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VOL. 45 | NO. 29 | Friday, July 16, 2021

We keep selling more houses than we have to sell

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1108B Biltmore Dr.

So much for the “blood out of a turnip” adage. Each month, the Nashville real estate market continues to set records for the number of sales by pulling transactions from the lowest inventory level in decades.

There were 4,649 closings in the Nashville area last month, an amazing number on its own. But the rules of mathematics are strained further when one considers there were only 4,308 homes in inventory at the end of May.

Based on those numbers, there is less than a one-month inventory in the market.

Even with numerous homes listed in June, there were only 4,615 homes on the market at the end of the month. Once again, the monthly sales outnumber the inventory.

Sales increased 11% compared to 2020 when the inventory included 10,001 homes and sales hit 4,085.

Off course prices also are on the rise with the median price hitting $415,000 in the area. In the not-so-distant past, loans more than $417,000 were considered jumbo loans. Veteran Realtor Tommy Patterson says jumbo loans now start at $586,500.

At any rate, the median price is flying toward jumbo status.

With only 3,778 sales pending, it appeared likely that there would be a drop from the 4,308 sales for the May. However, Brian Copeland, the president of the Greater Nashville Realtors, had a prescient statement recently when he warned that pending sales no longer reflect the number of sales that will close the next month.

The insanity in the market is not only reflected in how quickly houses go under contract and the number of sales, but the celerity of the closings. A 30-45 day close was once the norm, and that period has dropped considerably. This is due to the fear of rising interest rates and the new trend allowing the sellers to reside in the property for a month or two after the closing.

As was the case last month last month, Copeland says July sales might eclipse those of June despite inventory being down to 4,615 with 3,608 sales pending. His enthusiasm and optimism are understandable, as sales for the second quarter increased 24% compared to the second quarter of record-setting 2020.

All this is the very definition of a seller’s market. It is considered a level playing field when there is a six-month supply of inventory. Based on the current sales numbers, it would take a month with 24,000 new listings hitting the market for there to be a situation that favored neither buyer nor seller.

The problem with that logic is most of these recent sales had multiple offers, thereby leaving several unsuccessful buyers still roaming the lands in search of shelter.

Suppose there were only three spurned buyers per sale, that would mean that the market could potentially absorb 72,000 in a month. The end of forbearance will not be a blip on the real estate screen.

Sale of the Week

Long noted for her real estate prowess, Pamela Elcan of Parks can be found on numerous real estate transactions across the county.

517 Basswood Ave.

Most recently she served as the listing agent on a home at 1108B Biltmore Avenue – near the intersection of Granny White and Battery Lane – that she sold for the list price of $1.275 million the day it hit the market.

With 4,196 square feet comfortably spread across the two-storied home, the $304-per-square foot price raised some eyebrows, not to mention home values for the area. In the coveted Glendale school zone, the new owners can save hundreds of thousands of dollars in private school tuition while relaxing in the home described by Elcan as a French Tudor luxury home.

Elcan noted the home ‘features a dramatic entry, open floor plan, hardwoods, elegant millwork, custom banquette, a primary suite on the main, two expansive family rooms upstairs, a screened porch, custom bar/grill island, lush landscaping flagstone patio and firepit, home theater system and laundry rooms on both floors.”

“Master suite” has always been an awkward term and, fortunately, has gone with the wind. Look for “family room” to disappear soon since not everyone has a family. “Primary suite” and “main suite” seem to be the suites of choice these days. Ensuite has been taken by the smaller suites, but there has to be a better term for the suite formerly known as the master, and it will come at some point.

Allyson Woosley, another mega-producer from Parks, represented the buyer who, based on Elcan’s description, is set to enjoy maintenance-free, luxury living fit for a king, queen or royalty of some sort. Benevolent rulers for sure.

Among the sales in Elcan’s trophy case is the property at 517 Basswood Drive, a riverfront property near Rock Harbor Marina that closed in 2019 before the goldrush. Selling for $1.175 million, the 9.09 acres is a developer’s dream. The scuttlebutt is that the land is going to be the home of a project unique to Nashville.

Richard Courtney is a licensed real estate broker with Fridrich and Clark Realty, LLC and can be reached at richard@richardcourtney.com.

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