The national trend in real estate shows slowing sales and declining inventory. Delaware beach real estate is no different- inventory levels are the lowest they have been in Sussex County, Delaware in the last 10 years. At the same time, the sales pace has slowed.
Interestingly, the amount of inventory has fallen dramatically, while the pace of sales has slowed- but not at the same pace. This is a very confusing market. Typically, when the market slows down in Delaware beach real estate, the amount of inventory rises and the pace of sales falls. This isn’t what is happening at the Delaware beaches. Currently, the inventory and pace of sales are BOTH falling.
These numbers are best visualized in the “Months of Inventory” figures. This stat indicates the number of months it would take current inventory to sell at the current monthly sales rate. The graph below tells the story in residential real estate:
(Based upon SCAOR MLS data, 7/2/19)
This graph shows the consistent decline in Months of Inventory over the last 5 1/2 years. This is consistent with national reports. I typically don’t think national reports are of great value- since there is truly no “national” real estate market. Real estate is VERY local, and so the conditions in the area where you are looking may reflect (or look nothing like) the generalized “national” conditions.
If you are in the real estate market- what does this mean to you?
It means different things depending on circumstance.
If you are looking to sell Delaware beach real estate, then this is a good time. Prices have gained in the last few years, and interest rates are currently at multi-year lows. Low rates make homes more affordable. Property values have recovered much of what they lost in the Great Recession. Inventory is low. This is a Seller’s market for Delaware beach real estate. When you take the market conditions with the Essential Listing program, there is an opportunity to maximize your financial benefit from selling.
Now sellers, before you get the idea that you’ll be able to just pick a price and get multiple offers- that isn’t going to happen. The rate of sales is dropping- and this means that Buyers are sticking to the price points where they need to be. This isn’t 2004- where no one cared what things costs, and banks made loans to everyone. Lending is still very tight (some might say responsible), and everyone seems to have learned the lesson of the Great Recession. The bottom line is that properties that are priced to the market will sell. Overpriced properties will sit.
For Buyers, this is a tough market. Due to the lack of inventory, it is going to be hard to find the perfect property, and Sellers have the upper hand. At the same time, having an experienced Buyer’s agent who knows the market is a valuable tool. At the Delaware beaches, a Buyer’s agent is typically paid by the Seller- so there is no cost to you as the Buyer.
Buyer’s need to be prepared for the fact that homes are selling for more than 98% of their asking price these days, and the time when you could play hardball on price and terms with Sellers is long gone. That being said, we haven’t seen the Delaware beach real estate market become so overheated that typical contingencies (home inspections, financing, etc) need to be waived.
All in all, the Delaware beach real estate market is healthy. It’s a great time to sell (at the market price), and it’s a good time to buy (prices aren’t going crazy). We recommend you work with Sunrise Real Estate to help you buy or sell!