The past 12 months have been remarkable period for Maryland’s housing market, simply because they were so predictable. We had gotten used to housing indicators swinging wildly in response to a broad range of factors, including legislation, litigation, Federal Reserve announcements, corporate and individual behavior, and the European debt crisis.
Economic experts feared that this marked a “new normal” and that the housing industry would never be the same. Yet, in the summer of 2012, experts cautiously predicted initial signs of a possible recovery. The same experts also predicted surges in foreclosure activity as part of a necessary step in healing the market.
Overall, the past 12 months met those expectations:
- Foreclosures have risen as anticipated, and at a level that the market can absorb.
- On a year-over-year basis, home sales and the median home price has risen in each of the last 12 months.
- Months’ supply – the amount of time it would take to deplete the existing inventory of homes for sale – has remained at a very healthy level.
- Construction is on an overall strong pace as evidenced by residential building permits.
- Homes for sale are spending less time on the market with each passing month
So, where do we go from here?
Over the next several months, even while we expect to see big shifts in the backlog of seriously delinquent loans to foreclosure, we can also anticipate a continuing recovery with the conclusion of the crisis in sight. This is good news for homeowners, good news for homebuyers and good news for the state’s economy.