The Atlantic County area of the South Jersey Shore real estate market saw positive gains in August. Overall, the region’s market has remained stable, according to the Long & Foster Market Minute reports. The South Jersey Shore region includes Atlantic and Cape May counties.
In Atlantic County, the number of homes sold increased by 3 percent in August, while the median sale price jumped by 17 percent. Cape May County experienced slight decreases in both areas, with the number of homes sold falling by 3 percent and median sale prices dipping by 1 percent.
“The South Jersey Shore region is staying very true to what we’re seeing happening throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast markets where Long & Foster operates,” said Gary Scott, president of Long & Foster Real Estate. “August was a good month for the South Jersey Shore area.”
Active inventory declined by 18 percent in Cape May County and by 14 percent in Atlantic County. Homes sold in about three months on average in Atlantic County and they sold in about five months on average in Cape May County.
“Inventory continues to be a challenge in every market in which we operate, and we believe inventory is an issue that will probably not go away overnight,” Scott said. “There are a lot of people who have financed, refinanced or purchased at very favorable interest rates in recent years, and their motivation is different than it was for many in the past – they’re staying put.”
The inventory shortage is making purchasing a home particularly difficult for millennial buyers, Scott said. That’s not necessarily because millennials and older generations are competing to purchase the same homes, but more due to homeowners and investors choosing not to sell homes that millennials would be interested in purchasing, he said. Although new construction has increased, homebuilders are having a hard time meeting the demands of the market, he said.
“Many more people are moving toward smaller more effective, more efficient housing than the big boxes,” Scott said. “A lot of millennials are looking for maintenance-free, convenient living – like condos and townhouses – that is close to retail, entertainment and work opportunities.”
The best thing that homebuyers can do, Scott said, is to have their financing lined up, have an agent who is an expert negotiator at the ready and remember that real estate is hyperlocal. Within a single large subdivision, it’s possible to see homes in one part of the neighborhood sell quickly while homes in another part sell at a slower pace, he said. Long & Foster’s Market Minute reports allow consumers to view market data for individual communities and neighborhoods. Combining the information from regional and local reports, along with the neighborhood insight and expertise of a Long & Foster agent, can provide a much more rounded and accurate picture of the market, Scott said.
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.