Latest real estate data shows renewed market momentum
Second-quarter sales data released recently by the Sussex County Association of Realtors shows strong real estate sales for the first half of 2014, particularly in Sussex County’s single-family housing market.
This continues an upward trend in the last several years of a strengthening southern Delaware real estate market, now years removed from a crippling recession that saw home values throughout the United States plummet.
“We continue to be buoyed by these strong numbers. Real estate continues to move here in Sussex County, especially on the eastern half of the county, as is indicated by this recent data,” says Brad Riedle, 2014 SCAOR president. “We always try to stay cautiously optimistic when it comes to the future, but the data continues to be strong, and we look forward to a strong second half of 2014 and beyond.”
Single-family home sales for the months of April-June rose more than 14 percent over the same quarter a year ago, with the average three-bedroom home in the county selling for a median price of $271,239. While the number of homes sold in the second quarter is identical to last year, the average sales price has increased by 12 percent over the same period a year ago.
The amount of housing inventory available in Sussex County remains steady at 60 weeks, up slightly from last year but still much lower than in years past. Housing inventory is defined by the industry as the amount of time it would take to sell all current listings at the current sales pace if no new listings became available. This is a key indicator of a market’s strength, and 60 weeks is well within acceptable limits.
“We’re certainly not at the levels we were at back at the height of the real estate boom, but quite honestly, we may never see that type of housing activity in our area again. It’s certainly not going to happen in the foreseeable future,” says Riedle. “But what we are seeing is a market that is showing continuous and sustained growth, and that’s what we’re looking for in this new economic environment. We’re feeling more confident with each passing quarter that we are on a good long-term path.”
A total of 1,044 homes were sold in Sussex County between April and June, compared to only 660 in the first three months of the year. In total, more than $469 million worth of real estate has changed hands during the first six months of 2014, across all sectors.
More than $350 million in local real estate was sold in the second quarter of 2014 in Sussex County, in the single-family home market alone. Also, nearly $87 million in condo/town home sales were completed during the quarter, as well as nearly $4 million in mobile home sales, more than $16 million in sales of lots and land, and nearly $6.5 million in sales of commercial properties.
There are also more than 800 sales pending that should be completed during the third quarter of 2014.
The Sussex County Association of Realtors was chartered in 1949 and has steadily grown in size, scope and mission during its more than six decades in Sussex County. It is a professional trade association with goals of carrying out a program of education and advocacy for real estate in the county.
SCAOR is a resource for the public, as well as a recognized advocate for property rights and property owners in Sussex County. The association also monitors legislative issues on the local, state and national levels that may impact home ownership in the area.
To read more about issues related to Sussex County’s real estate industry, visit SCAOR’s website at www.scaor.com.