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By admin_leng | Published January 20, 2023

We can all agree. The past few years have been crazy for our industry. 2022 started strong, but we could feel the market beginning to cool by the end of the second quarter; a feeling that continued into Q3 and Q4.

Many, many factors have been driving the real estate ups and downs as of late. The loudest of which has been the fluctuation of interest rates. The volatile rate environment in the latter half of 2022 does seem to be stabilizing and industry optimists are hopeful buyers will return. The Federal Reserve may even be prepared to help, by slowing the uptick in interest rates as they see inflation numbers declining.

Other promising factors are at play as well. Almost 40% of homes in the US are paid for, with another 5% of homeowners having a very low mortgage. The baby boomer generation is sitting in a good financial position to downsize or move to their dream home. First-time home buyers will settle into the newly offered rates and find opportunities to buy. These buyers will become active over the course of the next few years; we cannot expect homeowners who are currently locked in at a 3% interest rate move in the immediate future.


Active inventory has increased from what we saw a year ago. At the end of 2022, there were 1,659 single family homes on the market which was just over a two months supply. That is 480 more single family homes in Des Moines Metro when compared to the end of 2021 (which was just over a one month supply). Today we remain at a low active inventory number for the market in the Des Moines metro area. Bottom line: demand can be killed with high costs and interest rates, but a shortage still exists.

New construction inventory grew to 1,050 active single family homes by the end of 2022. Currently, we are seeing a lack of resale homes on the market but the new construction inventory did grow in 2022 to just over a 6 months supply. Overall, 63.3% of the available single family homes in the Des Moines metro area are NEW construction homes.

Total single family homes that were pending at the end of 2022’s Q4 totaled 757 as compared to 1,466 a year ago. A difference of 709 homes! This points to a much weaker Q1 for 2023 than we’ve seen in years prior. 

To help analyze the pending numbers, look at the more standard years of 2017, 2018, 2019 were at an average of 923 pending homes at this time of year. Total new construction single family pending homes totaled 236 at the end of 2022, compared to 618 at the end of 2021.


Over the year, 2022 had a total of 9,361 single family homes sold. Over the last 15 years, the average total sold was 8,011 (the lowest being in 2010 at 5,417 total homes sold and the highest being in 2021 at 11,153 total homes sold). So 2022 was really pretty impressive for a year that has so many highs and lows, on so many different fronts.


Looking ahead, there are predictions of interest rates settling in and Federal rate hikes slowing up over the course of 2023. It will be interesting to see if the spring/summer market will be able to stabilize or if a recession will be in full swing. It’s important to remember that an average recession is nine months and that hard times do pass. Overall, 2023 has plenty to offer and we are excited to see what opportunities present themselves!

Check out full stats for a breakdown of each specific Des Moines metro community here.


February 28, 2023 marks our 16th Annual Builders and Developers Luncheon. Join us as we hear presentations from Andrew Warren, Director of Real Estate Research with PricewaterhouseCooper and Danushka Nanayakkara-Skillington, Assistant Vice President for Forecasting and Analysis of the NAHB.

You are invited for a wonderful event full of learning and networking opportunities.

Register now by clicking HERE. Hope to see you soon!

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