The Alaska MLS compiles statistical information regarding local real estate sales activity on a monthly basis and makes it available to real estate licensees by the 15th of the following month. The following is my analysis of Anchorage market statistics through the end of June, 2016 for single-family homes and condominiums.
Statistics for the first six months of 2016 show that we continue to have a good Anchorage area real estate market for single family homes in the price range up to $500,000. This is true even though there are currently approximately 38% more homes for sale than this time last year. With that said, there’s less than 3.9 months of inventory for sale under $400,000, 4.4 months in the $400,000 to $500,000 range and 6.4 months of inventory in the $500,000 to $750,000 range. That meets the definition of a seller’s market up to $500,000 and a normal market in the $500,000 to $750,000 range. It’s still a buyer’s market above $750,000 with 10.7 months of inventory in the $750,000 to $1,000,000 range and 30 months of inventory above $1,000,000.
The number of homes sold in all price ranges in January were down 17% from last year. February and March were down less than 1% from their respective months in the previous year. April was down 9%. May was down 5% and June was down 9% from each of their respective months last year. Overall year to date, the number of homes sold is down 7% to the same period last year. The average marketing time (listing to accepted offer) has taken only 47 days in the past 6 months. That’s slightly faster than the past several years. These homes are also selling at an average sales price very close to last year…..down less than 1%. The average single family home sales price for the first half of 2016 was $365,811, vs. the 2015 first half average of $368,489.
Bottom line, the number of homes sold year-to-date and their average sales price are down somewhat from the same period last year, but up from the same period in 2014. The charts below spell out some of this information out in more detail. Statistics can vary considerably month to month, but the first six months of this year give us a pretty good picture of how things will be looking by year end.
There are currently 3% more condominiums for sale than this time last year. Inventory for sale is still within the normal range of 4.7 months at current sales rates. With that said, numbers can vary considerably in different price ranges, such as 2.5 months of inventory in the $200,000-$224,999 range and 8.5 months in the $300,000 to $399,000 range. Although inventory is up 3% year to date, the number of sales are down 8%. The average YTD sales price is also down, but less than 1% to the same period last year. Average sales price year-to-date is $211,574, vs. last year’s $213,071 for the same time period. The average time on the market is 60 days vs. 59 days for the same period last year. These numbers tell that so far, there’s been a slight climb in inventory, and sales are down somewhat from last year. With that said, condominiums are not really taking any more time to sell and sales prices are hanging in there.
An item that I continue to watch closely is mortgage interest rates. Current rates for 30 year fixed rate conventional mortgages are 3.25%. 30 year FHA & VA mortgages are at 3.125%. That ‘s lower than they’ve been for some time, and near record lows! Bottom line, current interest rates are very low and have a positive impact on the market. Here’s an example of the difference in monthly principle and interest payments for a $300,000 mortgage at 3.25% and 5.25%: 3.25% monthly P&I pymt – $1,305.62 5.25% monthly P&I pymt – $1,656.61. That’s a difference of $350/month for 30 years. It definitely adds up over time! I can’t make a future rate forecast due to the numerous unforeseeable financial, political and world event factors that can impact rates. It’s even more interesting this year due to the political arena surrounding our presidential election. Rates may remain stable for a while, but I definitely foresee them going up sometime in the future. This concludes my 2016 YTD analysis.
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