Market Pulse – May 10

April’s home sales were up 33.7% from April last year, but is that a realistic market indicator?  It’s an accurate number but not totally representative of today’s market conditions.  

April last year was the first full month of economic reaction to the pandemic. The economy shut down. Local employers shed about 19,000 jobs. The housing market reacted, but not as dramatically, because REALTORS® quickly began using and promoting a series of safe practices to keep the real estate market alive. Still, sales dropped 17% below the April 2019 level. 

That’s why we’re seeing such a big gain this year. Simply put, last month’s closing measures a strong market that’s growing to April 2020 when sales declined on the heels of consumer fears about the pandemic.   

Expect something similar next month.  May was when last year’s sales took their biggest hit. They were down 20.5%.  

A better indicator for last month is a comparison to April 2019, when market conditions were more like this year. That comparison would put April’s sales growth at about 11%.