First Quarter 2017 Real Estate Market Report – Passaic County, New Jersey

PASSAIC-NJ_Q1-2017-QMRThe Passaic County housing market surged in the first quarter of 2017, with sales spiking and prices showing their first signs of meaningful appreciation in years.

Sales. Passaic started the year dramatically, with sales spiking almost 30% from the first quarter of last year. We’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for over five years, with quarterly sales up in 21 out of the last 23 quarters. As a result, Passaic closed almost 3,500 homes for the calendar year, the highest total we’ve seen in over 10 years, since the height of the last seller’s market

Prices. More importantly, we’re starting to see these sustained levels of buyer demand have their first impact on pricing. Prices were up across the board, rising almost 2% on average and 6% at the median. Prices are still down for the year, due to the lackluster performance in most of 2016, but they seem to be finally heading in a positive direction. With buyer demand strong, and inventory falling, we would expect prices to be going up.

Inventory. The Passaic inventory of available homes for sale fell again, down almost 38% from last year. We measure “months of inventory” by calculating the number of months it would take to sell all the available homes at the current rate of absorption, and generally consider anything below six months to signal a seller’s market that would normally drive prices up. So the fact that Passaic is now down to just over six months of inventory is important, since it presages the possibility of price appreciation for the rest of 2017.

Negotiability. Sellers gained significant negotiating leverage in the first quarter, with homes selling far more quickly and for closer to the asking price. The days-on-market fell dramatically, dropping almost 15%–almost a full month!–and now down to about five months on the market. And the listing price retention rate jumped almost a full percentage point, and is now up to 97%.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect these levels of buyer demand, coupled with declining inventory, to continue to drive price appreciation in a robust Spring market and throughout 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on April 27, 2017 at 3:15 pm
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,

First Quarter 2017 Real Estate Market Report – Northern New Jersey Market Overview

New-Jersey-OVERVIEW_Q1-2017-QMRThe Northern New Jersey housing market surged ahead in the first quarter of 2017, starting the year with a dramatic increase in home sales coupled with modest-but-meaningful signs of price appreciation. With inventory levels continuing to fall throughout the region, we expect that sustained buyer demand will drive a robust seller’s market through the Spring and the rest of 2017.

Sales surged throughout the region. All the Northern New Jersey markets got off to a strong start to the year, with regional sales up almost 12% and transactions rising in every market in the region: up 1% in Bergen, 30% in Passaic, 8% in Morris, 12% in Essex, and 32% in Sussex. For the rolling year, sales were up over 9%, reaching sales levels we have not seen since the height of the last seller’s market. Indeed, regional sales are now up over 65% from the bottom of the market in 2011.

The number of available homes for sale continues to go down. We measure the “months of inventory” in a market by looking at the number of homes for sale, and then calculating how long it would take to sell them all given the current absorption rate. The industry considers anything fewer than six months to be a “tight” inventory that signals the potential of a seller’s market that would drive prices up — and we’ve now seen this market cross below that line for the second quarter in a row. Indeed, inventory was down from last year in every individual county in the Report: Bergen single-family homes down 21%, and condos down 34%; Passaic down 38%; Morris down 34%; Essex down 39%; and Sussex down 36%. If inventory continues to tighten, and demand stays strong, we are likely to see more upward pressure on pricing. With sales up and inventory down, prices are starting to show some “green shoots” of modest price appreciation. Basic economics of supply and demand would tell us that after five years of steadily increasing buyer demand, we would expect to see some meaningful price increases. And we’re beginning to see some promising signs: the regional average sales price was up almost 1% from last year’s first quarter, and the average price was up in almost every county in the report.

Going forward, we remain confident that rising demand and falling inventory will continue to drive price appreciation through the rest of 2017. Sales have now been increasing for five years, which has brought inventory to the seller’s market threshold in much of the region. The economic fundamentals are all good: homes are priced at 2004 levels (without even adjusting for inflation), interest rates are still near historic lows, and the regional economy is stable. Accordingly, we continue to believe the region is poised for a robust Spring market and a strong 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on April 27, 2017 at 9:27 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty Quarterly Market Report For 2016Q4 – Passaic County, New Jersey

Passaic 2016Q4Sales in the Passaic County housing market rose again in the fourth quarter of 2016, but they are still not having their expected impact on pricing

Sales. Passaic sales finished the year strong, rising almost 14% from last year’s fourth quarter and finishing the year up over 12%. We’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for over five years, with quarterly sales up in 20 out of the last 22 quarters. As a result, Passaic closed almost 3,300 homes for the calendar year, the highest total we’ve seen in over 10 years, since the height of the last seller’s market.

Prices. Unfortunately, these sustained increases in buyer demand are not yet impacting pricing. Prices were down fairly sharply for the quarter, falling over 5% on average and almost 3% at the median. And that finished off a calendar year where prices were down almost 3% on average and 1% at the median. This is surprising, because we would normally expect sustained increases in buyer demand to drive meaningful price appreciation. It may just be a matter of time, but basic economic principles would indicate that increasing demand, coupled with declining inventory, should drive prices higher.

Inventory. The Passaic inventory of available homes for sale fell again, down over 22% from last year’s fourth quarter. We measure “months of inventory” by calculating the number of months it would take to sell all the available homes at the current rate of absorption, and generally consider anything below six months to signal a seller’s market that would normally drive prices up. So the fact that Passaic is now down to just over eight months of inventory is important, since it presages the possibility of price appreciation in 2017.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators indicated that sellers are gaining leverage with buyers. The days-on-market were down sharply, falling 15 days from the fourth quarter of last year and now down to under five months of market time. The listing retention rate was relatively flat for the quarter, but up to almost 97% for the year. If the market tightens, we would expect that homes would continue to sell more quickly and for closer to the asking price.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect these sustained levels of buyer demand, coupled with declining inventory, to finally drive meaningful price appreciation in 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on January 13, 2017 at 9:51 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , ,

Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty Quarterly Market Report For 2016Q4 Overall – Northern New Jersey

Northern New Jersey 2016Q4The Northern New Jersey housing market finished strong in the final quarter of 2016, with sales up sharply even while pricing continued to struggle. But with inventory levels falling throughout the region, we expect that sustained buyer demand will drive meaningful if modest price appreciation in 2017.

Sales were strong throughout the region. After a relatively slow third quarter, regional sales surged back, rising almost 11% and up sharply in every county in the report: rising 11% in Bergen, 14% in Passaic, 12% in Morris, 11% in Essex, and 18% in Sussex. This strong fourth quarter helped the region close the 2016 year up almost 11% in sales, reaching the highest yearly transactional total in over ten years, since the height of the last seller’s market. Indeed, regional sales are now up 63% from the bottom of the market in 2011.

Inventory continues to tighten. We determine the “months of inventory” in a market by measuring the number of homes for sale, and then calculating how long it would take to sell them all given the current absorption rate. The industry considers anything less than six months to be a “tight” inventory that signals the potential of a seller’s market that would drive prices up. Well, the months of inventory for the Northern New Jersey region has now crossed over that line, dropping down to 5.3 months. Moreover, inventory was down in every individual county in the Rand Report, and is now below or nearing the six-month level: Bergen single-family homes at 3.6 months and condos at 6.1 months, Passaic at 8.3, Morris at 7.3, Essex at 7.0, and Sussex at 11.3. Certainly, if inventory continues to tighten, and demand stays strong, we are likely to see upward pressure on pricing.

Even with sales up and inventory down, though, average prices have been flat or falling throughout the region. Basic economics of supply and demand tells us that after five years of steadily increasing buyer demand, we should expect to see some meaningful price increases. But prices languished, with the regional price down just a tick from last year’s fourth quarter, but down almost 2% for the year. Moreover, the average prices for the year were down in almost all of the individual counties, rising only for Bergen condos, with just a tick up for Sussex. And maybe that’s the tell it might be that the market is simply stronger at the lower end, so lower priced homes (like Bergen condos and Sussex properties) are making up a larger percentage of the mix of properties sold.

Going forward, we remain confident that rising demand and falling inventory will drive price appreciation in 2017. Sales have now been increasing for almost five years, which has brought inventory to the seller’s market threshold in much of the region. The economic fundamentals are all good: homes are priced at 2004 levels (without even adjusting for inflation), interest rates are still near historic lows, and the regional economy is stable. Accordingly, we continue to believe that better days are ahead, and that we are likely to see modest but meaningful price appreciation in 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate® – Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on January 12, 2017 at 9:36 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: Third Quarter 2016 – Passaic County, New Jersey

passaic-bhg_northern-nj_q3-2016-qmr-digitalSales in the Passaic County housing market continued to rise in the third quarter of 2016, but these sustained levels of buyer demand are not yet having their expected impact on pricing.

Sales. Passaic sales were up again in the third quarter, rising over 6% from last year and finishing the rolling year up over 10%. Indeed, we’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for over five years, with quarterly sales up in 20 out of the last 22 quarters. As a result, Passaic closed almost 3,200 homes over the last rolling year, a level Passaic had not reached in over 10 years, since the last seller’s market.

Prices. Unfortunately, these sustained increases in buyer demand are not yet impacting pricing. Prices were down, with the average price falling slightly while the median price was down over 3%. We would normally expect sustained increases in buyer demand to drive meaningful price appreciation, but Passaic pricing has been stubbornly resistant over the past few years. It may just be a matter of time, but basic economic principles would indicate that increasing demand, coupled with declining inventory, should drive prices higher.

Inventory. We generally consider anything below sixmonths of inventory as a signal for a seller’s market, where tight inventory leads to multiple offer situations, bidding wars, and ultimately appreciating prices. Passaic County is still working its way to that level, but inventory was down over 20% to 8.3 months, so it’s moving in that direction.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators both showed that sellers are gaining leverage with buyers. The daysonmarket were down just a tick for the quarter, signaling that homes were selling a little more quickly. And the listing retention rate was up, indicating that sellers were getting closer to their asking price. Together, they show that sellers are slowly gaining some bargaining power with buyers, which should eventually lead to modest price appreciation.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect buyer demand to stay strong through the end of the year, with the strong possibility of meaningful price appreciation in 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on October 12, 2016 at 9:30 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: Third Quarter 2016 – Northern New Jersey Market Overview

overview-bhg_northern-nj_q3-2016-qmr-digitalThe Northern New Jersey housing market plateaued in the third quarter of 2016, with sales flattening out after a torrid start to the year and pricing struggling to gain traction. With inventory levels falling throughout the region, though, we expect that the market might gain strength going into 2017.

Sales were basically flat throughout the region. After a strong start to the year, sales slowed during the third quarter, rising only about 2%. The good news is that if you look at the rolling year, sales were up almost 10%, continuing a trend we’ve been watching for about five years. Although we are not yet at transactional levels that we saw during the last seller’s market of the mid2000’s, sales are up about 40% from the bottom of the market in 2009 and are moving in a positive direction.

We are also seeing inventory continue to tighten. The industry measures the impact of inventory by calculating the “months of inventory” remaining on the market: i.e., the number of homes for sale divided by the average monthly transactions. According to industry standards, six months worth of inventory signals a balanced market: any less, and we are likely to see too many buyers chasing too few homes, which will tend to lead to multiple offer situations, then bidding wars, and ultimately higher prices. And that’s about where we are trending throughout the region, with regional inventory down over 25%. Indeed, Bergen is already below six months of inventory, and Morris, Essex, and Passaic are all below nine months.

Even with sales up and inventory down, though, average prices have been dropping throughout the region. We have been a little disappointed in the pricing this year, after what looked to be “green shoots” of price appreciation toward the end of 2015. Certainly, basic economics of supply and demand would tell us that after five years of steadily increasing buyer demand, we would expect to see some meaningful price increases. It might be that the market is simply stronger in the lowerend than the middle or higherend, which is changing the mix of properties sold and skewing the averages. Or it could still just be a matter of time before falling inventory and rising demand starts impacting pricing.

Going forward, we still believe that we are heading for a seller’s market. Sales have now been increasing for almost five years, which has brought inventory to the seller’s market threshold in much of the region. The economic fundamentals are all good: homes are priced at 2004 levels (without even adjusting for inflation), interest rates are still near historic lows, and the regional economy is stable. Accordingly, we continue to believe that better days are ahead, and that we are likely to see modest but meaningful price appreciation in 2017.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on October 11, 2016 at 2:58 pm
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Second-Quarter 2016 Real Estate Market Report: Passaic County

PassaicNJ-Q2-2016-QMRThe Passaic County housing market surged again in the second quarter, but another sharp increase in sales is still not having its expected impact on pricing.

Sales. Passaic sales were up again in the second quarter, rising almost 22% from last year and finishing the rolling year up over 15%. Indeed, we’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for over five years, with quarterly sales up in 19 out of the last 21 quarters. As a result, Passaic closed over 3,000 homes over the last rolling year, a level Passaic had not reached since the seller’s market of the mid 2000’s.

Prices. Unfortunately, these sustained increases in buyer demand are not yet impacting pricing. Prices were mixed, with the average price falling almost 2% while the median price was up almost 2%. We would normally expect sustained increases in buyer demand to drive meaningful price appreciation, but Passaic pricing has been stubbornly resistant over the past few years. It may just be a matter of time, but basic economic principles would indicate that increasing demand, coupled with declining inventory, should drive prices higher.

Inventory. We generally consider anything below six months of inventory as a signal for a seller’s market, where tight inventory leads to multiple offer situations, bidding wars, and ultimately appreciating prices. Passaic County is still working its way to that level, but inventory was down 31% to 9.2 months, so it’s moving in that direction.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators both indicated that sellers are gaining leverage with buyers. The days‑on‑market were down slightly for the quarter, signaling that homes were selling a little more quickly. And the listing retention rate was up, indicating that sellers were getting closer to their asking price. Together, they show that sellers are slowly gaining some bargaining power with buyers, which should eventually lead to modest price appreciation.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect buyer demand to stay strong through the summer market, and eventually start driving some modest but meaningful price appreciation by the end of the year.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on July 18, 2016 at 1:04 pm
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , ,

Second-Quarter 2016 Real Estate Market Report: Northern New Jersey Market Overview

OverviewNorthNJ-Q2-2016-QMRThe Northern New Jersey housing market continued to surge in the second quarter of 2016, with sales up sharply throughout the region. But rising levels of buyer demand are not yet having any real impact on pricing, which was flat or down in each of the counties.

Sales were up over 13% for the region, rising in every county in the Report. Closings have now been trending up for about five years, ever since the market stabilized after the correction precipitated by the financial crisis of 2008‑09. Although we are not yet at transactional levels that we saw during the last seller’s market of the mid‑2000’s, sales are up about 40% from the bottom of the market and are moving in a positive direction.

We are also seeing inventory continue to tighten. The industry measures the impact of inventory by calculating the “months of inventory” remaining on the market: i.e., the number of homes for sale divided by the average monthly transactions. According to industry standards, six months worth of inventory signals a balanced market: any less, and we are likely to see too many buyers chasing too few homes, which will tend to lead to multiple offer situations, then bidding wars, and ultimately higher prices. That’s where we are right now in Bergen and Morris, with both counties near the 6‑month threshold, and inventory in the other counties is tightening considerably.

Even with sales up and inventory down, though, average prices dropped throughout the region. We have been a little disappointed in the pricing this year, after what looked to be “green shoots” of price appreciation toward the end of 2015. Certainly, basic economics of supply and demand would tell us that after five years of steadily increasing buyer demand, we would expect to see some meaningful price increases. But appreciation still eludes us. It might be that the market is simply stronger in the lower‑end than the middle‑ or higher‑end, which is changing the mix of properties sold and skewing the averages. Or it could still just be a matter of time before falling inventory and rising demand starts impacting pricing.

Going forward, we still believe that we are heading for a seller’s market. Sales have now been increasing for almost five years, which has brought inventory to the seller’s market threshold in much of the region. The economic fundamentals are all good: homes are priced at 2004 levels (without even adjusting for inflation), interest rates are still near historic lows, and the regional economy is stable. Accordingly, we continue to believe that price appreciation is coming, and that the region will experience a robust summer market that continues throughout the rest of 2016.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on July 16, 2016 at 10:29 pm
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

First Quarter 2016 Real Estate Market Report: Passaic Market Overview

PASSAIC_NJ-Q1-2016-QMRThe Passaic County housing market started off 2016 with an increase in sales coupled with mixed results in pricing. Most indicators, though, signal that Passaic continues to develop as a classic “seller’s market” that will likely drive sales and prices up through the rest of the year.

Sales. Passaic sales were up again in the first quarter of 2016, rising over 8% from last year and finishing the rolling year up almost 11%. Indeed, we’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for almost five years, with quarterly sales up in 18 out of the last 20 quarters. As a result, the almost 3,000 sales over the past rolling year approaches the kinds of sales totals we last saw during the last seller’s market. Demand in Passaic shows no signs of abating.

Prices. Prices were mixed, with the average price falling while the median price was up a tick. We would normally expect sustained increases in buyer demand to have a stronger impact on driving prices up, but Passaic pricing has been bouncing around a bit over the past few years. Looking at the longer term trend, the rolling year prices are up more convincingly, with the average rising almost 2% and the median up over 3%. Those are sustainable levels of price appreciation, so we expect that to continue through 2016.

Inventory. The “months of inventory” indicator measures how long it would take to sell out the existing inventory of homes at the current rate of home sales. In the industry, we generally consider anything below six months as a signal for a seller’s market, where tight inventory leads to multiple-offer situations, bidding wars, and ultimately appreciating prices. Passaic County is approaching that level, and inventory is clearly tightening quarter by quarter.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators both showed that sellers are gaining leverage with buyers. The days on market were down slightly for the quarter, signaling that homes were selling a little more quickly. And the listing retention rate was also up, indicating that sellers were getting closer to their asking price. Together, they show that sellers are slowly gaining some bargaining power with buyers.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect that Passaic County will continue to flower into a fully realized seller’s market in 2016, marked by sustainable increases in both sales and prices.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on April 26, 2016 at 9:27 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , ,

So What’s Going on in the Passaic County Real Estate Market?: The Rand Quarterly Market Report for 2015Q4

NJ GRAPHS-BHG_Q4-2015 QMR-3-2The Passaic County housing market closed strong in the fourth quarter of 2015, with solid increases in both sales and prices. As a result, Passaic finished its third straight year of meaningful price appreciation, clearly indicating that it is moving into a seller’s market.

Sales. Passaic sales continued to go up in the fourth quarter, rising almost 7% and finishing the year with a 13% increase off 2014 levels. Indeed, we’ve now seen sustained increases in buyer demand for over four years, with quarterly sales up in 17 out of the last 19 quarters. Moreover, the almost 3,000 sales for all of 2015 marked the highest calendar year total since 2006, at the height of the last seller’s market.

Prices. Although prices bounced around a little in 2015, they finished the year strong. In the fourth quarter, prices were up almost 5% on both the average and at the median. And even with the ups and downs throughout the year, Passaic still finished 2015 with a solid 2.1% increase in the average and 3.1% at the median, marking the third straight year of modest, but meaningful, price appreciation. Prices still have a long way to go to recover from the market correction of 2008-09, but they are moving in the right direction.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators were mixed. The days-on-market were slightly up for both the quarter and the year, signaling that it was taking longer for homes to get sold. But the listing retention rate was also up, indicating that sellers were gaining some negotiating leverage with buyers, and were better able to command closer to their asking prices. As buyer demand continues to heat up, we would expect sellers to gain more negotiating power, leading to higher prices overall.

Going forward, we believe that Passaic’s fundamentals are sound, with homes priced at relatively attractive levels, rates near historic lows, and a stable economy. Accordingly, we expect that Passaic County will flower into a fully-realized seller’s market in 2016, marked by continued increases in both sales and prices.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on February 9, 2016 at 9:57 am
James Troia | Category: Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , ,