The Devil is in the Details!

The monthly central Indiana house sales report was just released.  It spelled out how closed sales were up 4% in May over a year ago, with the median average price up 9% as inventory levels retreated to just 4.8 months (down 9% from a year ago).  At first glance that all seems simple and straightforward— Sales have increased while at the same time fewer new houses are being brought onto the market, thus the growing imbalance of supply and demand has been driving up prices.  But wait just a minute…

In Boone County sales are up big time at 16%, inventory is down 10% but (drumroll…) prices are down 3%!  Wth, that makes no sense.

And in Brown County, sales are down 19% from a year ago and prices are down an ugly 42%.  The fact that they have way too much inventory is surely the culprit.  So, why does Brown County have so many sellers and so few buyers?

Hamilton County has just the opposite problem— they have no inventory.  Its down 12% from a year ago with sales up 6% and prices (not surprisingly) up 12%.  So, with prices rising, why aren’t more Hamilton County home owners planting a For Sale sign in their front yard?

Over in Hancock County, sales are down 9% and prices are up 19%.  I mean, what sense does that make?  You’d sure think weak sales would cause prices to fall, right?

Hendricks County doesn’t have much inventory either, and with rising sales, prices are up 9%.  Ok, that one makes sense.

And Johnson County makes some sense too… inventory is tight after a 15% shrinkage and even though sales are flat, prices are up 12% because there are so much fewer houses to pick from.

Figure this one out though- Madison County sales are tearing it up, as in +30%!  Wow!  But prices are down 2%.  Go figure?!

Marion County makes more sense than most… Sales are up 4%, inventory is down 5% and prices are up 7%.

And up in Montgomery County, sales are down 28% and prices fell 20% too.  That doesn’t sound healthy.  What’s going on- did everyone lose their job?

In Morgan County, sales are down 1%, but with inventory down 10%, prices were forced up 12%.  Makes some sense at least.

Out in Putnam County sales are down nearly 40%, and prices fell 7%.  Something has to be going on there….

Now Shelby County must have picked up a bunch of employers taking their jobs from Montgomery and Putnam Counties (just kidding) as sales are up an incredible 57%.  Wow, like really WOW!  But how do you figure this— with sales going crazy, prices are down 26%.  Now that’s nuts.

So, the next time someone starts quoting you housing market numbers, don’t swallow them hook, line and sinker without first digging into the details.  What’s going on in your neck of the woods may be something totally different than the average for everyone in Central Indiana.  Now, if you’d like to know what the numbers really are in your area- just give me a call or shoot me an email or text.  Talk soon!