If the last few months are an indication of the temperature of housing markets across the country, a period of relative calm can be expected during the last three months of the year. A trend of market balance is emerging as we approach the end of 2018. Prices are still rising in most areas, and the number of homes for sale is still low, but there is a general shrinking of year-over-year percentage change gaps in sales, inventory and prices.
New Listings were up 17.2 percent to 674. Pending Sales increased 2.8 percent to 446. Inventory grew 2.6 percent to 2,327 units. Prices moved higher as Median Sales Price was up 5.5 percent to $334,060. Days on Market decreased 9.5 percent to 134 days. Months Supply of Inventory was down 10.2 percent to 5.3 months, indicating that demand increased relative to supply.
Stock markets experienced an October setback, but that does not necessarily translate to a decline in the real estate market. The national unemployment rate has been below 4.0 percent for three straight months and during five of the last six months. This is exceptional news for industries related to real estate. Meanwhile, homebuilder confidence remains positive, homeownership rates have increased in the key under-35 buyer group and prices, though still rising, have widely reduced the march toward record highs.