November 2019 Market Snapshot

Monthly Market Indicators

In November, the Federal Reserve reduced its benchmark rate for the third time this year. This action was widely anticipated by the market. Mortgage rates have remained steady this month and are still down more than 1 percent from last year at this time. Residential new construction activity continues to rise nationally. The U.S. Commerce Department reports that new housing permits rose 5% in October to a new 12-year high of 1.46 million units.

New Listings in Harrisburg increased 30.8 percent to 17. Closed Sales were down 43.8 percent to 9. Inventory levels fell 3.9 percent to 49 units.

The Median Sales Price stayed the same at $233,000. Days on Market was up 46.3 percent to 88 days. Sellers were encouraged as Months Supply of Homes for Sale was down 17 percent to 3.2 months.

While many economic signs are quite strong, total household debt has been rising for twenty-one consecutive quarters and is now $1.3 trillion higher than the previous peak of $12.68 trillion in 2008. While delinquency rates remain low across most debt types (including mortgages), higher consumer debt loads can limit future household spending capability and increase risk if the economy slows down.

Housing Supply Overview

According to the U.S. Commerce Department, new housing permits rose 5% in October to a new 12-year high of 1.46 million units. Lawrence Yun, the National Association of REALTORS® chief economist, the latest figures “tremendously good news for the housing sector.” While increasing new construction activity is helpful, it is widely believed that construction activity is still below what is needed to provide adequate housing supply. For the 12-month period spanning December 2018 through November 2019, closed sales in the Harrisburg region were up 9.5 percent overall.

The overall Median Sales Price was up 1.8 percent to $229,000.  

Market-wide, inventory levels were down 9.1 percent. The construction type that lost the least inventory was the Previously Owned segment, where it decreased 5.9 percent. That amounts to 3.4 months supply for Single-Family homes and 4.2 months supply for Condos.

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