Pending sale vortex caused by Polar Vortex or other factors?


At the beginning of the fourth quarter last night, New England Patriots fans were biting their nails. Their team clung to a 29-22 lead as the Indianapolis Colts threatened a comeback. Like Patriot Nation, home sellers across MA entered the fourth quarter of 2013 expecting to cruise to victory; but instead of reaching the end zone like Patriot running backs, the clock ran out on 10,455 EXPired listings and another 4,144 CANceled listings effectively fired their coaches.

That’s right, the “frenzied” real estate market ended the year with nearly 15,000 failed MLS listings. The story and it’s implications are still unfolding, but there’s growing evidence that the housing market is headed into an off-season that’s cooler than expected.

Pending Sales Vortex

Contact Real Estate Cafe if you’d like to see snapshots of the first 11 days of 2014 compared to the same time last year showing:

  • Statewide in MA, pending single family sales are down 18% in the first 11 days of 2014; 
  • Pending SF sales between $150-$299K are down 19%, falling from 412 last year to 333 this year;
  • Paradoxically, 1 in 7 pending sales was between $200-$249K last year; now 1 in 7 is between $150-$199K (yes, these are single family pending sales, not condo – surprising, right?)
  • More surprising, pending luxury SF sales are down more than 50%, falling from 9 over $2M last year to just 4 so far in 2014.

Scan three of our recent blog posts below, and let us know if you think these patterns will continue and how that might influence your home buying plans for 2014.

Our hypothesis:  What’s yours?

Sellers are entering 2014 with some headwinds and pending storms, so blaming the pending sales vortex solely on the Polar Vortex last week is too simplistic.  To continue our football metaphor, here’s a scouting report of what to watch in 2014 courtesy of the Wall Street Journal:

  • If you foresee a Bear Market, what signs are you seeing of shrinking demand and falling prices or unrealistic asking prices and rising inventory?
  • If you foresee a Bull Market, can you layout your argument for where prices and inventory are headed in 2014?

Want to ask others where the housing market is going in 2014?  Please share this post via social media:

Real Estate Cafe’s recent blog posts

New Year’s resolution: Fact check reports of real estate “frenzy”

Real estate predictions 2014: Have sellers already missed the best time to sell?

Market snapshot confirms seasonal price reductions even in desirable towns

Posted in Bidding wars, Bubble Hour, Defensive Homebuying, Housing bubble, Housing forecasts, Market trends, Price trends, Savings & Rebates, Seasonality, Timing the market

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