March NE Tenn. pending home sales set new record

Homeowners accepted 983 offers in March, setting the stage for a strong opening to the prime spring home buying and selling season. March’s accepted offers – pending sales – is the highest monthly total since 2016, when the local housing market shifted into high gear.

Pending sales are a leading indicator of housing activity based on accepted offers for existing single-family homes, condominiums, and townhome resales monitored by the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors (NETAR) Home Sales Report. Since resales go under contract 30 to 60 days before the sale is closed, they typically lead existing-home sales by about two months.

“Slightly higher mortgage rates, increased lending standards, and a super tight inventory have not taken the edge off demand,” NETAR President Kristi Bailey said. “For the first time in modern market history, the number of active local listings is below 1,000. And there are ample examples of buyers receiving multiple offers the same day their listing goes public.”

There were 991 active listings at the end of March. That’s almost 60 percent less than what we had time last year, she added. “Balanced market conditions are five to six months of inventory. The Tri-Cities region had 1.3 months of inventory last month. Some city markets had less than a month’s supply of home on the market.”

Strong demand for homes in the $200,000 and below price range is stable, while demand for homes in the higher price ranges have seen the biggest growth rates. For instance, pending sales in the $400,000 to $500,000 range are more than 200 percent higher than last year, Bailey said.

The average listing price last month was $321,168, up 19.8 percent from last year, and the average sales price was $229,499, was 23.2 percent higher than last year.

NETAR is the voice for real estate in Northeast Tennessee. It’s the largest trade association in the Northeast Tennessee – Southwest Virginia region representing over 1,400 members and 100 affiliates involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. Pending sales, monthly Trends Reports, and the regional market analytics can be found on the NETAR websites at https://netar.us/voice-real-estate-northeast-tennessee .