Against a backdrop of limited listings, Massachusetts saw double digit growth in the median price of single-family homes in April. In total, the state's median single-family home price was pegged at $313,000, reflecting a near 14 percent increase compared to the same period of last year. Buyer demand and a tight housing inventory pushed up the values of homes, as more and more investors continue to snap up properties in the Greater Boston area.
This is the seventh month in a row that the state saw double digit growth for home values, suggesting that even more growth is to come within the summer months, otherwise known as the peak for property sales and turnover. However, as median prices increase, home sales slightly declined in the same month, dropping a total of 1 percent versus last year. This is primarily attributed to the fact that inventories remain low, hovering just above the threshold of "adequate" to sustain buyer demand.
However, real estate professionals and economists are confident that inventories will fill up more repidly in the coming summer months, buoyed by the fact that aside from rising median home prices, April also saw a record number of listings for the month - and is in fact the the highest in seven years. Pundits are projecting that sellers are holding off listing their properties until the beginning of summer, when most of the buying action happens.
The current buyer demand that Bostonians are enjoying is primarily due to the investors having more access to low mortgage rates, as well as consumer confidence is extremely up because of the positive jobs data that's sweeping the country as a whole. Foreign investors also represent a good number of home sales in the region, accounting for 16% of all sales beginning January of this year.
Aside from single-family homes, condominium sales also saw a healthy spike, up 8 percent in April compared to the same period last year. In particular, there were 1,493 closings this month compared to 1,382 a year ago. The median price for condominiums throughout the state also climbed two percent higher, rising to $280,000 for the first quarter, from $256,000 a year prior. Greater Boston condominiums also saw a 4 percent increase in total.
With home prices continuously climbing, sellers are finally gaining the confidence to list their properties. Buyers, too, are extremely confident snapping up homes and condominiums, perhaps because they've been waiting for opportunities like this for almost five years. The last time Boston saw turnovers such as we're witnessing now, was just before the market tanked back in 2008. All this data suggest that the coming summer months will not only be brutal temperature wise, but also bullish for the real estate market.