York County home sales down, median price up

Fewer existing homes sold in York County between March 1 and May 31, but the median price over the same period rose more than 18% from 2021.

With interest rates on the rise, what sales numbers will look like in the next quarter is a matter of waiting.

“The market is changing and changing rapidly for a number of reasons,” said Debbi Bozman, York County Council Chair of the Maine Association of Realtors. “Real estate (has) a lot to do with the economic position of the country and because interest rates are rising it limits the purchasing power of our buyers because (it) limits what they can afford.”

She said buyers aren’t as willing to go over a home’s list price as they used to be.

Bozman, of Keller Williams Coastal and Lakes & Mountains Realty in Wells, said in a phone interview that she sees the situation as stabilizing. “It’s the beginning of the change from a seller’s market to an evened out market,” she said, and later, maybe a buyer’s market.

The US Federal Reserve raised its key interest rate by three-quarters of a percent earlier in June – the biggest hike since 1994, according to the Associated Press, just days after data releases showed inflation at 8 .6% – a four-decade high. , in May. The Fed raised interest rates by a quarter percent in March and half a percent in May.

Madeleine Hill, president of the Maine Association of Realtors, said there were small statewide gains in the number of existing home sales during the quarter. She attributed some of the gain to typical spring sales increases.

“We also see demand for home purchases being affected by rising mortgage interest rates and appreciating home prices,” Hill said. “As sellers and buyers adjust, time will tell if we transition to a more balanced market with slower price growth and less competition among buyers for inventory to sell,” said Hill, of Roxanne York Real Estate in Harpswell, in a press release.

Bozman said Friday she’s seen interest rates around 5.78 for a 30-year fixed rate. Plus, she said she’s seen slightly lower rates from credit unions that keep mortgages in-house — as of Friday, June 24, interest rates were around 5.2% in some areas. , for a fixed rate of 30 years, according to the buyer. advance payment.

The Maine Association of Realtors reported 582 existing homes sold in York County from March 1 to May 31 this year, compared to 681 in 2021, or 14.54% fewer sales.

The median price was $445,000 for the March 1 to May 31 period, down from $375,000 or 18.67% from the same period in 2021. The median sale price indicates that half of homes were sold for more and the other half sold for less, according to the MAR.

Statewide, from May 1 through May 31, 1,420 existing homes were sold, down 11.97% from the 1,613 sold during the same period in 2021. The statewide median price for the month was $350,000, down from $305,000 in May 2021, or 14.745%. .

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