May 14, 2018

Home Prices Rise as Spring Market Faces Continued Inventory Battle

The Greater Lehigh Valley REALTORS® (GLVR) reported April data showed a spring housing market in Lehigh and Northampton counties trying to come alive as the battle for inventory continues. Carbon County, meanwhile, had an impressive month.
Click HEREto view the full Market Update report for April 2018.
As the inventory story continues, GLVR CEO Justin Porembo remains confident that builders and sellers are making their way to the market.
“Many sellers and builders are in a good position for financial gains, as the economy continues to favor putting existing homes on the market and building new homes for sale,” Porembo said. “There may not be massive increases in inventory from week to week, but a longer-term trend toward more new listings is expected.”
Porembo added that low inventory should continue to create a competitive situation for buyers, causing price increases over the next several months.
In April, prices continued to gain traction with the Median Sales Price increasing 11.4 percent to $195,000. Pending Sales saw a bump of 7.2 percent to 934. Closed Sales saw a drop of 10.6 percent to 591.
Inventory levels shrank 33.0 percent to 1,548 units, leading to a Months Supply of Inventory that dropped 35.3 percent to 2.2 months. Days on Market was down 18.6 percent to 48 days.
“This winter and spring exhibited unseasonal weather patterns in much of the country,” noted Sean LaSalle, 2018 President of GLVR. “As the seasons change to something more palatable, wages and consumer spending are both up, on average, which should translate positively for the housing market.”
LaSalle, a Realtor® with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox & Roach in Macungie, added, “Being quick with an offer is still the rule of the day as the number of days a home stays on the market drops lower. If that wasn't enough for buyers to mull over with each potential offer, being aware of pending mortgage rate increases is once again in fashion.”
Carbon County saw a nice start to spring, which could, in part, be attributed to buyers needing to look into outlying areas for homes. The Median Sales Price increased 3.0 percent to $139,000. Inventory levels remained steady, dropping just 1.9 percent to 308 units. Months Supply of Inventory was down 19.1 percent to 5.5 months. Pending Sales climbed to 67, versus 59 the previous April, and there was an increase in New Listings, which hit 113.