According to the SC Association of Realtors, “rising home prices, higher interest rates and increased building material costs have pressured housing affordability to a ten-year low, according to the National Association of Home Builders. Keen market observers have been watching this situation take shape for quite some time. Nationally, median household income has risen 2.6% in the last 12 months, while home prices are up 6.0%. That kind of gap will eventually create fewer sales due to affordability concerns, which is happening in several markets, especially in the middle to high-middle price ranges.”
In the Greater Greenville SC Real Estate Market for August 2018, according to the SC Association of Realtors, “New Listings were up 3.0 percent to 1,690. Pending Sales decreased 53.6 percent to 556. Inventory grew 14.1 percent to 4,607 units. Prices moved higher as Median Sales Price was up 3.8 percent to $201,300. Days on Market decreased 2.2 percent to 45 days. Months Supply of Inventory was up 13.2 percent to 4.3 months, indicating that supply increased relative to demand.”
While some are starting to look for recessionary signs like fewer sales, dropping prices and even foreclosures, others are taking a more cautious and research-based approach to their predictions. The fact remains that the trends do not yet support a dramatic shift away from what has been experienced over the last several years. Housing starts are performing admirably if not excitingly, prices are still inching upward, supply remains low and consumers are optimistic. The U.S. economy is under scrutiny but certainly not deteriorating.”
Now that you have heard from the experts, here is my take from the county level perspective. The Greenville, SC real estate market is not slowing down as much as the Greater Anderson real estate market. We’re still seeing multiple offers in several different price ranges and the average amount a time is spending on the market is dropping a little bit almost each month. Closed sales are up over 2017 and over July 2018. We’re not seeing big jumps, but we are still seeing increases. I think what makes the Greenville, SC real estate market different from the Anderson, SC real estate market is big business. While Anderson has it’s fair share, Greenville has a lot and the constant hiring and expanding of these big companies, especially manufacturing, is a big driving force behind the demand.
The colder it gets, the more the Greenville, SC real estate market will slow down…it happens every year. When it picks back up is typically determined by when it gets warm outside. Like with the rest of the country, there are areas that consistently have a better real estate market than others and Greenville is that area in the Upstate.
Maybe not to the extent of the Anderson real estate market, but I believe eventually, we’ll begin to see it begin to stabilize. It cannot survive as a seller’s market forever. Eventually, rising prices will cause the market to price out and demand will fall off a bit and those prices will begin to fall. It’s like a trickle down effect: Higher rates, less urgency to buy, fewer buyers, more inventory, fewer sales. It’s a natural progression and one that doesn’t have me too concerned at this point. I’ve been saying it for months and will continue to say it…I think we’re on the way to a more balanced and sustainable real estate market. That doesn’t mean we won’t experience ups and down. Which leads me to the state of the economy.
In talking with my dad, who has been a Realtor in the Anderson & Greenville, SC real estate markets for over 40 years, he made an excellent point and that is, we will most likely see an economic stumble but it probably will not be because the economy crashed. In his opinion, and I agree, it will be a result of the 2020 presidential election. He told me that every presidential election brings uncertainty, and ultimately a slowdown to the real estate market, and the economy as a whole. Once the election is over and the country knows what to expect (who will be President), then they tend to go back to spending money.
So while a slowdown is inevitable (at some point), don’t let that stop you from jumping into the Greenville SC real estate market. Of course, watch your pennies…just like you would any other time…and be smart about your decision, but remember this: