Lakes Region of NH Real Estate Market Report – 5/21/09
DOM OR DOB?
There were 50 residential homes that changed hands in April of 2009 in our Lakes Region of NH list of towns. That is up a little from the 46 that sold in April of 2008, so at least we are holding our own in total unit sales. The average sales price in April 2009 dropped compared to last April from $419,219 to $266,598. The median sales price also dropped from $245,100 to $190,000. This can be mostly attributed to more lower priced homes selling this year compared to last. Sales of homes under $200,000 almost doubled with 28 homes changing hands in April of 2009 compared to just 15 in April 2008. Mid-range home sales, those between $200-400,000, are down with 15 homes sold this April compared to the 22 recorded last year. The average “Days on Market”, or the average time that it took to sell a home, in April came in at 133 days which was virtually unchanged from last year.
So what does the statistical term “Days on Market” (DOM) mean? This number refers to the average of how long a property has been on the market or how long it took to sell a home depending on which report you look at. This number is actually somewhat inaccurate as it only represents the number of days a property has been on the market with the current real estate agency. Many properties have been listed for sale several times with different agencies. Some listings come off the market and come back on the market six months or a year later. Our MLS system has no way to calculate the DOM for all the times a property has been offered for sale and therefore the actual DOM would be higher, especially in these tough times.
What would be really interesting is if there was actually a way to track every buyer that goes out looking at homes from start to finish just like the MLS system tracks housing sales. I would venture a guess that the DOB (no, not “date of birth”, let’s call it “Days Out Buying”) for all the people that are shopping for a home would be more than the DOM numbers in our reports. Tracking buyers is never likely to happen, but who ever thought that the US Government would be selling Chryslers. A lot of focus is put on things from the seller’s perspective, but a “Days Out Buying” statistic should be pretty revealing and would show how much time your local REALTORS® spend to help buyers purchase their new home.
So while an average Days Out Buying statistic would be interesting, there is nothing average about any buyer. Just like the homes that they look at every buyer is unique. Buyers all have different motivations, needs, and timelines. Some know exactly what and where they want to be, some think they know but change their minds five times before they buy, some don’t have a clue, some can be totally unrealistic, and unfortunately (at least for the agents involved) some are only dreamers, tire kickers, or just plain curious. Buyers can be deliberate and methodical, or on again off again, and many will never buy anything anywhere on this planet. While all these statistics can used to measure how well the market is doing, they never can quite measure the complexities of what a real estate transaction is all about and the different personalities and motivations on the buyer and selling sides. Only REALTORS® can do that…
Report covers the towns of Aton, Barnstead, Belmont, Center Harbor, Gilford, Gilmanton, Laconia, Meredith, Moultonborough, New Hampton, Sanbornton, and Tilton