Needham Market Update: Fall 2011

The Needham real estate market is showing some signs of slowing. Comparing MLS and public record sales data from 2010 to 2011 (for the first ten months each year), the average sales price was slightly up from approximately $803,000 to $813,000. However, the total market volume was down with 229 sales from January – October 2011, versus 254 sales over the same period in 2010. In addition, updated data from the last four months suggest that the average sales price in Needham was $785,000. The average days on market has remained relatively stable at 93.

The most active area in Needham were homes priced from $500,000 – $600,000 with 46 homes selling so far this year; this is indicative of continued demand in the “starter” home market. There remains a more limited inventory in Needham for homes priced from $800,000 – $1,000,000, with only 37 homes selling in this subset. The upper end of the market and new construction segment remain active in Needham with 45 homes selling from $1,000,000 to $1,500,000. There were two Needham homes that sold in the $2,000,000 – $2,500,000 price range, which is a decrease from 2010 when six homes sold for over $2 million; it is notable that this drop, in part, lowered the total sales volume for the year. For additional sales data, please visit our Needham Real Estate page.

Needham’s current housing inventory has grown with 161 homes now on the market for sale. This is approximately a seven month supply based on this year’s absorption patterns (about 23 homes have been selling per month). The average listing price in Needham is nearly $1,035,000, which suggests that the market remains top heavy with new construction and higher end homes dominating the action. On the other hand, there are several overpriced and lesser desirable homes languishing on the market, which is putting a drag on market statistics.

The Needham real estate market has enjoyed several years of continued growth, bucking the trend of the poor housing market throughout the country. Overall, the Needham market remains relatively strong. For buyers, there is more opportunity with a higher caliber of homes for sale due to the now deeper inventory. On the other hand, sellers, for the most part, are still enjoying rising home values. Stable pricing, along with added supply should help keep the Needham market in balance.