New Hanover County Residential
It’s time for our monthly market update, and this time it’s the end of the year! Welcome to January, historically the slowest month of the year in real estate. Don’t panic – listings will pick up, and so will buyer activity. It usually happens around the third week of the month. As someone who talks to a lot of people daily, I am already feeling a slight uptick in conversations as people get back to work after the holidays. People are answering their phones, buyers are resuming searches, and sellers are setting appointments to talk about listing their homes.
New Hanover County inventory did not change much in December, decreasing just slightly from 3.27 months in November to 3.24 months in December. Brunswick County did rise to 4.03 months of inventory in December – that indicates a continued move towards a stable market, on the way to a buyer’s market! Pender County rose about half a month to 3.73 months, and Onslow County dropped slightly to 2.95 months.
The graph on the left above shows the number of sold listings in New Hanover County from January of 2018 to December 2023. I went back a little further because I want you to see the trend line. This is a great illustration because it shows you both the natural seasonal swings in the market year after year, as well as the overall trend year over year.
The number of sales climbs in the spring, peaks in June and July, drops a little in August and September (September 2018 was an outlier – Hurricane Florence occurred September 14, 2018), has a smaller peak towards the end of the year, then drops in January before it climbs again. This happens every year and is to be expected.
The graph on the right shows sales volume from January 2018 through December 2023. You can see that the decline over the past few years is not as prevalent as the decline in number of listings sold. This is because of the dramatic increase in the median sales price of homes over this period, which we have all felt.
What will 2024 look like? What direction is the market going in? It’s still too early tell. My guess is that it will look similar to 2023. Perhaps median sales prices will stabilize and there may be a higher number of sales as interest rates are projected to decline in the second half of the year. Maybe areas where there is more new construction, like Brunswick County, will see a more stable market in terms of inventory, and maybe even shifting into a buyer’s market. I have seen this in some micro markets and am watching it closely to see where it goes.
Questions? Looking for numbers for a specific neighborhood or town? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hi, I'm Kim Crouch, and I help people and investment entities buy and sell their homes in Wilmington and coastal southeast North Carolina!
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