the home thats below your budget may become the top of your budget...

If you have questions give me a call!



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