Steve's Stat's - January 2018


How's the market?  That's the number 1 question everyone who works in real estate is asked.  What separates good real estate agents from the rest is their ability to answer this question accurately, thoroughly and honestly.  When making decisions about your most important investment you want to know that the people you are working with know what they are doing and have a proven track record.

The ABSORPTION RATE is a measure that determines how quickly it will take to sell through the current inventory of homes for sale given current sales activity.  This measure indicates whether the market is one which favors the seller (seller's market) or one which favors the buyer (buyers market).  

(A) = Active listings - Shippensburg school district: 101

Houses sold in Shippensburg in the period used (3 months) : 78

(PD) = 78/3 = 26

(R) = Absorption Rate (measured in months) = A/PD = 3.88 months

The Absorption rate is a measure which indicates how long it will take to sell through current housing inventory levels given the current and most recent sales pace.  It is widely accepted that 6 months is a balanced market.  Any measure above 6 months would indicate a market which favors the buyer meaning lower sales prices and more marketing time due to higher levels of inventory.  Any measure below 6 months indicates a seller's market which can be characterized by lower levels of inventory and higher sales prices.  All of this is based on supply and demand economics.  

Looking at the sales data over the past 31 days:

Number of homes sold = 27

Median Sales Price = $162,475

Average Days on Market (for the 27 houses that sold) = 125 days or 4.17 months


As we enter in to 2018 we need to know that even though the temperatures are very cold, consumer confidence is HOT!  Since 2016 the number of houses available for sale in the Shippensburg school district has reduced to half of what it was just 2 years ago.  There is a lot of demand as lender requirements have eased up for mortgages and as buyers find themselves in the real estate market looking for homes to purchase.  Inventory is the real challenge now.  Finding houses for the buyers who want to purchase!  


We need to talk now, sooner rather than later.  Every year I am asked the question, "should I wait till Spring to put my house on the market?"  Not this year, people are looking for houses to purchase now and buyers are competing for those houses.  Spring is when everyone else chooses to list.  We do not know how many people will list their house in the Springtime but we do know that right now is a great time to sell for the most money and best terms possible.  

If you need to sell then call me and let's talk.  Let me tell you how much your house will sell for and potentially how quick I expect that to happen.  Ask me anything, I list and sell more houses here at JALEX than anyone else you could speak with so I know the market here in Shippensburg better than anyone.  I also offer my clients the most flexibility in getting the job done because I own my company and I do not have a huge corporate structure and overhead to answer to.  At JALEX we have proven we are as knowledgeable and capable as anyone else and the numbers prove that.  But we are also a local company, small enough to pay attention to each of our clients individual needs.


For 10 years inventory has been high and interest rates have been low.  That kept the local real estate market going.  Real estate agents have been telling you for years that the time to buy was NOW because mortgage interest rates are rising.  I think those folks were crying wolf.  

With the rise in consumer confidence over the past year however, I think that now is the time that we will begin to see sharp increases in mortgage interest rates.  All of the supply and demand factors are there and there is no reason for rates to remain as low as they have.  Housing inventory is low, buyer demand is high, employment rates are up, rents are high and lender mortgage requirements have eased.  If you need to buy then your biggest problem is going to be finding your home!  That is where we come in.  You see, nearly 95 percent of buyers start their house search on the internet.  By the time many houses are listed for sale and you see them on the internet they have already been for sale for days, perhaps weeks.  That is why many of the houses that you call about are already under contract.  And there are plenty of real estate agents that you can get a hold of through Zillow and Trulia or even Realtor.com who pay money to those sites to get your call.  They will meet you and show you the house even though they know it is not available.  Once you have signed their Buyer's agency agreement the house suddenly is under contract.  

If you need to buy a house.  Be smart.  Understand the value that a good real estate agent can bring to the transaction.  A good real estate agent should ask you to meet and talk about what you are looking for and how to offer you the best service.  A good agent will make sure to tell you what you need to know rather than what you want to hear to ensure that you get the house that you LOVE!  A good real estate agent does not need you to sign an exclusive agreement and therefore "lock" you in to using their company.  A good agent who knows what they are doing is a valuable ally in a market such as the one we are in now, a market that favors the seller more than at any other time since the early to mid 2000's.  

Steve Coover

Broker, Owner, Real Estate Agent

JALEX Real Estate Services

717-552-8340 Cell Phone-text | scoover@jalexhomes.com


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