Here are this week's numbers . As you can see the number of solds are down slightly from the past few weeks. I have given this some thought and I think we need a few more weeks of data to say whether or not this is a trend.
The National Association of Realtors has noted some interesting national trends that we are also seeing in our markets. As I have been reporting, the number of first time homebuyers leaving the city for the suburbs has been rising. In fact, the percentage of first time buyers increased to 36% of our buying pool in April 2020 from 32% in April 2019.*
The segments of the market that we are missing this spring is the relocation buyers and real estate investors. I suspect that investors are holding off due to the expectation that there is a greater financial risk associated with renters at this time. The social distancing measures have hit certain occupational groups harder―food service/ hospitality/recreation workers and retail trade workers. These groups are more likely to rent compared to others. In the first quarter of 2020, the national US homeownership rate was 65.3%, yet only 51% of food service workers were homeowners.*
Purchases for rental investment properties dropped from 11% in February 2020 to 6% in April 2020. With fewer investors buying, cash sales also decreased to 15% from 20% one year ago.*
The warm weather usually brings a slowdown in my business. People head outside to enjoy the weather and are not as focused on buying homes. This year, I am anticipating being busy all the way through August. Restrictions are easing and June 8 will bring another milestone here in Massachusetts with the (hopeful) announcement from the Governor of phase 2 of reopening.
It can be hard to stave off the waves of sadness and emotion surrounding all that is going on in this country and around the world. It has taken incredible focus and hard work to see positive results during this time, but we have. I will never forget this spring for many reasons and I feel myself (like many of you!) waiting anxiously until we are through all this. It is hard to say when that will be but we continue to work hard every day, to work together and to be grateful for all we have that is good.
*Data and statistics contained here compiled and provided by the National Association of Realtors