Marblehead Mid-Year Report: median price up 4%
Sales of Single family Homes (SFHs) were remarkable consistent for the fifth year in a row, while the median price increased nearly 4% to a new high for the first half of the year of $595,000. Variations between Q1 and Q2 reflect the mix of sales I highlighted in my Marblehead home prices set record in 2016 First Quarter report.
The condo market saw an increase in sales, while the median price reflected a swing in sales from a majority in 2015 taking place under $250,000 to a majority in 2016 occurring above $350,000.
Note the fluctuation between Q1 and Q2, almost the opposite of the pattern in 2015. This fluctuation was caused by the mix of sales in each quarter; the half-yearly numbers provide a better guide to the overall market this year.
The condo market in Marblehead is small and varies from old 2-3 family conversions to purpose-built oceanfront units. Those two factors can – and frequently – do cause wide swings in the recorded median price. The larger the sample the more reliable the number (the law of large numbers) so I place some confidence in the half-yearly number (the median price was a record for the first half of the year) and most in the full year’s figure. Note also the breakdown in sales by price shown after the pricing information.
Condo Sales by price
Sales, while still small in comparison with the SFH market, were the highest since 2007, alth0ugh still well below the peak years of 2000-2005.
Last year almost 60% of sales were under $250,000, while this year 60% occurred above $350,000.
The overall numbers for sale for both SFHs and condos are very similar to those of a year ago. In SFHs there is a sharp drop in supply under $600,000 and an increase in the $750,000 to $1 million range. There are no major changes in the pattern of condos for sale.
The market in Marblehead in the first half of 2016 showed steady, but unspectacular progress. As I have reported over the years, the market in Marblehead did not get carried away during the boom nor did it collapse in the Great Recession.
I was at a closing last week when the buyer said:”Anybody visiting Marblehead would be awed by the beauty and history of the town, and we get to live here.” That is why people come, and the excellent schools and low tax rate (the third lowest of the 34 cities and towns in Essex County) – and the ocean – are why we stay.
On a broader note, mortgage rates are at or very close to all-time lows, while the US economy appears to be resilient. Against that are the global concerns – think Brexit – and caution as we approach the November elections. Admidst all this, I expect the market in Marblehead will continue to plot its own, steady course.
If you are considering selling your home please contact me on 617.834.8205 or Andrew.Oliver@SothebysRealty.com for a free market analysis and explanation of the outstanding marketing program I offer.
If you are looking to buy, I will contact you immediately when a house that meets your needs is available. In this market you need to have somebody looking after your interests.
Andrew Oliver is a Realtor with Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty. Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated