Friends and Clients,
With July’s reports, we begin the annual cycle downturn. The surge of buyers who planned to purchase this year have settled into their new homes or at least are pending by now; the rest of the year will produce modest numbers by comparison. This year we also see that the post-housing depression surge, especially in Portland, continues to moderate dramatically towards a more normal marketplace. Most notably the 5 year chart of closed sales shows a steep drop from last year (12% down) and near levels not seen since 2013 and 2014. Inventory is going up, pending sales are down. This softening trend has been in play for much of this year. Remember, these are not bad numbers by any measure, but they lead us to conclude the rabid sellers market is abating. To keep the balance and the optimism, note that the average and median sales prices are still up 11+% in 2016.
Yamhill County came late to the party and therefore continues its ascent from the abyss of the dark years. We are also showing evidence that 2015 might be the high water mark for the sales surge. However, we continue to increase in land sales, commercial sales, and multifamily sales at a healthy pace. Residential sales show the annual tapering cycle at work but most of our numbers remain strong over 2015. Inventory is down, days on the market are fewer, pricing is up significantly, but actual overall sales are down compared to last July.
You may have noticed that it is an election year. That means there is much negative talk in the air agitating everyone. Fear, that great motivator, is at work again so that people get hyped up and motivated to change the world! This dynamic seems to stifle the marketplace about this time every national election year but just until the elections are over- and then nothing much changes afterwards. The country will then steer some to the right or the left but not much changes overall. My experience as a small business owner for 27 years is that all those scary elections have little effect when the voting is done. That is not to say that the driving political philosophies and agendas do not have a lasting effect on the nation (positively or negatively), they do, clearly! However, the immediate after-effect on the marketplace is almost unfelt and immeasurable in December. For those hearing horror stories about crashes and plunges just months ahead if their cronies do not win, relax; history does not show that pattern- rather the opposite. We expect another good year for real estate in 2017, but we keep our speculations to one year at a time!
August and September are light months for real estate. People are returning from vacations this Labor Day weekend. It will take a while for us all to get back into the routines and rhythms of life. The 4th quarter is a good quarter for real estate (sometimes the best) so expect good things to come before years’ end. We continue to work through the winter and the holidays so we welcome your referrals and your support as always. We are always at your service.
Included in this report is: