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Huntsville Real Estate Market Ends 2019 on High Note

The Huntsville Real Estate Market set a record pace throughout 2019, ending the year on a high note, according to a report released today.

The Huntsville Area Association of Realtors’ Fourth Quarter Real Estate Economic Report, conducted by the University of Alabama in Huntsville, found sales grew by more than 15 percent compared to the same quarter in 2018, with 1,995 homes sold in the quarter.

“We witnessed major growth in our industry last year, as more choose to make Madison County their home,” said HAAR President Sha Jarboe. “While this is great news for our city and industry, it also presents challenges as inventory reached historic lows in December with less than 1,000 available homes for sale.

“This report reinforces the need for attainable housing in our area and, as community advocates, Realtors stand ready to work with our local builders to make sure they have the skilled labor they need to meet our area’s construction needs. We also look forward to our continued collaboration with local leaders to support sensible laws that support the American dream of homeownership.”

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • Prices of homes sold continued to rise significantly from 2018. Median sales price rose 11 percent to $239,643 and average sales price increased 7 percent to $258,014. The price escalation can be seen in the decline in the number of homes sold in the less-than $150,000 homes and significant increases in the $200,000-$250,000 (20.5 percent) and the greater-than-$350,000 range (18.5 percent).
  • Average monthly pending sales rose to 456, up 16.6 percent from the 2018 fourth-quarter level.
  • Inventory of homes available for sale fell to the lowest level since 2001 with only 993 homes listed at year’s end.
  • The average days on market for the quarter was 35 days, down from 38 in the third quarter and from 48 in the fourth quarter 2018. At this level of sales, there was an average of only 1.3 months of supply during the quarter.

For information and to see the full report and other reports, visit haar.realtor.

Report: Madison County Housing Inventory is Lowest in 22 Years

ValleyMLS.com and the Huntsville Area Association of Realtors reported today that the number of active available listings of homes for sale in Madison County is 988, a figure lower than the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) has seen since 1998, when inventory data was first recorded.

The area’s recent success in job and population growth has led to low housing inventory numbers, while new construction and skilled labor to build new houses have battled to keep up with the trend.

“Today’s inventory milestone tells us that, whether you’re expanding or downsizing, there has never been a better time to sell a home,” said Cindi Peters-Tanner, 2020 ValleyMLS.com chair. ”If you were on the fence, these numbers should tell you that now is the time to find a Realtor and list your property.”

HAAR President Sha Jarboe said civic and business leaders should work together to respond to the low inventory numbers.

“We must all re-double our efforts across all organizations and levels of government to ensure we have the housing available for the thousands of new residents expected over the next five years,” Jarboe said. “Foremost, that requires attracting the skilled workers necessary for our local construction companies to keep up with demand.”

Founded in 1948, the Huntsville Area Association of Realtors is engaged in every aspect of the industry, including residential/commercial sales and leasing and appraisal. HAAR also maintains ValleyMLS.com, the leading real estate source in North Alabama.

Visit HAAR.Realtor

 

Study: Local Housing Market Stronger than National Trends; Low Inventory a Concern

While Madison County continues to outpace the national residential real estate market, the inventory of available houses remains a concern, according to a recently released study.

The Huntsville Area Association of Realtors, in partnership with the University of Alabama-Huntsville College of Business,  released its real estate economics report, which compares the local housing market in Madison County to its national counterpart.

 “Huntsville and Madison County appear on so many Top 10 lists for several good reasons: great job opportunities, low cost of living, a diverse economy and entertainment culture, and responsible management by our elected officials,” said HAAR President Cindi Peters-Tanner. “As a result, our real estate market has out-performed national trends and it continues to be the best place in the nation to buy or sell a home.”

As a result of the local market’s success, inventory remains a concern.

According to the reports, Madison County held 6.4 months of housing supply at the end of 2015. Since then, that number has dropped to 1.8 months while, nationally, inventory has risen from 5.1 months to 5.9 months.

The report said local new construction will need to grow considerably to meet future demand.

Additional findings of the HAAR / UAH report include:

  • Home prices are rising locally and national at the same rate of 4.5 percent.
  • Heightened labor force participation and median household income have increased the number of local residents with the ability to afford a house.
  • Local population growth continues to outpace national growth.
  • New construction accounts for roughly one-quarter (26 percent) of all home sales, beating the national average of 21 percent.
  • Since 2015, the Madison County residential real estate market has led the national average in new home sales percentage and population growth rate. 

HAAR has partnered with the UAH College of Business to produce quarterly real estate economic reports to provide Realtors, their clients, public officials, community stakeholders, and the general public an up-to-date snapshot on the local housing market. This information helps our community anticipate positive or negative changes as we look ahead to new growth and the challenges it brings. 

For information, visit HAAR.realtor/real-estate-economics-reports

 

It’s a Seller’s Market in Area Real Estate

Everywhere you look, there’s well-plowed red clay, the evidence of cleared land. Huntsville-Madison County is bursting at the seams with growth.

With the new Mazda Toyota plant, along with a host of other companies setting up shop in the area, coupled with the projected growth on Redstone Arsenal, it’s no surprise that that developers and the real estate community are busier than ever, just to keep pace with the rapid expansion.

Along with those jobs that are coming to town, people are following. Those people will need a place to live.

With low inventory coupled with high demand, it’s clearly a seller’s market.

“There are lots of new developments, the new home market is going well,” said Barry Oxley, executive officer of the Huntsville-Madison County Builders Association. “However, it takes time for homes to be available – from developing the infrastructure – sewer, utilities, flood plains. It’s a good six to nine  months after the infrastructure is set before the homes are built.”

But, he did say, remodeling and rehabbing homes is growing.

“The remodeling marketing is also doing well,” Oxley said. “The older generation is staying in their current homes and are remodeling instead of moving. Usually X number of homes become available for sale, but the remodeling market has changed that.”

Adding to that is the “tear down” movement, he said. Older homes in established neighborhoods such as Blossomwood, Five Points and the Lowe Mill area are being leveled and new homes are being built on the sites.

For the home owner, this is a good time to consider selling. With a low inventory of available houses, sellers control the market.

“Last month (December) has been indicative of the entire year of 2018,” said Cindi Peters Tanner, president of the Huntsville Area Association of Realtors. “What we have seen has been a reduction in inventory. With fewer homes available on the market, what this means is that it tightens up the market for buyers.

“Low inventory means there are qualified buyers making multiple offers, which is a great thing for sellers.”

And buyers must act quickly because houses are on the market for just a few weeks.

“There’s been a reduction in average days on the market,” Tanner said. “Currently, houses are now on the market an average of 49 days. This is a great market to be in with all the economic enhancements; the city is funding the growth.”

But, she cautions that sellers also need to be realistic.

“When it comes to home selling, listen to your Realtor and they’ll work with you to create an effective marketing plan,” Tanner said. “By doing that, you will be more successful in selling your home.”