The median sales price of all homes closed in Pennsylvania last month hit the highest level in over five years, according to a report prepared for the Pennsylvania Association of Realtors®. The median price was $204,274 in April, up 13.4% over the same time last year.
I think we have all been experiencing price escalations over the past several years. These prices reflect the strong demand for housing. However, rising prices coupled with increasing mortgage rates are creating a more challenging market to navigate for many homebuyers. Last week, NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun noted, “Mortgages now compared to just a few months ago are costing more money for homebuyers. For a median-priced home, the price difference is $300 to $400 more per month, which is a hefty toll for a working family.”
In fact, NAR calculated purchasing a home is now 55% more expensive than a year ago, which hurts affordability. And while wages have risen by 6%, the increase doesn’t match inflation, which is at 8.5%.
It’s become one of our key roles as Realtors® to help consumers – both buyers and sellers – understand this market and help set expectations. We know that it takes a little more time to be successful in purchasing a home in today’s market compared to two years ago. We’ve assisted homeowners as they prepare to sell their home and what they may experience in the process. That’s one of the many values we bring to our clients.
The number of Pennsylvania home sales remained consistent in April at 11,373, compared to March, with 11,421 home sales. Monthly sales are down 6.5% from the same time last year. NAR shows a five-month decline in pending home sales, as well as a drop in newly constructed single-family sales.
Listings in Pennsylvania also continued at the same level, with 35,919 in April, however, they were down 26.8% over April last year.
We continue to see record-low inventory, with just 2.64 months’ supply in April. This is down more than 30% over the same period last year.
Yun estimates we’ll continue to see elevated inflation rates for the next several months and predicts that the higher mortgage rates will slow the housing market.