More Charlotte home listings saw price cuts in June than a year earlier, indicating that Charlotte’s housing market is shifting “ever-so-slightly in favor of buyers,” a Zillow report says.
The number of sellers who cut home prices rose to 15.4 percent in June in the Charlotte metro region, according to Zillow. That’s up from 11.2 percent a year earlier. Price cuts in Charlotte averaged 2.4 percent.
“The frenetic pace of the housing market over the past two years is just starting to slow down every-so-slightly,” said Sarah Mikhitarian, a senior economist at Zillow, adding that the slowdown “will hopefully be a little bit of a reprieve for buyers who are looking to purchase a home.”
The numbers are similar nationwide: In June, about 14 percent of U.S. home listings decreased prices, up from 11.7 percent in 2016, according to Zillow.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Charlotte Observer
But one month of price decreases may not mean the market is tilting to favor buyers, a Charlotte Realtor warns.
The price cuts are “due to sellers getting too confident in a seller’s market,” said Jason Gentry, president of the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association.
“And then they’re having to do price corrections,” he said.
Prices have been rising fast in large part because the inventory of homes for sale in the Charlotte area is so low.
The average home sales price in July rose 5.1 percent, to $290,486, compared with the same month last year, according to Carolina Multiple Listing Services.
The number of houses for sale in Charlotte in July decreased 16 percent from last year.
Inventory is down even more dramatically from July 2012, when there were more than 18,000 houses available. Now, there’s barely half of that amount.
That lack of inventory is in part because of a lack of new construction. In addition, potential sellers are not listing their homes because they don’t see another house to buy, Gentry said, gumming things up further as reluctant owners keep their properties off the market.
“Sellers had all of the control and buyers were just at the whim of whatever was available on the market and whatever they could afford,” said Zillow’s Mikhitarian.
Gentry, a Realtor with Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, said Charlotte buyers shouldn’t be too optimistic. Buyers hoping for the market to shift toward them should look for signs like more inventory and houses spending a longer amount of time on the market, Gentry said. Neither has happened.
“We’re not headed toward a buyer’s market yet.”