The question I get asked most often has to be, "So how is the market these days?" Even folks who aren't buying or selling a home want to know. Why is that? I believe its becuase the state of any local economy is largely influenced by how well the housing market is fairing. And remember... all real estate IS local. So let's see just how the market really IS doing these days.
One way to assess the market is to see what the average sales prices are this year versus the same period last year and the year before. From June 1 through July 31 of this year, we closed on 489 residental properties, with an average sales price of $186,462. For the same period in 2007 there were 548 homes sold at an average sales price of $187,657. Backing up one more year, in 2006 the statistics for the same period were 676 sold homes at an average sales price of $182,572.
So it would appear that while home values this year are off by about $1000 (a negligible amount), we're still up overall from 2006's numbers. However, this is for our entire market. What about more specific numbers for the region's different areas?
Let's first look at Lynchburg City. In June & July 2006, there were 251 residential properties sold, average sales price of $168,022. In the same period of 2007 there were 210 sales, average sales price of $164,514. Finally, this year there were 189 sales, average sale price of $170,279 - an INCREASE over the previous two years!
In Bedford County, June & July 2006, 165 homes sold for an average sales price of $228,778; same period of 2007 there were 152 sales, average sales price of $250,709; this year, same period, there were 131 sales, average sales price of $235,980. Again, while this figure is dow from the previous year, its still better than the 2006 numbers.
Finally, in Campbell County, June & July 2006, 128 sales with an average of $159,372; 2007's nubmers were 102 sales, average of 173,421; this year there were 81 sales with an average sales price of $160,756. Again, while this figure is down from the previous year, it holds at the 2006 level.
This underscores my answer to the above question, which is this: the VALUE of homes has held relatively steady, but the number of homes BEING SOLD has dropped off. So while people are still buying homes, they aren't buying them as frequently as they used to in the past.