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Ring Out the Old, Bring in the New… Real Estate Planning for the New Year

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We’re on the heels of a Jewish new year again, and we’re all anticipating and hoping for a happy and healthy 5777 for our entire family, friends and community.

Even though we are not at the beginning of a new English calendar year, I thought it would be appropriate to look over some real estate statistics to convey to the consumer for knowledge purposes. People always ask me about market trends and expectations, and as realtors, we cannot predict trends for the future but can certainly share past statistics that are facts. One can argue that the immediate future could reflect recent past activity and the best we can hope for is to assess the market from the past previous years. With the information, one can only conjecture the real estate market of the future. I only hope this is helpful and somewhat indicative of what may be around the corner. The interest rates are still at an all-time low, which allows for greater buying power before rates increase, and that is a fact.

So, here is some food for fodder, not apples or honey, but dry comparison statistics from the most recent completed two years…

In 2014, the total number of sold homes reported in the area is 15,268, compared to 2015 with a total sold of 17,052 pointing, to a 12% change reported for the entire New Jersey Multiple Listing System. Moving on, in 2014 total sold homes came to $6,904,746,753 in comparison to  $7,861,437,658 in 2015, with a 14% change, with the average median sold in 2014 of $365,271 in comparison to $372,439 in 2015, with a 2% change. Okay, let’s break it down to individual areas, comparing individual towns. In Teaneck, 333 homes were sold in 2014 in comparison to 363 sold in 2015, a 9% change in activity whereby days on market (DOM) has decreased with a -2% change in 2014 to 104.8 compared to average days on market 102.9 in 2015, indicating that homes sold in a shorter amount of time. The average median price sold in 2014 was $324,063 with a 4% change in 2015 to $336,771, so median price increased somewhat. In Bergenfield for the same time period, there was a drastic change of 32% from 197 homes sold in 2014 to 260 homes sold in 2015. DOM reflected a drop -25% change from 103.6 days on market in 2014 to 77.2 days in 2015. What is interesting is that the average sold price was actually reduced by 3% from $318,917 to $309,917. Okay, let’s look at one more comparison locale, Englewood. Their sold number of 235 was actually reduced by a 3% change from 2014 of 235 solds to 229 sold in 2015 with also a drop of DOM from 127.1 in 2014 to 115.7 in 2015, reflecting a -9% change. Median house price increased by 6% from $340,342 in 2014 to $361,333 in 2015.

So, where does this detailed statistical information get us? On top of it all, it’s an election year of our country’s next Commander-in-Chief, with theories flying as to which candidate will allow for a stronger housing market. Having a lot of experience in the realty field, I know my customers who have interest in market trends, but the reality is they ultimately buy with their emotions and the timing that is right for them. Sure, interest rates are lower than ever with the hovering threat that the feds will be raising the rates, but even then, buyers will buy when the timing is right and sellers will sell when it is within their planning. It’s part of life, we do what we can and when we can, which ultimately trumps the data in the end.

Good luck with all your housing needs and, hopefully, by next Rosh Hashanah, I will provide another report comparing 2015 and 2016. By then, some will have bitten the bullet, taken the plunge and fortunately gotten a piece of the rock while others are still waiting, watching for the next report… got my message? Hope it makes a difference in your planning… Enjoy! Happy Rosh Hashanah to all and a Healthy and Happy New Year!

By Ruby Kaplan, V & N Realty

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