The entire South Jersey Shore real estate market experienced rising median sale prices in March, according to the Long & Foster Market Minute reports. The South Jersey Shore region includes Atlantic and Cape May counties.
In Cape May County, the median sale price of homes sold rose by 13 percent in March. The median sale price of homes sold in Atlantic County increased by 6 percent. The number of homes sold in the region declined last month, falling by 12 percent in Cape May County and by 17 percent in Atlantic County.
Active inventory fell in the South Jersey Shore region last month, declining by 14 percent in Cape May County and by 22 percent in Atlantic County. The days on market average in Atlantic County was 100 days, and in Cape May County the days on market average was 148 days.
“There’s never been a better time to sell,” said Gary Scott, president of Long & Foster Real Estate. “But the choices of where to go can be limited and there are a lot of different factors impacting inventory. In the South Jersey Shore, a large number of properties are vacation homes and rentals, which adds to the region’s unique challenges.”
Scott said one group of homeowners who could benefit significantly by selling is those who became landlords during the recession because they were underwater on their mortgage. Putting their home on the market now would help them maximize the return on their investment.
Some homeowners are trying to maximize the sale of their property by listing it with a discount brokerage, but that could end up costing them more, Scott warns. The barrier to entry to get a real estate license is fairly low, and the cost of discount brokerages is often reflective of the skills and services offered. A home seller may pay a lower commission, but their agent may not be as skilled in negotiations or be as knowledgeable about real estate contracts.
“When hiring a real estate agent, you want to ask them result-oriented questions,” Scott said. “Ask them what percentage of their listings sell, what their list-to-sale price ratios are, as well as the difference between a home’s original price and its sale price. Just because a real estate agent lists a lot of homes doesn’t mean they’ll provide the level of service that’s best for each client.”
The Long & Foster Market Minute is an overview of market statistics based on residential real estate transactions for more than 500 local areas and neighborhoods and over 100 counties in eight states. The easy-to-read, easy-to-share reports include information about each area’s units sold, active inventory, median sale prices, list to sold price ratio, days on market and more.
Information included in this report is based on data supplied by South Jersey Shore and Cape May County multiple listing services and their member associations of Realtors, which are not responsible for its accuracy. The reports include residential real estate transactions within specific geographic regions, not just Long & Foster sales, and they do not reflect all activity in the marketplace. Information contained in this report is deemed reliable but not guaranteed, should be independently verified, and does not constitute an opinion of SJS, CMC or Long & Foster Real Estate.