Real estate sales in the Outer Banks continued the unexpected strong performance seen in February into March with record sales numbers. The Outer Banks Association of Realtors released the March MLS Statistical Report – you can get the full report here.
Residential real estate was the strongest category to gain with an increase of 22%. The number of listings under contract in March jumped 22% to 451 units. The MLS reports this is the highest number of units under contract in the past 2 years and should make for an impressive sales report in April.
Some highlights from this month’s report follows.
Residential inventory decreased by 14% compared to last year while the median sale price increased by 5%. The lack of inventory is likely to continue to put increased pressure on prices. The quantity of residential property sold increased by 22%; showing a continued upward trend from February which was 17%.
Lots and land quantity and volume sold fell by 11%. There was no change to the average sale price but the median sale price increased by 17%. Inventory is down by 12% compared to last year.
Commercial unit sales are down by 67%; same as reported last month. Only 2 commercial units were sold compared to 6 last year. The average and median sale prices have little relevance with such a small sample. Commercial inventory is down 14% compared to last year.
Single family unit sales increased by 28% compared to last year. The volume sold increased 21% with the average sale decreasing by 5% but the median sale price increased by 1%.
Condos unit sales increased by 16% compared to last year; the same as reported last month. Condo median prices increased by a healthy 17%, with the average sale price increasing at 4% compared to last year.
Residential land unit sales fell by 12% compared to a year ago with average sale price up by 4% and the median up by 19%.
There were 9 residential short sale units sold which is 10% lower than last year. The average sale price increased by 18%. The median sale price increased by a whopping 78%.
Sales for bank owned properties increased from 18 units to 25 units compared to last year. Bank Owned unit sales increased by 39% continuing the gains of 70% reported for January and February 2017. The average sale price for Bank Owned property decreased by 38% compared to last year; while the median increased by 6%. Last month, The Outer Banks Association of Realtors commented that “One can only speculate as to whether the inventory of lower priced bank owned homes is being ‘cleaned out’”. The numbers suggest this has continued into March.
Overall, the quantity of distressed property sold increased by 21% compared to the same period in 2016. The average price decreased by 4% and the median increased by 54%. The Outer Banks Association of Realtors commented in the report that “The jump in median sale price can be directly attributed to the sale of one high priced oceanfront home.”
The effect distressed real estate will have on the overall Outer Banks market will continue to diminish as foreclosure and short sale inventory is depleted and the market returns to pre-recessionary levels of distressed real estate.
Outer Banks Town Statistics
The February 2017 median sale prices for the towns in the Outer Banks and the percent change compared to 2016 appear below:
Hatteras Island experienced a sharp increase and had the largest percentage gain of 18% compared to 2016. The next highest YTD increase was Kitty Hawk at 16%.
The Outer Banks real estate market is heating up. Activity from January to March has been the strongest in recent memory.
For any one sitting on the fence thinking about a vacation home purchase, second home purchase or permanent home, now is the time to act. Purchasing power will decrease once the anticipated mortgage rates increase. Smart buyers and investors will lock in rates now before the increase.
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If you have considered selling your Outer Banks home, now may be the best time. The lower inventory levels will allow your property to be seen with less competition. The strong demand will sell your home with fewer days on the market. Our 1.5% listing commission will save you thousands of dollars!
The rental market continues to be strong to provide income from the investment and enjoyment for the family for years to come. The Outer Banks continues to be named a top beach destination every year. For more information on buying Outer Banks Real Estate, or selling Outer Banks Real Estate or to learn more about the Outer Banks in general, please check out our blog