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Q3 2018: Des Moines Metro Housing Snapshot

By Kalen | Published October 17, 2018

The word on the street when it comes to housing is that the national market may have peaked and is starting to cool down a bit. At the same time, according to one national article on CNBC’s “Realty Check,” it’s important to follow all the facts as inventory, price point and location each play key roles. IN THEIR WORDS: “The housing recovery isn’t over, it just feels like it…”

Following a period of substantial growth, it is a great time to reflect on the local housing market – where strong demographics (the region grew 1.8 percent to 645,911 residents in 2017) and a sizzling labor market (2.5 percent unemployment rate) factor in. Let’s assess our Des Moines Metro housing statistics and see if you agree?

As of October 1, 2018, there were a total of 2,473 active homes on the Des Moines-area market, and the inventory of single-family homes has grown. That’s compared with 2,064 single-family homes listed for sale in October 2017, equating or close to a 20 percent increase year over year. Total inventory, however, is still low at 3.3 months as homes with affordable entry-level price points are still selling quickly even as prices increase.

In terms of new construction, the total number of active homes today stands at 925, compared with 812 homes a year ago and 707 homes two years ago. That translates to a 6.8-months supply, up from a 6-months supply at this time last year. It is very important to note here the different price points of new construction homes as inventory has increased alongside them.

Taking a closer look our current INVENTORY PAGE, it is clear that Ankeny, Bondurant, Granger, Indianola, Pleasant Hill and Van Meter each have a new construction inventory below the 6-month supply line, implying that these are good areas for builders to consider putting up more homes.

It seems a lot of talk around town is that the real estate market is cooling down. There may be a little truth to this, but I don’t see the statistics pointing to any kind of strong recession at this time. The total number of single-family homes sold this year is 7,325, including 1,242 new construction homes. When comparing this to a phenomenal 7,511 total single-family and 1,318 new construction homes sold last year, we can see that this represents only a 2.4 percent decrease in the total number of homes sold year to date.

I would say the numbers point toward a plateau or a peak being reached – not a cliff or complete drop off. The chart, looking at the end of Q3 for the past several years, is a clear indication that 2018 is still greater than every year besides 2017.

The bottom line is that the local market is still seeing significant growth. Des Moines is a hot city on firm footings with a strong outlook. Builders just need to be calculated in their decisions and maintain a healthy expectation that homes may not move quite as fast as they have during the past two or three years.

Looking to stay current on Des Moines’ real estate and new construction market and the local housing economy? Then save the date! Mark your calendar for our 12th Annual Builder and Developer Luncheon, hosted at the Marriott West Des Moines, on March 1, 2019. More info will come!

To view my full Q3 2018 housing statistics, click here. For additional information on the availability of single-family lots and unique ​Central Iowa​ ​housing communities, you can contact me directly at [email protected].

I am a Residential REALTOR® and Certified New Construction Sales Professional who specializes in helping homebuyers locate a suitable lot, secure a qualified builder, and pick a perfect floor plan to match their unique tastes or personal style. After listening and understanding the needs of my clients, I offer appropriate feedback and credible data that help buyers and seller make informed decisions in regards to real estate transactions. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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