Here is the painful truth about the Crystal Coast real estate market place. The Crystal Coast has a Wal-Mart size of inventory but it has a convenience store sized customer base. The area has never been able to handle successfully more than 1,000 active homes for sale at a single time. We’ve been above 2,000 active properties since the year 2005.
Normally when you have an excess of inventory you reduce price to motivate sales. Crystal Coast homes are on average about 10 percent cheaper now than back in September of 2005 when sales were at their peak. But the current inventory is three times larger now than it was back then. Maybe the price reductions haven’t been severe enough?
Crystal Coast Home Prices
The average sold price of a home for the month of September was $232K. The median price was $187K and $167K for Onslow County.
Almost 75 percent of the Crystal Coast homes sold in September were priced (average) under $300K. The market that isn’t marketed too but has the largest market share is the $100-$200K price range. Last month saw 42 percent of all sales in that range.
I think this is the root of the problem. Our clientele spends at Wal-Mart pricing and not at Prada or Saks price points. And spend they do when the market reasonable values its properties. This is why in recent months as much as a third of all sales have been for cash. When the price point is right the cash flow (literally) begins.
On the subject of cash, those sales dipped to 23 percent in September, still much higher than the traditional 13-14 percent cash sale we would, “normally” see. VA loans were also at 23 percent with conventional loans at a whopping 43 percent.
Good News For Real Estate
The good news about the government shutdown and bad economic forecasts is that they have help to suppress the rise in mortgage interest rates. In addition, the climb in rates faltered when the Federal Reserve announced a few weeks ago that it would continue buying up to $85 billion a month worth of bonds. Rates have dropped more than a quarter of a percent since July. What has been bad for federal debt has been good for lowering mortgage rates.
Let me leave you with this thought. Regardless of how great or how horrific a real estate market is, there are always, and I mean always great opportunities to be had. Never be discouraged away from buying or selling real estate due to real or perceived market conditions.
Margaret Hitchcock is a Realtor and owner/operator of Hitchcock Realty in Morehead City, NC. Contact her to buy or sell coastal real estate. Visit her online at www.HitchcockRealty.net or call (252) 269-2893