Click this link for the video Lake Gaston Real Estate Update Video Feb 2024
Click this link for the video Lake Gaston Real Estate Update Video Feb 2024
The real estate market at Lake Gaston went through many changes in 2023 as did most of the country. The first half of the year, we experienced multiple offers and waterfront homes selling for more than the asking price. The second half of the year, with rising interest rates, we saw buyer activity slow. Increasing home prices and the rise in interest rates saw some buyers priced out of the second home market. We are still in a seller’s market with buyers waiting for new listings, priced at market value and in good condition to become available.
At year-end Lake Gaston Realtors saw 175 waterfront home transactions close, averaging $889,313 each. Totaling $155,629,827 or a decrease of 7.18 percent in dollar sales over 2022 sales. The average selling price was 98.1 percent of the asking price in 2023. In 2022 it was 99.6 percent. Unit sales of waterfront homes were down 15.05 percent from 2022. Resulting from the lack of inventory and rising interest rates. Offshore homes showed a decrease in dollar sales of 27.2 percent over 2022 sales with 104 closed, averaging $221,146 each, totaling $22,365,549. Dollar sales of waterfront lots increased 35.69 percent in 2023. There were 75 sold in 2022 and 77 sold in 2023. Last year’s average selling price of $290,532 each totaled $20,049,750, Offshore lot sales decreased 25.37 percent from 2022 levels averaging $30,392 each. Firms all around the lake closed on 444 total transactions of homes and land (lots) in 2023. In 2022 that figure was 576. Total dollar figure in 2023 was $204,948,225. That is a decrease of 7.21 percent from 2022’s figure of $220,867,574. Sales numbers are from the Roanoke Valley Lake Gaston Board of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and do not include private sales.
The median sales price for waterfront homes in 2023 was $750,000, a 1.19 percent increase in sales price over 2022. The median price for offshore homes was $202,350, an increase of 2.72 percent in sales price over 2022. The median price of waterfront lots increased by 43.33 percent compared to 2022 levels.
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index® increased in November to 102.0, up from a revised 99.1 in October. The Expectations Index—based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business, and labor market conditions—rose to 77.8 in November, up from its revised reading of 72.7 in October.
“Consumer confidence increased in November, following three consecutive months of decline,” said Dana Peterson, Chief Economist at The Conference Board. “This improvement reflected a recovery in the Expectations Index. Despite this month’s improvement, the Expectations Index remains below 80 for a third consecutive month—a level that historically signals a recession within the next year. While consumer fears of an impending recession abated slightly—to the lowest levels seen this year—around two-thirds of consumers surveyed in November still perceive a recession to be “somewhat” or “very likely” to occur over the next 12 months. This is consistent with the short and shallow recession we anticipate in the first half of 2024.”
The National Association of REALTORS® reports the Pending Home Sales Index in November were identical to October, staying at 71.6 in November. Year over year, pending transactions were down 5.2 percent. Existing home sales were up by 0.8 percent in November over October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.82 million, finishing a five-month drop. Existing home sales were down 7.3 percent from one year ago.
"The latest weakness in existing home sales still reflects the buyer bidding process in most of October when mortgage rates were at a two-decade high before the actual closings in November," said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "A marked turn can be expected as mortgage rates have plunged in recent weeks."
According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, averaged 6.95% as of December 14, falling below 7% for the first time since August 10. That's down from 7.03% the previous week but up from 6.31% one year ago.
Mortgage interest rates remain high, 7.14 percent for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage on a primary home and 7.625 percent for a secondary home. The Fed has also imposed a fee for second home mortgages of 1.25 to 4.0 percent of the loan amount. Interest rates fell slightly in the last half of December but inched back up the first week of January.
What are the Economist and Housing Experts saying? They tell us mortgage rates will decrease slightly. Available inventory will increase slowly, and home prices will rise by lower single digits in 2024. We may not experience any changes this year. Economic and housing data can turn on a dime. Change will come depending on when the Fed lowers interest rates and what the job numbers are.
Have you been thinking about selling your home? Buyers are calling and they want to see homes for sale in the Lake Gaston area. They want to see homes that are priced right and in good condition. The inventory shortage could result in a faster sale at a premium price. “Spruce up” your home and get it listed right away! You need to work with a full-time REALTOR®, who provides written data such as this and pricing your home correctly is essential.
REALTORS® around the lake agree that 2023 is a challenging year for real estate. The shortage of listings continues as buyers wait eagerly to buy lake property. We have experienced inflated pricing, multiple offers, and waterfront homes selling for over asking prices. Compared to last year, we see a lack of available waterfront home inventory has slowed sales. A lack of quality lots for sales caused our sales numbers to drop.
In the first nine months of 2023 we have sold 129 waterfront homes, averaging $840,244 each totaling $114,841,506. The average price is up 3.89% of the average sale price for the same time in 2022. The median sold price of waterfront homes in 2023 is $770,000 compared to $750,000 in the same nine months of 2022, totaling an increase of 2.67%. The total dollar sales of waterfront homes are down 14.46% in the first nine months of 2023 compared to the same time in 2022.
Offshore home sales this year total $16,464,649 compared to $24,872,280 in the first nine months of 2022 in dollar sales, a decrease of 33.80%. The average offshore homes sold for $219,529 compared to $220,809 in 2022 during the same time, a decrease of 0.58%.
Waterfront lot sales are down 17.19% in unit sales with 53 sold in 2023 and up 13.15% in dollars sales compared to 2022 sales for the first nine months. The average waterfront lot has sold for $275,403 this year. Offshore lot sales are down 19.73% in dollar sales in the first nine months of 2023 compared to 2022.
Our total market, homes and lot dollar sales in the first nine months of this year total $152,151,205, a decrease 14.65% of the same time in 2022.
All figures are from the Roanoke Valley Lake Gaston Board or REALTORS Multiple Listing Service and do not reflect private sales.
The major contributor to the decrease in sales of waterfront homes is supply. In the first nine months of 2023, we had 125 new listings for waterfront homes compared to 259 for the same time in 2020, pre-pandemic.
The rise in interest rates has certainly contributed to the decrease as well. Currently the mortgage rate for primary homes is just under 8% and second-homes is just under 9%.
Pending home sales across the country decreased 7.1% in August, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. "Mortgage rates have been rising above 7% since August, which has diminished the pool of home buyers," said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. "Some would-be home buyers are taking a pause and readjusting their expectations about the location and type of home to better fit their budgets." "Moreover, the government shutdown will disrupt some home sales in the short run due to the lack of flood insurance or delays in government-backed mortgage issuance," said Yun.
“Consumer confidence fell again in September 2023, marking two consecutive months of decline,” said Dana Peterson, Chief Economist at The Conference Board. Responses showed that consumers continued to be preoccupied with rising prices in general, and for groceries and gasoline in particular. Consumers also expressed concerns about the political situation and higher interest rates. The decline in consumer confidence was evident across all age groups, and notably among consumers with household incomes of $50,000 or more.” The current situations with the lack of Speaker in the House, the wars in Israel & Ukraine, inflation, rate hikes, labor strikes, etc. are all contributing to the decrease in Consumer Confidence.
Many Economists predict a recession to some degree in 2024, citing higher bond yields and consumers draining their savings accounts because of inflation and rising cost of living as signs. Bloomberg Economics noted these reasons too, the start back of student loan payments, the increased use of AI and the possibility of a severe commercial real estate crash.
We are seeing the real estate market cooling down slightly here at the lake. If you have been thinking about putting your Lake Gaston property on the market now is a great time before interest rates increase more and the economy continues to slow. We have buyers waiting for that right property to come available. To find a buyer you need to price your property competitively in our currently changing market. Give me a call or send me an email, I’ll be happy to give you my opinion of the value.
In the first six months of 2023 our total closed sales, land and homes have totaled $104,077,151 down from $118,656,746 the same period of 2022 or a decrease of 12.29%. Closed sales on waterfront homes were down 10.48% in dollar sales in the first six months of 2023 over the same period last year. We have closed 88 waterfront homes this year compared to 112 last year. The average sold price of waterfront homes in 2023 is $907,620 up 13.94% over the same period in 2022. The median price of waterfront homes sold in 2023 was $762,500, up from $727,500 last year or a 4.81% increase. The increase in the median home’s sales price is from home prices increasing and sales of higher priced homes. Today, we show 25 waterfront homes sold on the lake for $1M or more this year. Compared to the same time period for 2022 when twenty-two sold. Going back to the same time period in 2019 only one waterfront home sold before Covid hit. Covid has been a major contributor to increasing real estate prices everywhere.
This year, 50 offshore homes have sold, and their total dollar sales are down 41.6% this year compared to last year. Waterfront lot sales are up 10.23% in dollar sales compared to last year.
All sales numbers are from the Roanoke Valley Lake Gaston Board of REALTORS® MLS and do not reflect private sales.
Second home prices have surged. Mortgage rates climbed to today’s rate of 7.12% for primary homes and 7.75% for second homes/ investment properties. Since the beginning of 2022, mortgage payments have become increasingly unaffordable. Second-home buyers face those increases plus the federal government increased loan fees for second homes last year. Example, if you buy a median priced home on Lake Gaston with 20% down payment, you’d have a monthly payment of $1,798 over 30 years because of the increased interest rate.
Total existing-home sales transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 0.2% from April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.30 million in May. Year-over-year, sales dropped 20.4% from May 2022.
"Mortgage rates heavily influence the direction of home sales," said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "Relatively steady rates have led to several consecutive months of consistent home sales."
“The Leading Economic Index provides an early indication of significant turning points in the business cycle and where the economy is heading in the near term. The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. declined by 0.7 percent in May 2023 to 106.7, following a decline of 0.6 percent in April. The LEI is down 4.3 percent over the six-month period between November 2022 and May 2023—a steeper rate of decline than its 3.8 percent contraction over the previous six months from May to November 2022. The US LEI continues to signal a recession within the next 12 months.”
Our inventory of quality homes in the Lake Gaston market continues to be low. Now is a good time to list your home if you have been thinking of selling. List your home before the market cools off more. Contact a full-time REALTOR® with working knowledge of the Lake Gaston market. Ask them to provide written data on properties sold and listed in the local market. When listing your property, price it according to comparable ones on the market. Remember, buyers’ frown at time wasted looking at overpriced properties. Overpriced properties sit on the market and become stale. Eventually selling at a lower price because of the wrong listing price at the start.
More people are coming to Lake Gaston and the surrounding locations. We see growth in both residential and commercial development. Lake Gaston REALTORS® love helping people find their dream home or business at the lake!
Barney Watson is the owner of Lake Gaston Real Estate LLC and he is Director for the Roanoke Valley Lake Gaston Board of REALTORS®. His cell is 252-532-3274 and his website is www.lakegastonrealestate.com.
In the first three months of 2023 our total closed sales, land and homes, have totaled $42,627,390, a decrease of 21.3%, compared to the $54,150,816 over the same three months of 2022. This year, our first quarter closed sales on waterfront homes are down 22.2% (in dollar sales), compared to the same period last year. We have closed 34 this year compared to 52 last year. The average sold price of waterfront homes in 2023 was $957,776, an increase of 19% over the same period in 2022. The median sold price of waterfront homes for the first three months was $741,445 compared to $727,500 in 2022, an increase of 1.9%. The median days on the market for waterfront homes for the first quarter was 7. The average sold price of offshore homes for the first quarter of 2023 was $205,889 versus $243,015 for the same period last year, a decrease of 53.8%. We closed on 18 offshore homes this year. Waterfront lot sales (in dollars) were down 25.2% from last year. All sales numbers are from the Roanoke Valley Lake Gaston Board of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service and do not reflect private sales.
Across the country, The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) reports: “Total existing-home sales, completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops, sank 2.4% from February to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.44 million in March. Year-over-year, sales decreased 22% (5.69 million in March 2022).”
"Home sales are trying to recover and are highly sensitive to changes in mortgage rates," said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "Yet, at the same time, multiple offers on starter homes are quite common, implying more supply is needed to fully satisfy demand. It's a unique housing market."
Our inventory of quality homes in the Lake Gaston market continues to be at record lows, especially those waterfront homes priced below $1M.
The Consumer Confidence Index® fell in April to 101.3, down from 104.0 in March. “While consumers’ relatively favorable assessment of the current business environment improved somewhat in April, their expectations fell and remain below the level which often signals a recession looming in the short-term,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Senior Director, Economics at The Conference Board. “Consumers became more pessimistic about the outlook for both business conditions and labor markets. Compared to last month, fewer households expect business conditions to improve and more expect worsening of conditions in the next six months. They also expect fewer jobs to be available over the short term.”
Mortgage rates have been decreasing slightly over the past month or so. The 30-year fixed rate for a primary residence is 6.799% (APR) and 7.476% for a second home. These rates strongly depend on your FICO score and down payment amount. Additional loan fees are also higher for a second home than a primary home.
And now we have the Biden Administration’s new ruling for mortgage loans that begins May 1, 2023. Newsweek reported, “Homebuyers with good credit scores will soon be facing higher mortgage fees as the Biden administration seeks to close the racial homeownership gap and get more first-time and low-income buyers through the door. A new federal rule could raise the monthly mortgage payments of buyers with good credit scores by over $60 a month, while riskier borrowers will get more favorable terms because their fees will be reduced.”
If you’ve been thinking of selling your Lake Gaston property, wait no longer! The shortage of inventory has persuaded some potential buyers to buy their lake homes sooner. A full-time REALTOR®, who provides written data and gives you the correct value of your home, is important.