Sales began to bloom in May, helping to start the peak selling season in a more robust direction than the first quarter of 2023. Sales were down for the fifth consecutive month when compared to 2022. The average and median selling prices in May set records in the year-over-year comparison, increasing by double digits over last year.
In May 2023, the number of houses sold fell behind May 2022 (256 vs. 313), for an 18 percent decrease. Year-to-date, 995 houses were sold, compared to 1198 houses in May 2022, for a 17 percent decline in sales.
The inventory of houses for sale lags behind the level available a year ago (703 vs. 721). However, with lower sales volume, the months supply level increased slightly to 3.9 from 3.1-months supply from a year ago for buyers. For comparison, in May 2010, there were 3602 houses for sale for a 16.4-months supply of houses for homebuyers.
The average selling price in May 2023 was $401,016 compared to $336,015 in May 2022, for a 19 percent increase. Year-to-date, the average selling price in May 2023 slipped 3 percent from May 2022 ($330,498 vs. $339,743).
The median selling price in May 2023 at $280,500 rose 12 percent from $250,000 in May 2022. Year-to-date, the median selling price decreased by $5,000 ($240,000 vs. $235,000).
The median price is the price at which 50% of the homes sold were above that price and 50% were below.
The total dollar volume in May 2023 dipped 2 percent compared to May 2022 ($102,660,128 vs. $105,172,830). The year-to-date total dollar volume dropped 17 percent ($328,871,978 vs. $395,033,091).
The number of bank-owned or foreclosed homes as a percentage of all transactions decreased to 2 percent from 3 percent in April. The previous lowest percentage was 1 percent in May 2022 and 2021, and the highest percentage in May was 34 percent in 2009.
The Freddie Mac mortgage rate in May was 6.57, up from 6.43 in April for a 30-year conventional mortgage. A year ago, the rate was 5.1.
This data reflects home sales across Allegan, Berrien, Cass, and the westerly 2/3 of Van Buren Counties and should not be used to determine the market value of any individual property. If you want to know the market value of your property, please contact your local REALTOR®.
When Selling a Home…
There are two areas of your home where you can really make a good impression on potential buyers with minimal effort. The first is the front door. From their car, it should look inviting. Give it a fresh coat of paint and, if needed, a new lock. Standing around while the REALTOR® jiggles the key to unlock the door dampens the enthusiasm for seeing you home, especially if they see chipped paint. And it can lead to the impression that things need to be better maintained.
The second area is the kitchen. Buyers want to imagine how their stuff will fit in the cabinets and on the countertops. So remove all clutter. Put appliances like the toaster and coffee maker in a cabinet. Remove all unused appliances and dishes from cabinets and put them in storage. Buyers will look in cabinets and pantries, so the less jammed these areas are, the better to give the impression of lots of storage space.
These two key areas are so personal that it is a good idea to get your REALTOR®’s advice and perspective. They see what buyers look at daily and can quickly help you with these impression makers.
When Buying a Home…
Today the internet has everything you need to know about anything. While it is a good place to start your process of buying a home, it is just that, a place to start. Getting professional help from a local REALTOR® will benefit you in many ways, personally and financially.
Your REALTOR® will listen to your needs, answer your questions, and guide you through the whole process taking your interests to heart. Using a REALTOR® will save you time and hassle because they know the local real estate market. In most cases, your REALTOR® has seen the houses he or she will show you and can point out features that match your needs and not waste your time walking through houses that don’t fit your needs or budget.
Your REALTOR® is experienced at negotiating and managing the closing process, steps that can save you money now and in the future.
To view properties that are for sale in your local area, go to www.swmar.com, and click on “Search”. The Southwestern Michigan Association of REALTORS®, Inc. is a professional trade association for real estate professionals who are members of the National Association of REALTORS®, and ancillary service providers for the real estate industry in Allegan, Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren Counties. The Association can be contacted at 269-983-6375.