The year-over-year increase in residential detached home sales continues. The February 2016 North Metro Atlanta Home Sales Report showed that last month's total sales were the highest they've been in the last five years. The average sale price followed suit. What else can we learn from this report? Read on to find out.
February 2016 North Metro Atlanta Home Sales Report
The First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS) recently released the stats that helped me create my February 2016 North Metro Atlanta Home Sales Report. A total of 2715 homes were sold in the North Metro Atlanta area last month. That was 12.6% higher than February 2015 and 17.8% higher than January 2016. Total year-to-date sales are outpacing last year's totals by 13.2% (YTD for 2016 is 5085 while YTD for 2015 was 4491). It looks like Buyers are very interested in purchasing a new home.
The Buyers that chose to invest in a new property paid more. The average sale price for a North Metro Atlanta home in February 2016 was $294,961. This was a 5.6% increase from the same time last year but a 2.4% decrease from the average in January. It's also the third month in a row that the average sale price has gone down. Will this trend continue? I'm sure Buyers hope so. We'll have to wait and see to find out.
What Buyers Can Expect
Late last year, the Federal Reserve raised the prime lending rate to 0.25%. There was a lot of chatter that we could expect to see this happen several more times in 2016. The world market took a hit in the early days of 2016 which caused financial experts to predict just a few modest increases over the course of this year. However, they have walked that back yet again. Between extremely low oil prices on the market, China's economic concerns and the possibility of Britain leaving the European Union, experts now believe that rates may not increase. In fact, they may even go back to 0%. However, this is not written in stone.
Interest rates are a very fluid thing. So is the determining factors to increase or not increase rates. The bottom line is that interest rates remain incredibly low. Mortgage companies have loosened their requirements to lend Buyers money. There are several programs in place that can help you get into the home of your dreams. Contact your North Metro Atlanta REALTOR® when you are ready to start looking.