Market Trends

Third Quarter Home Sales Data Indicate a Return to a More Balanced Housing Market

According to sales statistics from RI Realtors, the median sales price of single-family homes sold in Rhode Island during the third quarter rose to $275,000, a 3.8 percent year-over-year gain. Closing activity decreased 6.7 percent following two years of record-breaking sales.

Block Island’s median sales price led the state at $1,095,000, the East Side of Providence followed with a $646,000 median price, and the midpoint of Jamestown single-family sales was $645,000. Homes were most affordable in Central Falls, Providence, and Woonsocket.

“We’re not surprised to see that sales are beginning to plateau, in fact, we welcome it,” said Joe Luca, 2018 President of the Rhode Island Association of Realtors. “A moderation in sales activity gives the market a chance to ‘catch up’ by alleviating the shortage of homes for sale. We should see more balance between buyer demand and seller supply in the year ahead which is a good thing for the overall health of Rhode Island’s housing market. We’re anticipating that both buyers and sellers will benefit by the changes occurring now.”

In the multifamily property market, the median sales price continued its upward trend, increasing to $250,000, a 13.7 percent from the third quarter of 2017. Despite rising prices, the market remained active with sales increasing 15.5 percent from the previous year.

“In a strong economy, people put their money into investments that make sense. With rising rents and interest rates starting to creep up, rental units are a prime target for savvy investors. In fact, the monthly median price (of multifamily properties) has increased by double-digit amounts for 16 of the last 17 months and sales have increased for 20 of the past 21 months.” said Luca.

Bucking the trends seen in the single-family home market, the median sales price of condominiums fell 4.2 percent in the third quarter while sales increased by 5.3 percent.

In all three categories, properties sold more quickly this year than last, most likely due to pent-up buyer demand and increasing interest rates.

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