If you read nothing else in this report, read this: spring has sprung in Portland real estate, and the market is just about as hot as it's ever been. Here's the executive summary of what you need to know.
Prices were up 14% in March compared to March 2015, with Portland apprecation continuing to outpace the rest of the nation in year-over-year gains. Inventory remains at historic lows with a paltry 1.3 months of available inventory. Fixed, 30-year mortgage interest rates fell to their lowest level in nearly three years, with Freddie Mac reporting an average rate of 3.58%. With inventory and interest rates continuing to remain at historic lows, expect sellers to continue to command the market, with competition for their homes remaining fierce.
Portland home values have been on the rise and continue to rise in 2016. In fact, as we saw in February, with strong demand, low inventory and high migration from other states like California, Portland home values are rising faster than anywhere else in the nation.
Average sales prices are up a staggering 14.2% since March 2015 and 5.5% since February 2016. The average sales price in the Portland area was $385,100 in March 2016.
Buying activity in the Portland area remains strong with March closings finishing 4.4% ahead of the closings we saw in March 2015. New contracts (i.e., pending sales) were down -9.1% from March 2015 but were ahead of February 2016 by 10.4%.
Average total market time from just listed to under contract dropped from 75 days in March 2015 to just 51 days in March 2016 (-31.5%). Inventory, which is calculated to mean total time required to sell all active listings if no new listings were to come on the market, dropped from 1.9 months in March 2015 to just 1.3 months in March 2016, a -28% drop from February 2016.
So what do all these numbers mean? Just as we predicted in last month's market update, be prepared for a wild ride in Portland area real estate this spring and into summer.
SELLERS- if you're thinking of selling your home, now's a great time to do so, as inventory is as low across the metro area as it's been in almost 20 years. Low inventory combined with historically low interest rates means more buyers will be competing for your home.
BUYERS- it will continue to be a tough, challenging market this year, but despair not! You can navigate the market successfully and purchase the home you've been waiting for; every month we help buyers like you do just that. But you absolutely need an experienced professional to guide you through the process and to help you put the right strategies in place. It's a tough market, but you can leverage the expertise of those who work in it and fight for buyers like you every day.
Thinking of buying or selling? Let's chat! Contact me today to find out how we can help you navigate Portland's real estate market and get you on the path to meeting your goals: buying or selling a home.