The trend shows the Montgomery County is in a healthier market, with some consistency and stability, according to Shawn Tammaro, President of the Montgomery County Association of Realtors.
“With that comes consumer confidence, which translates to more sales,” said Shawn. “That means people start to get off the sideline — investing and buying houses to live in. That’s a big reason why the sales are increasing.”
Total quarterly sales in Montgomery County, PA for the last quarter of 2013 increased to 2,108 units. Of that, 1,914 were single-family homes. Prices also increased at the end of 2013 with an average sale price of $309,09. By comparison, in the fourth quarter of 2011, 1,636 units were sold, of which 1,494 were single-family homes, with an average sale price of $281,72
Tammaro said there is another indicator of the market — inventory levels and inventory accumulation — which is determined by taking the number of homes on the market and how many on average sell each month, and then calculating how long it would take to sell off the inventory.
“We know six months is a healthy number — that’s a healthy market,” Tammaro said. “In Montgomery County , PA right now, it’s closer to five months. That has trended down for the last three years. In 2010, it was eight to nine months.”
For sellers, Tammaro said it’s important to price their home comparable to what others in the neighborhood are selling for, but that they shouldn’t stop there.
“In today’s market, if you want to get fair market value for your house, it needs to be up to certain standards — up to safety code,” he said. “People don’t mind making cosmetic repairs, but it needs all the code requirements. The roof can’t leak, the stucco can’t leak. The home inspector will pick it up — or the appraiser will.”
And for buyers, Tammaro said the No. 1 issue is to keep any eye on credit. “You need good credit these days to get a loan. Save money — there are a few low down payment options out there, but they will get better rates and terms if they come up with 20 percent down. The more you can put down the better.”
He added that buyers should also keep an open mind when it comes to location if they want to get the most house for their money.
So does the data mean the area is in a buyer’s or a seller’s market?
“The numbers help tell this. I think we’re reaching a pretty neutral market. In certain areas it might be more of one or the other. We’re in a very healthy spot right now,” said Shawn.
To learn more about Shawn Tammaro visit http://entouragehomes.com