Home sales falter but a record year still possible

Photo of home in Rock Springs Louisville KY | Photo: Tre Pryor

“Hold all tickets!”

Last month, Louisville home sales looked to be in great position to surpass our all-time best year. Now that the September numbers are in, things don’t look quite so rosy.

During September 2017, there were 1,069 homes sold. Compared to last year, this is a 6 percent decline. There will be some more added to this total as late agents or offices enter them into the system but it was most certainly a down month for home sales.

That’s largely been the case this year. One month beats the previous year only to have the next one fall short. So, where does this leave us in our race for the record? It’s almost too close to call. January through September last year totaled 9,282 sales. For the same time period in 2017, we’re at 9,230.

Looks like this one is going down to the wire.

Charts of Louisville home sales and Louisville home prices for the 12 month period ending September 2017

After a strong August, September home sales dipped while prices inched higher.

The median sale price for September was $170,000. This value is 3.6 percent higher than last year. When we compare average sale prices we get roughly the same outcome. Our September average sale price of $211,196 is just 3.2 higher year-over-year.

We’re entering the point in the year when sale prices start to decline as competition decreases. June (sometimes July) is most often the high point of the calendar year when it comes to the highest sale price. Our chart confirms this was the case again in 2017. Homeowners should keep this in mind when choosing the best time to list your own property.

Another data point of interest is the Days on Market value, which moved up 3.8 days to land at 46.6 in September. Historically, this is a nice, low number but, as you may guess, it is taking into account all Louisville home sales. Homes under $200,000 are going to sell much faster than homes over $500,000.

Digging deeper, of the 2,662 total active listings, 1,491 (56 percent) are listed for $200,000 or more. More than 15 percent are asking more than $500,00. This value is higher now than it was at this point last year. As the price rises, there are more properties competing over fewer buyers.

Housing inventory continues to remain extremely low with an absorption rate of 2.53. This is down from 2.9 months of inventory this time last year. A balanced market typically holds an absorption rate of around 6.