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New England’s slowing real estate market

Economists say the housing market could be cooling down. The Boston condo inventory is at the lowest since 1999 as builders continue to be bogged down by the lack of labor, lagging delivery times, and the soaring cost of materials. For potential homeowners, experts say consider expanding your search.

So, what’s behind the slowdown in the real estate market, in Massachusetts and New England?

I think it’s the same thing that’s going on in other parts of the country.

Others think there’s something more to it:

The factors behind New England’s slowdown, however, are more complicated.

1) For starters, its economy appears to be stalling, researchers say, at a time when the country as a whole maintains a relatively strong economic outlook … Growth in total employment is expected to average 0.9% per year, compared to the national average of 1.3% over the forecast period.

2) Meanwhile, the pool of potential home-buyers in the region is “falling like a stone,” says New Hampshire-based demographer Peter Francese. He cites U.S. Census Bureau data showing almost 200,000 residents between 25 and 44 years of age left the region between 2000 and 2004. All six New England states show declines in that category, with Maine, Vermont, and Connecticut far outpacing the national average.

3) New Englanders have been slow to budge, with many sellers reluctant to cut prices; in spite of the slowing market, median sales prices have yet to fall, holding steady at $310,000 through May. Such reluctance is especially true at the high end, brokers say, where sellers are often in a position to wait.

I agree more with #1 than with #2 or #3 – it’s all about people having jobs.

Complete article: In New England, a Different Kind Of Fall As Housing Market Cools – By Troy McMullen, The Wall Street Journal

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Updated: January 2018