Market Update

Fletcher Wilcox
Grand Canyon Title Agency


November Median Purchase Price

The median purchase price for a previously owned single family home in Maricopa County is holding steady. In November 2018 for the second month in a row it was $290,000. Up from $287,000 in September.  The November 2018 median purchase price of $290,000 is $19,000 or seven percent higher than November 2017.  Chart one shows the median purchase price from January 2015 through November 2018.  For the last four years, the median purchase price for any month in one year is always higher in the same month of the next year.  I expect this to be replicated in 2019.  Expect sometime in the second quarter of 2019 for the median purchase price for a previously owned single family home in Maricopa County to be over $300,000.

November Sales, New Listings and Estimated Months of Supply

November 2018 sales of previously owned single family home in Maricopa County were down 527 sales or ten percent compared to November 2017.  See Table one.

New monthly listings in November 2018 were down 145 or 2% compared to November 2017.  This was the third month in a row that new monthly listings were down year-over-year.  See Table two.

While overall November 2018 sales were down, some price ranges this November exceeded last November in the number of sales.  Table three compares the number of sales by price range in November 2018 to November 2017.  The biggest year-over-year decline in sales by price range was from $150,000 to $199,999.  Sales in this price range were down 408 or 47%.  The sale price range with the most sales, both this November and last November, was $200,000 to $249,999.  In November 2018 there were 1,041 compared to 1,144 in November 2017 for a decrease of 103 sales or nine percent.  Price ranges this November which exceeded last November are the following: there were 93 or ten percent more sales in the price range of $300,000 to $399,999.   There were 55 more sales from $600,000 to $999,999 and twenty-one more sales from $1,500,000 to $2,999,999.

The last column of Table three shows the estimated months of supply by price range.  A six month supply of homes in a price range is generally thought to favor neither a seller nor a buyer.  If this is true, it is still very much a seller’s market in most price ranges.  For example, for homes listed from $150,000 to $199,999 there is a 1.1 month supply.  For homes listed from $300,000 to $349,999 there is a 2.6 month supply.

How Previously Owned Single Family Homes Were Purchased

Table four compares how previously owned single family homes in Maricopa County were purchased in November 2018 to November 2017.  Since sales were down year-over-year by ten percent, it is no surprise that purchases with a conventional, FHA and VA loans were also all down year-over-year.  Purchases with an FHA loan had the greatest decrease at thirty percent.  This would be expected with the aforementioned decline in the number of sales in the $150,000 to $199,999 price range.  What may be a surprise is that purchases with cash were up three percent this November over last November.

At the end of November the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that the maximum conforming loan limits for mortgages to be acquired by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2019 will be raised to $484,350, from $453,100 in 2018.  In 2019 borrowers will not have to pay the higher jumbo mortgage rate when obtaining a loan of $484,350 or less.