February 2019 Market and Sales Update

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Home values are holding steady in Maine, while sales during the month of January 2019 declined compared to January 2018. According to Maine Listings, sales of single-family existing homes eased 12.9 percent last month, compared to January one year ago. Median sales prices (MSP), however, remain unchanged at $200,000. The MSP indicates that half of the homes were sold for more and half sold for less.

Time will tell how much of the January and rolling quarter decreases are attributable to the longest partial government shutdown in U.S. history, which ended on January 25th. The shutdown delayed or completely suspended some real estate transactions that were dependent on federal government-guaranteed loans.

The National Association of Realtors today announced a sales decline of 8.4 percent and an MSP increase of 3.1 percent to $249,400 comparing January 2019 to January 2018. The regional Northeast experienced a 1.4 percent decrease in sales, while the regional MSP rose 0.4 percent to $270,000 over that same time period.

Newcastle Realty has had a very good start to 2019. As of February 22, 2019, our brokers have closed 15 transaction sides with a total volume of $4,096,020—down from our same Y-T-D sales in 2018. By comparison, Tindal & Callahan has booked $3,204,000 from 9 sides and Drum and Drum Real Estate has sold $1,342,000 with 8 sides. We are pleased to remain the #1 real estate firm in our area.

Most of the year-to-date 2019 property sales in the local area have occurred in Waldoboro (7), Wiscasset (4), Westport Island (5), Boothbay (7), Jefferson (6), and Bristol (6). Slightly fewer sales have happened so far this year in Damariscotta (2), Boothbay Harbor (3), Bremen (4), Edgecomb (3), Nobleboro (5), and Newcastle (4). Towns seeing just one or two sales are Alna (2), South Bristol (1), and Dresden (2). Those that have yet to show any sales include Whitefield, Southport, Somerville, and Monhegan Island.

There are currently 254 single family homes for sale in Lincoln County (down from 314 last month), with 29 percent of those priced at or above $500,000. The 614 residential sales that have occurred in the past 365 days represent transactions in the range of under $100,000 (10%), $100,000-$249,999 (48%), $250,000-$499,999 (32%), $500,000-$999,999 (9%), and $1 million-plus (1%).

The current market absorption rates for Lincoln County homes is 4.0 months (under $100,000), 4.6 months ($100,000-$249,999), 7.5 months ($250,000-$499,999), 15.5 months ($500,000-$999,999), and 34.6 months ($1 million and up). This tells us how long it would take for existing inventories to be absorbed into the market at current rates of sales if no new listings were introduced.

Newcastle Realty tracks Lincoln County and statewide sales, along with other important metrics, which keeps our brokers fully informed of current market conditions and emerging trends as they serve buyer and seller client needs. Questions or comments may be directed to Dennis Hilton, President of Newcastle Realty at dennishilton@cheneycompanies.com or 207-380-3435.

  • Sales statistics based on information from the Maine Real Estate Information System, Inc. (d/b/a Maine Listings) for the period 1/1/19 through 2/22/19.