Context: 10 Years of Lincoln Sales Data
Whoa! We have now analyzed TEN YEARS of Lincoln singe-family home sales data, which provides an important context for the current market.
You can see how few houses sold in 2022, compared to prior years. See the trends in each price bracket? The story is complicated – fewer houses sold in 2022, but really it was just far fewer houses sold under $1.5M. This is the story of a year that built on the pandemic migration, the over-bidding, scarce supply, and rising interest rates.
Existing inventory shrank in 2019, and that was exacerbated by ballooning demand in 2020. Buyers purchased all the homes for sale, and new houses were almost always scooped up right away. This environment fueled both a short days-to-offer trend across all price bands in the Lincoln, MA single family market.
Of course, as with the trends across the Boston suburbs, our sale price per square foot increased dramatically. This increase stands in clear contrast to the much slower trends that were taking place in different parts of the market – which had yielded inconsistent price-per-square-foot gains in Lincoln over the prior 10 years.
Below, you’ll see my favorite chart, which uses a different data set I maintain: weekly inventory. There’s nothing like scarcity to drive up prices! As we gear up for the launch of the 2023 spring market, we anticipate prices will stay essentially stable until we see inventory reach over 15-ish houses listed. Buyers need to have options before prices can soften. Inventory may have increased to pre-pandemic levels in other parts of the country, but Lincoln is too desireable a location for buyers to hold back, and for many buyers, their search area covers only towns with similarly constricted options.
Of course, every house is a market unto itself, so when a house is listed for more than the market perceives its value to be, it will take more time to sell and will sell for less money. Perhaps that wouldn’t have been the scenario in the spring of 2022, but unless a house was marketed previously, we can never know. We are finding that houses are — mostly — being priced appropriately (along the lines of a sales price we would have expected in 2020) and selling for over asking. Still.
Buckle up, friends, we are set up for a much-hotter-than-aticipated spring, 2023!