Typically, my Chattanooga real estate market reports look something like what you'll find at the other end of that link back there.
I have to admit, they are almost agony to put together. It's just that boring. Don't get me wrong, I'm as wonky as the next real estate geek, but there's not much of a challenge other than trying to make them interesting. So this month I decided to shake things up a bit and try something a little different. I moseyed on over to the Chattanooga MLS and ran some serious spreadsheets.
Unless you've been living under the proverbial rock, there's not much doubt that we're in a housing 'crisis.' I keep hearing over and over again about how the median home price is falling like one of those crazy BASE jumpers. And I've often thought "Hmmm, wonder if the median price is falling because actual prices are falling or because higher priced homes aren't selling as quickly?" I mean, if you looked at the price of the SAME house, is that falling? Or is that declining median price telling us more about WHICH houses are selling than it is about the price of any given home? How can you adjust so that you know you are comparing apples? How many times can I use the word 'price' in a single paragraph? These are the things I ponder in the middle of the night.
So I ran the numbers for all of the Novembers from 2005 through 2010. And here's what I came up with for your geeked out pleasure:
Total number of sales
- 2005 405
- 2006 388
- 2007 320
- 2008 224
- 2009 322
- 2010 196
- 2005 $145k
- 2006 $156k
- 2007 $143k
- 2008 $137k
- 2009 $160k
- 2010 $148k
- 2005 $179k - Difference between median & average: $34k
- 2006 $197k - Difference between median & average:$41k
- 2007 $165k - Difference between median & average:$22k
- 2008 $191k - Difference between median & average:$31k
- 2009 $169k - Difference between median & average:$9k
- 2010 $183k - Difference between median & average:$35k
Average Days on Market (DOM)
- 2005 92
- 2006 112
- 2007 126
- 2008 139
- 2009 110
- 2010 143
- 2005 $86
- 2006 $92
- 2007 $83
- 2008 $94
- 2009 $82
- 2010 $83
Average Age of Home
- 2005 34yrs
- 2006 30yrs
- 2007 35yrs
- 2008 40yrs
- 2009 41yrs
- 2010 30yrs
Average Square Footage
- 2005 1,987
- 2006 1,992
- 2007 1,865
- 2008 1,945
- 2009 1,990
- 2010 2,059
What do these numbers tell me? At least according to my interpretation...
Prices haven't really fallen so much but the number of sales is drastically lower and the average time spent on the market is a lot higher. So you might be getting a similar price for your home when you sell it, but expect it to be a lot harder to get that sale.
There's been some fluctuations in pricing & $/sq ft but nothing really earthshaking.
The stimulus worked, even if only temporarily. November 2009 was the original deadline for the $8,000 first time buyer tax credit (it did end up being extended but it's pretty likely that the buyers that closed that month didn't know that was going to happen when they signed on the dotted line). It isn't surprising that DOM, median price & average price are all a whole lot better for 2009 than they were for either 2008 or 2010. I think it also explains why the gap between median & average price was so much smaller for that month. First time buyers (read: people looking at lower priced homes) made up a much greater proportion of sales for Nov 2009 than they ordinarily would.
So, to sum up, the sky isn't falling in Chattanooga. There's no need for panic. But if you really, really need to sell your house, you're going to have to bite the bullet and price it very competitively to get it sold in a reasonable amount of time.
All of the images in this post are taken from 302 Red Oak Dr, Red Bank, TN. Click the link for more information on purchasing this home.
If you want to download the raw data that I took this from, you can click on the links and get an Excel file for each year. All of the data is for Hamilton County as a whole and only includes single family homes (with condos) sold through the Greater Chattanooga MLS. Everything you see in this post is reliable but not guaranteed.
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2005
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2006
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2007
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2008
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2009
Chattanooga Home Sales November 2010 .
Originally posted at Chattanooga Real Estate News
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