There’s no summer vacation for the Lowcountry’s hard-charging home sales market.
Charleston County: 702 home sales in July at a median price of $265,000. Through July, volume is up 24% to 4,241 closings.
Berkeley County: 289 sales at a median price of $170,000 in July. Through last month, home sales are up 25% to 1,566 transactions.
Dorchester County: 241 sales at a median price of $175,000 in July. Year-to-date, sales volume is up 26.5% to 1,387 deals.
Source: Charleston Trident Association of Realtors
The Charleston region otallied a 30 percent jump in sales last momth, despite concerns that slow employment gains and growing mortgage interest rates could discourage would-be buyers, officials said Monday.
The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors reported 1,272 homes changed hands at a median price of $209,950 in July, up from the 972 homes sold at a median price of $205,000 in the same month a year ago.
Through July, local home sale volume are up 24 percent and the median price is 10 percent higher compared to the first seven months of 2012, according to the association.
A total of 7,417 homes exchanged hands at a median price of $200,834 for the first seven months of the year.
The association’s report comes just days after economist Joseph Von Nessen warned that the local housing market could slow in coming months, citing slow employment growth.
On Monday, some local officials addressed the issue, saying there’s still optimism on the horizon.
“We may see a slight adjustment in the pace of sales growth, but as Dr. Von Nessen mentioned, it’s unlikely that we will see any type of contraction in the market,” said Dave Sansom, president of the Charleston Trident Multiple Listing Service.
Industry experts have also warned that the uptick in mortgage rates could either push would-be purchasers to the closing table or discourage them from buying.
So far, some local real estate officials have said growing rates have not slowed home sales.
Ann Whalen, broker-in-charge of Coldwell Banker United Realtors in Mount Pleasant, said her office has been abuzz all summer.
“We have not noticed a lull, and we haven’t even noticed one in August, where there usually is one,” she said.
The Realtors association also reported that the low number of homes available for sale remains.
At the end of July, a total of 5,770 homes were listed for sale in the local Multiple Listing Service data-base at the end of July, down nearly 9 percent from 6,328 at the end of July 2012.
“We expect to end the year showing a significant gain in sales volume over 2012 and ongoing growth in pricing as well—especially as inventory remains at this low level” said Owen Tyler, president of the Realtors group.
The association also revised its June sales figures slightly higher to 1,338 sales at a median price of $219,340.
Reach Tyrone Richardson at 937-5550 and follow him on Twitter @tyrichardsonPC.