Housing Inventory Improves in April, Still Well Below Norm
More properties are being listed for sale in Sumner County entering what is typically a busy spring season for home sales. While it is still very much a seller’s market, a new report from Sumner REALTORS® shows increases in key supply indicators for the second consecutive month.
Total inventory for single-family homes – measured as all properties available for sale including those under contract – increased 7% in April compared to March. The number of active properties (398) jumped 17% from March and is 46% higher than a year ago. There were also more new listings (466) compared to the prior month (430) and year (405).
Housing inventory typically surges in the spring as the weather improves and families try to time moves around children’s school schedules. Cyclical patterns have not necessarily applied in Middle Tennessee or nationally, however, since the brief pandemic-fueled economic upheaval and ensuing real estate market boom that began in 2020. The association encourages buyers and sellers to engage a professional REALTOR® to successfully navigate the complicated and fluid market.
“We have not seen enough new inventory in the past 30 to 60 days to suggest that the supply issue will resolve in the near term. Nor do we expect any type of notable spring surge. The more likely scenario moving forward is that rapidly rising home prices, overall inflation and rising mortgage interest rates creates more affordability issues and finally cools demand,” said Kelly McDaniel, owner/broker of Weichert REALTORS® – Southern Realty Partners in Hendersonville and 2022 President of Sumner REALTORS®.
Even as inventory improves, the increasing cost to purchase a home is pushing some buyers out of the market, especially first-time homebuyers. The average of a single-family home in Sumner County was $501,008 in April, 33% more than in April 2021 ($377,926).
Last week the Federal Reserve announced it is raising interest rates by a half-percentage point, the largest single increase in 22 years. The Fed also said it will consider additional hikes during its next few meetings this year as a tool to curtail inflation, which is outpacing overall wage growth in the U.S. Mortgage rates, meanwhile, have surged to 5% for the first since 2011 and have risen 1.8 percentage points since the beginning of the year.
The National Association of REALTORS® forecasts home sales activity to drop about 10% in 2022.