Will Real Estate Listings Bloom Like Dandelions?
During my rides around the Lakes Region, I’ve noticed bright yellow clusters of dandelions that have recently sprouted. It’s a chilling reminder that our busy season, when new real estate listings start popping up all around the Lakes Region, has arrived. There’s only one problem…the number of new listings do not in any way, shape, or form mimic what I’m seeing with those bright yellow flowers. Oh, how I wish we could get the markets of yesteryear back when we had thousands of listings. Those days are over for the near future.
The last time I checked, we had a 1.1-month supply of inventory in the Granite State. A more balanced market would lie somewhere between a four and six-month supply of inventory. Keep in mind our state has approximately 1.3-1.4 million people, and at present, there are only 1,081 single-family homes for sale in the entire state. Of the 1,081 single-family homes for sale, the median asking price is $599,000, and the median days on the market to date is 20 days. The numbers get even more scary, considering we have 6,571 Realtors® in New Hampshire. Sounds like a pretty grim statistic, but I’ve always maintained a bright, positive outlook, and we’ll find a way around this one somehow.
Think of this…so many people took advantage of record-low refinancing rates from 2019 to 2021 and even a few previous years. So if their current mortgage rate is in the 2%-3% range, there’s a high probability they don’t want to take on a new mortgage at 6.5%. That dilemma has contributed to our low inventory levels. Also, properties were acquired to place on Airbnb and VRBO, and the lack of new constructions has likewise added to the shortage.
The State of New Hampshire is following the nationwide trend…fewer existing homes are selling. However, in April 2023, home prices in New Hampshire were up 6.5% year over year, according to Redfin, but Redfin was quick to add at the same time, the number of homes sold fell 24.8%, and the number of homes for sale fell 19%. They indicated the median statewide sales price was $433,400 for that period.
What I found interesting was that Redfin’s statistics showed the top 10 metropolitan areas in New Hampshire with the fastest growing sales price.
- Laconia at 39.7%
- Dover at 17.1%
- Concord at 14%
That is one heck of a jump for Laconia. That certainly puts “the city on the lakes” on the radar—big time.
Redfin predicts nationally, for 2023, a post-pandemic sales slump will push home prices down for the first time in a decade.
I do know that New Hampshire’s housing affordability index is presently at 69. 100 would be a great score, and at 69, families will struggle to qualify for a mortgage on a home.
New Hampshire and the Lakes Region are very desirable locations to live in, so the demand will continue. What I’m seeing in the Lakes Region is quality, realistically priced properties are selling fast, and we still see multiple offers. One of my agents this week made an all-cash offer for an island property on Winnipesaukee for a client where they offered $80,000 over the asking price for the island property and a mainland dock. She, unfortunately, was outbid by another buyer. The property was under contract within 7 days. It’s very hard today to represent buyers because of the intense competition. I’ve seen some sales go down recently for big numbers, much more than I thought they would sell for. It’s just a troubling time because there’s so little inventory, and many people absolutely love our Lakes Region and want to acquire a property.
I’ve pulled 8 towns and cities from the Lakes Region to give you an idea of what’s currently for sale. Single-family homes only, excluding waterfronts and condominiums. Here they are:
Meredith: 10 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $599,400 and range from $499,000 to $1,795,000.
Gilford: 6 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $586,500 and range from $389,899 to $854,000.
Moultonborough: 6 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $652,733 and range from $542,500 to $750,000.
Belmont: 10 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $764,900 and range from $539,000 to $1,100,000
Tilton: 6 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $500,000 and range from $150,000 to $649,900.
Laconia: 7 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $729,000 and range from $265,000 to $1,350,000.
Alton: 4 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $587,450 and range from $530,000 to $1,488,000.
Wolfeboro: 15 single-family homes are for sale with a median listing price of $599,000 and range from $262,900 to $1,395,000.
Let the rollercoaster begin, and let’s see a lot of new dandelions popping up along all of our country roads here in the Lakes Region. All of us Realtors® out here are anxious to provide the best insight and perspective on a truly unique marketplace.
This article was written by Frank Roche. Frank is president of Roche Realty Group with offices in Meredith and Laconia, NH, and can be reached at (603) 279-7046. Sales data was compiled through a NEREN search and is subject to change. Please feel free to visit www.rocherealty.com to learn more about the Lakes Region and its real estate market.