Despite slower sales activity, buyers continue to drive up home prices in Howard County as supply remains low, according to the Howard County Association of Realtors and the Bright Multiple Listing Service. The median sales price for homes in Howard County during the month of May 2022, was $556,000, representing an increase of 8.6 percent compared to the previous month, and an increase of 10.1 percent compared to the same time last year.
Closed sales (452) saw an 8.9 percent decrease compared to the previous year (496) and a 16.2 percent increase compared to the previous month (389). New residential listings (524) saw a 20.7 percent decrease compared to the previous year (661) and a one percent increase compared to the previous month (519). Active listings (197) were down 30.9 percent compared to the previous year (285).
The average days on market for units sold was seven days, which is a 30 percent decrease from the same time last year (10) and 61 percent below the five-year May average of 18 days.
“Part of what is driving the market right now is that supply has yet to catch up and there are still more buyers than sellers,” said HCAR President Sarah Anderson. “Once the market starts to cool down, inventory will begin to expand, which means that buyers will have more choices available to them. This should also lead to a slowing of increased pricing.”
There was a 9.3 percent month-over-month increase in new contract activity with 517 new pendings; a 5.8 percent MoM increase in all pendings (new contracts plus contracts carried over from April) to 604; and an 11.3 percent decrease in supply to 197 active units.
This activity resulted in a contract ratio of 3.07 pendings per active listing, up from 2.57 in April and an increase from 2.87 in May 2021. The contract ratio is 77 percent higher than the five-year May average of 1.73. A higher contract ratio signifies a relative increase in contract activity compared to supply, and indicates the market is moving in the seller’s favor.