Home sales are reaching record highs in many parts of the country. Data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) indicates that June 2015 marked the highest sales rate in more than eight years. This recent surge in demand combined with a shortage of homes on the market has also begun to nudge sales prices upward.
According to Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, “Buyers have come back in force, leading to the strongest past two months in sales since early 2007. This wave of demand is being fueled by a year-plus of steady job growth and an improving economy that’s giving more households the financial wherewithal and incentive to buy.”
From a regional view, when compared to other areas of the nation, the Midwest saw the sharpest increases in June with existing home sales rising 12.7 percent above June 2014 with a median price jump of 7.2 percent year over year. Kansas City is no exception to the trends being seen at the national and regional levels.
According to data from the Kansas City Regional Association of Realtors and Heartland MLS, the Kansas City region has seen a more than a 10 percent increase in existing home sales year to date. The average sales price for existing homes has jumped 6.2 percent versus June 2014 to $199,806. In addition to higher sales prices, sellers have also seen decreases in days on market with a current average of 60 days.
Buyers, on the other hand, have had to adjust to the pace of the current market which has brought with it an increase in competition. The inventory of existing homes on the market in the Kansas City area in June was down more than 23 percent over June 2014, with fewer than 10,000 homes available.
Realtors recommend that buyers receive loan pre-approval prior to beginning their home search, as it allows them to act more quickly upon finding the right property. This proves to be especially important when multiple buyers are interested in the same home, which has become increasingly common with the limited market supply.
Whether considering buying or selling a home, Realtors are able to provide guidance in navigating the local market. Don’t hesitate to call on their expertise.
Dan O’Neill, MGRI, is 2015 president of the Kansas City Regional Association of Realtors.