The real estate market in my small hometown of Havre de Grace, MD had me worried for a second, since sales were flattening, inventory held firm and median sales prices looked just like they did last year (the last time we reviewed the market was October 2016). While it hasn’t done anything to change my concern, it has made some positive changes.
The total real estate sales volume was $5.16 million (the most recent full month for which we have sales), which was down just slightly from last March. There were 23 homes that received new owners during the month, which was a drop of a single home. A sign of alarm was the time it took to sell a home in Havre de Grace, MD during March of 2017, since it took 131 days to sell during that period! That was a 40% increase from the same time 12 months prior.
Another sign of sales mediocrity was the number of new listings on the market in Havre de Grace. There were 119 total active listings, which was only 4% less than March, 2016. As we’ve mentioned elsewhere, most adjacent markets are seeing as much as 20% lower inventory, and fewer homes for sale has helped prices improve; it also helps homes sell faster. A positive sign is that the number of pending sales is up 13% to 58, which shows that the coming months might see positive sales gains in Havre de Grace.
Some of you might recognize the highest-priced sold home in Havre de Grace for the month. It belonged to the late Dr. Gunther Hirsch, the obstetrician and former mayor that helped deliver a number of you reading this! His home had just over 2,700 square feet, a half acre of land and located at 605 Giles St. It sold for $439,000. A picture is below courtesy of MRIS.
The market in White Marsh has continued its steady roll, but there wasn’t a significant pop in sales during March of 2017. The volume, as usual, was mostly in the 21236 zip code, but there was some action in the 21162, mostly due to the developing that Ryan Homes is doing there in two different communities.
The total volume was steady at about $9.5 million in March, 2017, which was a 2% bump over the same month a year ago. 43 homes sold in the area, which, while more than many similarly sized zip codes, was only 2.38% over the same time last year, which represented an average sales price of $221,000. It took slightly less time to sell a home, with the days on market dropping to only 71 days.
The main story in most markets has been about homes inventory, which has reduced by about 20% in most nearby markets, but real estate listings in White Marsh, MD has stayed relatively firm. The number of active listings on the market when the statistic was recorded was 99, which was only 7.5% less than last year, so even though the inventory is lower than last year, the pace at which it has dropped is lower than most nearby markets.
Another factor that should be considered in White Marsh, MD is the number of pending sales, which are the number of homes currently under contract. This is the single best near-future indicator of homes sold, and in this market they are down considerably. The number of pending sales was 75 in March, 2017, which was a 24% drop over a year ago, suggesting that the either the market may be cooling down, or that March was just an anomaly; this is something we certainly need to keep an eye on.
The highest sales price took place in the Red Lion area of the 21162 zip code at one of Ryan’s newest communities. It was on Autumn Terrace drive, which is off Red lion rd., which is parallel to route 40 and off Ebenezer rd. Since it’s new construction, it had a base price of $454,990, and after all of the upgrades, the final sales price was $547,000. A picture of the property is below. (picture courtesy of MRIS).
We’ve seen most Harford County real estate markets catching fire lately, with inventory being constrained and bidding wars on most well-priced homes. And the same has been happening in Bel Air, MD, even though slight differences exist between the 21014 and 21015 zip codes.
The 15 has been the more robust, although both areas have been strong for sellers. The market there jumped 21% to 34 homes sold in March 2017, and while there were more sales (37) in the 14 in March, it was a 7.5% drop from March of 2016. Another point of note was that there were 11 condos sold in the 14 to only 1 in the 15, and since these were lower in price to the other properties sold, this substantially affected the overall results in that zip.
The prices were up in both zips, jumping 5.7% in the 15 and a sharp 10% in the 14! It took less time to sell a home in each market, taking 66 days in the 15 and only 39 in the 14, on average. Both markets are becoming constrained since there are so few homes in comparison to the rate of sales. The absorption rate (the amount of time it would take to clear out homes inventory if there were no new listings) dropped to 2.9 months for Bel Air, MD overall (including both zips), and overall inventory was 206 active homes when the measurement was taken.
Finally, the highest home sale took place in Glenangus and sold on March 10 for $716,750. A picture of the 4,000+ square foot home is below.
Have you been wondering what’s going in the space being added next to HomeGoods at the far end of Constant Friendship Shopping Center in Abingdon, MD? I’ll give you a hint: what’s a place that you need to visit every year, and if you don’t, people will know it when you smile? That’s right, the dentist! More specifically, according to the flyer for the property on the shopping center’s website, Aspen Dental will be entering the space.
The total addition is almost 8,000 square feet and the dental office is only taking up a portion. There will be remaining space available for another retailer to move in; don’t get too excited because this location is considered less than desirable for most retailers because of the lack of visibility, but it might work for a business that is complementary to the HomeGoods.
What would you like to see there? Another restaurant, of which there aren’t many in this center? How about a clothing retailer? Keep in mind that it will only be about 3,000 to 4,000 square feet, depending on how much Aspen Dental takes. Give us your opinion!
It was a little chilly in Harford County in February, 2017, but the real estate market in Abingdon, MD was steamier than usual! 37 homes changed ownership in the month, which was 37% over the same time a year ago. The median sold price was just below the average for the state at $210,000, which isn’t a surprise with as many townhomes as there are in that area. Surprisingly, it took a little longer to sell a home in Abingdon, MD that month, but still lower than most areas at 67 days.
The number of active listings actually went up a bit this month from 112 to 128, as people took the opportunity to list in order to take advantage of the rising home prices. Since Abingdon is generally ahead of the curve, we can expect this trend to spill over into other areas. Even with the higher number of active listings, the absorption rate (the number of months it would take to “sell out” inventory; a healthy market is 4 months or less in most cases) was 3.76 in Abingdon, MD.
The highest-priced sale was a new build in the Laurel Ridge community by Toll Brothers (picture included is a rendering) which sold for $600,512.