Affordability Improves Despite Rising Home Prices

Home affordability has dropped in January to the lowest point it has seen in the past year.  In fact, home price affordability has only seen two months in the past 23 that were more attractive than they are right now.  Home prices have steadily increased over that same time period.  In the past 12 months alone, both the average and median home prices are up almost 5%.  So how could affordability be getting better?  Simple….interest rates are at their lowest levels since early 2013!

Every month we update Mecklenburg County single family market stats on our website and send out via E-Newsletter.  Our evaluation of affordability is based on the monthly payment a buyer would have using the average sales price and current interest rate for each month.  This past January the average monthly payment using those figures is only $941 for principal and interest.

Based on the January stats, the market in 2015 is looking similar to 2014 which was an excellent year.  Early signs suggest 2015 may even get a little better as pending home sales are up 10% from the same time last year.  Here is a sneak peak at all of our stats for January when comparing to the previous month and the same month last year:

– Home sales are down 28% from last month and down 1% from last year.  (Note: The drop from last month is normal this time of year!)

– Average sales price is down 6% from last month, but up 5% from last year.

– Media sales price is down 9% from last month, but up 5% from last year.

– Average days on market is down 2% from last month and down 28% from last year.

Pending home sales are up a whopping 34% from last month and up 10% from last year.

– Housing supply is up 6% from last month, but down 7% from last year.

– Mortgage rates are down to 3.67% from 3.86% last month and 4.3% last year.

– Average house payment is down 8% from last month and 4% from last year.

It looks likes its going to be another strong year for real estate sales.  Buyers planning to make a purchase in the next year should watch interest rates closely.  The recent trend is that home prices are doing nothing but increase so interest rates will be the key to an affordable purchase.


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