Maine Residential Market Overview - Best Quarter of the Year!
The third quarter brought a noticeable seasonal shift in inventory and sales, making it the busiest and most vibrant period for Maine's real estate market this year. It was a mixed bag of real estate tales - ranging from intense bidding wars for coveted single-family homes in the Portland area to the less fortunate fate of overpriced listings that lingered without securing acceptable offers, eventually leading to strategic price reductions until finding the elusive "sweet spot."
In terms of numbers, the overall volume of single-family homes and condominiums declined by 11%, with a 19% drop in the number of units compared to Q3 2022. However, there was a promising uptick of about 25% in both volume and units compared to the previous quarter of this year.
The median price for single-family homes in Maine witnessed a solid increase of 7%, reaching $375,000. However, the number of homes sold dropped by 22%. It's worth noting that this was the lowest number of homes sold during a third quarter in Maine since 2013. With limited inventory, the properties that did come to market, and were priced well, sold quickly, with an average selling time of just 9 days (compared to 6 days last year). Selling at the list price became the standard in Q3.
Condos experienced a significant median price increase of 9.5% compared to the same period last year, reaching $399,500. The number of units sold saw a modest 5% drop, and condos took an average of just 6 days to sell. On average, sellers received offers above their asking prices, much like in 2022.
Seasonal Pick Up
Prices remained stable compared to the previous quarter, but the number of sales increased. Q3 ended with the highest home prices ever in Maine's history, matching Q2 of this year. It marked the strongest quarter of the year, with demand remaining robust, even though some overpriced listings had to adjust prices and spend more time on the market. Some buyers stayed on the sidelines due to higher interest rates and stabilized rents, resulting in a more subdued market compared to the active years of 2021 and 2022.
Maine Residential Market Forecast: Q4 2023 + Beyond
As we move into Q4 2023, Maine's residential market is expected to maintain its strong performance. High-demand areas are likely to see continued price growth, with competitive markets experiencing multiple offers and waived contingencies for desirable properties. However, with the holiday season approaching, we anticipate a quieter market. Historically, demand tends to soften during the colder months, leading to slower sales and reduced buyer activity.
Interest rates in the high 7s have led some buyers to delay their moves, but there are always those faced with life changes and first-time homebuyers are still entering the market. Some first-time buyers are seizing the opportunity to invest in multifamily homes while enjoying the benefits of homeownership. Thanks to Fannie Mae's reduced down payment requirement to 5%, prospective owner-landlords can now acquire these properties more affordably and with greater ease.
But what about Portside?
We're delighted to share that we had an exceptional quarter, in fact, it was our best third quarter in the history of our company in terms of sales volume. We proudly ranked as the #2 brokerage in Maine for sales volume. Our dedicated full-time career agents work diligently to provide top-notch service to our clients, supported by a robust in-house database of listings and a collaborative culture that sets us apart.
There you have it – the latest update on the Maine real estate market!
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