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Real Estate Inventory Levels Affecting Sales and Pricing

BOONE – Low real estate inventory is directly affecting the high sale prices and low total sales we are currently experiencing locally, as well as nationally. Residential and land inventory in the High Country continues its slow climb after hitting record lows in April. However, when compared to inventory levels and recorded sales this time last year, we see a stark comparison… with the total number of homes sold down by  33%.

July of 2020 began the Real Estate surge for the High Country. Inventory was good, sales were growing at a steep pace, and prices were beginning to rise. Flash forward to our current real estate market. The real estate boom has left us, along with the rest of the nation, seeing low inventory levels. With a 1% increase in inventory over last month, August began with 576 residential listings in our four-county region. This time last year, our MLS recorded an inventory of over 860 properties. That shows a decrease in inventory of over 48% year-over-year. With inventory levels lower than previous years, we see the relationship between our inventory and recorded total sales.

High Country Realtors® reported 279 homes sold in July of this year. Those numbers look good for our year-to-date growth. But let’s consider our numbers from last July. Realtors® reported 372 homes sold in July of 2020. Which means we are seeing a 33% decrease in recorded home sales. This shows that when the listing inventory is down, it correlates to our home sales, which will also be lower. However, the low inventory is also what effects the higher real estate prices, per the law of Supply & Demand.

Our MLS data reports that the median sale price continues to grow, out of the 279 homes that sold this July, the median sale price was $357,000. When comparing that number to July of 2020’s median sold price, which was $280,000, we see an increase of over $77,000. On top of that increase, we are still seeing Seller’s receive an average of 99% of asking price. And although sales numbers don’t touch last year’s in quantity sold, our sales volume has seen a slight increase. In July Realtors® brought in over $123 million dollars in sales, including the 13 million-dollar residential properties that sold locally.

LAND: In Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, and Watauga there were 129 tracts of land that sold for a combined total of nearly $14.9 million in July. These numbers are slightly lower than the report from the previous month.

Watauga County recorded the most land sold this month, 57 tracts for $7.49 million. Ashe County recorded the second most land sold with 29 tracts that brought in over $1.72 million. Avery County followed with 18 tracts selling for over $1.86 million and Alleghany recording 14 tracts that sold for a little over $2.4 million.

COMMERCIAL: Duplicating June’s commercial sales; a total of 5 commercial properties sold in July totaling over $4.5 million. According to our MLS, 3 were in Watauga County, accounting for $3.89 million. Then one each in Ashe, and Avery. The property in Ashe County sold for $185 thousand and the property in Avery County totaled $455 thousand. No commercial property was sold in Alleghany County for July.

ALLEGHANY COUNTY: 55 Alleghany County Realtors® sold 26 homes for $5.29 million. The median sold price for those properties was $199,450.

ASHE COUNTY: 147 Ashe County Realtors® sold 54 residential properties totaling $17.45 million. The median sold price was $277,705.

AVERY COUNTY: 158 Realtors® sold 59 homes in Avery County which totaled a little over $31 million. The median sales price for those properties was $365,000.

WATAUGA COUNTY: 447 Watauga County Realtors® recorded 117 residential properties selling for nearly $59 million. The median sold price was $436,000.

INTEREST RATES: We continue to see historically low interest rates. Freddie Mac reports 30-year FRM mortgages dropped to 2.77% as of August 6, 2021.

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