Where have all the sellers gone?

As I read this New York Times article: Where have all the houses gone? my mind went to Yogi Berra’s line of “it’s deja vu all over again” as I checked my files and discovered that this will be my 5th article with this title – and the first was written in 2013.

Let’s look at the what and the why.

First, the what. This chart shows that inventory has plummeted across the country:

Housing Inventory

The why: That is not so easy to summarize but the NYT suggests that half of the decline is pandemic-related and the other half is “more complicated”.

The pandemic impact:
– Supply is down because “Is this a time you want to open your house up to people?”
– Baby boomers have been reluctant to sell and downsize
– Who wants to move into an assisted living facility or nursing home?
– Millions of homes are still in mortgage forbearance schemes – some of these may otherwise have come on to the market
– Rents are falling as single home prices are rising, an unusual pairing
– Homeowners are fleeing cities for the burbs – and for warmth and low taxes

The non-pandemic effect:
– After the crash in home prices in the Great Recession, many single family homes were bought to rent out – in the last decade some 7 million homes have become rental properties
– New home construction dropped sharply after the Great Recession
– Low mortgage rates (even before the pandemic-driven drop below 3%) – have been cheap for some years, encouraging some homeowners to retain their current home as an investment property when they buy a larger one

The questions:
– When the country is vaccinated and people feel free to move around again will baby boomers resume selling?
– And will this add to demand in areas where their children and grand-children live?
– Is the move to a new lifestyle in a warmer and low tax or tax free environment a short-term reaction to the pandemic or a longer term trend? (I believe it is the latter).
– Will new home construction continue to pick up? Probably, but with the cost of raw materials jumping new home prices will continue to rise.
– Will people feel confident about returning to nursing homes and assisted living facilities; or will they elect to “age in place” with more in-home help?
– Will a new type of development take place, something between living in a single family home and a nursing home?

Comment
I used to work with a Realtor who whenever I quoted national or regional statistics would respond “all real estate is local.” I suspect that a lot of Realtors and homeowners and home buyers have felt that the issues they were facing in recent months and years were local. I used to point out to my friend that while real estate was local, it was also important to be aware of national trends that may have an impact on local markets. That is even more true today.
And while home prices have risen sharply in the last 9 months, it is relevant to consider that as we emerge into a post-pandemic world, we expect to see the animal spirits released which, with the help of major economic stimulus from the latest injection of funds and the likelihood of a much needed investment in infrastructure, should see the US poised for several years of rapid economic growth.
While this will likely drive interest rates and hence mortgage rates higher, that will be for the right reasons.
It would be a brave person who would bet against a continuing rise in home prices in the near future.

Goodbye sub 3% mortgages
It’s 80 degrees in Florida….

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com
www.OliverReportsFL.com

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of OliverReports.com. He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Salem, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Open Houses on my brother’s birthday

As usual, a few more Open Houses than were in yesterday’s list:

blank

Click on these links for details:
Marblehead Open Houses
Swampscott Open Houses
Salem Open Houses
Beverly Open House
Lynn Open Houses

And read these articles:
Goodbye sub 3% mortgages
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com
www.OliverReportsFL.com

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of OliverReports.com. He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Goodbye sub 3% mortgages

It was only last July that the 30-year Fixed Rate Mortgage (FRM) dropped below 3% for the first time and this week it moved back above 3% again, following the direction of the 10-year Treasury Note (10T).

Mortgage rates

The latest survey from Freddie Mac returned a rate of 3.02% and earned this comment:
“Since reaching a low point in January, mortgage rates have risen by more than 30 basis points, and the impact on purchase demand has been noticeable. While purchase activity remains high, it has cooled off over the last few weeks and is currently on par with early March, prior to the pandemic. However, the rise in mortgage rates over the next couple of months is likely to be more muted in comparison to the last few weeks, and we expect a strong spring sales season.”

The key to the level of the FRM is the 10T. Investors in mortgage-backed securities (bundles of mortgages sold to investors) require a premium – spread – over the yield on 10T.

The chart below shows three rates: the top line in orange shows the rate on the FRM; the blue line at the bottom is the yield on 10T; and the grey line (mostly) in the middle is the difference in the rates – the spread.

Mortgage spreads

For most of the time in recent years this spread has been in the 1.6- 1.8% range. The exceptions have been in times of financial stress: the Great Recession and COVID-19.
Mortgage rates

The current spread is just 1.48%, suggesting that the FRM is actually lower than its historic normal level of 1.6-1.8%.

Regardless of the short-term movement, mortgage rates remain cheap as show by this chart:

Mortgage rates

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com

www.OliverReportsFL.com

2020 Market Reports: Town by Town Reviews

Market Reports for all 34 cities and towns in Essex County are now available on the website.

This is the link to that page: 2020 Market Reports by Town

Read these recent articles:
Goodbye sub 3% mortgages
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com

www.OliverReportsFL.com

 

Open Houses weekend March 6/7

Here are this weekend’s Open Houses. Be aware that with such low inventory, many new listings receive offers before the weekend Open Houses.
This list will be updated on Sunday morning (because of the quirks of MLS some of the Sunday Open Houses don’t show up on Saturday.)

Open Houses

Click on these links for details:
Marblehead Open Houses
Swampscott Open Houses
Salem Open Houses
Beverly Open House
Lynn Open Houses

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

New Listings week ending March 5

A few more New Listings this week:

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Click on these links for details:

Marblehead New Listings
Swampscott New Listings
Salem New Listings
Beverly New Listings
Lynn New Listings

These tables show that inventory is greatly reduced from a year ago, when levels were already low:

Housing inventory

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

New Listings mid-week March 3

A few more new listings:

New Listings

Click on these links for details:
Marblehead New Listings
Swampscott New Listings
Salem New Listings
Beverly New Listings
Lynn New Listings

These tables show that inventory is greatly reduced from a year ago, when levels were already low:

blank

And read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: a Town by Town guide
It’s 80 degrees in Florida….

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®

Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReports.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205

www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com

www.OliverReportsFL.com

Open Houses weekend February 27/28

Here are this weekend’s Open Houses. Be aware that with such low inventory, many new listings receive offers before the weekend Open Houses.
This list will be updated on Sunday morning (because of the quirks of MLS some of the Sunday Open Houses don’t show up on Saturday.)

Open Houses

Click on these links for details:
Marblehead Open Houses
Swampscott Open Houses
Salem Open Houses
Beverly Open House
Lynn Open Houses

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

New Listings week ending February 26

Here are the latest New Listings:

New Listings

Click on these links for details:

Marblehead New Listings
Swampscott New Listings
Salem New Listings
Beverly New Listings
Lynn New Listings

These tables show that inventory is greatly reduced from a year ago, when levels were already low:

Housing inventory

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

Only One House For Sale in Swampscott under $2 million

The shortage of inventory has been a major topic of conversation both locally and nationally for some time now, but the current situation in Swampscott is extreme.

There are just 5 Single Family Homes for sale (MLS shows 6 but one is listed as both SFH and Condo and is actually a Condo legally). Of those 5 , one is listed at $1.75 million, one at $2.8 million, one at $2.9 million, one at $3.5 million and one at $6.5 million.

Such is the supply/demand equation that when houses at lower prices – and some at higher prices – do come on the market a bidding war breaks out.

Thus, if you may be thinking of selling in the spring, you may want to consider taking advantage of the current market drought and list now, especially with mortgage rates having increased quite sharply from the recent extraordinary lows.

Team Harborside is the leading team for sales on the North Shore and we would delighted to offer you an opinion of the current valuation of your property.

Read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: Town by Town guide

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

 

 

2020: The Top End comes Roaring Back

One of the surprise of the last 2-3 years – to me at least – has been that there has not been more activity in the top end of the market, even as activity increased at lower levels. But that changed in 2020.
Let’s look at sales by price point:

The number of sales over $1 million increased 39% from 353 to 489:

Million dollar sales

The number of sales over $2 million increased to 60 compared with the prior high of 51

Million dollar sales

 

Sales over $3 million doubled from 10 in 2019 to 21 in 2021, passing the prior peak of 18 in 2007:

Million dollar sales

And there was a rebound in sales over $4 million to 12, also passing the prior 2007 peak of 11.

 

Million dollar sales

These charts support what one would normally expect in a rising market – an increase in top-end sales. It took a COVID-inspired exodus from cities to achieve it on this occasion.

Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: a Town by Town guide
Conforming Mortgage Loan Limits raised for 2021

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®
Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReportsMA.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.AndrewOliverRealtor.com
www.MarbleheadSouth.com

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of OliverReports.com. He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Salem, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

New Listings mid-week February 24

Another week with few new listings:

blank

Click on these links for details:
Marblehead New Listings
Swampscott New Listings
Salem New Listings
Beverly New Listings
Lynn New Listings

These tables show that inventory is reduced from a year ago, when levels were already low:

blank

And read these recent articles:
Mortgage Rates are Rising
How Marblehead’s 2021 Property Tax Rate is Calculated
Essex County 2021 Residential Property Tax Rates: a Town by Town guide
Conforming Mortgage Loan Limits raised for 2021

If you – or somebody you know – are considering buying or selling a home and have questions about the market and/or current home prices, please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com.

“If you’re interested in Marblehead, you have to visit the blog of Mr. Andrew Oliver, author and curator of Oliver Reports . He’s assembled the most comprehensive analysis of Essex County we know of with market data and trends going back decades. It’s a great starting point for those looking in the towns of Marblehead, Sale, Beverly, Lynn and Swampscott.”

Andrew Oliver
Market Analyst | Team Harborside | teamharborside.com
REALTOR®

Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty
One Essex Street | Marblehead, MA 01945
m 617.834.8205

www.OliverReports.com
Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated

Andrew Oliver
Sales Associate | Market Analyst | DomainRealty.com
REALTOR®

Naples, Bonita Springs and Fort Myers
Andrew.Oliver@DomainRealtySales.com
m. 617.834.8205
www.OliverReportsFL.com (coming soon)

Open Houses weekend February 20/21

Here are this weekend’s Open Houses. Be aware that with such low inventory, many new listings receive offers before the weekend Open Houses.
This list will be updated on Sunday morning (because of the quirks of MLS some of the Sunday Open Houses don’t show up on Saturday.) (more…)