The year 2021 was another record year for home sales in the Champaign County area, according to the Champaign County Association of REALTORS® as the market frenzy continued with low mortgage rates and inventory shortages in another year of the COVID pandemic. Home sales in the Champaign County area reached a record high for the month of December as well.
Year-end 2021 total home sales of 3,325 units were reported in the Champaign County area, up 7.29 percent from 3,099 reported in 2020. Home prices continued to gain traction on a year-over-year basis with the median home sale price for 2021 for the Champaign County area at $176,000, up 4.95 percent from $167,700 in 2020. The average home sale price for 2021 increased 9.01 percent to $207,036 from $189,918 in 2020.
CCAR reports a total of 248 homes were sold in December, up 2.06 percent from 243 homes sold in December of 2020. For the month of December, the median home sale price was $178,000, up 5.95 percent from $168,000 in December one year ago. The average home sale price for the month of December was $210,626, up 11.52 percent from $188,876 in December 2020.
“The year of 2021 certainly defied all expectations and home sales rallied to reach historic levels in the Champaign County market area,” said Stefanie Pratt, president of the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®. “Homes have been selling at a record pace shrinking inventory supply levels. With more sellers planning to enter the market this year, we are hopeful home buyers can look forward to a greater inventory selection, decreased competition and more opportunities to make their home purchase.”
The average rate on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) was 3.10 percent in December 2021, up from 2.68 percent in December of 2020 and up from 3.06 in November of 2021.
Pending sales, a sign of future real estate activity, declined 7 percent in December of 2021 from December a year ago, according to Midwest Real Estate Data LLC. There were 133 pending sales in December as compared to 143 in December 2020. Pending sales in the month of December reflect the total number of active listings that went under contract and are awaiting a closing usually 30 to 60 days in the future. Inventory of homes for sale dated January 21, 2022 stood at 647 properties on the market, down from last month’s inventory total of 696 properties. It took an average of 34 days to sell a home in December.
“All signs point to another solid year for the housing market heading into 2022, but it also could be an increased challenge for first-time buyers as they deal with tighter affordability conditions due to price growth, higher mortgage rates and inflation,” said Pratt. “Home prices and sales should continue to rise in 2022 but at a more moderate pace than what we saw in 2021. As more inventory hits the market that should take some pressure off of price growth.”
According to realtor.com, “a number of factors will help keep homeownership in reach for many buyers, including expected income growth of 3.3 percent by year-end and declining unemployment is expected to continue to drop. As the economy grows and unemployment declines, bigger paychecks will enable buyers to compete even as housing costs rise. Recent survey data shows millennials account for over half (53%) of prospective buyers who plan to purchase their first home within the next year. Demand for more space has been a consistent theme throughout the pandemic and one that is expected to carry into 2022.”
Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS® reported in the National Association of REALTORS® December housing sales report, he does expect existing-home sales to slow slightly in the coming months due to higher mortgage rates, but noted that recent employment gains and stricter underwriting standards ensure home sales are in no danger of crashing. He forecasts rates to remain below 4% by year-end and wages to hold firm due to a tight labor market.
“This year consumers should prepare to endure some increases in mortgage rates,” Yun cautioned. “I also expect home prices to grow more moderately by 3% to 5% in 2022, and then similarly in 2023 as more supply reaches the market.” Nationally home sales finished strong reaching the highest annual level since 2006, according to NAR.
“A competitive seller’s market is expected to stick around in 2022, as well-priced homes in good condition will continue to sell quickly in this new year,” said Pratt. “As flexible work arrangements allow more to remote work, buyers will be in search of homes that match their preferences including accommodating work space as well as livable and recreational areas. CCAR REALTORS® remain committed to working to help clients achieve the American dream of homeownership, providing information and valued services to help buyers and sellers reach their desired goal.”
The Champaign County Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade organization serving Champaign County and surrounding areas and is the leading resource for REALTOR® members and an advocate for homeownership and private property rights. Data was compiled by Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC as available on January 14, 2022. The Champaign County Association of REALTORS® is an active participant in promoting equality and inclusion as longtime champions of fair housing with equal access to housing and opportunity for all. CCAR opposes discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, & national origin.
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The Champaign County Association of REALTORS® is the "Voice for Real Estate" in the Champaign County area of Illinois, whose over 400 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. CCAR was chartered in 1917.
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