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A Look Back at the 2018 Market Statistics From the Greater Columbia Area

Based on 2018’s market statistics, there are a few important trends that were predicted to take place in 2019.

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It’s time to take a look back at South Carolina’s market stats from 2018 to get an idea of what trends might take shape moving forward in 2019.

Last year, home prices were consistently up again in most markets. While most of the US saw a reduction in price increases, South Carolina’s price increases were in line with the last several years. High demand for new homes for sale fueled these price increases. A fourth interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve spooked the stock market to close out the year, and the Fed indicated that the number of rate increases would be cut in half in 2019.

Here are some of 2018’s year-over-year statistics compared to 2017:

  • The number of new listings rose 2.7% to 116,267
  • The number of closed sales rose 3.8% to 87,256
  • The median sale price rose 5.5% to $200,000
  • The percentage of list price received at sale rose 0.3% to 97.4%

The increase in the number of new listings and closed sales indicates that buyers were plentiful amidst higher prices, increased interest rates, and historically low inventory.

The overall level of inventory increased 2.2% to 28,721 units, while the month’s supply remained relatively flat at four months. Inventory has been decreasing overall over the last eight years, but a national shift is beginning to affect local supply as well.

Unemployment rates remained remarkably low, and wages continued to improve for many US households. It’s generally good for all parties involved in real estate transactions when wages grow, but the average increase didn’t keep pace with home price increases, which created an affordability crux in the second half of 2018.

Based on these numbers, it was predicted that inventory would improve in 2019, and that would apply some downward pressure on prices for beleaguered homebuyers. Though month-to-month price increases were common in 2018, it was thought that that might change too this year.

With this in mind, housing affordability remains an important storyline as 2019 continues to take shape. Right now, conditions are improving in South Carolina regarding prices and the number of sales, but the market is flattening out across the rest of the US. Overall, it’s still a great time to buy or sell.

As always, if you have any questions about our market or you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d love to help you.

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