CHARLOTTE, N.C. – October home sales show buyer demand for homes across the Charlotte region has not waned, as closed sales this past month rose 11.2 percent year-over-year with 5,029 closed sales. These are completed transactions that include single-family homes, condos and townhomes. Compared to the month of September 2020, closings increased 3.1 percent. Despite the pandemic, which slowed sales in April and May of this year, year-to-date figures show closed sales ahead of the first ten months of 2019 by 3.4 percent.
An abundance of buyers in the marketplace drove pending sales up 20.2 percent year-over-year, as 5,182 properties went under contract compared to October 2019. Pending sales generally tend to be a good predictor of future sales, which means the 16-county region should continue to see a steady stream of sales over the next 45-60 days. Pending sales in the pipeline decreased 3.1 percent compared to September 2020.
Seller confidence was positive for a second consecutive month, bringing 5,533 new listings to market, with activity rising 6.6 percent year-over-year. This should help buyers with more choice in their home search. However, year-to-date figures show new listing activity is still challenged and down 3.7 percent year-to-date when compared to activity during the same period in 2019.
2020 Canopy Realtor® Association/Canopy MLS President John Kindbom said, “Home sales typically taper off as we move into the last quarter of the year, but 2020 has not been the typical year. Consistently low mortgage rates have helped fuel buyer interest and demand, which has been strong in our region for the last few years. We also know that the pandemic has caused many people to crave larger spaces for working and schooling from home, so the back-to-back increases in new listing activity over the last two months should also help buyers with more choice.”
Inventory remained tight and fell 47.6 percent year-over-year, leaving 5,405 properties for sale at report time, or 1.2 months of supply. However, compared to September 2020, supply increased slightly, with sellers adding 310 additional properties to the market in October 2020. Last month, the region had 1.1 months of supply (5,095 active listings) at report time. In October 2019 the region had 10,315 active listings, or 2.4 months of supply.
Low supply continues to pressure prices. The average list price ($361,150) rose 10.5 percent compared to last year, while both the median sales price ($289,900) and the average sales price ($354,248) rose year-over-year by 14.1 percent and 16.0 percent, respectively. However, the median sales price, which is the best measure of price over time, remains unchanged compared to September and August 2020. The original list price to sales price ratio was at 98.7 percent, meaning sellers are getting almost all of their asking prices.
Homes continue to sell quickly as days on market, the metric that accrues for “Active” and “Under Contract-Show” statuses, averaged 25 days in October 2020 compared to 40 days in October 2019. This is the shortest time on market since Canopy MLS began tracking DOM. The average number of days a property was on the market from the time it was listed until it closed (list to close) also decreased. List-to-close totaled 79 days in October 2020 compared to 92 days in October 2019.
Kindbom notes further, “With days on market trending lower for a second consecutive month, buyers will continue to see a brisk pace of sales. Even though this is a strong seller’s market, sellers will need to make sure the home is priced accurately in order to sell quickly. Overall, we need to continue to see homebuilders ramp up production, which should also help the region’s inventory situation.”