Monday, June 09, 2008

May Sales Report (2008)

Yep, Yep... the market still favors the buyers by quite a margin. While we are busy looking for positive signs that the local market is coming back to a state of normalcy again, time keeps on ticking... and we keep on searching.

Before we move on to the funky charts try to keep one thing in mind. It is more difficult today to qualify and obtain a loan for a home purchase than it was in 2005. I use 2005 because that was the top of the market in terms of total units sold. So even if there were as many buyers on the market today as there were in 2005, many of the would be buyers would not qualify for a home loan to purchase a home. Yes, sellers... even the buyers are feeling some pain these days... you are not alone.

Also... back in 2005, there weren't nearly as many sellers with property for sale on the market as there is right now. There also wasn't nearly as many 'foreclosure' homes competing with the other more traditional sellers impacting the situation.

Lastly... back in 2005, many people thought that Kingman and the surrounding areas were considered a 'safe' place to invest in because of the growth potential. At some point it became apparent that Kingman was NOT all that it was supposedly cracked up to be... large employers shifted away from the area, projects to enhance growth opportunities were nixed by the city, and some in the media screeched with glee and supported a movement to 'slam the brakes' on continued development.

All of the above has helped play a hand in the following charts that you are about to see... after the disclaimer of course...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Listings and sales in units chart:

The gap between new listings and actual sales is still too wide on a month to month basis even though new listings are trending lower over the last year. It is difficult to see, but SALES are actually trending lower over the last year as well. Have I mentioned before that our market has an inventory problem??

Average listings and sales averages chart:

New listing average prices have been courting the buyers by reducing the initial asking price year over year by just under 17% less this year than in May of 2007. However, successful sellers sold for 20% less than the previous year. Both trend lines are heading in the same direction, aggressive sellers will do well as compared to seller that are just feeling out the market.

The foreclosure activity that I wrote about last week should be considered in the class of aggressive sellers. For as long as this market continues, the more a seller can think aggressively the better the sellers chances are at attracting a buyer (or hopefully two or more) in short order.

2005 through 2008 unit sales chart:

For the third month in a row... sellers have outpaced the previous years mark. Before we break out he 'bubbly' on this, keep in mind that we are beating 2007's numbers. And if we really want to compare the pace so far in 2008 to the worst complete year by my data gathering (2007), since the beginning of the year... 2008 has not performed as well for the first 5 months of the year and is 25 units sold behind in comparison.

2005 through 2008 average price chart:

The yo-yo effect might play on your senses a bit, but the trend line so far this year for average sales prices continues to head down. The trend lines for 2006 and 2007 were basically flat by comparison. There is no confusing which way average prices are going this year... just like there was no confusing which way the trend line was pointing in 2005.

The average sales price for May of 08 was down 20.4% as compared to the May of 07.

2005 through 2008 median price chart:

The median price for May 2008 was off 24% as compared to the May 2007 figure.

The price range of units sold for May was between $44,000 through $560,000.

Average SFR statistics:

The average home sold in May had 3.08 bedrooms, 2.08 bathrooms, a 1.93 car garage, included 1,543 square feet of living space, and was built in 1995. The average hold sold for an average of $110 per square foot of living space.

It took an average of 152 days of marketing to attract a buyer to come to an agreement and a total of 192 days from the first day of marketing to the close of escrow.

Sellers reduced price $15,379 to attract a buyer on average from the first day of marketing, and conceded another $9,328 to the buyer in the transaction. The total average price concession for the homes sold in May was $24,708 (12.67% total reduction).

Bonus Charts:

The average price per square foot fell 12.7% as compared to the year before.

This chart is clearly telling all of us (including the real estate professionals that are representing the sellers) that we are still too slow in adapting to the buyers and/or still being too stubborn given the state of the local economy.

If you are thinking of selling a home in today's market you do have a couple of choices. First you have to ask yourself if you are really trying to sell AND can afford to sell your property without having to cough up a pile of money at the closing table. If the answer is yes, then your choice is to put the property on the market at a very competitive and aggressive price that coincides with actual sales data and price levels. Simply put, it is easy to beat the competition right now. The other choice is to join the hundreds of offerings on the current market, reduce the price every 60 days or so, and still let the buyer beat you up and concede your proceeds further.

If you are paying a monthly mortgage, you will likely save thousands of dollars by entering the market with an aggressive price. Sometimes this is a consideration that sellers overlook when putting their property on the market. With fewer buyers out there in the market today... you don't want to attract one buyer... you want to attract at least two. When the buyers are finished bidding against each other, you might be pleasantly surprised to find that your property didn't suffer price reductions OR price concessions when all is said and done.

Happy hunting!!

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