More homes were sold in south Charlotte last month than any month in the last two and a half years, according to data from the Charlotte Regional Realtors Association and averages calculated by South Charlotte Weekly.
The south Charlotte area saw 381 homes sold in May 2013 at an average sales price of $395,913. The amount of homes sold is a record high since South Charlotte Weekly started analyzing home sales data for zip codes 28134, 28209, 28210, 28211, 28226, 28270 and 28277 in January 2011. The closest any other month came since then was April 2013, when 308 homes sold. The next closest was August 2012, when 269 homes sold.
The average sales price in May 2013 was the second highest seen since January 2011. The highest was June 2012, when homes sold at an average of $399,625.
“We are feeling really good about (the market),” said Laurie Knudsen, the sales manager and broker in charge of Helen Adams Realty’s Ballantyne office, 15235 John J. Delaney Drive. “I think for the most part in Ballantyne we’ve passed that (low point.) North Carolina and Charlotte really didn’t see the high highs and the low lows that the rest of the country did.”
While local realtors are optimistic, past trends show home sales may not stay at this pace – but should stay higher than recent years. May 2011 had the most homes sold that year in south Charlotte, at 225 homes, while May 2012 had the second most homes sold that year, at 256. But even if numbers dip once the summer arrives, 2013 has so far been a breath of fresh air for realtors and people looking to sell their homes.
“If a house is in good condition and well priced, it’s not staying on the market very long,” Knudsen said, adding that it’s become a seller’s market in south Charlotte.
One issue driving sales prices, realtors say, is the lack of inventory in south Charlotte. In 2011, 841 homes had sold by the end of May in south Charlotte. In 2012, it was 812. As of June 1, 2013, 1,069 homes had sold in south Charlotte. There just aren’t enough homes available to keep up with the pace, realtors say, meaning many sellers are seeing multiple bids placed on their homes for the first time in years and prices are jumping.
It’s yet to be seen what impact the move of MetLife to Ballantyne will have on the local housing market. The company announced earlier this year it would bring around 1,300 jobs to the Ballantyne Corporate Park as part of the insurance agency’s U.S. retail operations headquarters. Some of those jobs will be relocated from other areas, meaning current MetLife employees will need to move into the area.
Another move – Wingate University’s Matthews campus moving to the corporate park – likely won’t have as big an impact on local housing as MetLife but could give people looking for a new home an added reason to move to Ballantyne.
“There’s definitely a shortage of inventory in the area,” Knudsen said. “I think … the people who had to sell their homes have sold their homes. Prices have risen slowly, so people who didn’t have to sell are still waiting for prices to come up a bit.”
Whether increased sales will keep up is anyone’s guess. Realtors have high hopes after what they’ve seen during the last few years with the housing market.
“A lot of it is optimism … but we’re not fortune tellers,” Knudsen said.
Contact Knudsen at her Ballantyne office online at www.helenadamsrealty.com or by phone at 704-341-0279.