Grassland Weekly Watch: 5/23/2020

May 23, 2020

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School is out – and so are the Home Buyers!

And just like we all piled into our minivans to go parade through the school parking lot this week.. well.. you get the idea.

But when we really look at the Grassland Real Estate numbers… though Buyers are parading around home shopping, the sad fact is there are so few homes on the market for them to buy.

It’s put our Grassland market movement in a bit of a pinch, as you’ll see in the data below – and the Home Sellers on the parade route right now are actually the ones feeling the most love.


What We’re Seeing

This past week or two has been a period of major shift in our local Real Estate market – so dramatic that it almost feels tangible. We have fewer homes on the market than this time last year, they only stay on the market a matter of days (if priced and marketed correctly), and homes are generally selling for higher prices. But the number of Sellers coming back out for business is starting to ramp up to meet these Buyer expectations.

For example, my business partner and I have recently put 3 listings in a row Under Contract in 10 days or less, at full price. Each one of those homes also represent new record prices for resales in their respective neighborhoods. Two of those were multiple offer situations, which also took finesse. Now that’s a Seller’s dream – and we make it a reality by knowing the market and creating marketing strategies to elicit these results.


Grassland Prices are Up but Sales are Down

Among the things we evaluate… is the meaning behind the sales data. Though we’re generally enjoying increased sales prices, we’re seeing fewer home sales overall here in Grassland because there just aren’t enough homes For Sale.

Let’s take a look at our overall Grassland numbers so far in May:

May 1, 2020 – May 21, 2020: 16 closings at a median sales price of $645,375

vs.

May 1, 2019 – May 21, 2019: 29 closings at a median sales price of $518,500

As you can see, we have almost half the amount of closings right now than we did this time last year… to the tune of about 45%. YIKES! But our median home price is about 20% higher in the first 3 weeks of May 2020 than in the first 3 weeks of May 2019.

Both of these numbers are significant and relate to each other. The low inventory numbers are what continue to drive our values higher.


Looking Deeper

Let’s break down home value changes in some of our neighborhoods. These percentages reflect median sales price growth for homes closed during the first five months of 2020 versus the first five months of 2019:

Temple Hills: +36% (likely so high due to new construction in The Reserve)

Cottonwood: +13%

Laurelbrooke: +8%

Stonebridge Park: +8%

Fieldstone Farms: +6%

(I left out some of our other popular neighborhoods like Horseshoe Bend, Hunterwood, Montpier Farms, Sneed Forest, Legends Ridge and River Rest because they either had too few sales to count as an average and/or comps that dramatically skewed the data.)


The Story Behind the Stats

The roles of supply and demand in our market are dramatic right now:

  1. Low Inventory. Its not a Buyer problem — It’s a Seller problem. There are PLENTY of Buyers. There are not plenty of homes For Sale! So the lower number of closings is a direct reflection of not having enough homes on the market. We went into this Covid Crisis with an already low supply of homes to sell. But once pandemic concerns hit Williamson County, those Sellers who didn’t have to sell became trigger-shy and held back listing their homes For Sale. So now we’ve got an even lower amount of homes For Sale than we normally would, in what is typically peak season for Real Estate Buyers.
  2. Buyer interest has increased. We have seen a dramatic increase in Buyer traffic across Tennessee, Williamson County, and even here in Grassland just in the past week or so. Take a look at this data shared by ShowingTime, the home showing serviced used by most Realtors to schedule home showing appointments:

This chart shows the number of home showings in Tennessee has rebounded – increasing by 4.4% from this time last year!

The state’s average number of home showings this week is 26.7% higher than it was on January 1, 2020.

Today, we are seeing an 11.7% improvement in the number of showings since the pre-pandemic peak on March 11 2020.

AND.. we’re only 6.8% lower in home showings than last spring’s peak on April 16, 2019!

It looks like the trend is continuing in an upward motion. and I would venture to bet we may still have our spring “peak season” here in Real Estate afterall as more Sellers start hitting the market again – It’ll perhaps just be delayed. This could just be the beginning of our climbing showing activity, which often correlates with trends in home sales, if there is enough market inventory.


Financing

We’ve been hearing quite a few things about changes in the markets and with lending practices. As it all applies to housing, National Association of Realtors Chief Economic Analyst Lawrence Yun doesn’t see much in the way of our home values growing across the US. He says, “Record-low mortgage rates are likely to remain in place for the rest of the year, and will be the key factor driving housing demand as state economies steadily reopen.”

Obviously, none of us have a crystal ball and it’s really hard to predict future activity. Are positive trends with Buyers long-term? Or do they reflect short-term pent-up demand due to Stay Home orders? The answer to these questions are yet to be seen.

But we know what’s happening right now. And knowing current data is so helpful in order to best plan our next move.


Don’t Miss Your Time to Shine

Selling your home is not luck – and it’s not a rookie’s game. It’s knowing the market, creating a sound marketing strategy, and getting the job done based on current conditions.

I hope if you’re walking away with anything after reading all of this, it’s a feeling of relief and confidence if you’re thinking of listing your home For Sale. Because right now, it is very much a Seller’s market.

Every storm cloud has a silver lining. Don’t let all the Covid-related doom and gloom surrounding us rain on your parade!

If you need to sell your home and want honest advice on what it takes right now, I’ll get specific with you. Call, email or text me. I provide a free consultation to see what your home could sell for – or to get pre-approved to buy. I’m a Grassland area resident, I’m a Platinum Award-winning Williamson County REALTOR® ranking in the top 2% and I specialize in helping my neighbors buy and sell homes!