With 1,128 single-family contracts recorded, August 2020 was a strong month for the Hartford County real estate market. The total was about 31% higher than last August, but noticeably lower than the July 2020 total. On a year-to-date basis 2020 is trending about 12% ahead of 2019 through August.
The bounce back that is visible in the contracts by month data suggests that the spring lockdown was a temporary obstacle in the market. January and February deal counts were well above 2019, as were June, July, and August. April was the only month that experienced a dramatic impact since both March and May were able to match last year’s totals.
All of this activity has come despite low levels of inventory. The metric tracking the supply of available homes edged downwards again in August, although the number of active listings was actually about the same as the July total. Because the calculation considers the number of contracts over the prior 12 months, the same number of listings with more contracts results in lower supply relative to demand.
At the big picture level, 2020 is on track to be the strong real estate year that we were expecting based on the winter market before the pandemic arrived. Summer saw a level of buyer activity that we hope for during the spring months, even if home owners did not come through with listings at the same pace as Hartford County typically sees during the spring.
The coming months could go in either direction. Our sense is that there will continue to be an active real estate market through the end of the year because a lot of people still want to move, and because the financial environment continues to be favorable. Interest rates are low and the lingering threat of a virus resurgence seems to be making people want to find a new home.
Low inventory means that there is still an opportunity for sellers. We don’t think the market favors sellers quite as strongly as it did in May and June, but owners interested in cashing out of their real estate still have a good chance to sell for an attractive value. Please reach out to us at 860-655-2922 if you would like more information about either selling your current property or buying a new home.