June real estate stats show buyers not always on top anymore

sjones@thesunnews.comJuly 11, 2013 

PHOTOSPIN.COM

— Real estate along the Grand Strand in June showed a seasonal decline in new listings, a leveling in the growth of single family home sales and a significant rise in sales prices over 2012, according to the monthly market report from SiteTech Systems.

Distressed home and condominium listings continued to drop and their prices continued to rise, while at the same time the number of single family home sales this year was significantly above last year, all of which may be signaling a time that all homeowners cherish like a good steak.

“It used to be a total buyer’s market,” said Paul Game, broker in charge and sales manager for The Lachicotte Co., “but it’s beginning to turn.”

The rise in prices for distressed homes and condominiums is expected with the drop in inventory, said Todd Woodard, president of SiteTech Systems, and Game added that at least in some cases there are multiple buyers after the same property.

That in turn allows sellers to drop back a bit on the concessions – closing costs, allowances for repairs and the like – they’re willing to give someone to buy their property.

Game said not all properties are coveted by more than one buyer, and that the bargaining depends not just on the property, but on the terms banks are willing to give to non-cash buyers as well.

But overall, he said, today’s market is more level for sellers than it’s been for some time.

The SiteTech report showed that while the number of single family home sales are nearly the same as June 2012, the volume to date this year is up 19.2 percent from what it was a year ago.

While June’s $182,250 median sales price was below that of May, it was more than $20,000 above the median $161,310 price that homes were getting in June 2012. Year-to-date median prices recorded an $11,000 increase this year versus last.

Along the Grand Strand, homes on average sold for 94 percent of the asking price, another signal that sellers may be gaining some edge in their relationship with potential buyers.

Median prices for condominiums both in June and for the year are up over 2012. For June, the median price climbed nearly $5,000 to $114,700 from June 2012 and the year-to-date median price of $107,000 was $1,000 over the first half of 2012.

A total of 91 percent of condominiums sold for at least their list price, SiteTech reported, versus 88 percent that did in June 2012.

Woodard also said that the percent of June’s overall sales that were distressed properties – 15 – was the lowest in a long time.

And he, too, noted the change from not too long ago.

“Before when (buyers) presented an offer,” he said, “the sellers were happy just to get an offer.”

Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765.

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