A lack of homes for sale, skyrocketing prices and bidding wars—when you try to find information on what the 2021 real estate market looks like, all of these themes make up the top headlines. However, they rarely help when trying to make an important real estate decision whether that’s to buy or sell. We find that one of the most important tools to guide decision making is having great information about your local market…so what is going on in the Sunapee Region?
From January 1 through May 31, 2021, there were a total of 199 single family homes sold in the region*, the lowest number of transactions for that timeframe since 2017 which had 190 transactions. We also recorded the highest median sales price of $336,000 since we began tracking in 2005. This is a $71,000 increase compared to the same timeframe in 2020**.
Looking at single family home sales for just the month of May, we saw 48 homes sold for a median sales price of $346,950. In comparison there were 50 sales in 2020 ($280,000) and 65 sales in 2019 ($245,000), view our May Home Sales Report. How does that relate to the rest of New Hampshire? In May 2021 there were 1,331 single family homes sold for a median sales price of $402,000—a 6% increase in sales and a 25.7% increase in median sales price since May 2020 according to New Hampshire Association of Realtors.
Looking at the larger picture, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that existing home sales in the Northeast decreased 1.4% in May, but the annual rate climbed 46.9% from a year ago. The median price was $384,000, up 17.1% from May 2020. Read the NAR May report here.
Annual Sunapee Region Home Sales from 2017 to 2020:
What are we seeing?
Buyer fatigue has set in over the past few months. Those who have been searching for a home in 2021 are feeling the exhaustion of bidding wars, tight timeframes to preview homes and pressure to make offers attractive beyond their comfort zone. Many are pulling back to take a break and refresh—watching the market more passively and not rushing to make as many offers as they were earlier in the year. Although still well attended, we are seeing open house numbers decrease compared to the first quarter. Many sellers are still receiving multiple offers but these are also down from Q1.
Those looking to sell are still experiencing the benefit of high home values, but are conflicted on where to go, or if they want to enter this fast-paced market as a buyer. Although home staging has always been one of our top recommendations, we are seeing an even greater impact from proper home staging—both in initial buyer interest and offers being made.
Our unique geographic location as a lakes and mountains vacation destination, sandwiched between two employment sectors (Concord/Manchester and Lebanon/Hanover), has always made the Sunapee Region desirable for both full-time and second homeowners. As inventory has tightened both south and north of our area, we are seeing more buyers looking to move to the Sunapee Region. Many are OK with a slightly longer commute to find the home features they prefer while others are citing a more flexible work schedule as their reason for relocating. Consistent with national trends, we are seeing an increase in buyers looking for vacation homes—waterfront, water access, view homes, and homes with a fair amount of privacy but close to outdoor activities such as hiking trails, lakes, and snow sports.
Navigating the 2021 real estate market has proven challenging for buyers and sellers alike. We don't have a crystal ball but as long as rates stay low and inventory remains tight, we believe this year will be similar to the pre-pandemic high of 2019 but with a much higher median sales price.
It's always good to remember that generally, long-term real estate decisions tend to hold great value. Short term real estate moves come with much higher risk. Our goal is to help buyers and sellers make the very best decision around real estate utilizing quality information and our extensive network of resources.
Have questions or want to discuss the local real estate market? Give us a call 603-526-8600 or shoot us an email!
You may also be interested in viewing Just Listed homes in the Sunapee Region.
*Towns included: Andover, Bradford, Croydon, Goshen, Grantham, Lempster, Newbury, New London, Newport, Springfield, Sunapee, Sutton, Unity, Warner, Washington, Wilmot
**Data was pulled on 6/23/2021 from New England Real Estate Network (NEREN) and is subject to errors, omissions, prior sale, change or withdrawal without notice. Data may not match older blog posts as sales may have been added or corrected in NEREN after a post was created.