Homes sales up in November

Published 3:52 pm Wednesday, January 4, 2017

According to the Virginia Association of Realtors (VAR), home sales increased during November compared to past years in the commonwealth. The newly released statistics, coupled with reaction from local Realtors, prove the same can be said in the Heart of Virginia as well.

“This has been one of the busiest Decembers that we have had and I know the other Realtors in the community are very busy also,” Jason Meeks, president of the South Central Association of Realtors said — a group that includes Charlotte County.

C.H. “Kip” Lafoon, of Coldwell Banker Lafoon Realty Inc., agreed. “November and December have been exceptionally strong in comparison to recent years,” Lafoon said.

He said his company covers Prince Edward, Cumberland, Buckingham, Charlotte, Nottoway, Lunenburg, Amelia and Appomattox counties.

“We have enjoyed a significant and steady flow of business during this entire year,” Lafoon said. “We are greatly encouraged by buying interest in existing homes, commercial and unimproved properties, as well as sellers that are now seemingly ready to transition into a larger home or another location.”

Meeks said though the local increase is on a more limited scale than statewide statistics, the region has enjoyed strong sales as the end of the year approaches.

“My personal business for the 2016 year-end notably exceeded the activity that I saw in last year’s final months,” Meeks said. “With the prospect of loosened inventory as spring approaches, and rates remaining accessible, we can look forward to a (new year) of opportunity for local buyers.”

Meeks said the National Association for Realtors is predicting a steady growth period for the next 10 years.

“That will be encouraging,” he said.

Statewide statistics show an increase in transactions by 17.8 percent, from 7,020 to 8,269 in just one year.

Statistics compiled by Sidney Smyth, of Long and Foster, show the housing market was mixed for South Central Virginia, including Lunenburg, Prince Edward, Charlotte and Nottoway counties.

According to Smyth, South Central transactions decreased in 2016, with 18 units sold in November in South Central Virginia Real Estate, a total of 25 percent less than November 2015.

The statewide mean price was $265,000, which is 5.2 percent higher than the median price year prior.

During November 2015, the median sale price for South Central Virginia Homes was $99,250, a total of $750 less than this year, when the median sale price was $100,000.

The state’s volume of sales exceeded $34.8 billion, an increase of 7.9 percent from the 2015 total of $32.3 billion. It was more than 20 percent higher than November 2014, when the total was $28.7 billion.

Across the state, Realtors saw a 10.3 percent decrease in the number of days a home was on the market. The average went from 78 to 70.

Locally, the number of days a home was on the market was also markedly lower than past years.

The average number of days was 115, lower than last year’s 148 days by 23 percent.