The Outer Banks Association of Realtors released the June statistical report on July 8th. Considering we are still dealing with a global pandemic, the real estate news is not bad.
Yearly sales in all classes remain down 5%, but monthly sales for June are up 6% over last year. For those in the business of real estate, neither of those numbers are a surprise. Once the area reopened on May 16th, agents have been busy showing and selling!
Inventory has declined sharply in the past year – with residential inventory down 39% and land inventory down 14%. Total inventory is down 30%. This is a national trend as well, with residential inventory down nearly 19% through May, according to the National Association of Realtors.
The number of properties under contract remains at a record high, 842 on the day this report was released. Even though sales figures are up, there are still problems getting listings to closing. Appraisers, home inspectors, surveyors, and attorneys are overwhelmed. The number of properties going under contract in June was 531. That is still a good number.
Showings were down a bit in June, but this is likely due to the difficulty REALTORS® have showing homes during the busy vacation season. Also, many homes are being shown virtually, with some going under contract before the buyer ever sees the property in person.
The COVID-19 restrictions have resulted in many changes in the way the business of real estate is conducted. More than ever, it is an online and virtual transaction. I think this is a benefit for those of us in tourist areas where it is always challenging to show properties in-season. Certainly, agents have had to become more comfortable working in a virtual world, but the general public has had to make the virtual plunge as well. Even grandma has likely learned Zoom!
Residential median home prices overall are up slightly at 2%. Those towns that are showing increases are Kill Devil Hills up 13%, Nags Head up 4%, Colington, Currituck and Mainland, and Corolla all up 1%. The decreases are in Southern Shores 12%, Duck 10%, Kitty Hawk 3%, Roanoke Island, and all Hatteras 2%.
Real Estate is generally strong on a national level, and certainly still healthy On the Outer Banks. There is new construction happening too, with the number of building permits up nicely over last year. But inventory is still low.
If you need to sell now, that low inventory number could work in your favor. There’s no better time to sell an item than when demand for it is high, and supply is low.
For buyers, mortgage interest rates remain historically low. Just make sure you have your financial affairs in order and a pre-approval letter in hand when you are ready to start looking. I have seen recent instances where sellers want to see the pre-qual letter before they will allow their house to be shown.
Always talk to your REALTOR® to get the best assessment for your situation, whether buying or selling.
Information in this article is based on information from the Outer Banks Association of REALTORS® MLS for the period January 1, 2019, through July 8, 2020.
Mike is a long-time “Outer Banker”, both as a vacationer and a full-time resident. You may also know him as “Moose”, his nickname since he was 15 years old, and his on-air radio name for decades in Raleigh, Greensboro/Winston-Salem, and Norfolk. In fact, you can still hear him on Beach 104 every morning on the “Moose & Jody Show”. Michael has built successful businesses on the Outer Banks. He is active in the community as well as a founding board member of “Outer Banks Forever”, Past President of “The First Flight Society”, a founding member of “The Outer Banks Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition”, and Past President and current member of “First Flight Rotary. Moose shares your love of the Outer Banks, understands the uniqueness of the area, and can help you find your perfect home. Learn more at mooseobx.com