Boone County housing market down in May, up overall

Tuesday, July 1, 2014 | 6:57 p.m. CDT; updated 3:17 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 9, 2014

COLUMBIA — Home sales in Boone County dipped slightly in May compared to the previous year, but in the last 12 months overall, sales have picked up and so has the pace.

The number of Boone County homes sold in May dropped 4.4 percent compared to the same month last year, and home sales through the first five months of the 2014 are down nearly 7 percent, according to data from the Columbia Board of Realtors.

Despite a small dip in May, home sales in the past year have shown improvement over previous 12-month periods. This is most apparent during mid-spring and early summer, when home sales typically peak. Graphic by Austin Huguelet

The average sale price in May was down 3.5 percent from a year ago, and homes took longer to sell as the average number of days on the market rose by 10 days from 59 days in 2013 to 69 days in 2014.

Columbia realtor Don Ginsburg said that one of the coldest Missouri winters on record contributed to the year-over-year deficit. "The year started off slow," he said.

The fluctuations were part of the normal year-to-year cycle and certainly no cause for alarm, said Jim Meyer, managing broker at Columbia real estate firm MeyerWorks LLC.

Based on statistics Meyer gets from the Multiple Listing Service, there was a 9 percent increase in the number of homes sold from June 2, 2013, to June 1, 2014, compared to the previous 12-month period. However, there was no significant change in average sale price.

"We haven't had a lot of appreciation," Meyer said. "We are seeing a significant number of sales but not a corresponding increase in prices."

The market is still returning to normal from the housing crisis at the end of the last decade, Meyer said.

Other comparisons between June 2013 and May 2014 include:

  • 23 percent more homes sold than between June 2011 and May 2012.

  • Homes also spent on average five fewer days on the market month by month compared to the period between June 2012 and May 2013.

  • The average decrease of number of days on the market by month from June 2011 and May 2012 was 19 days.

Inventory — the length of time it would take to clear the market if no more homes were added — was 3.2 months in May, slightly up from 2.92 months in the previous year, according to the Columbia Board of Realtors data. In real estate terminology, zero to four months of inventory indicate a seller's market.

The number of homes sold in Missouri in May dropped 2.2 percent compared with the same month last year, better than Boone County's 4.4 percent slide. Missouri home sales through the first five months of the year are down nearly 8 percent compared with the same period in 2013, according to figures from the Missouri Association of Realtors.

In the Midwest region, existing home sales through May are 7.4 percent below what they were at the end of May 2013. Nationally, sales through the first five months of this year are down 8.2 percent, slightly worse than Missouri's slide, according to reports from the National Association of Realtors.

Supervising editor is Katherine Reed.

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