Louisville home sales increase – June over May

Photo of home in Graymoor Devondale.
Move-in-ready homes are in high demand, but their shortage has been pulling back on the reins of Louisville’s real estate market. | Photo by Tre Pryor

As we would assume, Louisville home sales were higher in June than they were in May. Once school is out, it’s like the starter’s gun has gone off. The race begins to get that home under contract, inspected, negotiated and then moved into before the next school year starts. Is it just me or does it feel like it’s sooner every year?

Given most deals run 40-50 days, if you really want to feel good about your chances to get in by your target date, start your home search in May and you’ll be ahead of the pack.

Charts of Louisville home sales and Louisville home prices for the 12 month period ending June 2016.
Sales increased in June, but not enough to match 2015. The real story is housing inventory that is vaulting prices. (Click to enlarge.)

When I run the numbers and see that 1,239 homes sold in Jefferson County during June, I’m not really comparing that to how many sold in May (1,092), but instead how it compared to last June. The answer to that question is, “Not quite as well.”

During June 2015, there were 1,314 properties sold. This means home sales fell by 5.7 percent year-over-year. Given four out of six months have been higher this year than last, I’m not too worried at this point. Year to date, we’re up 3.7 percent for Louisville home sales. Instead, I’ll patiently wait until summer is complete to make any predictions for our full year totals.

To be fair, it’s rather remarkable that our home sales are this strong. Throughout the year I’ve been talking about how housing inventory is well below flood stage, to borrow a pun. Every month of 2016 has recorded an absorption rate below three months. Yes, you read that correctly. We have less than half the homes for sale needed to be considered a balanced real estate market.

Look what it’s doing to home prices…

The median home sale price for the month was $168,500 — that’s just a couple of points higher than last year’s mark. (The average was $207,111.) But when we compared the 12-month trend-line values for June, we see prices up 4.4 percent. That is truly just a hair higher than Louisville’s traditional 4 percent annual appreciation.

Given the scarcity of homes, I would have expected this value to be higher.

We have to assume that at least some of these sale prices are being thwarted by bureaucratic appraisers, fighting against market forces. Ask your agent how many deals they’ve worked in 2016 where the appraisal came back low. I’d bet a pretty penny it’s at least twice as many as in past years.

If you’re interested in learning how your home’s area performed, head over to this Louisville Real Estate Update June 2016 page for charts by MLS area.