Although Nashville home closings are slightly down for the month of May, real estate specialists in the Nashville area claim that it’s still a good thing. This year, 1,945 homes were sold in the month of May. In May 2010, 2,270 houses were sold, a decrease in 325 homes sold over the past year. Although there is a slight drop, the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors President Alice Walker claims that, “In these times, having just short of 2,000 closings in a month, with over 2,000 sales pending, is positive news.” In addition to the good news, there were external factors last May that caused people to buy more. Walker adds, “We know last year’s numbers were inflated due to the 2010 home-buyer tax credits, but with home sales up 9 percent from May 2009, the trend is consistent with prior months and generally encouraging.” With the tax credit incentive, more people were willing to buy, making the market artificially higher than it would have been otherwise.
Last May, 24,007 houses were on the market compared to this years 22,514. “Inventory is down from last year, but – as expected – up from last month,” says Walker. More good news is that “the late spring and summer housing market activity always prompts an increase in the number of homes available. With little change in median home prices, housing options remain strong and prices are stable.” These findings are great news for the Nashville real estate market.
May’s median home price of $165,900 fell $1,800, or 1 percent from May 2010. Overall, the drops in price and sales that are occurring are extremely small and nothing to be worried about. According to the Tennessean, real estate agents and mortgage lenders say they’re seeing slightly more buyer activity, while home sellers are willing to adjust their expectations downward on how much a home is worth. Walker says that “still, the softness of the job market appears to be keeping potential buyers in a very cautious posture.” Research recently conducted by the Labor Department says that Middle Tennessee has fared slightly better in employment than the state as a whole. The April unemployment numbers in the Nashville area were at 8.7 percent versus the overall 9.6 percent in the state of Tennessee. Although people have their doubts, these findings are extremely positive and are hopefully a step in the right direction, moving the real estate market back up to where it used to be.