HUGHESVILLE, Md. –– While interest rates and prices continued to climb over the past month, housing market activity been historically low, as many potential homebuyers seem “spooked”.
According to the most recent data from the Southern Maryland Association of REALTORS®, several “frightening” trends have appeared over the past month in the local market.
Although active listings have remained low for months, new listings and newly pending home sales saw sharp declines over the past month. New listings dropped over 27%, whereas new pending sales dropped over 23%.
This all comes as mortgage rates have reached a 20-year high, pushing up to approximately 8% for a standard 30-year home loan.
“A lack of inventory is not a new problem. However, with interest rates going up, it is not surprising to see more buyers starting to sit out for the time being,” SMAR 2023-2024 President Tracy Vasquez said. “It is really difficult to define what a regular housing market would be, but these strains on homebuyers and lack of market activity is not something Southern Maryland would consider normal.”
While fewer buyers are interested in the current interest rates, many are still engaging in the housing market, as the median sold price rose by roughly 8.74% in the region.
Fewer units sold in the past month’s year-over-year data, but many of those that did, did so in less time than in 2022. Across Southern Maryland, 416 units sold for a decrease of almost 20% from last year, and they did so in an average of 20 days, which is four less than this time in 2022.
Another key indicator is that the average sold price to original list price ratio rose by 1.61% to approximately 99.5%. That means although there are fewer buyers out looking, there is still enough demand to keep sellers in the driver’s seat of the transaction.
Although months of supply rose year-over-year by over 20%, the region is still far off from what would be considered a healthy amount of housing supply.
“There is a reason why many sellers feel handcuffed to their low-interest rates, and that is in part because we don’t know the next time we might see rates that low,” Vasquez said. “Buyers should not be scared of this market. Interest rates are up from our recent history, but many homebuyers will remember a time when these rates would be considered normal or even better.”
Housing market statistics from each county in the Southern Maryland region can be found below:
Units Sold: 95 (-34.48%)
Total Sales Volume: $ 49.2 Million (-27.23%)
Average Days On The Market: 19 (-7 Days from September 2022)
Median Sold Price: $500,000 (+28.53%)
Units Sold: 203 (-7.31%)
Total Sales Volume: $ 88.5 Million (-6.94 %)
Average Days On The Market: 23 (+2 Days from September 2022)
Median Sold Price: $425,000 (+4.94%)
St. Mary’s County
Units Sold: 118 (-21.85%)
Total Sales Volume: $ 50.1 Million (-17.83%)
Average Days On The Market: 18 (-7 Days from September 2022)
Median Sold Price: $375,000 (+2.74%)
Visit https://www.southernmarylandrealtors.org/pages/housing-statistics/ every month for additional details about the housing market in Southern Maryland. A video breakdown of the local statistics for the month can be found on the SMAR YouTube page at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5H9XP8ZKZw
Statistics for this article were compiled with cooperation from Bright MLS, a leading housing market data source and a real estate listing service for Realtors® throughout the region.