New England has seen record-breaking snowfall this year, with storms dumping multiple feet of snow in some areas. In January, New England existing-home sales already showed signs of a winter dip, which had been partially attributed to the winter conditions in some parts of the country, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. In the Northeast, existing-home sales plummeted 6 percent in January and the Midwest has dropped 2.7 percent.
Good news Mainers, these statistics do not reflect our market! Maine real estate sales continued to climb in January, fueled by second-home buyers and those not deterred by the weather. Maine Listings released monthly statistics which show that sales of Maine’s single-family existing homes jumped 8.6 percent in January 2015 compared to last year. We are eagerly waiting to hear the release of February's statistics.
What does this mean to buyers and sellers? Simply, the lack of inventory we have on the market today moves us towards a sellers’ market. A sellers’ market is defined as a scarce supply of inventory where the sellers can keep prices high. Additionally, in a sellers’ market there are more buyers than homes for sale. Since supply is less than demand, homes will be higher priced. In Maine, the new inventory that hits the market each month is selling, thus leaving us no new supply of homes to sell.
As we approach the 2015 spring market, the mortgage lending climate remains highly competitive, including Maine Housing which offers the Advantage Program and other really great programs for first-time home buyers to stay in the game. With the mortgage interest rates still at an all-time low, this continues to be a solid time for buyers to keep buying and sellers to keep selling.
As I have said before, please call a local REALTOR for all your real estate needs no matter how big or small. We are trained professionals here to make your life easier. It's best to surround yourself with the right team of professionals that can continuously give you the right advice for all your circumstances.