Despite a robust national and local economy, as well as strong consumer demand for Charlotte, NC homes, we’re seeing a dramatic slowdown in home sales. Maybe “because of” is a better term than “despite.” Skyrocketing demand has led to high prices which in turn have contributed to a shrinking inventory. But it looks like that self-perpetuating cycle has finally peaked out.
The market overview for the greater Charlotte area certainly suggests this is the case. As of January 31, 2019, the number of homes for sale dropped by 304 units, or 3.4%. Right – another drop. But not only has the once-steady decline in the number of months supply of homes for sale slowed, this month, it’s unchanged from last January. Our 2.2 months supply still represents a shortfall for buyers, but it is a solid indication the lop-sided seller’s market has run its course. And while the median sales price has bounced up once again by $11,000, or 5.1%, the percent of original list price received grew by a marginal .4%.
Change is in the air.
However, we can expect to see pricing to continue to be a stumbling block for many buyers, especially first-time buyers. While the Federal Reserve did not post an interest rate hike this month, it had already tweaked rates up four times last year alone. Sensing an end to constantly rising prices, many will hurry to the market to sell, including a new wave of Boomers ready to downsize and retire. Consumer confidence continues to hold steady, and if the Fed, as most mortgage lenders expect, continues to hold down future interest rate increases, we can expect supply and affordability to veer more toward home buyers.