Thursday, April 8, 2010

Charlottesville Albemarle Real Estate: Inventory Soars First Week of April

Between April 1-7, inventory for sale--single family, townhouse, condo--in C'ville and Albemarle rose by 130 units: 

34 in Charlottesville: median price $279k
96 in Albemarle: median price $386,563

As of April 7, there were 768 single family homes listed in Albemarle CountyCharlottesville has 248 single family homes.

At this point in April 2009, there were 666 single family homes on the market in Albemarle County.  In April 2009,  Charlottesville had 202 single family homes.

Image, copyright CAAR, shows numbers for new listings in Central VA April 1-77.


Greg Slater said...

Just perusing your site I wanted to share something for clarification on your inventory numbers. We allow agents representing builders to input listings as proposed as a marketing tool for what could be built. Agents can separate proposed from actual listings for inventory analysis. In this case there were actually 8 in the first week of April. So 8 of those new listings are not actually homes that exist. I thought that was pertinent. But I also wanted to share some information for some context to this snapshot of the first week in April. Listings coming on the market is a very seasonal event. Here are the number of listings that came on the market in the first week of April in Alb/Cville of the same property types for the past 6 years:

2010 88
2009 111
2008 94
2007 144
2006 176
2005 95
2004 80

So in reality, the first week in April 2010 represents the lowest amount of new listings to the market since 2004.

I thought that was interesting.

alex said...


I would imagine that people aren't selling their homes at this time unless they HAVE to. Therefore it should not be suprising that we are not seeing a robust march to market for new or resale homes.

What is telling is that despite somewhat meager new "pickings" little is selling, as demonstrated by the increased (and increasing) size of inventory year over year. Furthurmore, a disproportionate ratio of homes that are selling are distressed.

Not a healthy market at all!

Anonymous said...

"8." That makes a BIG difference. My perception has totally changed. I see that there's really not much to choose from so I'd better run right out and buy.


John Doe said...

Sales volume has been declining by double digits since 2005, so of course there are fewer listings; those who did buy can't trade "up." In addition, there was an end to the construction boom. Many local builders have had mass foreclosures or gone under--or had to change their development strategies, for instance at Belvedere, which suddenly sold property for a "luxury apartment complex." And five years ago if you had a pulse you could get a mortgage with no documentation.

It makes perfect sense that there were more listings then than now. There may be more sales in 2010 than during 2009, the depth of the recession, but for Q1 there won't be more sales than 2008, 07, 06 etc.

Nor for the rest of the year when mortgage rates rise and tax credit expires.

Many of those who bought 2000-2007 are now stuck with underwater mortgages (no re-fi, no HELOC), or they're heading for a short sale, or a foreclosure...or know they can't sell for what they want/need.

Real C'ville - The Bubble Blog said...

Greg, please offer your professional perspective on this post:

Anonymous said...

Greg, still waiting on that answer.

Also, what's with the climbing number of million dollar properties in Albemarle County?

Greg Slater said...

Respectfully, I simply don't have time to engage in the broader macro economic conversation at this level in this forum. I'm happy to share data from time to time that adds context to the discussion here, but I can't do that as often as I would like. And quite honestly, for the most part, its not what my clients hire me to do.

The title of the post in which I repsonded inspired me to dig a little deeper, so I shared.

As for million dollar listings, not my cup of tea. In 14 years I have sold exactly 1 property in this range. Actually, it was $1M even. 59 new listings over $1M came on the market in Q1 2010. 13 went under contract. Below beside each year you will find first, the number of new listings over $1M listed 1st QTR that year and second, the number of contracts reported for the entire calendar year over $1M. In ()is the 1st QTR contracts as well.

2010 59 ? (13)
2009 52 41 (11)
2008 55 47 (11)
2007 55 53 (13)
2006 57 67 (12)
2005 36 70 (13)
2004 29 57 (15)

I'm easy to find, often in a model home on the weekend, and love meeting people and discussing all things real estate. Look me up. But not this weekend, I have a 5 yr old patiently waiting for me to leave the computer and the Masters is heating up.

downtownenvy said...

Thanks Greg! I had wondered about this sector of the market and the numbers seem to be steady, (at least to a layperson). I know you are very busy, but I was wondering do certain agents seem to always handle these kinds of properties or is it more just what comes the way of the realtor?

Just wondering.

Anonymous said...

139 $1M++ properties in Albemarle, and 10 in C'ville according to todays mycaar listings

More show up every day. There simply aren't enough buyers.

BTW skipping "macroeconomics" convos is a good strategy b/c otherwise nobody would buy anything at any price point.

Greg Slater said...

Downtownenvy:the short answer is a little of both. I just quickly perused the listing agents for the 2008 closings and only found a few agents who handled more than one sale on the listing side. I would guess the buyer side is even more divided. I have been doing this long enough to know that people choose agents for a variety of reasons. That being said, there are brokers and agents who target this segment of the market as their niche.

The numbers I posted were for Albemarle County.

Greg Slater said...

SIR, I tried to leave this comment once and it didn't take.

Downtownenvy- A little of both. At quick glance of the closed sales over $1M last year there were just a few agents with more than one transaction on the listing side. I imagine looking at the buyer agent side its even more spread out. I've been in this business long enough to know people choose agents for a variety of reasons. There are agents that target this niche specifically.

FYI The numbers I provided were for Albemarle County.

Anonymous said...

I find your comments are not realistic and frankly you have a vested interest in making a sale to unsuspecting buyers.

I refer you to Case-Shiller's history of the American housing prices going back to 1890. Unless real estate prices are allowed to complete a 'real' liquidation phase, they will not turn up. Talking inflation adjusted returns, historically real estate goes up 1.5%/yr. It is highly likely this is not a bottom in the market, and the real estate bear market will continue until 2016-2018. Anyone buying with the idea of future return on typical residential investment will have a long, long holding period. The C'ville market is nowhere near affordable at advertised prices and ethically, the industry is doing young homeowner no favors even with government intervention.

Alex said...

I am a buyer, frustrated by this market and the lack of realism inherent in the pricing. Therefore, I am somewhat impatiently waiting on the sidelines for the correction that I believe will happen or for the possibility of an individual property popping up that is appropriately priced and will suit my needs.

Inflated pricing hurts home sellers the most, as it is most likely that they will not catch a sucker and that the longer the house sits on the market, the less it will eventually be sold for.

Inflated pricing hurts RE agents second most, as it radically reduces the number of sales they can make. Overall, this results in less income for them. They cannot possibly stand to gain from inflating prices even 20-30 percent, since their "cut" of this extra percentage is a fraction of the losses they are suffering by a stalled market.

While Greg Slater indeed does have a vested interest in making a sale to a buyer, unsuspecting, suspecting or whatever, he has a right to do so as long as he does it in an honest fashion. It is not Slater's responsibility to try and convince buyers not to buy! Buyers should be educating themselves, and if they are still careless about buying a house after all that has occurred over the past few years then it is their fault if they get ripped off.

I do not know Slater personally but have spoken to him on occasion when looking at homes, and at one point had business dealings with him (as a buyer) when he was at his former job. I can tell you unequivocally, that he was always 100% honest and upfront with me and never tried to "spin me a story". I do not have a very high opinion of some members of the local REA community, but he is one who has earned my respect - for whatever that is worth!

Anonymous said...

Yes, of course, you are correct that Greg Slater is not personally responsible for a buyer's decision. My apologies for the address of the post as it was not intended to impute Greg's character.

The market at large is unfortunate circumstance and has hurt many.