Salisbury MD Area Home Sales in 2017
There were 1180 settlements on residential housing units in the Salisbury MD area and Wicomico County in 2017, up 7% from 2017. The median sales price was $154,900, up 3% over the same period along with a 10% decrease in inventory.
The average time on market for properties sold in the Salisbury MD area last year was 3.1 months. Foreclosures and short sale properties accounted for 19% of residential sales in 2017, down from 25% in 2016.* Residential sales in Wicomico County are up 31% since 2014, with the median price increasing by 11% over the same period.
Salisbury MD Area Home Buyers in 2018
Home buyers in the Salisbury MD area and Wicomico County looking to purchase this year are facing some challenges. First, inventory is currently at a four month supply, meaning we are in a seller’s market. (A six month supply of homes is the standard for a “neutral” market) Fewer homes for sale puts upward pressure on prices, which was discussed in detail in the Fourth Quarter 2017 Home Sales Report.
Second, many economists are expecting mortgage rates to slowly climb throughout 2018. Rates may be near 5% on a 30 year fixed loan by years end, further eroding affordability. In practical terms, a $200,000 home with a 10% down payment on a 30 year fixed loan would have an $80 per month increase in payment under this scenario. For a buyer to have the same payment now versus then, their maximum home price would need to be around $187,000. If current trends hold and the median sales price goes up another 4% in 2018, then that same buyer’s maximum sales price would need to be closer to $179,000!
Also, as the economy improves (we believe it will sharply once the recently passed Federal tax cuts take further effect) companies will begin hiring at a faster pace and offer employees higher wages, meaning additional buyers entering the market. Some of this will undoubtedly be offset by more homeowners listing their properties for sale to relocate, move up, or downsize, but only to a certain degree.
Salisbury MD Area Home Sellers in 2018
Home owners in the Salisbury MD area and Wicomico County planning to sell have plenty to cheer about. Low inventory (competition) has pushed the average days on market down to just over three months, while fewer distressed properties that bring down values of neighboring properties are being sold.
Many homeowners are now recognizing that the “selling season” is becoming year round and not necessarily April through August as was once widely accepted. Those who understand market conditions are moving ahead of the curve knowing there are significant numbers of buyers ready to go now because of expected mortgage rate increases. Contact us for details on we sell our client’s homes for the most money in the shortest time frame.
What Can the Salisbury MD Housing Market Expect in 2018?
Our predictions for 2017 home sales in Wicomico County last January were spot on. In 2018, we see a similar trajectory for the Salisbury MD area real estate market. By the time the ball drops in a little over 11 months, around 1,250 residential properties should be sold while the median home price should go up an additional 3-4% to about $160,000.
This time we’re not being contrarian when it comes to conventional wisdom regarding mortgage rates either. The sky won’t be falling when considering that historical averages for home loans are around 6%. With Wall Street reaching new highs, concerns with North Korea and a looming budget battle in D.C., there are plenty of things to watch that can affect our local housing market. Check back in with us frequently for the most comprehensive market data available in Wicomico County.
Information compiled by Esham Real Estate Inc. is deemed to be reliable, but is not guaranteed © 2018 MLS and FBS
*Based on information from the Coastal Association of Realtors® for the period 1/1/17 through 12/31/17