November Home Sales Defy Seasonal Trend

By Newsroom America Staff at 19 Dec 2016

(Newsroom America) -- Despite the typical winter slowdown, November home sales finished 19.1% above a year ago and prices increased 1.4% over October.

All but one of the 53 markets in the RE/MAX National Housing Report posted an increased number of sales over November 2015, with nearly half of the markets at least 20% higher. In all, last month saw more homes sold than any other November in the eight-year history of the report.

With one month to go, 2016 is on pace to exceed what was a strong 2015. Year-over-year, 2016 has posted price increases or stayed flat in all 11 months to date, and sales increases in nine months. November posted the largest percentage year-over-year sales increase thus far in 2016.

Last month, the Median Sales Price among the 53 markets edged above October at $220,000 and finished 8.9% higher than November 2015. As in the first 10 months of 2016, inventory continued to drop year-over-year, with a decline of 17.0%.

November's Months Supply of Inventory was 4.0, compared to the 5.0 months supply reported in November 2015. Days On Market averaged 59, compared to 58 in October and 65 a year ago. For this month's housing report infographic, visit rem.ax/2cYFT50.

"The continued decline of inventory and talk of rising interest rates may have contributed to November's surge of home sales," said Dave Liniger, RE/MAX CEO, Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder.

"Over the past 11 months, the majority of markets have seen home prices return to their pre-recession levels, reaffirming that 2016 has been the best year for the housing market since the recession."

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Of the 53 metro areas surveyed in November, the average number of home sales increased 19.1% compared to one year ago, which marks the second highest increase in the eight-year history of the report. This month, only one of the 53 metro areas surveyed experienced a decrease in sales year-over-year (Miami, FL at -11.4%) while the remaining 52 saw increases. The markets with the largest increase in sales include Billings, MT +38.1%, Las Vegas, NV +34.9%, Boise, ID +33.1%, Burlington, VT +30.7%, Honolulu, HI +30.3% and Phoenix, AZ, +29.1%.

In November, the median of all 53 metro Median Sales Prices was $220,000, up 1.4% from last month and up 8.9% from November 2015. Of the 53 metro areas surveyed, all but two (Burlington, VT and Des Moines, IA) saw year-over-year increases with respect to Median Sales Price, 15 rising by double-digit percentages. The largest double-digit increases were seen in Honolulu, HI +17.7%, Tampa, FL +15.9%, Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX +15.0%, Seattle, WA +13.2% and Birmingham, AL +13.1%.

Days on Market – Average of 53 metro areas

The average Days on Market for homes sold in November was 59, up one day from the average in October 2016, but down six days from this time last year. The two metro areas with the lowest Days on Market are San Francisco and Denver at 32 and 33 respectively. The highest Days on Market averages continue to be in Augusta, ME at 148, and Burlington, VT at 97. Days on Market is the number of days between when a home is first listed in an MLS and a sales contract is signed.

Months Supply of Inventory – Average of 53 metro areas

The number of homes for sale in November was down 9.3% from October, and down 17.0% from November 2015. Based on the rate of home sales in November, the Months Supply of Inventory was 4.0, compared to last month at 3.9 and last year at 5.0. A 6.0-month supply indicates a market balanced equally between buyers and sellers.

In November, 49 of the 53 metro areas surveyed reported a months supply of less than 6.0, which is typically considered a seller's market. The remaining four reported a months supply above 6.0 which is typically considered a buyers market. The markets with the lowest Months Supply of Inventory continue to be San Francisco, CA at 1.3, Denver, CO at 1.5 and Seattle, WA 1.6, with Denver and Seattle seeing the same Months Supply of Inventory as last month.

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