January 2021 Market Snapshot

Monthly Market Indicators

January started off strong for the housing market, with healthy buyer demand and strong market fundamentals. A robust increase in housing starts in December points to an active year for new construction, but higher material costs, especially lumber, and a limited supply of buildable lots will temper the number of new units.

New Listings in the Harrisburg region decreased 72.2 percent to 5. Closed Sales were up 55.6 percent to 14. Inventory levels fell 63 percent to 20 units.  Prices continued to gain traction. The Median Sales Price increased 10.4 percent to $234,950. Days on Market was up 13.5 percent to 85 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Homes for Sale was down 75 percent to 0.9 months.

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s January research estimates approximately 2.7 million homeowners with mortgages are currently in forbearance plans. Some of these homes may eventually come to market, but given the strong appreciation in most market segments in recent years, these eventual home sales are likely to be mostly traditional sellers. However, a modest increase in short sales and foreclosures at some point this year would not be surprising.

Housing Supply Overview

The new year has begun, and with it comes many people who have made buying or selling a home part of their 2021 resolutions. While ongoing unemployment claims remain elevated due to COVID-19, they are substantially lower than what they were during their peak and have had little effect on buyer demand thus far. For the 12-month period spanning February 2020 through January 2021, Closed Sales in the Harrisburg region were up 55.6 percent overall.

The overall Median Sales Price was up 7.2 percent to $230,000.

Market-wide, inventory levels were down 47.9 percent. The construction type that lost the least inventory was the Previously Owned segment, where it decreased 46.4 percent. That amounts to 1.5 months supply for Single-Family homes and 2.3 months supply for Condos.

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