July 2022 Real Estate Market on the Outer Banks, NC

July 2022 Real Estate Market on the Outer Banks, NC

What Goes Up, Must Come Down

It’s been a wild and crazy ride here in the Outer Banks real estate marketplace over the last two years. We’ve experienced record-low inventory levels and bidding wars among eager buyers hoping to snatch up any available property.

What goes up, must come down. That’s the signal we’re getting from the marketplace as we slide into the month of August and the summer selling season begins to wind down.

June and July have brought hot weather but cooler sales, according to the latest figures from the Outer Banks Association of Realtors MLS Statistical Report. But the OBX always experiences a slight downturn in sales activity this time of year, so the waning interest isn’t a red flag.

Available inventory ticks up

OBX realtors noticed an upward trend in available inventory starting in February. As the months have progressed, inventory numbers have continued to rise, albeit slightly. It will take several more months of steady increases before inventory levels get closer to normal.

While total inventory is still down 4 percent over last year’s numbers, residential inventory posted an increase of 18 percent. We expect the upward trend to continue, which spells good news for buyers this fall.

Property sales decline

Residential homes and land experienced a decrease from the previous year. Year-to-date residential sales were down 25 percent, while lots and land also declined by 21 percent.

It wasn’t all bad news for property sales, however. Median prices for both residential properties and lots were up over the same period last year. The median sales price for residential properties saw a 13 percent increase to $555,000. Likewise, lots enjoyed a 21 percent boost in value to $124,529.

OBX by the numbers

The July 2022 MLS report offered some other insights about the status of the OBX real estate marketplace. Most notably, distressed sales have decreased by 41 percent year-to-date. That’s down from a high of 48 percent in 2020. With fewer homeowners defaulting on their mortgages, the year-to-date distressed inventory has decreased 100 percent.

All OBX towns and areas experienced a decrease in sales in July. However, some fared better than others, with Kitty Hawk boasting the highest number of year-to-date sales for July at 84. Median sales price also increased 19 percent in Kitty Hawk to $596,210.

Future market trends

The OBX — along with most of the country — has been in a strong seller’s market for more than two years. Low inventory numbers have helped sellers reap higher home profits, leaving buyers scrambling for whatever they could afford.

With OBX homes at or near the half-million-dollar mark, many buyers have pulled out to wait for more favorable conditions. While the MLS reports have brought promising news about the future availability of property, it’s done little to indicate whether price decreases are on the horizon as well.

In the meantime, buyers can best prepare for the days of increased inventory by getting pre-approved for lending. Doing so allows buyers to quickly act on properties as they enter the marketplace.