Though housing sales rose last month for the first time since the summer, Baton Rouge’s housing inventory and average days on market are continuing to grow, suggesting the market continues to be shifting in favor of buyers.
“I’ve been telling all my buyers, this is the best time for them,” says Keller Williams agent Kyle Peterson.
For February, closed sales spiked to 746, up some 6.1% from the 703 sold in February 2018, according to monthly indicators compiled by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors.
The month was marked by higher inventory (4,168, up 11.3%) and houses remaining on the market for more days (up nine days to 78, a 13% increase).
While those numbers favor buyers, the months’ supply of inventory, sitting at 4.7 months last month, still leans toward sellers. A neutral or buyer’s market is said to be six months or more of inventory.
“I definitely feel like my showing traffic has improved substantially,” Peterson says. “There are more active and eager buyers looking at houses and they’re looking for deals.”
Meanwhile, new listings dropped last month to 1,241, down 6.8%, while rising average sale prices increased to $221,919, up by 1.7% compared to February 2018. Helping drive the average price of houses is the amount of new construction in the market, Peterson says.
As detailed in a recent Business Report feature, the market is expected to shift in the direction of buyers—or at least balance out—this year as the supply of homes gradually rises and properties sit on the market for longer periods.