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Hampton Roads Real Estate Update June 2012

Hampton Roads’ real estate experienced predominately encouraging market statistics in June 2012. Optimistic statistics include a rise in residential pending sales, a drop in year-over-year residential active listings, and an increased median sales price, all of which are countered only slightly by data showing that the region’s residential settled sales are down marginally.

The number of residential homes listed for sale fell 18.61% in June 2012 when compared to the same time last year. All seven of the region’s major cities saw year-over-year decreases in active listings of 14% or more. Virginia Beach and Chesapeake experienced the largest year-over-year declines at 23.92% and 23.76% respectively. Hampton (20.53%) and Newport News (20.41%) also experienced significant drops in active residential listings. This reduction in active listings has resulted in a 7.44 months supply of inventory, the lowest it’s been since tracking began in January 2009. Approximately 6 months supply of inventory is considered normal, so this lower inventory suggests a stabilizing real estate market.

Last month’s number of residential pending sales increased 12.73% when compared to June 2011. Numbers were up 11.74% on the Southside and 13.03% on the Peninsula. Suffolk and Chesapeake had year-over-year increases of 44.19% and 19.79% respectively. Norfolk and Portsmouth were the only two of the seven major cities not to experience year-over-year increases, rather their pending sales dropped 10% and 7.08%. This marks the 14th consecutive month that residential pending sales have increased year-over-year. Year-to-date (January through June) 11,376 contracts have been reported to the MLS. This is the highest number of contracts written during the same time period since 2007 when 13,483 contracts were reported.

Residential settled sales for the region dropped a slight 1.82% in June 2012 when compared to the same period in 2011. Suffolk, Hampton and Chesapeake were the only cities among the region’s seven major cities to experience year-over-year increases at 36.56%, 20.35% and 1.37% (in that order). Newport News and Portsmouth saw the largest year-over-year drops at 20.57% and 18.70% respectively. Though residential settled sales are down slightly since last year, the median sales price is up to $207,500, which is a 3.8% upswing when compared to $199,900 in June 2011.

The distressed homes market shows positive signs for June 2012. Distressed homes accounted for 24.70% of all residential active listings, the lowest it’s been since October 2011 when they accounted for 24.29% of the listings. Distressed homes comprised 28.81% of the region’s residential settled sales. Though up from 26.26% in May 2012, this is the second lowest percentage of distressed homes in the residential sales makeup since the numbers rose above 30% in October 2010.

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