Home Affordability In St Louis Improves In 2 Of Five Counties During 1st Quarter

Homes became more affordable in Jefferson County and St Charles County during the first quarter of this year from the 4th quarter of 2019, according to data just released by ATTOM Data Research.  As the table below shows, the affordability index for both those counties increased from the prior quarter as well as from the same quarter the prior year.  Franklin County’s affordability index was the same for the 1st quarter of 2020 as the prior quarter but improved by 5% from a year ago.  The two St Louis’s, the city and county, both saw decline in home affordability from both the prior quarter as well as the prior year.

Average wage earner can qualify to buy in 3 out of 5 Counties…

So while the city and county of St Louis saw a decline in home affordability, the average wage eaarner in those two areas can qualify to buy a home, as can an average wage earner in Franklin County.

St Louis Home Affordability – 1st Quarter 2020

St Louis Home Affordability - 1st Quarter 2020

New Sales Of Residential Listings In St Louis In Past 7 Days Down Just 14 Percent From Year Ago

As all of us continue to deal with a much different lifestyle as a result of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) I am closely monitoring the St Louis real estate market to help get the most accurate information possible to our agents, clients, and consumers to help them make informed decisions about their real estate transactions.

With this in mind, I took a look at new contracts on listings for the past 7 days, so in other words, homes that actually went under contract during the period, but this time, I wanted to drill down deeper than I did a few days ago when I reported new contract activity.  This time I looked at just new sales of residential listings (homes, condos, villas, etc) rather than all property types in the MLS as other property types, such as commercial, land, and farms, for example, could be reacting differently.

As the table below shows, there were 1,142 new contracts on residential listings in the St Louis MSA during the past 7 days, a decline of just 14% from the same time period a year ago.  There were 836 new contracts on residential listings in the St Louis 5-County Core market during the same period, a decline of only 13% from the same period a year ago.

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
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St Louis New Contracts On Residential Listings For The Past 7 Days

St Louis New Contracts On Residential Listings For The Past 7 Days

A slower pace and different methods of selling homes…

As the data shows, COVID-19 is definitely having an effect on the St Louis real estate market in terms of a lower number of sales and, depending on how things go with containing the virus may bring sales down lower, but for now, the sales activity has been only modestly impacted.  Granted, with the threat of COVID-19  many changes are being implemented into the process but thus far everyone in the industry is working together well to take the necessary precautions to address the health concerns while still allowing people to conduct business.  For example, as much as can be done virtually or electronically is being done.

This is something our firm, MORE, REALTORS, has incorporated into our business model for well over a decade so for us and our agents, its a familiar and comfortable way for us to do business.  It has caused us to switch into high gear to complete enhancements to our DOHR™ (Digital Open House Registration, U.S. Patent Pending) which include a totally virtual open house experience, a virtual showing experience as well as a hosted virtual tour experience. These are all things that will allow us to serve our seller clients by exposing their homes to the market, showing them to potential buyers while also protecting them and their families from exposure to the COVID-19 threat.

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
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Over Sixteen Hundred Listings Went Under Contract In Past Week In St Louis area MLS

As I mentioned in my article yesterday about the effect of the coronavirus on the St Louis real estate market, for those homebuyers in a position to buy a home, there will be some good opportunities presented. Apparently, there are buyers out there that perhaps feel the same way or, they at least are not uncomfortable with buying now as, in the past 7 days, 1,670 listings in MARIS, the regional MLS that serves the St Louis area as well as some additional areas outside the metro area, went under contract.  When pulling data from our database for this, I confirmed that prior to the listing’s status changing to Active Under Contract or Pending (both are statuses indicating they are now under contract) the prior status in the MLS was Active thereby verifying these are “new” sales.

The 1,670 sales in the past 7 days is just sligthly lower than the 1,835 listings that went under contract during the same period a year ago.

Now, if the President or the Governor put us under a “Shelter in Place” order or something similar that effectively shuts down everything, that will pretty well put a bullet in new home sales for a while.  Depending on which “latest report” you believe, that either will or won’t happen.

Stay safe and healthy!

 

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – March 2020 – 2020 off to a better start than last year…so far

The St Louis real estate market is off to a great start for 2020!  Home sales year to date has outpaced sales from the same time a year ago and everything points to 2020 being a good year for real estate!  The $64 question is, however, what effect the Coronavirus may have on the market.  Only time will tell, but my thoughts are that while there will no doubt be some negative impact on the St Louis housing market as a result of Coronavirus (COVID-19) its impact will be much less than what we have seen of late in the stock market.

I don’t believe we will see any sort of significant decline in home prices but we will likely see a “pause” in sales as some buyers decide to wait and see how things go.  No doubt some of the potential buyers that will be affected are those whose jobs or income are impacted as a result of Coronavirus, such as people in the travel, hospitality, sports, and entertainment industries.

Rates jumped up last week but are still attractive. The week before last, St Louis mortgage interest rates hit an all-time low as buyers were locking in interest rates on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage as low as 2.95%! This past week, however, that changed and the rates shot up by as much as 1% and not as a result of the stock market or coronavirus as much as from just too much demand.  Apparently the investors that purchase the loans from lenders around the country got overwhelmed as the volume set record highs so they raised rates.  Even with the increase, rates are still historically good.  

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
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Payments On Typical St Charles County Home Over 13 Percent Cheaper Today Than Year Ago

The typical median-priced existing home sold for $233,000 in February 2019 and a year later, as the chart below shows, in February 2020 the typical median-priced home sold for $235,000, an increase of just under 1%.  Here’s the beauty though, thanks to interest rates dropping from an average of 4.41% a year ago to 3.29% today, even with the slight increase in price, the typical St Charles County home costs less today than a year ago!  Not just by a little either as the payment on the median price a year ago (no money down) would have been $1,178.18 at the current rates at the time, the payment today, at the higher price but lower rates would be just $1,019.15, a savings of $159.03/month or 13.5%!  Oh, and just to show the “compound effect” of this, over the life of the loan, you will save $55,249 in interest.

So, what are you waiting for?  Buy a house!

St Charles County Existing Home Sales – Past 13 Months

(click on chart for live-interactive chart)

St Charles County Existing Home Sales - Past 13 Months

Why I’m Bullish On Real Estate For 2020

As you may have noticed, I’ve been pretty optimistic about the outlook for the real estate market this year however, that is not always the case as I call it like I see it.  The reason for my optimism is based upon what a true data geek like myself would base it upon, data!  So, what’s the data that has me believing 2020 will be a good year for the housing market in St Louis and beyond?  Several things:

  • As I have been reporting here for the past couple of years now, mortgage delinquency and foreclosure rates have continued to decline which show the strength of the economy as a whole as well as the housing industry.
  • As the US Economic Indicators charts below show, since peaking around 2010, the unemployment rate, 30-year mortgage rate and mortgage delinquency rates have all steadily declines to either record lows or at least the lowest rate in recent history.
  • As the St Louis unemployment, home prices and rent chart below shows, unemployment in St Louis has fallen to the lowest level in decades and the relationship between home prices and rents show home prices lagging behind rents indicating that we’ll likely see continued, good housing appreciation rates.
  • As the 30-year fixed rate mortgage chart below shows, mortgage rates are at near record low rates giving buyers much more buying power.  In my market update video I shared here a day or two ago I illustrate just how much more buying power this translates into.
  • As I reported last week, St Louis home sales last year managed to top the prior year slightly, in spite of the low-inventory market we have been stuck in.  This shows the demand that is out there.
  • As I reported earlier this week, the home sales trend for 2020 in St Louis is in positive territory has well.

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – February 2020 – Home Sales Trend Going Into 2020 Looking Good

The St Louis real estate market is off to a good start for 2020! The home sales trends going into this year are encouraging and, coupled with the strong economy we are in, has me very confident that 2020 is going to be a great year for the St Louis real estate market! MORE buying power! In addition, long term mortgage interest rates just dropped again giving buyers more buying power!  See the example in my video of just how much less a home will cost you today payment-wise than 14 months ago, even after appreciation has pushed prices up. Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – January 2020 – The market finished 2019 strong!

The St Louis real estate market had a strong finish in 2019! One of the many great things for the St Louis housing market about a strong finish in 2019 is that 2020 begins strongly as well!  January will be a key month in terms of whether the trend will continue or whether December’s uptick was an isolated event. Another encouraging thing about the real estate market is that long term mortgage interest rates remain low!  See in the video just how powerful this is!  How a house today will actually cost you less than a little over a year ago, even after factoring in home price appreciation! Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

St Louis Area Home Sales For 2019 Fall A Little Short of 2018

There were 27,076 homes sold in the St Louis 5-County Core market during 2019, a decline of 1.18% from 2018 when there were 27,399 homes sold.  As the STL Market Report below shows (available exclusively through MORE, REALTORS), the median price of homes sold during 2019 was $208,000, an increase of 5.85% from the year before.

Going into 2020, the inventory of homes for sale remains low and favors sellers.  Currently, the supply of homes for sale is just over 2 months.

STL Market Report For The St Louis 5-County Core Market

STL Market Report For The St Louis 5-County Core Market

St Charles County Home Sales Trend On The Rise After Hitting Bottom in September

The home sales trend in St Charles County peaked in April 2017 with 6,118 homes sold in the 12-month period ended April 30, 2017.  Since then, the home sales trend fell to closer to the 6,000 home mark until hitting a near peak again in August 2018 with 6,111 homes sold in the 12 month period ending that month.  After that, the home sales trend in St Charles County has fairly consistently trended downward until hitting bottom in September with 5,759 homes sold in the 12-month period ended September 30, 2019, nearly a 6% fall in home sales from the recent peak. This marked the lowest home sales trend for St Charles County since April 2016.

The St Charles County home sales trend has reversed course…

The good news is, for the past two months, home sales in St Charles County, as the chart below illustrates,  have trended upward hitting 5,809 homes sold in the 12-month period ended November 30, 2019,  a 1.2% increase in the trend from August 2019.

St Charles County Home Sales Trend – Past 3 Years

(Click on chart for live, interactive chart)
St Charles County Home Sales Trend - Past 3 Years

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – December 2019 – No Better Time To Buy!

Between low, low-interest rates and the seasonally low home prices, there is no better time to buy a home! Just like every year, home prices are declining and will continue to decline over the next few weeks until they hit their “winter bottom” and then start the climb back to spring prices. All the while, mortgage interest rates remain low, giving you more buying power than a year ago, even at the higher home prices! Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

Cyber Monday Real Estate Deals?

Are you one of those people like me that didn’t go out and fight the crowds on Black Friday in search of deals and instead waited until today to catch the Cyber Monday deals online from the comfort of your home or office?  Or perhaps you were out Friday shopping and now you are back at it online?  In any event, don’t forget that Cyber Monday deals come 7 days a week this time of the year in real estate!  That’s right!  Like I discussed here on Black Friday, some of the best deals of the year on St Louis real estate occur from now until the end of the year.

As the STL Market Chart (exclusively provided by MORE, REALTORS) below illustrates, in the St Louis 5-County Core market home prices (the red line) peaked in July and, with the exception of a little uptick in August, have trended downward since reaching the lowest point since April of this year.  St Louis home sales (the pink line) have shown pretty much the same result, hitting the lowest level in November since February.

It shouldn’t be a surprise…

What is happening in the St Louis real estate market presently does not come as a surprise because home sales are very seasonal and, the seasonal fluctuation we are seeing now, happens every year.  This is why I chose a 25-month chart below, so you can see the last year was pretty much the same pattern.  also, I wanted to show that prices continued to fall last year until hitting bottom in February of this year and I would expect a similar pattern this year.  That does not mean however that you want to wait until February to buy as the prices shown are based upon closed deals.  The typical real estate transaction takes 4-6 weeks to close, so those “February” home prices were from sales transactions that originated in December and January for the most part.  Therefore, from now until the end of the year the best time to buy a home in St Louis from a value standpoint!

“Cyber Monday” St Louis Home Prices

(click on chart for live, interactive chart)

Cyber Monday St Louis Home Prices

 

Black Friday Shopping? Buy a house and save a bunch of money!

As you get ready to head to the stores today for all those Black Friday bargains, perhaps you should jump on St Louis Real Estate Search and find a few houses to look at as well?  Well, if you have been thinking about buying a home, you would do well to buy now rather than wait for spring.  As the table below shows, based upon data just released from ATTOM Data Solutions, people in Missouri that buy homes in October, November or December get the best deals of the year!  This may account for the fact that there were 25% more homes sold during the 4th quarter than during the 1st quarter.

Now is the BEST time to buy in St Louis!

As the chart at the bottom shows, home prices in St Louis have hit their lowest point during January in 2 of the prior 3 years and in February on the third one.  These prices are reported as of the closing of the sale, so if prices are typically the lowest on homes that closed in January, given that the typical sale takes 4-6 weeks to close, that makes from now until the end of the year the best time to buy a home in St Louis from a value standpoint!

Best Time Of Year To Buy A Home

Best Time Of Year To Buy A Home

Source: ATOM Data Solutions

St Louis 5-County Home Prices and Sales – Past 36 Months

St Louis 5-County Home Prices and Sales - Past 36 Months
Source: STL Market Charts – MORE, REALTORS

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – November 2019 – Low-Interest Rates And Consistent Sales Trends

The St Louis real estate market trends remain steady and consistent! The St Louis home sales and price trends give me an optimistic outlook for next year.  Low-interest rates continue to offset some of the cost of the increases in home prices that have occurred. Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

Actual “Cost” Of St Louis Home Today Over 7 Percent Lower Than Year Ago

Thanks to a strong economy and low-interest rates, the actual cost of a home today in St Louis is lower than it was a year ago, in spite of the fact that the median price of homes sold in St Louis has increased by 5.64% in the past year.   Most people buying a typical home in St Louis finance nearly all of the purchase price, therefore, the cost of financing plays a significant role in the true cost of a home.  Buyers decide what they can afford (as do lenders) based upon the house payment, not the price of the home.

The cost of a home today in St Louis versus a year ago…

As our STL Market Chart below shows, the median price of a home sold in the St Louis 5-County core market in October of this year was $200,000, 5.3% higher than last October when the median price of homes sold was $189,900.  However, as our mortgage interest rate chart below shows, the rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is currently 3.78%, over a full percentage point less than October 2018 when the rate was 4.83%.

If we do a little math and use our mortgage payment calculator, we find that if someone bought a median-priced home in St Louis in October of 2018 at $189,900 and financed 100% of the purchase at the current rate at the time (4.83%), their payment would have been $1,027 per month.  If a person were to buy a median-priced home in St Louis today at $200,000 and finance 100% of the purchase at the current rate of 3.78%, their payment would be $958.  So, even though the price of the home increased over 5%, the payment on the home (at current prices) actually dropped by 7.2% showing just how much impact interest rates have on the cost of a home.

What are buyers waiting for?

We are entering the “slow season” for real estate, winter, a time when, year after year, home prices typically decrease until hitting a low around January and then start to increase as the weather warms.  Therefore, we are in the period when home prices will be the lowest they will be for the year, interest rates are near the lowest they have been, so, if I were considering buying a home, I would jump into action as I just don’t see how it’s going to get better than this anytime soon.

St Charles County Home Prices Increase By Over 6 Percent In Past Year

The median price of homes sold in St Charles County during the past 12-months was $243,900, an increase of 6.09% from the prior 12-month period when the median price was $229,900.  As the STL Market Report (an exclusive report available only from MORE, REALTORS®) shows, home sales declined over 5 percent during the same period and the inventory remains low with a listing supply of just 2.37 months.

As the STL Market Chart at the bottom illustrates (also exclusively available only from MORE, REALTORS®), home prices in St Charles County have had the normal, seasonal, fluctuations but have been steadily trending upward over the past five years.  Home prices peaked in August of this year at $257,500 and have been slipping into the normal “winter lull” and will continue to slide until around January or February when they typically bottom out.   Last year, home prices peaked in June then fell 4.2% by September and this year, even though home prices peaked just last month, have fallen over 5% already since.  I expect home prices in St Charles County will see some correction going forward and anticipate less of a spike in home prices come spring than we saw last year.  Last year, in St Charles County, prices increased by nearly 14% in the 4-month period from the seasonal low in February to the peak in June.

St Louis Area Home Price Appreciation Tops 5 Percent In Past Year

The median price of homes sold in the St Louis 5-County Core Market during the past 12-months was $205,000, an increase of 5.13% from the prior 12-month period when the median price was $195,000.  As the STL Market Report (an exclusive report available only from MORE, REALTORS®) shows, home sales declined nearly 3 percent during the same period and the inventory remains low with a listing supply of just 2.53 months.

As the STL Market Chart at the bottom illustrates (also exclusively available only from MORE, REALTORS®), home prices in the St Louis 5-County Core Market have had the normal, seasonal, fluctuations but have been steadily trending upward over the past five years.  Home prices peaked in June of this year at $230,000 and have been slipping into the normal “winter lull” and will continue to slide until around January or February when they typically bottom out.   Last year we saw the same pattern with home prices peaking in June however last year from June to September home prices fell 9.33% and this year they fell 10.87%.  This could perhaps be indicative of a little market correction coming with regard to home prices.


St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – October 2019 – Interest Rates Offsetting Price Increases

The St Louis real estate market is slowing down somewhat as it does every year around this time, but the market still looks good. Low-interest rates continue to offset some of the cost of the increases in home prices that have occurred. Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

St Louis Is Number One Market For Flipping Homes

St Louis is the top marketing for flipping homes, according to an article published yesterday on Realtor.com.  It’s not all just flipping activity however in the article a very notable and credible St Louis industry source (unabashed self-promotion) stated that “flipping is more common in homes in the $175,000-plus range, while many of those listed for $125,000 and less are being turned into rentals, says Norman.”

The Realtor.com article gave an overview of the market data I produced for them so I wanted to share the market data behind the overview.

St Louis Neighborhoods With Large Investor Presence:

  • 63137 Zip Code Area (Bellefontaine Neighbors/Glasgow Village) – 43.5% of housing units are investor-owned
  • 63135 Zip Code Area (Ferguson) – 39.2% of housing units are investor-owned
  • 63033 Zip Code Area (Florissant Area) – 21.8% of housing units are investor-owned

Home Prices In St Louis’ Active Investor Markets:

St Louis Home Sales Continue Downward Trend

Home sales in the St Louis 5-County Core Market for the 12-month period ended September 30th, 2019 were down just over 3% from the same period a year ago.   During the same period, home prices in the St Louis 5-County Core market increased a little over 5% as the report below from MORE, REALTORS shows.

Inventory of homes for sale still favors sellers…

As the report shows, there is just a 2.44 month supply of homes for sale in the St Louis core market which means the St Louis market is still very much a seller’s market.

1-Story Homes In St Charles County Appreciated More Than 2-Story Homes In Past 10 Years

One story homes, often referred to as “ranch-style”, have always been popular, especially with ageing home buyers that don’t want stairs.  With a large number of baby boomers that have become empty nesters, many of them are downsizing and one-story homes are often their style of choice as well.  Whether this demand is the reason or not, one-story homes in St Charles County have outpaced 2-story homes in terms of home price appreciation over the past 10-years.

As the charts below show, one-story homes in St Charles County show, have increased in price from a median sold price of $116 per sqft. 10 years ago to $156 per sqft today, an increase of 34.5% during the period.  As the second chart below shows, 2-story homes during the same period increased from $94 per sqft. to $124 per sqft, an increase of 32.0%.

In terms of the median price homes sold for, there was an even bigger gap between 1-story and 2-story homes.  One-story homes increased in price from $164,5000 to $229,000, an increase of 39.2% and 2-story homes from $210,000 t $275,000, an increase of 31.0%.

What Impact Does The School District Have On Home Prices and Sales?

The question in my headline is one of those questions that in the real estate community, and with most homeowners, would elicit a response something like “the quality of the school district has a major impact on the housing market, duh!”.  While I don’t think anyone would argue that having quality public education available to everyone in all areas is important, I’m just talking data here and looking at it from the real estate perspective.  So, with that in mind, I decided to use one of the reports produced by proprietary software created by MORE, REALTORS® and based upon MLS home sales and price data, to compare home prices and sales in two of the best St Louis area public school districts to two of the worst (at least according to many lists of best and worst schools out there) to see how they compare.

For two of the best districts, I chose Clayton and Kirkwood and for two fo the worst, I chose Riverview Gardens and the City of St Louis.  The results were interesting and, somewhat surprising perhaps.  The reports below have all the data, but here is a summary of the comparison:

  • Home sales for the most recent 12-month period vs the prior 12-month period were up slightly (0.20%) in Riverview/St Louis districts and were down 15.66% for Clayton/Kirkwood.
  • Home prices for the same period increased by 5.36% in Riverview/St Louis and by 2.41% for Clayton/Kirkwood
  • Listing inventory for Riverview/St Louis districts is at 2.31 months and for Clayton/Kirkwood is at 2.49 months.

By the way, if you would like to see reports like this for any St Louis area school district, county, zip or city, contact me and I’ll be happy to send it to you.

Home Affordability Improves In St Louis During Third Quarter

Home affordability improved in the St. Louis metro area during the 3rd quarter, with 4 of the 7 largest counties seeing an improvement in their affordability index from the prior quarter and 5 of the 7 seeing an improvement in affordability from a year ago, according to the latest data from ATTOM Data Research.

The greatest improvement in affordability was in Franklin County.

As the table below shows, Franklin County saw a 12% improvement in housing affordability from the prior quarter and an 11% improvement from a year ago.   Jefferson, St Charles and St Clair (IL) County saw improvements in affordability from the prior quarter as well.

St Louis County suffered the greatest decline in housing affordability.

St Louis County saw affordability decline 12% from the prior quarter and 10% from a year ago.

Home prices are outpacing wages in 5 of the 7 counties covered…

The Real Cost of a Home In St Louis Is Lower Now Than It Was In 2006

You are probably saying I’m nuts to be saying that a home in St Louis costs less today than it did 13 years ago, back in 2006, but, note I said the “real cost” of a home.  Since nearly all people buying a typical home in St Louis are going to do so with a mortgage, I think to really determine the cost of a home, and certainly, it’s affordability, we have to look deeper than just the price.  Therefore, as the table below shows, I analyzed the cost of a home in St Louis during two periods of time, the most recent 5-year period and the 5-year period leading up to and including 2006 (the last year of the boom before the bust).  In determining the real cost, I looked at the median price of homes sold but then also the mortgage interest rate at the time and the resulting payment.

As the table illustrates, the current cost of a median-priced home in St Louis, from a mortgage payment perspective, dropped 5.5% from a year ago thanks to lower mortgage interest rates which more than offset the increase in home prices.  The impact of interest rates on the true cost of a home is further illustrated by looking that the change in the mortgage payment for a median-priced home in St Louis from 2014 to today which was an increase of 17.8% over the period.  However, the median price of homes sold during the same period increased by 23.4%, over 30% more than the payment increased!

The real cost of a St Louis home today is even less than in 2006

Now, to go one step further, if you look at the second table below, which is for the period of July 2001 through July 2006, you will see that, while the median price of homes in St Louis was lower, mortgage interest rates were much higher.  In fact, the median mortgage interest rate from 2001 through 2006 was 6.245% while it was just 4.0% from 2014 through 2019.  This resulted in the mortgage payment of $1,084.26 on a median-priced home in St Louis in 2006, $76.56 per month more (7.5%) than today’s mortgage payment on a median-priced home in St Louis.

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – August 2019 – Dirt Cheap Interest Rates

The St Louis real estate market is still going strong and interest rates are dirt cheap! Not much has changed over the past few months in the St Louis housing market in terms of home prices and sales, prices continue to rise at normal, healthy rates and sales continue along at a rate a little shy of last year.  What has changed dramaticaly  over the past 9 or 10 months however, are interest rates.  The have dropped by a third and in this months market update video I do a little math and show just how much that impacts home buyers in a  positive way! Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.

In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
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The Most Expensive Homes In St Louis

St Louis may be the 8th most affordable metro area in the country to buy a home, but it also has areas where home prices are much higher as well.  The median price of homes sold in the St Louis metro area during the past 12-months is $184,500 however the average price of homes sold within the past 12-months has exceeded this in 85 of the 205 municipalities within the St Louis MSA.

Below is our list of the 30 cities with the highest average price of homes sold during the past 12 months.  St Louis County has the majority of the most expensive cities at 22 (although, in all fairness, St Louis County is also chopped up into a ridiculous number municipalities) followed by 7 in St Charles County and 1 in Warren County.

 St Louis MSA’s Most Expensive Cities

Continue reading “The Most Expensive Homes In St Louis

St Louis Real Estate Market Update VIDEO – July 2019 – Still going strong!

The St Louis real estate market continues to show strength and favors sellers, however, buyers have shown they are price-sensitive. While most of the St Louis market remains a seller’s market based upon the lack of inventory for sale, this does not mean (and the data backs it up) that it’s a blank check for sellers.  Buyers in the market appear to be savvy and are price sensitive.  In fact, one frustration I hear from agents with over-priced listings is that, not only do they only have few showings, they are not receiving offers.  I think the issue is buyers don’t want to tie themselves up negotiating with a seller that, from the outset, seems unreasonable for fear that while tied up with them a real opportunity will come along and they will miss out. Therefore, for sellers to take full advantage of this seller’s market, they need to price their home appropriately from the start. Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  

Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

The St Louis real estate market continues to show strength and favors sellers, however, buyers have shown they are price-sensitive. While most of the St Louis market remains a seller’s market based upon the lack of inventory for sale, this does not mean (and the data backs it up) that it’s a blank check for sellers.  Buyers in the market appear to be savvy and are price sensitive.  In fact, one frustration I hear from agents with over-priced listings is that, not only do they only have few showings, they are not receiving offers.  I think the issue is buyers don’t want to tie themselves up negotiating with a seller that, from the outset, seems unreasonable for fear that while tied up with them a real opportunity will come along and they will miss out. Therefore, for sellers to take full advantage of this seller’s market, they need to price their home appropriately from the start. Find out more, as well as get information on some of St Louis’s best resources for home buyers and sellers in our just-released market update video.In our MORE, REALTORS, 5 Minute St Louis Real Estate Market Update video below, you can quickly and easily get the latest information on home prices, home sales, trends and more for the entire St Louis area!  
Thinking of selling and want to know if your neighborhood is a seller's market? Contact us and we'll  answer that question for you.
You can now subscribe to our ITUNES Podcast Channel to receive our updated market videos via podcast automatically each week! Just click here, then click on "Subscribe Free".) St Louis Real Estate Market Update Video - St Louis Home Prices

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
Save Commission On Your Home Sale Without Sacrificing Service! See how- FairCommissionRates.com

Home Affordability Drops Significantly In St Louis City and County Increases In Jefferson and Madison

Home affordability declined in the City of St Louis from a 98 on the affordability index in the first quarter to an index of 73 this quarter, for a decline of 25% in home affordability in the City of St Louis, according to the latest data from ATTOM Data Research.  In neighboring St Louis County, the affordability was 116 in the first quarter and 89 the 2nd quarter, for a decline of 23%.  On the affordability index, anything under 100 indicates homes are less affordable than the historical average and anything over 100 indicates homes are more affordable than the historical average.

Homes became more affordable in Jefferson County and Madison County, IL. during the 2nd quarter.  As the table below shows, Jefferson County improved from an already good 105 on the affordability index for the 1st quarter to 108 during the 2nd quarter and Madison County, IL from 103 to 106.

The affordability index takes into account the median home price for the county as well as the median wages for the county, computing what percentage of wages it takes for people in that county to buy a home.  In spite of the decrease in affordability in the City of St Louis, it still takes the small percentage of wages (21.7%) to buy a home there.  The national average is 33.9%.

Home prices are outpacing wages in 4 of the 7 counties covered…

St Louis County Assessor Increased Property Values Four Times More Than Market Data Supports

This year is a reassessment year for real property in Missouri, so assessors throughout the state are going to update the property values that tax assessments are based upon.  According to state law, the value should reflect the value of the property as of January 1, 2019.  Reassessment is done every two years, so the prior reassessment was in 2017.  Given that the real estate market has been performing well now for the past several years, and property values are increasing, it’s not surprising that most property owners will see an increase in their assessment from the 2017 value to the 2019 value.  However, homeowners in St Louis County have been particularly vocal about their dissatisfaction with the amount of the increase.  An article on STL Today earlier this week shared the story of a Kirkwood couple that said: “We feel like we are being ripped off by the county” after the St Louis County assessor increased the value of their home 153% from the prior value two years before.  According to the STL Today article, the preliminary figures from Jake Zimmerman, the St Louis County Assessor, show the median increase in assessment was 15% from the last assessment in 2017.

How does the St Louis County Assessors 15% Increase in property values compare with the market data?

Sell Your Home For The Highest Price In The Least Amount of Time!  See how- STLSellersAdvantage.com 
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Continue reading “St Louis County Assessor Increased Property Values Four Times More Than Market Data Supports

St Louis Home Sales Continue Downward Trend – YTD Home Sales Lowest In 4 Years

Year to date, through the end of May, there were 9,929 homes sold in the St Louis 5-County Core market, a decline of 5.2% from this time last year when 10,477 homes had sold.  This marks the lowest YTD home sales through May since May 2015, when there were 9,262 homes sold.  As the second chart below illustrates, the St Louis home sales trend (trailing 12 months and represented by the dark green line) peaked in October 2018 with 26,032 homes sold in the prior 12 months but then stalled and has begun a slight downward trend which continues with 25,433 homes sold in the 12 month period ending in May 2019.

Meanwhile, St Louis home prices continue to rise with the median price of homes sold in the past 12 months in the 5-County Core market increasing 5.21% from the prior 12-month period.  As the table below the charts shows, the median price of homes sold in the St Louis 5-County Core market during the most recent 12-month period was $199,900, an increase from $190,000 during the prior 12-month period.

The inventory of homes for sale has declined even further from last month, with just s 1.81 month supply of homes for sale in the St Louis 5-County Core Market.  The low inventory is the key reason behind the lower home sales as there just aren’t enough homes for sale to satisfy the current home buyer demand.

Would-be home sellers are afraid to list their homes…

The low supply of homes for sale, coupled with the high demand, has many homeowners reluctant to list their homes for sale for fear they will sell but won’t be able to find a home to buy.  This is why we developed our “Guaranteed No Sale” program, something that protects sellers from becoming “homeless”.  It allows a seller to list their home with the confidence they won’t be obligated to sell if they are not successful in finding a home to buy.  You can find out more at GuaranteedNoSale.com.