Real Estate Slowdown Or Normalization?

Friday, March 21, 2014

After several months of increased home sales and prices, a drop off from what is considered to be “normal” is easy to be confused with a market slowdown. However, if one follows the financial trends, it is more likely that the greater Chattanooga region is experiencing a first quarter bout of “normalization.”

As mortgage delinquencies fade, banks are listing bargain-priced product less often. That means investor activity – which accounts for a substantial market share – is moderating. That's not to say that rates and prices aren't still attractive to owner-occupant buyers. They most certainly are. Some short-term volatility is expected as part of a normal market readjustment. 

Closed sales were down 15.1 percent from last year’s numbers, closing with 417 residential units sold. New listings in the Chattanooga region decreased 2.0 percent to 934. Inventory levels shrank 5.3 percent to 4,681 units.

Prices remained determined as the Median Sales Price increased 17.6 percent to $143,500. Days on Market were up 7.0 percent to 137 days. Absorption rates improved as Months Supply of Inventory was down 4.7 percent to 8.2 months. 

Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors President Vicki Trapp said, “The economy has more or less shuffled along, despite some climate-induced surprises to job growth and new construction. There is no denying the fact that we've now seen 47 straight months of private job growth, creating 8.5 million new payrolls. There's still work to be done. Thankfully, with such low inventory levels, many builders are bullish on new construction. The spring market is budding, and it should be an interesting one.”


Home Prices Rise In September

In 12 month’s time, local real estate prices have climbed higher, showing signs that that nation’s recovery is holding steady, for the time being. First time homebuyers are in the driver’s seat as a consistent inventory of homes for sale and reasonable interest rates for borrowers continue to encourage new purchases, according to the  Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors. ... (click for more)

Sale Of Erlanger Lifestyle Center To Go Through, But At Lower Price

Erlanger Health System officials said Monday that the stalled sale of the Lifestyle Center downtown will be going through, but at a lower price. Britt Tabor, chief financial officer, said the purchasers, Todd Phillips and John Foy of Noon Management LLC, had discovered problems with the roof and the HVAC. The initial agreed price was $4.8 million, but that has been lowered ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Firm Gets $1,010,000 Contract For Overseeing VW Expansion For New SUV Line

A Chattanooga firm is getting the contract for overseeing the construction work for the new SUV line at the Volkswagen plant. Officials said the EMJ Corporation has been selected for the project that will give a new surge of activity and employment at the plant at the Enterprise South Industrial Park. The work includes additions to the body shop and tech center and adding ... (click for more)

Man Airlifted To Erlanger After Early Morning Crash In Bradley County

Bradley County EMS responded to an early morning crash Thursday at 7 a.m. at the intersection of Lauderdale Memorial Highway and Walker Valley Road in Charleston. Three ambulances and an EMS supervisor responded to the scene. There were three vehicles involved and one car left the roadway.   One adult man suffered serious injuries and it was determined that he needed ... (click for more)

Chairs Cost How Much?

Many times while growing up, I would go to the store with my parents. More often than not, I would see something I wanted, and ask my parents to buy it for me. More often than not, they said no. “Why?” I asked. “Son, money doesn’t grow on trees.” That’s a phrase I’m sure many of us have heard more than once over the course of our lives. However, I have since learned that they were ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Dear Friend Luther

One sunny morning in June years ago, the renowned radio icon Luther Masingill was on his way back to the WDEF studios on South Broad Street when he stopped for a red light and noticed a young couple in a car idling next to his familiar light blue Ford pickup. “What caught my eye was a buck-toothed boy eating a banana in the back seat,” he explained in an aside to that day’s lunchtime ... (click for more)