Monthly Market Indicators
In 2019 home prices were up again in most markets. Buyer demand continues to be strong but with tepid seller activity still in many locations, total sales are lower than they would normally be in a more balanced market. While up from their recent lows a few months ago, mortgage rates end the year close to three-quarters of a percent lower than a year ago, helping to improve affordability and offset rising home prices.
New Listings in Harrisburg decreased 5.9 percent to 16. Closed Sales were down 13.3 percent to 13. Inventory levels fell 2.3 percent to 43 units.
Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased 0.9 percent to $220,000. Days on Market was down 6.0 percent to 61 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Homes for Sale was down 12.0 percent to 2.9 months.
With low mortgage rates, low unemployment, and continued wage growth, home buyer activity is expected to remain healthy into the new year. New construction has been on the rise in 2019 and is expected to continue into 2020, but many experts note that the country is still not building enough new units to quench demand. It remains to be seen whether existing homeowners will be enticed to sell by higher home prices, which could finally bring the overall housing market into greater balance.
Housing Supply Overview
This month the Federal Reserve voted to leave its key benchmark rate unchanged, which was widely expected. While the rate decisions by the Federal Reserve do not directly affect mortgage rates, Federal Reserve policy does affect the economic markets overall. Mortgage rates ended the year close to three-quarters of a percent lower than in 2018, a welcomed improvement for buyers as well as homeowners who took the opportunity to refinance. For the 12-month period spanning January 2019 through December 2019, closed sales in Harrisburg were up 8.0 percent overall.
The overall Median Sales Price was up 1.3 percent to $227,900.
Market-wide, inventory levels were down 10.8 percent. The construction type that lost the least inventory was the Previously Owned segment, where it decreased 8.5 percent. That amounts to 2.9 months supply for Single-Family homes and 3.7 months supply for Condos.