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Home Sales Rebound in October Moving Into Positive Territory

Home sales rebounded in October with double-digit sales growth in the Champaign County area. October was the sixth month so far this year that home sales were up over sales from 2017, according to the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®.

          CCAR reports a total of 227 residential home sales in October, up 18.23 percent from 192 in October a year ago. Home sales year-to-date remain 2.03 percent ahead of last year with home sales for the Champaign County area at 2,562 sales as compared to 2,511 a year ago.

            The median home sale price in October 2018 for the Champaign County area was $142,000, down 8.08 percent from $154,475 a year ago. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more, half for less.

            The average home sale price in October in the Champaign County area was $170,165, down 3.72 percent from $176,736 in October of 2017.

           “The Champaign County area housing market definitely showed impressive gains in October heading into the final months of the year.  There were other positive trends in the market in October including the fact homes were on the market for a shorter period of time and the total number of pending home sales also increased,” said Eric Porter, President of the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®.

            There were 185 pending sales reported for the month of October reflecting an increase of 16.4 percent from 159 sales reported a year ago.  Pending sales for the month of October reflect the number of active listings that went under contract and are awaiting closing, usually 30 to 60 days in the future.

            The average number of days on the market for all home sales in the Champaign County area in October of 2018 was 84 days, down 3.1 percent from 86 days in October of 2017.

            The Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation reported the national average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage was 4.83 percent in October, an increase from 4.63 percent from the previous month and 3.90 percent in October of 2017.

            The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 4.81 percent for the week ending November 21, 2018, down from the previous week when it averaged 4.94 according to Freddie Mac. Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, says, “The downward spiral in oil prices and a volatile equities market caused mortgage rates to decline 13 basis points to 4.81 percent, the largest weekly drop since January 2015. Mortgage rates are the lowest since early October and the dip offers a window of opportunity for would-be buyers that have been on the fence waiting for a drop in mortgage rates.”

            “We expect a period of relative calm in the market as we finish out the year,” indicates Porter. “There remains some competition in the market for housing attractive to both first-time homebuyers and boomers who want to downsize. That is creating a shortage of inventory that meets their specifications. On an encouraging note, we saw a 19 percent increase in new listings in the month which will offer some fresh inventory as lower inventory levels have kept some would-be buyers out of the market.”

            Year-over-year housing inventory in the Champaign County area market declined 11.6 percent to 873 homes for sale as compared to 988 in October of 2017.

            “The Illinois and Chicago markets appear to be following normal patterns for this time of year,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL) at the University of Illinois in the October Illinois REALTORS® home sales release. “There is some uncertainty among consumers whose outlook, while positive overall, is a little cautious about the housing market reflected in Fannie Mae’s Purchase Sentiment Index that revealed that the net share of consumers who said it’s a good time to buy a home posted a large decrease.”

            The National Association of REALTORS® reports that existing home sales increased in October declined 5.1 percent from a year ago. “As more inventory enters the market and we head into the winter season, home price growth has begun to slow more meaningfully,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist with the National Association of REALTORS®. “This allows for much more manageable, less frenzied buying conditions.” Yun estimates that existing home sales will finish at a pace of 5.345 million, a decrease from 2017 (5.51 million). In 2019, he anticipates sales will increase to 5.4 million, a 1 percent increase. The national median existing-home price is expected to rise to around $266,800 in 2019 up 3.1 percent from 2018 this year.

            The Champaign County Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade organization serving Champaign County and surrounding areas and is a leading resource and an advocate for homeownership and private property rights. Statistics are from residential sales within Champaign County. Data compiled by Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC as available on November 14, 2018.

Monday, November 26, 2018/Categories: News Releases