by Eric Berman - email@example.com - 781-839-5507
WALTHAM, Mass. – November 13, 2019 – The Massachusetts Association of Realtors® (MAR) reported today that the number of single-family homes put under agreement in the month of October went up almost 13 percent while the number of condominiums put under agreement went up 18 percent compared to this time last year. This marks 12 straight months of year-over-year increases for single-family homes. The median price for single-family homes put under agreement increased almost two percent to $400,000 while condominiums increased almost four percent to $375,000 compared to October 2018.
In response to the October ‘Hot Topic’ question, Realtors® reported seeing different levels of attendance at open houses this fall.
“The three words we can use to best describe buyers in the market over the last 12 months have been ‘demand, demand, and demand’,” said 2019 MAR President Anne Meczywor, broker/associate at Roberts & Associates Realty, Inc., in Lenox. “While prices continued to be up, buyers have benefitted from interest rates under four percent for the last five months.”
October Realtor® Market and Price Confidence Indexes:
“October is the second straight month that we’ve seen the Realtors® Confidence Indexes improve over the same time last year. Hopefully, we’ll see the same improvement in November, and we’ll be able to call it a trend,” said Meczywor.
Monthly ‘Hot Topic’ Question:
The ‘Hot Topic’ question for the month of October asked Realtors® how open house attendance has been this fall.
Of those who responded, less than one percent said that attendance has been the busiest they’ve seen for the fall and almost 19 percent said attendance was busier than usual. Thirty-seven percent of respondents said that open house attendance was about the same for the fall. About 27 percent of respondents said attendance was weaker than usual and almost six percent said attendance was the weakest they have ever seen for the fall. Less than five percent of respondents don’t use open houses to market their listings.
“Open houses are just one tool in a Realtor®’s toolbox,” said Meczywor. “In competitive markets like this one, open houses sometimes aren’t even necessary. As soon as a property is on your Multiple Listing Service, it is being shown and it very well may be sold quickly.”
The tracking of signed purchase and sales agreements (also called “pending sales”) provide reliable information about where the real estate market is heading in coming months.
A pending sale or a sale “under agreement” happens when the buyer and seller agree on the terms of the sale of a home and have a signed purchase and sale agreement but have yet to close and be recorded as such. MAR is the only organization, which compiles this statewide information from Multiple Listing Services each month.
Monthly pending (or under agreement) data and closed sales data comes from the three Realtor®-affiliated Multiple Listing Services in Massachusetts. They are the Berkshire County Multiple Listing Service, Cape Cod & Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service, Inc.; and MLS Property Information Network, Inc. The data is compiled by 10K Research and Marketing, Inc. and updated each month. As a result, previous data may change after the reports have been run.
The Realtor® Index Methodology:
The Massachusetts Realtor® Market Confidence Index (RMCI) and Price Confidence Index (RPCI) are based on monthly responses from a random sampling of Massachusetts Association of Realtors® members on the state of the housing market. More specifically, the survey asks members two basic questions pertaining to the real estate business in their market area in Massachusetts.
In addition to these standard questions, the survey each month includes one wildcard question that changes each month and is based on an industry hot topic.
The RMCI is calculated in the following way. Respondents indicate whether conditions are/or are expected to be “strong” (100 points), “moderate” (50 points), and “weak” (0 points). The results are the average score for each question. A score of 50 is the threshold between a “strong” and a “weak” condition. Similarly, the question about home prices over the next year (Realtor® Price Confidence Index) is calculated using five categories: “Rise 0-5%” (75 points), “Rise 5%+” (100 points), “Level” (50 points), “Fall 0-5%” (25 points), and “Fall >5%” (0 points).
About the Massachusetts Association of Realtors®:
Organized in 1924, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors® is a professional trade organization with more than 25,000+ members. The term Realtor® is registered as the exclusive designation of members of the National Association of Realtors® who subscribe to a strict code of ethics and enjoy continuing education programs.
Editors and reporters: Please note that the term Realtor is properly spelled with an initial capital “R”, per the Associated Press Stylebook.