Central Indiana existing-home sales finish 2019 with surge

Sales of existing single-family homes surged in central Indiana in December, capping off a sluggish year for transactions amid rising prices and low inventories.

Completed sales in the 16-county area jumped from 2,475 in December 2018 to 2,708 last month—an increase of 9.4%, according to the latest data from the MIBOR Realtor Association. Sales rose on a year-over-year basis in three of the last four months of 2019 after falling in seven of the previous eight months.

The active inventory in December dropped 11.1%, to 5,064 houses, and the median price was up 9.9% on a year-over-year basis, to $195,000.

Closed sales for the entire year came in at 35,474, down 0.4% from 35,603 in 2018.

The median price for homes sold in central Indiana in 2019 rose 6.4%, to $190,500. New listings fell 2.2% for all of 2019 compared with the previous year, to 41,590.

“Prices were strong throughout 2019, despite record low inventory,” said MIBOR CEO Shelley Specchio in written comments. “Based on the interaction of demand and supply (sales, pending sales, and median price), every metric shows a strong market as we enter 2020.”

Marion County

In Marion County—the most active market in central Indiana—closed sales in December rose 6.1%, to 1,048.

The median sales price in the county spiked 3.1%, to $165,000. New listings fell 12.3%, to 687. The inventory of available single-family detached houses in Marion County fell 9.9%, to 1,096.

For the full year, Marion County experienced a 0.5% rise in closed sales, to 13,521. The median price of sold houses during the year was $161,000, up 7.3%.

Other area counties

In Hamilton County, sales jumped 14.7%, to 493, in December. The median sales price rose 0.2%, to $309,000. The inventory of houses fell 8.6%, to 972.

Closed sales ticked down 0.1% in Hamilton County during the entire year, to 6,628. That’s just eight fewer sales than in 2018.

In Hendricks County, sales dropped 0.5% in December, to 221, and the median sales price increased 7.4%, to $232,000. Full-year sales dropped 3.4%, to 2,997.

In Johnson County, sales soared 34.6% in December, to 245, and the median sales price rose 3.9%, to $207,763. Full-year sales dipped 0.2%, to 2,847.

Sales in Boone County were down 11.3% last month, to 86, while the median price of a home rose 20.4%, to $336,400. Full-year sales rose 1.4%, to 1,222.

Hancock County sales shot up 66% in December, to 123, and the median price rose 15.5%, to $207,000. Full-year sales increased 12.8%, to 1,495.

Sales were up 2.7% in Madison County last month, to 115. The median sales price increased 40%, to $120,000. Full-year sales rose 4.1%, to 1,671.

Morgan County sales increased from 34 to 42 in December and the median sales price rose to $126,500. Full-year sales increased 2.5%, to 532.

Shelby County saw 32 closed home sales in December, down from 37 the previous year. The median price spiked to $157,950. Full-year sales dipped 3.5%, to 522.

Statewide sales

On a statewide basis, Indiana saw 89,386 closed sales in 2019, up 0.3% from 2018, according to the Indiana Association of Realtors.

The median sales price increased 7.2%, to $169,900, and the average price rose 5.9%, to $198,170.

New listings during the year fell 0.9%, to 108,155.

“December was a strong month for home sales statewide, pulling 2019 ahead of the record-breaking year before and surprising many,” said Bernice Helman, 2020 president of the Indiana Association of Realtors. “Not surprising is the fact that prices are still on the rise. Inventory has yet to satisfy demand, and competition for quality homes remains fierce.”

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