Slowly but surely we are beginning to move in the right direction.
After a tough October and November throughout Delaware County PA, the numbers in December began to look a bit more robust. Although down, all the numbers are improving from the last couple of months. Overall, both units sold(339) and homes put under contract(253) were down 14% from December 2007, while new listings(388 ) were down approximately 7%. Average sold prices were down over 8% from 2007, but I would say this reflects more the mix of homes sold and the realities of the available financing rather than a dramatic shift in pricing. Countywide, average days on the market remains a bit higher at 78 days on the market, but time on the market varies widely depending on the price range as seen from the Luxury Market report.
Again, we are seeing a wide range of activity on a more local level. In Newtown Square PA, the number of homes sold(16) were up 23% from last year (with prices up 23%) while the homes put under contract(5) declined 45%, and newly listed homes(5) fell 61%. Next door in Marple Township PA, homes sold (6) declined 60% (with prices down 3%) with 6 new homes under contract (down 40%) and 9 new listings (-18%). Across the county in Lansdowne PA, homes sold during the month (9) declined 18% with an 8% price decline, while new pending (5) and new homes listed (10) both increased 25% from 2007.
Bottom line: We're getting there.
After a rough fourth quarter, it does look like we are trending back to a more stable market, but we may remain in a bit of a holding pattern until we see the new adminstrations' plans. In the short term, the overall unsettled economy will probably keep a rein on both prices and activity, but this remains one of the best buying opportunities we have seen in years with lower home prices, more inventory, and incredible financing for well qualified buyers. In addition, we have seen some move up activity as homeowners take advantage of the available financing and reduced prices to expand their options. Once financing becomes more available for the larger loans, this could help to accelerate the activity.
(All information is based on TrendMLS Market Statistics and believed correct but not guaranteed)