NE Tennessee pending home sales up by 15 percent over last year

Johnson City Press • Oct 27, 2016 at 4:38 PM

Pending home sales in Northeast Tennessee grew by double digits over last year in September, but drifted lower than an August spike that boosted them to a 13-month high, according to the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors.

NETAR President Marsha Stowell said in a news release Realtor Property Resource reports show September's new pending sales were 15 percent higher than September last year and down from August's 35-percent year-over-year increase.

Pending sales are the number of single-family, condominium and townhome properties with accepted offers available for the month. Pending sales typically move from accepted offer to closing anywhere from 45 to 90 days.

Factors like a tighter than normal inventory of homes for sale and the normal seasonal behind the softer pending sales numbers, Stowell said

“But that doesn't mean the bottom is dropping out demand,” she added. “Overall market activity remains brisk.”

According to the National Association of Realtors, pending sales shifted higher in nationally in September following August's notable dip. Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says a robust increase in the West and a healthy bump in the South pushed pending sales upward in September.

“Buyer demand is holding up impressively well this fall with Realtors reporting much stronger foot traffic compared to a year ago,” he said in the same news release.

Stowell said local Realtors are seeing the same thing. Monthly reports of steady job and wage gains combined with very moderate average local average home sales price increases is encouraging households to consider buying instead of renting, she said.

“The one major predicament in the housing market is without a doubt the painfully low levels of housing inventory in much of the country,” added Yun.

Locally, new listings got a shot in the arm with an 9 percent year-over-year increase in August, Stowell said. That was offset in September when new listings were 5 percent lower than September last year.

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