Home prices level off as tight inventory continues to restrict home sales

by Rincey Abraham

Tight inventory leading to dropping home sales continues to be the song of Atlanta home sales, according to the September Atlanta Realtors report.

Home sales fell 10.3 percent on a year-over-year basis in September, going from 4,843 homes sold to 4,346. This was also a 20.5 percent drop from August’s 5,466 homes sold.

Inventory in the Atlanta area grew slightly to 14,993 units, up 0.1 percent from last year. New listings are up 8.5 percent from September 2017 to 4,830, but down 7.3 percent from August. However, the months of supply grew from 3.0 months in August to 3.1 months in September.

“The summer cycle has ended, and the number of transactions has slowed to below the sales this time last year, at least partially due to a continued tight, yet slightly increasing, inventory of available homes,” Atlanta Realtors President Bill Murray said.

Home prices continue to outpace 2017 as both the median and average sales price grew on an annual basis. But signs of leveling off for the cooler months may be on the horizon as prices dropped from August. The median sales price in September was $264,000, up 9.5 percent from $241,000 last year but down a slight 0.4 percent from August’s $265,000. Atlanta’s average home sales price was $322,000, up 7.7 percent from $299,000 in September 2017 and down 2.7 percent from $331,000 in August 2018.

“Sales prices have begun to level out but continue strong increases with year over year comparison as Atlanta looks towards the slower months ahead,” Murray said.