Thus far, 2019 has been favorable to the home buyers and sellers of Western North Carolina. It remains a seller’s market in most communities. But will the seller’s market continue?
To give you the rundown, Beverly-Hanks President Neal Hanks, Jr. has delivered the Q3 2019 Real Estate Market Report. When breaking down the markets, we examine four metrics: The supply of homes for sale, sales pace, home prices, and the availability of financing.
Read the full report or contact your Beverly-Hanks real estate expert to learn more about the dynamics of your neighborhood.
WNC Supply of Homes
The shortage of homes for sale intensified in eight out of our nine counties in Q3. Limited choice fueled competition among buyers and gave renewed negotiating confidence to sellers.
Overall, there are 5% fewer homes for sale now than this time last year. However, this shortage is not occurring at all price levels. It remains a strong buyer’s market in every county at the luxury level. The uniqueness of luxury properties often prevents them from being easily substituted for one another. An experienced luxury agent is essential for understanding the nuances of this niche.
Madison County is the only county in our region seeing more homes for sale now than Q3 2018. The number of homes for sale is up nearly 10%, and the market remains balanced or tipped in favor of buyers in all brackets except homes under $99,999.
WNC Regional Sales Pace
Slower home price appreciation and unexpectedly low mortgage interest rates have kicked buying back into high gear. Total year-to-date sales across the region are up 6% over the highwater mark hit in 2018. More than 2,950 homes sold during the last 90 days. That’s nearly 33 homes every day!
When paired with a declining home supply, this strong sales pace means that competition for your chosen home may be more intense than ever. Every county in the region saw at least a modest increase in sales pace. Even Buncombe County, whose pace has been on the decline due to lack of inventory, saw a significant jump.
WNC Home Values
The Home Price Index provided by the Federal Housing Finance Agency is one of the most accurate in the industry for home values. However, it does lag our local MLS data by one quarter.
According to the Federal Finance Housing Agency, Asheville MSA’s home prices appreciated 2.6% over the last 12 months. We expect home prices to rise at a similar rate for the foreseeable future.
Buncombe County’s median sales price continues to lead the region at $315,000. Rutherford County is the most affordable at $182,700.
Availability and Cost of Financing in WNC
We are currently seeing 30-year mortgage rates at the second lowest level since bottoming out in 2012.
Many of the forces pushing rates lower in the second half of 2019 will remain in effect for 2020. A global recession, ongoing trade wars, and the upcoming presidential election are creating economic uncertainty. Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of RealtorsⓇ (NAR), predicts rates to stay around 3.6% in 2020.
Don’t miss this unexpected opportunity by hoping for lower rates in the future. If a Beverly-Hanks Mortgage Services loan officer has shared a favorable rate with you, it’s inadvisable to wait. Go ahead and guarantee yourself one of the lowest rates in recent history.
What’s Next?: Sellers will Remain in Control for a Little While Longer
The experts polled for Zillow’s Home Price Expectations Survey believe that home prices will rise an average of 2.8% in 2020. Their forecast is consistent with the recent performance by the Asheville MSA. In addition, mortgage rates are expected to remain low among the Fed’s concerns for an impending recession.
As rates are eased to fortify the economy, we expect our markets to remain active. It is likely that buyers will take advantage of both the savings and additional purchasing power of low rates. However, with no meaningful influx of new residential listings on the horizon, we predict that sellers will retain control of the market for the foreseeable future.
Ready to Learn More?
Purchasing a home amid fast, dynamic market conditions can be intimidating. Our Beverly-Hanks agents are uniquely prepared with the tools and experience to help you buy a home no matter the market. Don’t postpone the opportunity to build personal wealth through homeownership. Give us a call—We are ready to help!
All real estate is local. In order to make confident real estate decisions, we believe it important for you to have timely and neighborhood-specific information. Request a Q3 2019 Real Estate Market Report from your Beverly-Hanks real estate agent.