Spring brings new look, increased sales

Spring brings new look, increased sales

May 26th, 2013 Mark Blazek in Realestate

The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors is undergoing a facelift of sorts. Not only do we have a new logo, we also are in the midst of redesigning our website, which features links to two property searches - commercial and residential. Our goal is for the association and gcar.net to be the first place consumers go to online when searching for property.

I am excited about these new resources and the rebranding of the association. And the timing could not be more perfect, as all indicators show continued and steady improvement in the Greater Chattanooga real estate market conditions.

The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index recently showed that home prices in 20 major metropolitan areas had increased at the strongest pace since "the bubble" years. At long last, major national indices are telling the story local MLS data users have known for months or even years. Yes, the housing market is recovering. The recovery varies by geography and market segment, but things are certainly better than they have been and are showing no signs of letting up.

Closed sales rose an astounding 15.4 percent, closing with 645 residential units. New listings in the Chattanooga region were up 9.8 percent to 1,180. Inventory shrank 8.2 percent to 4,826 units. Prices moved higher as the median sales price was up 3.8 percent to $135,000.

Days on market decreased 8 percent to 126 days, the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year declines. Month's supply of inventory was down 18.3 percent to 8.5 months, indicating that demand increased relative to supply.

The prickliest thorns in our collective side are still lack of inventory and subdued listing activity. In some neighborhoods, consumers have 50 or 60 percent fewer options from which to choose than they did a few years ago. That's causing bidding wars in popular areas. Despite the competitive landscape for buyers, housing remains one of the brightest lights in an otherwise subdued economic recovery.

The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors, a regional organization with more than 1,400 members, is one of more than 1,800 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia.