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CHARLESTON, SC- Posting the strongest December sales figures since 2006, the Charleston-area residential real estate market closes out a year of steady sales growth and celebrates the arrival of several positive indicators.
According to preliminary figures released by the Charleston Trident Association of REALTORS® (CTAR), 785 homes sold at a median price of $186,050 in December. This represents an increase of more than 100 sales and median price growth of just over 2% when compared to last December.
However, the best news lies in the year-to-date figures. The Charleston area will close out 2011 with at least a 6% increase in closed sales and a difference of just 3% in median price from 2010. “We anticipated the slight decline in median price, with the amount of distressed inventory in our market” said 2012 CTAR President Herb Koger. “However, seeing sales growth at a sustainable and healthy level—that was not encouraged by tax incentives—clearly demonstrates that there are buyers who understand the value of owning a home in the Charleston area” said Koger.
In 2011, 9,276 homes sold in the Charleston area, at a median price of $181,573. In 2010, 8,767 homes sold at a median price of $186,423.
“When we look at the positive indicators that developed throughout the year—growth in sales, relative stability in median price and a declining inventory—we see an extended period of positive movement and growth in our market, which leads me to believe we’ll see another year of slow, but healthy progression in 2012” said Koger. “While we’re on the right track, we may continue see some price softening as we keep working through our distressed inventory” he added.
Inventory continues to decline, with 6,904 homes listed as actively for sale in the MLS.
With 194 sales at a median price of $169,702 in December, the residential real estate market in Berkeley County added to its impressive year-to-date totals.
2,219 homes sold in the County at a median price of $162,450 during the year—a 5% increase in sales and slight 2% decline in median price compared to 2010’s 2,112 sales at a median price of $165,457.
In 2011, the most active area of the county was bordered by Jedburg Road-Highway 17A and College Park, with 523 sales at a median price of $156,290. The most affordable area of the county is Cross/St. Stephens/Bonneau, where 71 annual sales resulted in a median price of $69,000. The most expensive area continues to be Daniel Island, where 250 homes sold at a median price of $407,500.
December figures completed a year of healthy sales growth and the ongoing correction of prices with 429 sales at a median price of $222,500.
Increasing affordability in Charleston County led to a market-leading 9% growth in sales during the year. 4,961 homes sold at a median price of $220,000 in 2011, as compared to 4,566 sales at a median price of $233,750 in 2010.
As the largest geographic area in the county, Mount Pleasant saw the largest number of closings in 2011, with 1,457 homes sold at a median price of $311,173. West Ashley (outside I-526 to Rantowles) was next, with 688 sales at a median price of $179,532. Sullivan’s Island is home to the most expensive property in the County, with 37 sales resulting in a median price of $1,335,000. The most affordable area of the County is North Charleston (inside I-526) where 199 homes sold at a median price of $57,000.
128 homes sold at a median price of $151,750 in December, closing out a year of stability in Dorchester County.
Year-to-date figures show a less than 1% variance in sales and median price. In 2011, 1,778 homes sold at a median price of $160,000. In 2010, 1,794 homes sold at a median price of $159,125.
The Summerville/Ridgeville area was the most active, as well as the most expensive area of the County in 2011, as 820 sales resulted in a median price of $168,395. St. George/Harleyville was the most affordable region—46 sales at a median price of $84,200.