August 21, 2018
Mortgage recordings in July showed a significant increase from a year ago. There were 301 mortgages recorded in amounts between $75K and $424K compared to 256 last year. This is consistent with our own book of business which has shown a decline in the percentage of cash deals from about 33% to 26%. That?s the lowest percentage for us in many years.
About the middle of July, it appeared that the purchase market was slowing down. During the second half of July, the number of recorded deeds representing a transaction rebounded to 264 and the month ended up almost identical to July 2017 when 260 deeds were recorded. A spot check of August again shows a notable 14% decline thru the 17th of the month. I?m a bit gun shy to draw any conclusions.
I do think that because of the lack of inventory, buyers are taking longer to find a house to buy. The normal seasonal patterns that we?re accustomed to are not as constricted by ?back-to-school? or ?we must move during the summer? considerations. Buyers will close and move whenever they find a house.
So in spite of the lack of inventory and the resultant price appreciation, our market perseveres. That?s a good thing for all of us!
~ John Bethell