Home sales strong in Wilson

Angie Mayes • Updated Jun 11, 2016 at 8:00 AM

Wilson County single-family home sales were down slightly in May, compared to the same time last year, however, it remained higher than sales two years ago. 

There were 252 sales in May 2016, versus 259 in May 2015 and 217 in May 2014. 

Still the cost of the homes has continued to climb from an average of $234,065 in 2014 to $276,427 this year. That, combined homes on the market for an average of 50 days, makes Wilson County a hot housing market, according to Jo Qualls, with the Realtor Assistant, a marketing firm designed to assist realtors with housing statistics.

Qualls, who was a realtor for a number of years, began to look at the numbers a few years ago. She eventually began to generate number sheets for her own business and soon found other realtors asked for her help.

Year-to-date numbers are up from last year and 2014, she said. There were 1,033 homes sold so far this year, compared with 984 this time last year and 857 by the end of May 2014.

The average list price for homes in the county is $276,871 but the average sales price is slightly less at $273,528. Homes stay an average of 57 days on the market, she said.

In Lebanon, Realtors have sod 490 homes so far this year. In Mt. Juliet, they have sold 427 and 61 homes have been sold in Old Hickory. In Watertown, 35 homes have been sold this year.

With those numbers, the amount of homes on the market is low, with just two-to-four months of “inventory,” Qualls said. 

The reason for the upswing in sales is due to the job market, mortgage rates staying low and “consumer sentiment being the highest since 2007,” Qualls said. “That bodes very well for the future.”

She said Wilson County is tied for second as the fastest-growing county in Tennessee. The median income is second highest in the state. The unemployment is 3.2 percent. Amenities in Wilson County are “very desirable” she said. 

Other positive indicators are the baby boomers who are also buying. The people who lost their homes in 2006-2009 are now buying homes again. 

“We’re expecting about 1.5 million of those people to buy homes by the end of 2018,” she said of nation-wide numbers. She added single women are also buying homes.

“Female boomers buy more homes that single boomer men,” she said. “The millineals are getting ready to debut. In the past, they wanted to live in the urban areas, in the cities, close to things to do. They wanted small spaces and easy access to everything. The oldest of that group is now in their 30s, and they have changed their attitude. As they age, they will be changing and forming different value structures. They are expected to be a big part of the real estate market in the next few years.”

The said first-time homebuyers have changed because at one end of the range is millineals, which will be eventually be coming into the market. Affordability is also a factor.

“Almost any price range you’re going to find someone who thinks it’s too high,” Qualls said. But on average, they’re exceeding the wage growth. The average wage earner needs 30.2 percent of their income to buy a home.”

Lack of inventory for builders and developers, and the fact that sellers are staying in their homes longer, are reasons for lack of sales.

“I think real estate in Wilson County and Middle Tennessee as a whole is going to do well,” she said. “If we can knock out some of those issues that are concerns I think we’d do a lot better.”

For more information on the real estate numbers, email [email protected]

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