It might be a tight housing market with rising prices, but sales in July were up almost 2 percent year-over-year, according to the latest RE/MAX National Housing Report. July was only the second month this year to have year-over-year sales increases, but the 28th in a row to see prices go up from a year earlier, the report said.
According to the report, 37 of the 54 metros posted sales increases over July 2017. Forty-two of the 54 posted a year-over-year drop in inventory, and days on market dropped to 41, four days less than last July.
While the national average for days on market was 41, homes in Seattle moved at an average of 19 days in July, followed by Omaha at 20. On the other side of the coin, Augusta, Maine, saw houses stay on the market for an average at 89 days. Miami was a close second, with an average 83 days on market in July.
The report revealed that though the overall average number of home sales in July was up from a year ago, it was down 8.7 percent from June. The biggest year-over-year increases in sales happened in Billings, Montana, which saw a 27.4 percent uptick in homes sold over July 2017. Tulsa, Richmond, and Pittsburgh saw year-over-year increases between 11 and 13 percent.
“Because we’ve faced challenging inventories and increasing home prices for some time now, a seasonal slowdown that rebalances the market a bit might actually be a positive in the months ahead,” said Adam Contos, CEO at RE/MAX. “It could level affordability to some extent and create more opportunity for buyers who’ve been priced out of hot markets.”
Median sale prices in July hit $250,575, which was up 4.4 percent from July 2017, but down 3.1 percent from June. Inventory closed July at 2.9 months, the smallest total ever recorded for July, according to the report.
San Francisco, Boise, Denver, and Salt Lake City had inventories of less than two months in July.
Wilmington, Delaware (down 2.2 percent) and Trenton, New Jersey (down 0.7 percent) were the only two cities posting sales price decreases since July 2017. Four metro areas increased year-over-year by double-digit percentages. The largest was Boise, where prices spiked almost 19 percent. Omaha, San Francisco, and Salt Lake City all saw median prices increase by more than 12 percent.