August 17, 2017
Jon Bell, Portland Business Journal
Unlike the heat wave that closed down July and opened August, residential real estate activity in the metro region cooled off a bit last month.
According to the latest Market Action report from the Regional Multiple Listing Service, closed sales in July (2,793) were down more than 12 percent from June, though slightly up over July of 2016. In addition, pending sales were down about 8 percent from last July, as were new listings, which dropped about 4 percent.
Also down year over year was total market time, which dropped by five days in July to an average of 33 days.
What didn’t decline was inventory, which rose up to 2.1 months compared to 1.9 months last July and 1.6 months in June. Helping to shore up inventory was a 12 percent increase in new construction across the metro region.
“Inventory hasn’t jumped to a buyer’s market,” said Israel Hill, office leader for John L. Scott Portland Northeast, “but it has nudged up in most price points.”
Also on the rise — prices. According to RMLS, averages prices through July were up 9.3 percent over the same time last year to $428,000. Median sales were up 11.2 percent to $378,000.
“Even with the drop in sales activity, we still had an increase in median prices in the Portland metro area,” said Lennox Scott, chairman and CEO of John L. Scott Real Estate. “It continues to be a seller’s market because of the backlog of buyers who have been looking for months for a home.”