Market surveillance: residential market update for August 2021


The market continues to be dominated by a lack of inventory of residential homes for sale. There is currently 2.9 months of inventory, which is the time it would take to sell all the homes currently on the market at the current selling rate. The number of new registrations in August of this year compared to last year has decreased by 24% and our number of active registrations is 30% lower than last year at this time. This caused our booming sales market to slow down. Since the start of the year, our sales have exceeded $ 393 million in residential transactions with 924 homes sold. While the dollar volume of transactions increased 27% this year, the number of homes sold was down 2% from last year. Despite a slowdown in sales, our median selling prices continued to increase, up 1% in August and up 18% overall from a year ago. Pending sales that will begin in September are down from a year earlier, although the dollar volume of homes currently on deal exceeds last year’s rates.

The inventory of condos for sale is also very low across the county, with only 2.1 months of inventory currently available. We had more new units on the market in August compared to last year which helped our demand somewhat, but the market is still very hot. Condo sales in August were much higher than last year, with more than $ 7.5 million in transactions and 19 sales. The number of condo sales since the beginning of the year has increased by 26% compared to last year and the dollar volume of condo sales amounted to $ 32.8 million, an increase of 16 % compared to the same period last year. This market is a resource for those looking in the residential market but cannot find housing stock to meet their needs. It is also a lower maintenance option that appeals to many.

The severe housing shortage in all sectors continues to put pressure on real estate sales in the Berkshires, as well as on our economic and community vitality. It will take a multidimensional approach to meet increased demand for housing. Strategies should include improving the existing housing stock, developing senior housing options, encouraging smart development and growth, tackling underutilized housing, among many other initiatives. Housing professionals, investors and developers from all sectors are working to create a vision to move the county forward to address this critical community issue.



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