Sales: According to the Greater Alabama Multiple Listing Service, Birmingham-area residential sales totaled 1,565 units during July, up 9.1% from 1,434 sales in the same month a year earlier. July sales were down 1% compared to 1,581 sales in June. Results were 13.7% above the five-year July average of 1,377 sales. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.
For all Birmingham-area home sales data, click here.
Inventory: Total homes listed for sale in the Birmingham area during July were 5,552 units, a decrease of 4.6% from July 2018’s 5,818 units and an increase of 3.2% from June 2019’s 5,381 units. July months of supply totaled 3.5 months, a decrease of 12.6% from July 2018’s 4.1 months of supply. July’s months of supply increased 4.2% from June’s 3.4 months of supply.
Pricing: The Birmingham-area median sales price in July was $220,000, an increase of 0.7% from one year ago and a decrease of 4.3% from the prior month. The differing sample size (number of residential sales of comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss pricing, as it will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The average number of days on the market (DOM) for homes sold during July was 34 days, a decrease of 22.7% from 44 days in July 2018 and an increase of 13.3% from 30 days in June.
Forecast: July sales were 1.6% or 26 units below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 1,591 sales for the month, and actual sales were 1,565 units. ACRE forecast a total of 9,910 residential sales in the Birmingham area year-to-date, while there were 9,575 actual sales through July.
ACRE’s statewide perspective: After a slight decline in June, statewide residential sales rebounded in July, increasing 10.2% from 5,722 closed transactions in July 2018 to 6,307 in July 2019. Year-to-date, sales are up 3.1% from 2018, a record year for residential sales. Home price appreciation in the state continued to climb as the median sales price in July increased 4.6% year-over-year from $169,178 to $176,926. The statewide median sales price is up 4.2% year-to-date. While nationwide inventory levels (active listings) decreased 1.6% year-over-year, Alabama’s residential listings continue to tighten, decreasing 9.9% from one year ago. Low inventory levels were a significant factor contributing to rising sales prices throughout 2018 and in the summer buying season of 2019. With low inventory levels, it is surprising to see homes selling at a slightly slower pace than one year ago. Homes selling in Alabama during July spent an average of 89 days on the market, an increase of three days from July 2018.
NAR’s national perspective: After a 7.4% drop in June, existing home sales strengthened in July. Nationwide residential sales increased 3.3% from approximately 523,000 closed transactions one year ago to 540,000 currently. The nationwide median existing-home price increased 4.3% in July, marking 89 consecutive months of year-over-year gains. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said, “Falling mortgage rates are improving housing affordability and nudging buyers into the market.” However, he added that the supply of affordable housing is low across the nation. “The shortage of lower-priced homes has markedly pushed up home prices.”
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