The Memphis Area Association of REALTORS has released the August, 2008 and 2008 Year-to-Date Sales Figures. The numbers show a continued soft market in the Memphis area, with total sales ytd at 9,560 off 19.8 % from 2007 at. Median sales price is off 12.1 % for the year at $123,000.
MAAR does not report absorption rates but based on total sales for the the first 8 months of 2008, there were 13,568 pending and completed sales sales as of 8/31. There are currently 12,421 listings in all categories, translating to a 7.3 months supply of inventory- not bad, really, considering 6 months is considered a balanced market. Numbers over 6 indicate a buyers market.
Absorption rates vary widely between areas and price ranges. View the entire report to check your areas and price points of interest.
There is no significant change from May. Total sales are off 19.4% YTD with the Median Sales Price down 14.3% YTD and Average Sales Price off 12.3%. Homes are staying on the market 10.6% longer than last year. Click here to download the full report.
What does this mean? The market has cooled off, even in Memphis. The laws of supply and demand are at work. Will housing prices bounce back? Probably, but it will take some time to get back to the boom levels, and some neighborhoods will do well no matter what. I don’t feel that I have enough expertise on new residential construction to comment on that.
The first thing I ever learned about investing was “buy low – sell high”. We are in a strong buyer’s market, and if you are thinking of buying your first home, moving up, or acquiring investment property, now is a good time. Financing is available and interest rates are good, but money is tighter than it was a couple of years ago. Expect higher down payment requirements in certain neighborhoods and new condos.
And for those of you who like to look as absorption rates, the 3 $1M+ sales this month brought the inventory of homes in that price range down to a 58 month supply.
Please contact me with your specific real estate and market condition questions. If you look at the data, you can see the wide variations between neighborhoods.