Ascension Parish Real Estate - Mid-year Market Analysis
IntroductionThis report presents a comprehensive view of the real estate market for detached single-family homes in the Ascension Parish. Current and historical sales data are examined together with census projections to gain some insight into the future of real estate in this market area.*
Historical and current data were obtained from the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors MLS database. Data were extracted representing sales from January 1, 2003 through June 30, 2008. Only data for Detached Single Family homes were included in the analysis. Manufactured homes and multi-family dwellings are outside the scope of this analysis.
Ascension Parish Home Prices
The average price of homes continues to trend upward in the Resale category. New home prices have not been significantly different in 2008 from 2007.
Home ownership has been and remains a good investment in the Parish.
Ascension Parish Home Sales
Unit Sales - Monthly Trends
The six-month moving average of new homes continues to trend downward while that of homes in the resale market segment is trending upward. The downward trend in new home sales is significant since historically sales have increased by this time of the year.
The number of newly constructed homes projected to be sold in the parish during 2008 is dramatically lower than in 2007, dropping by over 45%. Unit sales in the resale market segment, however, is expected to remain strong in 2008. Based upon the first six months of sales data, unit sales of resale homes is projected to be only slightly less than in 2007 and well ahead of sales in pre-Katrina years.
Ascension Parish Real Estate Market Absorption
At the end of 2007, there existed a 6.5-month supply of new homes in Ascension parish. It is clear from the chart below that the situation has worsened. There is currently a 10-month supply of new homes with excess inventory existing in nearly all price ranges. It is a seller's market in only the $150K and below price range. Between $151K and $200K it is more or less a neutral market and above $200K it is clearly a buyer's market. It appears that the inventory in the $300K to $350K range is coming into balance.
Through June, the absorption rate for new construction is less than 31 homes per month. This is the lowest rate of sale in the entire 5-year period examined for this report.
The resale market in the parish has remained robust during 2008. Only slightly less than 2007 unit sales were ahead of those in the pre-Katrina years. In the lower (below $200K) price ranges it is still a seller's market. Only when prices exceed $350K does a serious over supply situation exist. While it is a neutral market for the resale segment overall, at 6.5-months supply inventory levels have grown with respect to demand from the 5-month supply reported in our 2007 year-end report.
For a more in depth report, please contact the author.
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