Bob Montgomery over at GoUpstate.com has written a great article on our market here in the hot housing market here in the Upstate area. Properties are flying off the market in our area with most only staying on the market an average of 96 days! Below is the entire article or you can view it here http://www.goupstate.com/news/20160731/upstate-housing-market-booming
The housing market here is hotter than an August day in Spartanburg.
Homes are selling at a faster pace than homes being listed, leading to a shorter supply and higher prices in the Upstate, according to the latest numbers from South Carolina Realtors.
Real estate agents say that means more competition for home buyers who may have to spend more. But it’s good news for those who’ve been holding off listing their house waiting for the right time to sell.
“It’s most definitely a seller’s market,” said home builder Manning Lynch of Spartanburg. “I’m selling everything I’m building well before I get finished.”
With prices moving higher, many first-time buyers are being forced from the higher-priced Greenville market to neighboring Spartanburg County, according to Patty Wilds, agent with Century 21 Upstate.
In Greenville, the median home price went up from $168,000 last year to $176,000 this year, while in Spartanburg it has risen from $134,500 to $138,000, according to S.C. Realtors.
“Greenville County is pushing (buyers) to Spartanburg, pushing our prices up and our inventory down,” she said.
One couple, she said, started hunting for a house in May in the $150,000 price range, and Greenville was too expensive. So they started looking in Spartanburg’s west side.
But then the kind of home they were looking for started rising from as low as $140,000 to $150,000 and to as high as $165,000 to $185,000 currently, Wilds said.
The couple made several offers, but lost out.
Finally, they’re under contract for a home in Greer that fits what they were looking for, Wilds said.
“It was very frustrating, because you have to make a move right away — as soon as the property becomes available,” said Wilds’ client, Ryan Magiera. “Because everything is flying off the market.”
It’s been eight years since the market crashed and the Great Recession set in, and the economy has been slow to come back, Lynch said.
“It was awfully tough there for a few years, so this is a welcome change on our side of the equation,” he said. “We were all kind of gun-shy after just having our butts whipped.”
South Carolina Realtors is a trade association with more than 16,000 members who belong to the residential and commercial real estate industries.
Statewide through June, S.C. Realtors reported new home listings were up 5 percent compared to last year, inventory shrank by 6 percent and the median sales price was up 5 percent to $189,500.
And the monthly inventory was down 12 percent. That means demand is exceeding supply.
“Homes are selling quickly, with most on the market for only 96 days,” said South Carolina Realtors CEO Nick Kremydas.
Greenville is leading the Upstate in housing market growth, seeing an 8.5 percent increase in home sales this year. Spartanburg reports 2,213 homes sold through June, up from 2,130 sold through June in 2015 — a 3.9 percent increase.
Also, homes in Spartanburg are taking less time to sell. Last year through June, the average time on the market was 138 days. Through June of this year, the average home stayed on the market only 124 days, a 10.1 percent decrease.
“I have not seen this much activity since before ’08.” Wilds said. “People as a whole are feeling settled. If they haven’t lost their job by now, they’re probably OK. People have been saving more, biding their time, waiting a little longer into their late 20s and early 30s to buy.”
Not only are homes selling faster, but the inventory of homes for sale has gone down this year.
Statewide, there were 39,249 houses for sale from January to June 2015. This year through June, there were 36,784 homes on the market, a decrease of 6.3 percent.
Jo Chism of Enternet Homes, incoming president of the Spartanburg Association of Realtors, said the trend is mirrored in Spartanburg, where home sales are outpacing listings.
“We see lots of multiple offers on properties,” she said. “If they’re priced right, they’re going very quickly.”
Lynch said he’s also seeing a move of first-time buyers from Greenville to Spartanburg.
“I sold two houses recently to customers out of Greenville because we had the affordable product in Spartanburg,” he said.
Lynch said home builders are starting to ramp up subdivision projects to try to meet the demand.
And Chism said more homeowners who’ve put off listing their homes due to poor market conditions are now reconsidering.
“I think the market is definitely very strong and likely to stay that way,” Lynch said.
Kremydas said now is a good time to list or buy a house.
“There is still a possibility of an interest rate hike this year,” he said. “Now is the time to ... take advantage of these record-low rates.”
Wilds said the demand for housing will continue to rise as more companies come to the Upstate or expand their workforce.
She said areas that are hot now will continue to be, such as the west side of Spartanburg County, Boiling Springs and the Inman-Campobello-Landrum areas where land is still relatively cheap and the location is desirable.
“Those areas will see a great amount of growth,” Wilds said. “With Spartanburg on the cusp of growing its downtown, we’ll have a lot to offer to a family moving into the area.”