Each Friday, the executives of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty write about luxury, trends, business and more in the advertising pages of the Mansion section of The Wall Street Journal. Below is CEO Robbie Briggs' letter of April 21, 2023.
FROM MY PERSPECTIVE
It is rare to witness all the dynamics that have been impacting our housing markets virtually all at once.
We’ve been having overlapping periods of rising mortgage rates, fragility in the economy, declining sales, increased prices, low inventory and strong buyer demand — though not necessarily all at the same time. Yet, this is the environment in which we find ourselves as we closed out the first quarter of 2023.
In 2022, data on properties going under contract in the last quarter of the year — always a leading indicator for the months to follow — pointed to a down first quarter for 2023. As anticipated, both sales volume and the number of homes sold decreased significantly compared to the same quarter last year, in every market we serve. The declines are definitely not for a lack of buyer demand: Properties are trading for the highest and best offers in our marketplaces. A home that is well-situated, well-priced and move-in ready is commanding multiple offers and a premium price.
One of the biggest reasons for the drop-off in sales is the shortage of inventory in the face of this demand. Compared to the first quarter of 2022, inventory this quarter was down in Dallas, Tarrant and Collin counties. There are buyers waiting for homes — but sales cannot improve until there are more properties to sell. We encourage homeowners who are thinking of selling, but who are sitting on the sidelines, to list their homes now and take advantage of the incredible buyer demand that still exists. Due to the continued influx of people moving to North Texas — a phenomenon expected to continue well into the 2030s — the trends we have noted in our marketplaces are not quite the same as those seen at the national level.
Never a dull moment! Come get some insider perspective at briggsfreeman.com/market-moves. I hope you find our report informative — and I invite you to contact one of our expert agents, any time. They are the best sources of advice and expertise for all your real estate needs — no matter if market is hot, cool or anywhere in between.