November 2021 Real Estate Market on the OBX
For Sale Properties Hit All-Time Low
November 2021 brought with it another month of real-estate firsts for the Outer Banks, and not in a good way. Commercial and residential inventory hit an all-time low. According to the newly released November 2021 MLS Statistical Report from the Outer Banks Association of Realtors (OBAR), OBX had just 887 properties to sell during the month.
Residential properties took the worst hit, with a 39 percent reduction in total units from 2020. Prospective buyers looking for their dream home or rental vacation property had just 380 options from which to choose. Available commercial properties and lots and land were both down 23 percent over 2020, with 41 and 466 units, respectively.
High demand, plummeting inventory
Even in years when the inventory is lean during the spring and summer months, more properties usually come into the market in late fall and winter. The trend does not appear to be holding this year. Commercial, lots and land, and residential inventory numbers continue to decline as we move through the end of the year, which is not a good sign for things to come.
Monthly sales figures, despite the plummeting inventory, indicate demand remains high for properties in the OBX. Desirable properties with correctly assigned price tags move quickly on the local market, with the average number of days on market for residential properties now sitting at 53 from 114 last year. These factors combine to keep the seller’s market that peaked earlier this year going strong.
OBX by the numbers
Although inventory is well below normal levels for this time of year, sales remain strong, posting a 22 percent increase. Other year-to-date MLS statistics of note:
- Residential sales rose by 13 percent, with a total of 3,134 units sold.
- Lots and land sales increased 63 percent, with a total of 898 available properties sold.
- Commercial property sales reflected the biggest boost, up 77 percent with 46 units sold.
- Residential median sales price dropped by a percentage point to reflect a $475,000 average.
- Distressed sales for Dare County remained flat.
With more buyers turning to lots and land to build rather than buy existing properties, the total number of building permits requested for Dare County in 2021 is 275. Kill Devil Hills had the highest number of building permit requests at 71.
The total volume of combined types of properties sold has quickly approached $2 billion for 2021, which reflects a 49 percent increase over last year.
Year-to-date statistics for OBX areas
Some Outer Banks areas have performed better over the last year due to more readily available inventory. Let’s look at how each region fared in comparison from November 2020 and November 2021.
The big winner for the year in sales was Ocracoke Island, which posted a 122 percent increase. A total of 40 properties were sold on the island over the last year. The median sales price on Ocracoke also got a 24 percent boost to $440,000. Other top performers include:
- All Hatteras – 33 percent increase in sales with 533 properties sold
- Kill Devil Hills – 31 percent increase in sales with 422 properties sold
- Colington – 24 percent increase in sales with 163 properties sold
Not all OBX locations fared well. Some posted a decrease in sales over the last year, including Duck (10 percent), Southern Shores (5 percent), Roanoke Island (3 percent), and Kitty Hawk (3 percent).