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December 2017 Housing Report

The Lamacchia Housing Report presents overall home sale statistics and highlights the average sale prices for single families, condominiums, and multi-family homes in Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire for December 2017 compared to December 2016. It also looks at other metrics in Massachusetts like Homes Listed and Pending, as they are often the best indicators for predicting future trends in the market.

Massachusetts December Home Sales Down 4.54%

Massachusetts home sales decreased 4.54%, from 7,734 in December 2016 to 7,383 in December 2017.  This is the first time since September that sales have been down.  Multi-families were the only category showing an increase in sales, up at 2.57% from the year before, 759 were sold in December 2017, compared to 740 last year.  Condos and single families decreased by 3.22% and 6.10% respectively, with condos at 1,959 in December 2016 to 1,896 in 2017.  Single families went from 5,035 in December 2016 to 4,728 in 2017.

As expected from Anthony’s recent Predictions for 2018 blog, average sale prices increased by 6.17% in December 2017, from $394,235 in December 2016 to $418,541 last month.  Prices increased in all three categories with multi-families increasing the most, by a little over 9%, from $422,799 to $461,069.  Condos fell closely behind, rising 7.53% with prices moving from $317,720 to $341,660.  Single-family prices increased 5.20% in December 2017, going from $429,477 to $451,808.

Homes Listed for Sale:

In December 2017, 3,459 homes were listed for sale in Massachusetts compared to 3,594 in 2016, showing a 3.76% decrease.  That’s about half of the 6,399 homes listed in November 2017, which is to be expected, given that we are seeing the lowest inventory ever recorded as well as the typical trends in diminishing inventory during the winter months.  Click here to read a blog on inventory trends.

Pending Home Sales:

There were 5,049 homes listed in December 2017, only a little under half a percent decrease from the same month in 2016.  With both listed and pending sales numbers down this month, it’s likely to see further diminishing sales numbers in the next month or so until the market picks back up for buyers in the spring.

Southern New Hampshire Home Sales Up 3.01%

The number of properties sold in Southern New Hampshire rose 3.01% from 1,063 to 1,095, much less of the increase that we saw in November 2017 of 15.65%.  Multi-families saw the largest increase of 15.79% going from 57 sales in December 2016 to 66 last month.  Condos increased 12.15%, now up to 277 from 247, and single families were the only category that decreased just under one percent, with 752 over 759 last year.

The average price for homes in New Hampshire increased by half a percent, a stark difference from November 2017 which increased by 10.95%.  While single families increased by 5.87% (from $301,139 to $318,817), condos decreased in average prices by almost 4% (from $250,886 to $240,896) and multi-family prices decreased by almost 16% (from $350,123 to $294,824).  The number of sales were up in the two categories that exhibited lower average prices, so it’s not that surprising.  We generally see increased prices when the number of available homes is lower than the number of interested buyers.

What’s Ahead?

This year is beginning as predicted, with low inventory and a general increase in prices for homes.  Demand is high, and that competition drives up prices.  We are currently experiencing the lowest inventory ever recorded, so it’s the best time for sellers to get geared up and take advantage of the market.  Buyers are out there looking for homes, and if it’s priced right, you’re likely to have multiple offers to choose from in a bidding war.  Only experienced agents will know how to get you there, so be sure to connect with one as soon as possible.  Buyers, on the other hand should remain vigilant and be ready to go to battle for their desired property.  Read this blog about being ready to strike and win a bidding war.  Homes are out there!  Over 3,400 homes were listed in Massachusetts in just December alone.  Preparation is key to boost the likelihood of an accepted offer- so be sure to work with an agent who knows how to navigate this busy, bidding war frenzied market.

Data provided by Warren Group & MLS PIN and compared to prior year.