The January 2019 real estate sales data has revealed what I believe, will be the trend for 2019.
The direction has moved to a neutral position.
Irrespective what the inventory data may show, less than three months of housing inventory, the market is neutral; favoring neither sellers or buyers.
The caveat for January’s report has to be pricing. The average and median sale prices compared to last month are declining. Any matrix you want to use reflects the same conclusion. Comparing data to last year is of little value, other than from a historical perspective. Sometimes, one can glean the direction a market heads for a given period; not necessarily the value, just guidance.
Real estate does not necessarily follow historical norms; it is all about demand for a given period and the community.
How will the softening market affect you?
Given the direction of actual sales pricing, the most recent data on asking price does not seem to correlate; asking price of homes has increased. Either the sellers or their agents have this belief that heading into spring will bring a pricing spike or they are ignoring the data and going the greed route. Either way, my gut tells me disappointment will follow.
If you are a buyer, it will depend on your time horizon. For sellers, it depends on your motivation for selling.
I am willing to have that honest conversation with you.